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Girls more confident at single sex schools?


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#1 Kreme

Posted 11 January 2019 - 10:26 AM

I found this article interesting. It discusses a study on confidence of boys and girls in the single sex environment.

https://www.smh.com....110-p50qno.html

My daughter will commence at a single sex public high school this year. We didn’t specifically choose a single sex school, however our local coed school has a 65/35 boy/girl split. We really felt that wasn’t the right environment for her.

I went to a coed school and about 90% of the issues I had were with boys, who were so aggressive in their resentment of girls who were higher achievers than them. They were vicious and systematically pulled apart the self confidence of myself and many of my friends. I’m glad my daughter won’t experience that in high school.

I think the main argument for coed is that it mirrors real life, but when real life disadvantages women, then maybe sheltering them from that for a few crucial years isn’t such a bad idea?

#2 jayskette

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:32 AM

she can experience real life in uni. i do find that more boys than girls act up and dont want to study in junior school, once they leave in year 10 it gets better.

#3 Ruf~Feral~es

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:37 AM

My DD is at a girls school and DS at a boys school.

I know a lot of people feel strongly both for and against - and I don't want this to become a public/private debate either, but I am strongly in favour of the single sex education - FOR MY KIDS, at this time, and in my experience.

It also probably helps that I went to single sex until year 9, and then co-ed for the final 3 years.

I like the way they both teach the kids.  The girls are not competing or even thinking about boys a lot of the time.  The focus on STEM is huge in the girls school, girls hold all the leadership positions, etc etc etc.  

And with the boys - they schedule the day totally differently, they are focused on what works for boys without having to consider how girls learn (lots of variables there just in the singe sex cohort).

The new headmaster at our sons school who has come from a co-ed school, commented on the sheer number of boys involved in music and drama - especially the school choirs.  Something he never experienced at the co-ed because it was 'daggy and embarrasing' for boys to sing together.   Obviously some did it, but not to the extent of the boys at this school.

There are many pro's and con's, but I personally think the pro's outweigh them.  DD has thanked me several times for sending her to a girls school, after spending time with her friends at Co-ed.  

It may help that I have a child of each gender.  With friends and family, they still experience a lot of time with people of the opposite sex.  And looking at the 15 year old girls now, the boys are starting to appear - in conversations, parties, not to mention the combined school music and drama etc that my kids do.  So they are certainly still learning how to interact and deal with each other - just not in the classrooms or at lunchtime.

I think it depends a lot on the school and the child.  But I'm a fan.

#4 avocado toast

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:42 AM

The private school near me is co-Ed however the boys and girls are in seperate classes and only together during break times. Thoughts on this? I like the idea of it. My kids are 10 years off yet but I hope to be able to afford it when the time comes

#5 Moo-me

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:42 AM

I went to single sex high school and really enjoyed it! I think I am more confident because of it. No boy drama. We all just had fun. But every experience is different.

#6 Lallalla

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:50 AM

It definitely depends on the school and child surely?!

My partner and his youngest brother went to an all boys boarding school and it did great things for them. Their other brother went to a coed school and would have drowned at the school his brothers went to.

#7 BECZ

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:51 AM

I don't know, I'm torn on this one. I haven't read the attached article yet, but there always seems to be arguments both ways.

Our eldest is starting high school this year at a girls only school.  I would much prefer a co-ed, but it was the best school for her within a reasonable distance.  They also do a lot with the boys school, so do mix with the opposite sex.  

I went to a co-ed the entire time and found it highly amusing seeing girls that went to a girls only school at uni freeze up and not be able to communicate with boys.   Only to sit ther giggling in shock after he walked away that a boy had actually spoken to them and saying, OMG, I didn't know what to say!

All of my kids 2 girls, 2 boys enjoy spending time with the opposite sex at school and quite often have more friends (and occasionally a best friend) of the opposite sex.  I don't know how my kids will go, but any local co-ed high schools had disadvantages we couldn't ignore.

Edited by BECZ, 11 January 2019 - 11:54 AM.


#8 born.a.girl

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:51 AM

It's certainly a topic that attracts polarising opinions.


Our daughter went from her truly awful state school, to a school that just happened to be a single sex private school, that suited her.   Amazingly, this school was fractionally closer to us (about 1k), and was the only private school I would have considered among the half dozen or so that would have been feasible.

In theory it was for years 4 - 6, but she was so happy there I didn't have the heart to pull her out and send her to the state secondary, which had been the plan.  We even had an option of state co-ed, or state girls'.


It's hard not to be influenced by your own experiences. As a teenager I was significantly underweight, and in and out of hospital.  What's called bullying now, was just referred to as 'teasing' back in the sixties.  Most of the problems came from the boys, who loved to mock the idea that any boy would be attracted to a bag of bones.

Daughter went through the single sex private school till year 12,then started making heaps of male friends at uni.  She wondered why I'd chosen a single sex school (although that wasn't actually part of the consideration) when males could be such good friends.  I do wonder if the reason she has such good friendships with males is because she wasn't exposed to them at their worst.  (Only child.)

#9 EmmDasher

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:59 AM

It’d be much more interesting to study the reasons for that difference. I can think of social & economic factors which might drive that difference which don’t have much to do with single sex education or gender not even taking into account individual differences or variation between cohorts and school attitudes. It is interesting but of not much substance in itself IMO.

#10 Ruf~Feral~es

Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:59 AM

Quote

I went to a co-ed the entire time and found it highly amusing seeing girls that went to a girls only school at uni freeze up and not be able to communicate with boys.   Only to sit ther giggling in shock after he walked away that a boy had actually spoken to them and saying, OMG, I didn't know what to say!

I hear this all the time, but have to admit, I have never seen it IRL.  There are shy girls at co-ed schools who blush when a boy looks at them, just as there are in single sex.

When I moved from a girls school to co-ed, I wasn't a quivering mess at the sight of a boy.  And when I look at my DD and her friends - or my DS and his friends - I never see any of them scared, worried, stressed or 'unable to cope' with the opposite sex.

I've spent a lot of time around adolescents through work too, and still have never seen this reaction.  There are just shy / outgoing kids.  Not sure the gender mix of their schooling is the cause of the reaction.

#11 Nanns

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:04 PM

I am a fan of single sex education. They know how to deal with the sex and are experts in the area.

Boys and girls also provide distraction. They have enough with social media.

I do worry about them learning to behave/ have confidence around girls because they are few and far between in our life.

#12 Lucrezia Borgia

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:04 PM

a co-ed school, but with single sex classes (for some or all) sounds like the best way to go. best of both worlds. i think the evidence seems pretty strong that girls perform better across the board in a same sex environment.

i went to an all girls school all my life - i wasn’t a quivering mess when i got to uni. i liked being around the guys. i also liked my single sex school (but to be fair i never knew any different) - i can see how boys at an early stage might have been a distraction - however it would have been nice to have some more social interaction with boys.


#13 Lifesgood

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:04 PM

I find it unsurprising. I went to co-ed schools and remember vividly the repeated minor put-downs from boys. I have no doubt it contributed to my level of confidence and sense of self worth as a female.

My DD is at a girls-only school.

#14 Feral Grey Mare

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:07 PM

My DD and DS both went to our local public, co-ed primary and high schools. The only hostility DD encountered was from other girls and she formed some strong and lasting friendships with boys in her peer group. DS was completely non-academic so was not in a position to feel threatened by girls being "smarter". He too formed some lovely friendships with girls in his year.

My brother teaches at a boarding school which was initially single sex but later became co-ed. He said the biggest impact was that the boys became a lot nicer once there were girls in the mix.

My own experience was similiar to DD's in that I was targeted by a rather nasty group of girls in my year.



#15 TrixieBelden

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:09 PM

View PostBECZ, on 11 January 2019 - 11:51 AM, said:

  

I went to a co-ed the entire time and found it highly amusing seeing girls that went to a girls only school at uni freeze up and not be able to communicate with boys.   Only to sit ther giggling in shock after he walked away that a boy had actually spoken to them and saying, OMG, I didn't know what to say!
.
.

My experience was very different. I went to a single sex school and at the time would have said it made no difference to confidence or achievement. At uni though - I couldn’t believe how well-trained the majority of girls from coed schools were when it came to being quiet if a boy was talking. They were very much less likely to speak in class, to volunteer to be first in pracs and anatomy labs, or to volunteer for leadship roles. On two occasions a male student simply demanded that a female student hand over a book she was already using and both times, the female student did so without a moment’s hesitation. It was bizarre, especially coming from an environment in which all the authority figures were female.

I’m not a giggler and nor were most of my contemporaries at med school, whether from coed or single sex schools. The experience you’re describing is quite foreign to me, fortunately.

ETA I find many of the assumptions about single sex environments for young women to rely fairy heavily on stereotypes born of misogyny. Girls are gigglers, superficial, b**chy, mean etc.  If as a woman you’re not a d*ck, and you have female friends who aren’t dicks, then there’s not really a legitimate reason to conclude that the majority of young women are dicks either.

Edited by TrixieBelden, 11 January 2019 - 12:14 PM.


#16 BECZ

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:10 PM

View PostRuf~Feral~es, on 11 January 2019 - 11:59 AM, said:



I hear this all the time, but have to admit, I have never seen it IRL.  There are shy girls at co-ed schools who blush when a boy looks at them, just as there are in single sex.

When I moved from a girls school to co-ed, I wasn't a quivering mess at the sight of a boy.  And when I look at my DD and her friends - or my DS and his friends - I never see any of them scared, worried, stressed or 'unable to cope' with the opposite sex.

I've spent a lot of time around adolescents through work too, and still have never seen this reaction.  There are just shy / outgoing kids.  Not sure the gender mix of their schooling is the cause of the reaction.

Yeah fair point. I agree that not everybody is going act/react the same way.  This is what I personally saw and yes I did see others that went to single sex schools that didn't act this way.  These particular girls weren't what I would typically describe as shy and it surprised me that 2 of them had brothers.  Mind you they were younger and I do wonder if this would have been different if they were used to older buys being around.

I loved going to a co-ed school as I found hanging around girls all the time got too b**chy.  As boring as the boys talking about the surf, golf, soccer etc. was, it was so nice to get away from the b**chyness.

#17 BECZ

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:12 PM

View Postavocado toast, on 11 January 2019 - 11:42 AM, said:

The private school near me is co-Ed however the boys and girls are in seperate classes and only together during break times. Thoughts on this? I like the idea of it. My kids are 10 years off yet but I hope to be able to afford it when the time comes

This sounds absolutely perfect to me!

#18 TrixieBelden

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:16 PM

View PostBECZ, on 11 January 2019 - 12:10 PM, said:



Yeah fair point. I agree that not everybody is going act/react the same way.  This is what I personally saw and yes I did see others that went to single sex schools that didn't act this way.  These particular girls weren't what I would typically describe as shy and it surprised me that 2 of them had brothers.  Mind you they were younger and I do wonder if this would have been different if they were used to older buys being around.

I loved going to a co-ed school as I found hanging around girls all the time got too b**chy.  As boring as the boys talking about the surf, golf, soccer etc. was, it was so nice to get away from the b**chyness.

Yeah, classic example of internalised misogyny.

You’re not a b**ch, but all the other girls are. Because it’s an inherently female trait (except for you).

#19 kimasa

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:16 PM

I went to an all girls school for year 7-12 and I can certainly say that was not the experience of me and those close to me, I had an obsession with my body image, my weight, my breasts (or lack thereof) and my skin. I probably would have had the same issues in co-ed, but I was in an environment 5 days a week where if the buttons at the front of your dress weren't pulling at your bust you got groped while someone yelled "PECS NOT BREASTS", and teachers brushed it off as "You're all girls here, you've all got them, just forget about it".

#20 BECZ

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:19 PM

View PostTrixieBelden, on 11 January 2019 - 12:16 PM, said:



Yeah, classic example of internalised misogyny.

You’re not a b**ch, but all the other girls are. Because it’s an inherently female trait (except for you).

No, not at all!  I was b**chy at times too.  I just found that boys didn't act that way and it nice to have a different if note boring topic of conversation.

#21 somila

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:20 PM

From the article:
"I'm not for a single second advocating single-sex education. My thrust was to simply say that ...  the lack of self-efficacy can be driven by the belief that certain roles are undertaken by men."


My perspective is that segregation according to gender is not the answer in the grand scheme of things.

Edited to fix strange font format-y thing.

Edited by somila, 11 January 2019 - 12:22 PM.


#22 Oriental lily

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:24 PM

I think it would  good if there was was more flexibility in state schools . We have three secondary state schools in about a 6 km radius in my town and it would be great if two were single sexed and the third mixed . In smaller towns with only one secondary school perhaps segregated classes .

My eldest daughter has always had more boys as friends than girls so for that reason I think a co Ed school would always be better for her . She just seems to find more like wise interests with boys ,she also had a speech delay as younger so found the social interactions with girls harder .
My middle daughter would flourish anywhere . Nothing seems to ruffle her feathers . She has only girls and friends and think boys are putrid so I think a single sex school would be fine . She is 10 so things might change in the future .

My third daughter seems to currently have more friends that are boys but she seems to be adaptable . She is incredibly sensitive though so would crumble under a bullying situation .

I was horribly bullied at school . Not by boys though but girls . I was a bit plump at school and this group of horrid girls would make a thump thump thump noise whenever I walked by .

I pretty much was ignored by the boys, which suited me fine .

#23 Apageintime

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:26 PM

I transferred from co-ed to single sex for year 11-12 and could believe seeing all these girls running around at lunch, and engaging with sports!

and my male friends have said the same, at co-ed they wouldn't have joind the drama team or choir, but at all boys... well when the choir is all men, can't be seen as too girly.

I'm sure it doesn't suit every child, but it definitely works for some.

#24 Lucrezia Borgia

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:27 PM

boys engage in behaviour that could be described as b**chy (i mean b**chy in itself is a loaded gendered term - as it can really only apply to females) - but boys gossip, judge people based on appearance, back stab, be passive aggressive, make fun of others etc etc.


#25 Jane Jetson

Posted 11 January 2019 - 12:35 PM

View Postborn.a.girl, on 11 January 2019 - 11:51 AM, said:


It's hard not to be influenced by your own experiences.

I'm aware that I'm *thoroughly* influenced by my own experiences, and given how much sexual harassment, assault and general denigration went on at my co-ed public school in the 80s, I deliberately chose a single sex school for my daughters. This is not because I believe girls and boys have intrinsically different learning styles - at all - but because I believe boys' negative behaviour goes relatively unpoliced in high schools and that girls are expected to accommodate this.

In my experience, co-ed school means put-downs from the boys from Day One which teachers ignore. They get to speak in class, they get to shout you down, they get to determine whether you're ****able or not - this being the only key thing about you - and to declare this loudly and constantly. If you're low socio-ec and get tits early, like my sister, you're going to get a lot of being groped and called a s*ut while you're 13 and have never kissed a boy.

Topping Science did me no good when there was A Boy Who Was Good At Science to applaud and admire. I was pushed away from such unfeminine pursuits despite my test scores, which were better than those of the resident genius. I don't want my girls being expected to take second place to a boy who's less capable than them just because they don't have penises.

I look at the thread here where a boy was sexually harassing a young girl via text, think about the fact that there are entire subreddits devoted to supporting the victims of such creepy boys (and men) and frankly I want to reduce my girls' contact with boys until a little further into their teenage years, when they've got a few years of being taken seriously under their belts and can better handle being treated like pieces of meat.

And yeah yeah not all boys etc etc.




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