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Mixed-sex schools are also known as co-education schools in America. Mixed-sex school systems are becoming quite common in different parts of the world although there is a big debate on which system of schooling, between the mixed-sex schooling system, and the single sex schooling system, is more advantageous to both the individual students/pupils and the general society. This paper is a research paper that focuses on the advantages of mixed sex schools as an education system. The research is based on the views of different authorities in the field of education.
After the research, a translation of the research findings is made followed by a cover letter. The following are the main broadly agreed advantages of mixed sex schooling system. To begin with, mixed-sex schools provide a perfect avenue for healthy competition between boys and girls (Thomson, n.p.). Thomson argues that this can be attributed to the fact that human beings are naturally inclined to compete with the members of the opposite sex.
Boys will do all their best to perform better than the girls, and the girls will also try very hard to outshine the boys in the academic performance. This therefore provides an opportunity for healthy completion between boys and girls in school. The second major advantage of mixed schooling system is that the system is that the mixed give the students conducive environment to grow socially in an all-round manner, i.e. to be able to integrate and to relate well with people of both sexes (Co-ed schools are better schools, n.
p.). This is a very big advantage to the students because even after school, the students will be able to interact freely, and in a healthy manner with the members of both sexes. This is very important considering that the main aim of education is to train people for life and education aims at making the students able to fit well in the society.
Social science research have shown that people who have gone through the mixed-sex system of education tend to integrate better in the society than the people who have undergone the single sex system of education(Researchers, n.p). Mixed-sex system of education therefore is very important for the healthy social development of the students. The third major important advantage of the mixed system is that it helps the students to develop self-esteem and self confidence (Benefits of Co-education Environment, n.p). In mixed sex schools, girls and boys learn and interact together. This interaction gives the students an opportunity to develop self-self esteem and self confidence. Interacting with the people of opposite sex gives one a courage to interact before any group of people, i.e. whether women or men. A research in social sciences has shown that a person who learnt in a mixed-sex school or environment tends to have a stronger self-esteem than those who studied in single sex schools (Researchers, n.p.).
Again, people who have studied in mixed schools are able to interact with the opposite sex quite freely because they have developed the self esteem and the self-confidence to be able to interact with the people of the opposite sex. On this view, professor Simon Baron-Cohen, professor of Developmental Psychology at Cambridge University, said that single sex schools denies the students the opportunity to interact and to learn about each other ( Advantages of Co-education-the Cathedral School, n.p.). This fact therefore shows that mixed sex schools are indeed very important for the holistic development of an individual. Another scholar who strongly supported the idea of mixed sex school system was Plato, an ancient Greek scholar. Plato was one of the earliest scholars to advocate for a mixed-sex system of education. Plato said that “Co-education creates a feeling of comradeship” (Advantages of Co-education-the Cathedral School, n.d online). Plato therefore was of the idea that both girls and boys should learn together, in the same institution, without any form of discrimination based on sex.
The fourth advantage of mixed-sex school system is that it is more economical to maintain mixed sex system of education than it is to maintain single sex system of education (Pansare, n.p.). This is because, first, to maintain same sex education system we must build many schools that will accommodate the two different sexes .But this is not the case with mixed sex system of education. With the mixed sex system of education, we don’t need many schools because both boys and girls would study in the same schools. Secondly, single sex system of education requires that teachers are specially trained to manage the two different systems of schooling, but with the mixed sex systems of education, there is no need for this special training because the teachers would only be trained to handle both girls and boys in mixed sex schools. These two facts show that on the economic perspective, mixed sex system of education is by far the cheaper and the more efficient option. This is especially so considering the fact that many counties are undergoing economic difficulties.
Instead of wasting massive resources on building many infrastructures for the single based systems of schooling, such countries, especially countries in the developing world should embrace mixed sex system of education and focus on quality of education rather than wasting their meagre resources on unnecessary school infrastructures that are associated with single sex system of education. The other advantage of mixed sex education system is that, in the mixed sex school system, life is really more balanced because of the mutual interest between the two genders (Researchers: Coed Schools Provide societal benefits over Single Sex classes, web.). Both boys and girls find a lot of fun doing things together as opposed to doing things separately. This therefore means that there will be more productivity in mixed sex schools than in single sex schools because in mixed sex schools, the students will do their activities heartily, for instance projects, drama and concerts. Students in mixed sex schools therefore find their school experiences more fun and enjoyable as opposed to the rather drab experiences of the students in the same sex schools. Mixed sex schools therefore should be encouraged because they make the life of the students more enjoyable and they also yield better result as opposed to the single sex schools.
Another major advantage of the mixed sex school system is that in the mixed sex system there is normally more discipline than in the single sex system of education (Advantages of Co-education: Cathedral School, online). In the mixed sex system of education, as the parents of one school noted “the boorishness of the boys is tamed by the civilising influence of the girls; girls cattiness is tamed by the more relaxed approach of the boys. It’s a win-win situation” (Advantages of Co-education: Cathedral School, online). This observation is true because men and women are different in many respects. The two sexes are different in many ways and they complement each other in different ways. This fact therefore shows that for the balanced and holistic growth and development of both boys and girls, it is necessary that the two sexes learn and grow together so that they may complement each other. The mixed sex schools therefore are better in terms of discipline than the single sex schools.
Mixed sex system of education also provides a more realistic way of training young people to take their different roles later in life (Benefits of Co-education, n.p). Mixed sex training helps to break the misconceptions of each sex about the other and provides an excellent opportunity for building a strong relationship between the two sexes later in life. What this means in essence is that since young people are trained in school to undertake their different roles later in life, it is imperative that they are trained together as boys and girls, because the roles that they will take later in life will involve the both sexes. Single sex schools therefore deny the young people the opportunity to learn how to deal with both sexes later in life. This lack of experience on how to deal with both men and women can pose a big challenge late in life for the young people. Mixed sex school therefore are by far the best training places for the leaders of tomorrow.
The other main advantage of mixed sex school system is that in mixed sex system, boys and girls support one another in various activities, and this mutual assistance results in good performance in their academic endeavours. As Dr. Leonard Sax notes, “….boys and girls respond differently to certain educational methods. For example boys learn better with direct questioning while girls respond to a gentler approach” (Weiss, 2). This in essence means that since boys and girls have differences in their approach to educational methods, boys and girls have different ways of understanding things and they can therefore assist each other in understanding things better. This fact shows that mixed sex school system affords the students a golden opportunity for boys and girls to assist one another in their academic activities and this leads to higher productivity in their various academic activities. Mixed sex school system also encourages heterosexual relationships and discourages homosexual relationships (Ipson, n.p).
Research and surveys on the relationship between one’s sexual orientation and the school that one has attended have showed that there is indeed a strong correlation between the type of school system that one attended and their sexual orientation: research findings show that mixed sex school environment tend to encourage heterosexual relations, while single sex school environment tend to be a breeding ground for homosexuals (Ipson, Web). These facts therefore show that mixed sex school system is quite ideal for encouraging heterosexual relations among the students. This fact again shows that mixed sex school system have a big advantage over the single sex schools. Mixed sex school system also help boys and girls to overcome the stereotypes and the myths that they have about each other’s gender (Javed, 7). In most cases, as children we are told a lot of stereotypes and other false things about the opposite gender. For instance, some communities believe that women cannot match up the capabilities of men in some fields and that men are very poor in some areas of interest that are predominantly understood to be a preserve of women (Javed, 7). But in a mixed sex schooling system, both girls and boys work together and this enables them to gauge firsthand the capabilities and the weakness of each gender in different fields.
This therefore enables them to overcome the many stereotypes that they have grown up with about the opposite gender. Mixed sex school system therefore offers a perfect opportunity for both girls and boys to have a firsthand experience of the opposite sex and this enables them to prove wrong the stereotypes and the myths that they have grown up with about the opposite gender. This overcoming of the stereotypes and the myths about the opposite gender encourages healthy competition and also helps the boys and girls to have a better relation with the members of the opposite sex. Mixed sex system of education also enables effective division of labour (Javed, 9). In mixed sex system of education, students can divide work based on gender in such a way that the boys are given activities that are more suited for men and girls are given activities that are better suited for ladies (Javed, 9). This kind of division of labour will of course depend on the prevailing circumstances. For instance in some circumstances, girls can do indoor activities in the school like decoration, while boys on the other hand can perform outdoor activities like slashing glass in the school compound. This effective division of labour will lead to more efficiency in the school activities.
The division of labour also will make the students to enjoy their activities more because they will be doing what they are best suited to do. Mixed sex system of schooling also enables the boys to be more eager, enthusiastic and adventurous (Javed, 8). A research has shown that boys in a mixed sex system of education are more eager and enthusiastic than their counter parts in the single sex system of schooling. In mixed sex system of education, boys will be more eager and enthusiastic in their various activities in the school, for instance, boys in a mixed sex system of schooling will readily voice their opinion in front of the girls, so as to win the girls admiration (Javed, 8). Boys in the mixed sex system of education will also behave well, so as to win the girls admiration. This therefore shows that mixed sex system of education are quite ideal for the boys- it motivates them to enthusiastically work very hard so as to please the girls and to eventually win their admiration.
In the above research findings, we have seen that the issue of which schooling system is more advantageous between the mixed sex schooling system and the single sex schooling system is a controversial debate among the experts in education. However, many evidenced based research have shown that single sex schooling system has no any substantial advantage over the mixed sex schooling system. Conversely, scientific research has shown that there are indeed many substantial advantages of mixed sex schooling system over the single sex system of education. Many experts in education sector are widely agreed that there are many and far reaching advantages of mixed sex system of schooling over the single sex system of schooling. As we have seen above in the research on how mixed sex system of schooling are advantageous, research have shown that mixed sex system of education offers the students a singular opportunity to interact with the members of the opposite sex, and this interaction enables them to learn more about their opposite sex.
Consequently, the mixed sex system of education environment is very conducive for the healthy and holistic social development of the students/pupils. There is plenty of evidence as we have shown in the research above in support of the claim that the students or the pupils who have gone through the mixed sex system of education are more able to integrate and to fit well socially in the society than their counterparts in the single sex system of schooling. This ability to fit well in the society and to relate better with the members of both sex enables the students from the mixed sex system of schooling to be better leaders in the society, for in the larger society, leaders are supposed to interact and to deal with both men and women. Mixed sex system of education therefore prepares the students holistically for life in and outside of school.
The other main research based advantage of mixed sex system of education is the fact that the mixed sex system of education promotes healthy competition between boys and girls. As a result, the healthy competition leads to hard work and to better performance. The critiques of this view argue that while the mixed sex system of schooling may promote healthy competition between boys and girls, mixed system of schooling however makes the students to lack concentration in their studies for they become too concerned about the members of the opposite sex and they start even dating within the school. The critiques of mixed sex system of schooling therefore argue that this premature and untimely sexual relations in mixed sex system of schooling causes lack of concentration among the students. Mixed sex schooling critiques therefore argue that although mixed sex system of schooling promotes competition between boys and girls, this competition therefore does not automatically lead to better performance because of the lack of concentration among the students associated with the mixed sex system of schooling.
But a critical look at this criticism of the critiques of mixed sex system of schooling shows that the claim is weak and not based on facts. This is because although the mixed sex system of education offers the students an opportunity where they can start premature sexual relations that can interrupt their studies, there is however strict regulations and rules in mixed sex system of schooling that prohibit these kinds of unhealthy sexual relations among the students. As we have shown above, and contrary to the view of the critiques of the mixed sex system of schooling, there is actually more discipline in mixed sex schools than in single sex schools. Also, the students in mixed sex schools develop respect, over time, for their opposite sex colleagues in the school. This therefore also promotes discipline in school, and the boys and girls learn to cooperate better and they actually enjoy a lot doing things together; they support each other according to one’s ability and this actually leads to better performance.
The other evidence based advantage of mixed sex system of schooling is that the mixed sex system of schooling is cheaper and more efficient system of schooling than the single sex system of schooling. Evidence has shown that the single sex system of schooling is very expensive because of the many infrastructures required to maintain it and also because of the need to train teachers who can handle boys and girls separately. In mixed sex system of schooling, the government would get more output by using less input, as compared to the massive input and less output associated with the single sex system of schooling. In conclusion, mixed sex schooling system has indeed many evidence based advantages over the single sex schooling system. This fact shows that the mixed sex system of schooling should be promoted by various governments, while the single sex system of schooling should be abolished.
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