Why choose a single sex boarding school.
Many parents worry about how their teenager will respond to members of the opposite sex and there is much talk about academic performance being different between boys and girls. Single sex education certainly has its advantages for both boys and girls.
The positives of single sex schooling
The adolescent years can be troublesome and the distractions of the opposite sex can detract from achieving academic excellence. Generally speaking a single sex school can focus specifically on the needs of that gender and develop activities that are particularly suited to that gender’s learning styles. Clearly in a boarding school environment it is important to regulate adolescent behavior both in and out of lessons and mixed gender schools may experience some issues with relationships between the students. A single sex boarding school can develop a teenagers’ independence without the distraction of relationships, allowing focus on leadership skills, sports skills and academic skills.
A program can be tailored to meet boys’ more physical needs with a greater variety of competitive sports and team building exercises. Boys tend to thrive in a competitive environment and respond better to a more structured approach to learning with very clear boundaries. Differentiation can therefore be by ability as opposed to gender.
The negatives of single sex schooling
Some parents are concerned that their son or daughter will struggle to form good opposite sex relationships if they attend a single sex school. Generally speaking, a good single sex boarding school will ensure that there are activities with neighboring opposite sex schools to enable development of these social skills. It is common to find two single sex boarding schools within a reasonable distance of each other, sometimes run by the same institution, in order to facilitate this social development. Not all boys learn the same way, some gain a lot from working with girls and vice versa so they may miss out on certain styles of learning in a single sex school.
Boarding schools single sex benefits
Many educational experts recognize that while boys and girls may develop at a similar rate academically, they often develop differently emotionally. A troubled teen boy will benefit greatly from positive male role models and a supportive environment that responds to his social, academic and emotional needs without the added concerns of opposite sex relationships. These schools work closely with their students to foster team spirit and cooperation which create many long lasting friendships and positive bonding between the students. This has been shown to improve academic performance as a friendly rivalry is a good motivator to success.
Choosing a single sex school with your teenager
It is important that your son or daughter is involved in the decision as to which school they attend. They may have reservations about attending a single sex school so will need to visit any such school to see the facilities and experience the atmosphere. Obviously, you as a parent may have strong opinions and want your child to attend a single sex school, but it will be more successful a decision if your child agrees with the choice!