When it comes to schools, there are two types: mixed school and single-sex school. The former is also referred to as co-educational or mixed-sex school where students are both men and women while the latter only accepts students who are either all boys or all girls. This can also referred to as an exclusive school.
Coed schools offer numerous benefits to students but there are also drawbacks that result from attending schools or educational institutions with male and female enrolled students. Let us take a look at the opposite sides of co-educational schools.
List of Advantages of Coed Schools
1. Offers School Diversity
One of the good things about enrolling students, especially kids in mixed-gender schools is the diversity that this decision offers students. If young boys and girls are given exposed to diversity in an early age, they will find it easier to adapt in different environments when they grow up. The diversity this set-up offers is significant in teaching other forms of diversity such as cultural and social.
2. Teaches Equality
With both male and female students attending classes together and participating in class activities, these students will be able to learn about equality between men and women. As opposed to single-sex schools, coed schools treat students equally with no preference to sex, thus, when assignments are given, there are no special treatments and students are graded and evaluated on their performance and not on gender.
3. Promotes Socialization
Some people who were not educated in coed schools often find it hard to socialize with the opposite sex since they are not used to interacting and talking to members of the opposite sex. Conversely, students enrolled in mixed classrooms experience being with members of the opposite sex and become familiar with existing with them. The familiarity will teach them about co-existence and at the same time prepare them when they get out of school where they will have to deal with different kinds of people.
4. Prepares Students for the Real World
Another advantage of co-educational schools is that students are exposed to a normal environment in the sense that society is composed of both men and women. If they are taught and motivated to interact with both sexes, they can use this skill when they graduate in college and be in the real world where men and women co-exist, especially at work.
5. Improves Communication Skills
If a student is studying in a school or university with members of the opposite sex, he or she will be exposed to men and women as well as communicate with them. Since both genders have different ways of expressing themselves, studying in coed schools can help an individual with communication skills.
6. Challenges Sexism
A school with mixed students offer an environment that gives men and women the chance to express themselves and share their views which will teach boys and girls about equality when it comes to sexes. This is because in this educational environment, students are allowed to discuss and debate. As a result, they will be able to explore each other’s perspectives and their differences when it comes to views. This will make it easier for them to agree to disagree.
List of Disadvantages of Coed Schools
1. Can Result to Distraction
One of the downsides of mixed schools where there are both boys and girls is that students might not be able to concentrate with their studies. This is more possible to happen with students who are in high school and college because these are the levels where attraction among students can happen. If a boy has an infatuation on a girl or they will be in a relationship and something goes wrong, this can affect the studies of these students. Studies show that students in single sex schools are able to perform better in academics as opposed to coed students because they are not conscious about themselves and are less distracted.
2. Boys Differ from Girls
Boys are said to be better than girls when it comes to Math while females are better in communications skills and Language than males. Having said that, problems may arise when it comes to performance of students in the classroom. Say, the subject is Mathematics and the boys perform better than girls. The teacher might need to come up with techniques to teach the lesson and this can eat up much of the time intended for more lessons. Moreover, participation in class will not be balanced since one gender might be performing well than the other. This can also affect the atmosphere and the flow of lessons in the classroom.
3. Academic Performance
Some educators who teach in single-sex schools that most students perform better academically in all-boys or all-girls schools than in coed educational institutions. This is because the co-existence of boys and girls in the classroom can lead to shyness or intimidation of some students. When these happen, students who will be intimated or embarrassed to participate in class will end up not performing well, academically.
4. Early Relationships
Students spend most of their time in school and in a coed school, this means boys and girls have more time to be together and interact with one another. One disadvantage is that this can also lead to engaging in relationships and eventually sexual activities. If these kids are still immature and careless, these actions can result to early pregnancy and early marriages.
5. Less Confidence
In a classroom setting where students are all boys or all girls, students are more confident to speak up and perform in class because they are not conscious of what their classmates, who are members of the opposite sex, will think of them. According to a study, girls are less confident in coed schools compared to the confidence shown by female students in exclusive schools for girls. This is because they tend to be shy around their male counterparts especially in participating in class or during recitations. This is more evident in some subjects like Math, Science and Technology.
6. Attention Given to Students
In a coed setting, boys are considered to be independent and able to do things for themselves while most girls, with the exception of some, are seen as fragile. This is a common way of thinking which is not advantageous all the time. With this attitude, girls tend to get more attention and get more assistance when they need help as opposed to boys who are expected to figure things on their own, most of the time.
There are both advantages and disadvantages in coed schools and parents should take these into consideration when deciding on what school to enroll their children at. This is because the school environment has a great impact on the students.
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.