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Single Sex Education?
Why would anyone want to go to an all girls’ school? This is a question I have often pondered. Can you imagine school without the obnoxious comments from boys, football games, and gossiping about boys? This doesn’t sound like a lot of fun, does it? You girls may think about this and decide there are no advantages to an all girls’ school, but in reality, all girls’ schools have many. Believe it or not, having boys around is not the most important factor in our education. In fact, boys in the classroom are actually a setback. All girls’ schools are more advantageous than coeducational schools because there are fewer distractions, you will have a higher self esteem socially and academically, and you will be more successful academically.
Let’s face it, we are obsessed with boys. We act and dress with only a boy’s opinion in mind. Boys not only preoccupy our minds in a social setting, but in the classroom as well. We know that we know the answers to the questions in school, but we often avoid raising our hand in class. Why? We are afraid that the answer might be wrong, and the boys will laugh at us. Even worse, we might be right, and then they will think we are nerds! We also must confess that we tend to space out during lessons and daydream about the star quarterback two seats over. These distractions could be eliminated if boys are removed from the setting. Without them, we could focus on education rather than what they think of us.
Self-esteem is another issue that will improve with the absence of the male species in the classroom. In high school, there is an extreme amount of pressure to fit in. Some may not fit in, and some prey on others in order to fit in and increase their own self esteem. Usually it is the boys who will tease us, whether it’s because they like us or they want to get a laugh out of their friends. This teasing can crush our confidence and cause us to become very self-conscious. Without boys, we can confidently walk down the hallway without dodging annoying boys who relentlessly torture us.
Some may say, “What about other girls?” Girls can definitely be cruel and catty, but usually this bitterness towards another girl sprouts from a boy, whether she stole your boyfriend or he likes her better. How many times have you found yourself gossiping with your friends about how you are much prettier than the girl your crush likes? Girls would get along better if there were no boys around to fight about. Boys will not get in the way of friendships, which are far more important than relationships, making the high school experience much better for a girl.
A single sex atmosphere will also increase our self-esteem academically. Studies prove that women do better in single sex schools and have higher self-esteems (Cooner, Knight, and Wiseman 90). In coed classrooms, boys receive more attention, whether it is criticism or praise, than we do (Cooner, Knight, and Wiseman 91). How often does a teacher stop a class to yell at a typically obnoxious boy? We therefore feel ignored by our teachers. This has a dramatic effect on our confidence in the classroom. In an all girls’ school we can receive our teacher’s attention more frequently and ask questions without feeling embarrassed. More attention means more praise, which we clearly deserve. The increase in attention from our teachers will help to increase our academic self-esteem.
The most important advantage of an all girls’ school, however, is academic success. Did you know that coed schools are structured around the development of male students? Writing, reading, and math concepts, such as long division, are introduced to us when a boy’s mind is ready to process and understand the information (Cooner, Knight, and Wiseman, 90). The fact that we were developmentally ready to understand this information a few years ago is ignored. I find that completely unfair and I’m sure that you can agree. Girls develop math and verbal skills faster than boys do, so we rarely experience any challenges in the classroom. No wonder we are so bored! Our boredom can negatively affect our achievement. I reiterate the fact that the teachers often ignore female students, even high achieving females. This discourages us from exerting ourselves in their schoolwork. Why bother pulling an all-nighter preparing for a presentation when a boy is going to receive more attention for his presentation anyway? An all girls’ school is structured around our development, which poses an academic challenge to us. We will then strive to succeed and in turn receive praise from our teachers. Our increased interest in our schoolwork improves our attitudes as well as our grades, which will help us in the future. Better grades will increase our opportunities to attend good colleges and get good jobs. Our increase in confidence will prepare us for these jobs that we will be able to get with a good education.
You still may not be convinced that an all girls’ school is better than a coeducational school because you are wondering how it’s possible to meet boys if they are not in school. Don’t worry girls! There are tons of places to meet boys. There are boys everywhere (except in all girls’ schools of course) including the mall and your neighborhood. Let’s consider another fact. If an all girls’ school exists in your town or nearby, chances are an all boys’ school is not far off. If not, where would all of the boys go? Trust me, the boys are looking for us girls as much as we are looking for them. Clearly, this issue is not an obstacle in your social life.
Life without boys? It sounds worse than it really is. You can now see that having boys in the classroom is a setback for us girls. Without them around, we can focus on our valuable education. We will have all attention focused on our work and our needs, which is very beneficial to receiving an effective education. We can also focus on forming friendships with other girls in the school without worrying about them stealing our boyfriends. Catty gossip can be eliminated from everyday school life, allowing us to fully concentrate on our education. Our education should be our first priority in life, and an all girls school in turn makes us their first priority, improving the quality of our education.
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