Independent school is a huge investment for parents which ensures that children receive the best quality of education. The decision of whether to go for a single sex or co-educational school is a big one as both come with their own merits and drawbacks. We have teamed up with a private girls school in Hertfordshire to help you weigh up the pros and cons.
Pressure to Conform to Stereotypes
In co-educational schools, girls are more likely to feel pressure to fit in and assume gender roles. This can put girls off exploring traditionally male dominated subjects such as science, technology, engineering, and maths. In a single sex school, girls have the freedom to occupy these subjects without feeling “out of place” and can explore their passions.
The way that boys and girls view education and work together is very different as boys tend to be more competitive while girls enjoy working collaboratively. Single sex education can help boys and girls to learn in ways that are best suited to them, allowing them to get more out of their education.
However, while this may be true, a big factor for making this decision is socialisation and how it is affected in single sex education. Gendered classrooms reduce the opportunities that children have to work with the opposite gender and depriving them of this can inhibit their ability to work effectively with one another in the future. This is a key part of child development which co-educational schools cater to perfectly.
To tackle this problem, many single sex schools work with schools of the opposite gender to create opportunities for boys and girls to work together. This is usually through events such as theatre, music and debating events.
There is also evidence to suggest that girls and boys can have a positive influence on each other as girls inspire boys to work harder and vice versa.