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Sunday, March 14, 2004

Same Sex Public Schools

Wouldn't this solve the problem of gender bias in school? NPR's Talk of the Nation discussed this recently. I missed most of the broadcast, so you can fill me in, however, as a high school student, I was enrolled in both types, so I can give you my, ahem, educated opinion.

Freshman, sophomore and the beginning of junior year were spent in a co-ed Catholic high school. For the remainder of my high school years, I attended an all girls Catholic school. I was so much happier in the latter. The simple fact was, there were no boys around and therefore, fewer distractions. I was far less self-conscious, it didn't matter what you looked like when you got to school, there was no one to impress; I think it's safe to say that the teaching methods used were specifically adapted to females, since that's all they taught; and we were even spared idle sports coaches masquerading as real teachers between practices, favoring their players. It was just plain more comfortable and I got a whole lot more learning done.

A listener called in to say that her son was enrolled in a public school that was experimenting with single-sex education. It seems as if the results were generally positive, but the program would most likely be cancelled because of the additional expense to the school board in teaching subjects twice. Huh? If you have x number of students, and they're pretty equally divided by sex (an average of 105.2 school age males to 100 females according to the 2000 Census), seems to me you'd still have x students being taught, whether they're divided by sex or alphabetically, and no additional expenses. Right? Maybe I'm just not getting it.

Anyway, I think it's a great idea, don't you?

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