Exclusive Vs. Co-Ed Schools: Which is Better?

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Well, with so many achievers and celebrated personalities hailing from both, and so much debate going on about one being better than the other, it’s just natural for parents to have a hard time deciding—unless of course they already got their established biases. So let’s discuss some of the grounds where these debates are rooted.

Educators and parents alike say that the single sex grouping factor in exclusive schools can give students more confidence and better shape their character. They get to identify with almost everybody in their school because they have at least one common ground: gender. Thus, they need not worry about gender discrimination. In some countries where women rank lower than men in society, there will inevitably be a discrimination or clash between the two sexes even among youngsters in school. Boys will be given priority and girls will have limited options probably in academics and extra-curricular activities. Thus, girls may develop an inferiority complex or a mindset that they can’t do some things because they aren’t capable.

Gender discrimination may also show in subjects or electives that students choose. Many school boys in co-ed schools think twice about taking or concentrating in subjects and activities that are branded as feminine, such as literature, music, arts and crafts, and designing. That’s because they consider the girls who may make an unwanted impression about them. Likewise, some girls in co-ed schools think twice about joining clubs and classes which always tend to get more male students than females.  

Students in co-ed schools get to socialize with people of the same age from the opposite sex regularly. Thus, the ability of students in these schools to better socialize with any gender is generally higher. On the same vein, not a few graduates of exclusive schools admit that they had or still have difficulty interacting with members of the opposite sex. And they think it’s because of their limited exposure in school.

Homogeneity in class composition, however, proves more advantageous for students who are mentally or physically challenged. They have lesser tendency to compare themselves to others too much and are able to find more support from more people of the same gender.

Many experiments also show that students in exclusive schools get to focus better in their studies than those in mixed gender schools. That’s because they don’t have too much issues to deal with. A couple of examples would be the simple issues of whether one’s “crush” is looking at him or her and who likes whom in class. These may be very shallow issues to adults but they can be quite disturbing to adolescents.  

Still, some studies support the view that children will have a more holistic and better education—socially, emotionally, and mentally—if they study in an environment where both sexes are present. Research says that co-ed school students are able to better perform academically and handle themselves well in public. With the presence of members of the opposite sex, a student is able to regulate his or her violent tendencies better than in an all-boys or all-girls environment.

Well, all these data and opinions may not help clear up the issue or answer the question of which school type is better. But these should at least guide parents on what to consider when determining the right schools for their children.


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