The advantage and disadvantage of co-education and single sex education - Essay Example

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On the other hand, single sex education entails the presence of only one sex in a school, either exclusively boys school or exclusively girls…
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The advantage and disadvantage of co-education and single sex education
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Advantages and Disadvantages of Co-Education and Single-Sex Education Co-education is a system of education where both male and female students share the same school, including the facilities thereof. On the other hand, single sex education entails the presence of only one sex in a school, either exclusively boys school or exclusively girls school. Both systems have advantages and disadvantages based on the level of education, cultural and historical background, and the underlying student’s needs. However, research has shown that the advantages of co-education far outweigh those of single sex education (Collins, 2013). The students’ individual needs play an important role in establishing the kind of system that they can adopt. Despite co-education having several advantages, single sex education is the best in some areas and at certain times. Therefore, both co-education and single sex education have limitations as well as depicting strengths.
The proponents of co-education attribute it to the development of social skills. Single sex education is faulted for limiting the interactions between the students hence they are unable to fully develop their social skills especially with the opposite sex (Bali, 2012). This means that the students that are under the co-education are able to develop skills that will enable them to understand the opposite gender. In addition, the students are able to break their shyness hence they freely interact with the opposite sex. This boils down to the family, where a child that was exposed to the opposite gender will have a better chance of getting a mate, as well as having the skills to relate with one another. According to Collins (2012), social interactions begin at infant schools where the children are able to establish relations with both sexes.
Single sex education system ensures that sex-related distractions are minimized. Boys will give some attention to girls and vice versa especially during the adolescence (Ahmad, 2012). This can be detrimental to learning since time is likely to be lost in the process. This occurs when boys and girls study in the same institution as opposed to single sex education system. Co-education facilitates the diversion of the students’ attention from schoolwork to sexual-related thoughts and attractiveness. Some of the struggles in a co-education system include the perception by the opposite gender, immature romance, and boy-girl crushes among others.
In terms of academic performance, students from single sex education system do well as opposed to co-education schools. A research by Australian Council of Educational Research in 2001 indicated, “That both boys and girls who were educated in single-sex classrooms scored on average 15 to 22 percentile ranks higher than did boys and girls in coeducational settings” (Greenslade, Sarkis & Vella, n.d). It has been cited that though the co-education system allows social development, it does not create room for the differences in growth for both sexes. On the flipside, co-education system helps break sex stereotypes by helping the students realize the needs of the opposite gender. Since a single sex school provides limited interactions with the opposite sex, there are many stereotypes developed. However, since the essence of being in school is to perform and get to discover one’s strengths, the single sex education system provides he ideal environment.
In conclusion, both single sex education and co-education systems are advantageous in one way or another. An advantage for one system seems to be a disadvantage to the other. Based on the analysis of the advantages and disadvantages highlighted, single sex education system seems to be more performance-oriented.
Ahmad. (2012). Advantages and disadvantages of mixed-gender schools. Retrieved from
Bali, J. (2012). The advantages & disadvantages of co-education system. Retrieved from
Collins, M. C. (2013). Advantages and disadvantages of co-educational schooling. Retrieved from
Greenslade, R., Sarkis, M. & Vella, B. (n.d). Single sex schools vs Co-educational schools. Retrieved from Read More
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