Coeducation refers to the education system in which students of both sexes are put together in the same educational institution unlike in singe sex schools. This paper seeks to make an argument in favor of coeducation as opposed to single sex schools. The paper will look into the arguments against coeducation and those in favor of the system with the aim of establishing an opinion in support of coeducation.
Arguments against coeducation
There are arguments that single sex schools are better than coeducational schools. Proponents of single sex schools, for example, highlight the fact that every student will perform better in academics in a singe sex school as compared to a coeducational one. This claim is particularly raised with respect to girls (Boarding, 2008).
There are also arguments that students can learn more efficiently in the absence of their opposite sex which is viewed as a distraction. It is claimed that boys and girls learn in different ways thus the need for segregation (Lind & Brzuzy, 2008). Reported cases of sexual harassment by boys over girls in coeducational set ups also triggers arguments against coeducation (Chrisler & McCreary, 2010).
Arguments for coeducation
Research results and expertise arguments have favored coeducation. A number of opinions have at the same time been raised in support of argument that coeducation is the best for children as compared to single sex education.
Proponents of coeducation argue that it develops a level of confidence among the children especially with respect to expressions in the presence of peers of the opposite sex. According to a research that was conducted in schools in Canada, it was revealed that children who attended institutions of coeducation could comfortably express themselves in the presence of the opposite sexes.
This establishes a foundation for development of children of both sexes as their needs in life, whether academic or in work places in future, will require inter-sex relations. A developed confidence and relations with people of the opposite sex is, for instance, a tool to interpersonal relations that helps to eliminate discrimination among individuals.
There is also a recognized level of respect among the sexes in coeducation. This also lays foundations for respect of either sex as the children grow up. Again, this respect will contribute to cohesion between the sexes leading to increased understanding and subsequently reduced conflicts.
The availed opportunity for social interactions between the two sexes in their educational set ups also promotes developments of ability of individuals to easily integrate and make relations with individuals of the opposite sex. This promotes constructive relations such as friendships among individuals of opposite sex. Eventually, these individuals will develop an environment in which girls and boys, men and women can freely solicit for help from one another (Ridley, n.d.).
There are also mutual benefits that both sexes derive from each other as they interact in a coeducational set up. Girls are, for example, identified to be standard setters. Their nature to have the best has been identified to be a source inspiration or motivation that encourages boys to work hard to attain these standards.
Coeducation will with this respect be seen as a tool for shaping the boy child into a focused individual. Girls similarly learn from boys. Their careful nature often limits their explorations into new ventures whereas this is like a hobby to the boys. As a result of the interactions in coeducation set ups, the girls learn the boys’ moves of explorations into problem solving. The tendency to specialization in some subjects by gender also makes coeducational set ups beneficial to both sexes.
Girls are, for instance, identified to be efficient in organization for instance in time management. Though boys are adventurous into problem solving, they are poor in organization and may not work out their problems in time. Interactions between the two groups can thus be a learning avenue for both parties into success (Pomerantz et al., 2002).
Bernal (2006) argued that coeducation system had the impact of increasing the number of registrations in a particular institution. The diversification attracts both sexes thus increasing diversity into social learning. Respect and appreciation for one another is thus developed for better social interactions in the society (Bernal, 2006).
Apart from the mutual motivational aspects that are beneficial to both sexes, there is a provocative motivation that is induced by females into males. An achievement of a female in a mixed sex set up is for instance identified to force men into extra effort to attain that particular achievement (Bank, 2011).
Discussion and conclusion
Though there are arguments on either side of coeducation, the critics do not have a strong basis for rejecting coeducation. Sexual harassment that is claimed to take place in coeducational setups can still be experienced outside the schools. Besides, there is notable evidence that both boys and girls develop friendly interactions in coeducational set ups. Coeducation is thus better in that it also helps to develop students psychologically into social interactions.
Bank, B. (2011). Gender and Higher Education. Baltimore: JHU Press.
Bernal, L. (2006). Challenged by coeducation: women’s colleges since the 1960s. Cork, Ireland: Vanderbilt University Press.
Boarding. (2008). Advantages of single sex schools. Retrieved on June 15, 2011 from: http://www.boardingschoolsinfo.com/advantages_girls.html
Chrisler, J & McCreary, D. (2010). Handbook of Gender Research in Psychology, Volume 1. New York, NY: Springer.
Lind, A & Brzuzy, S. (2008). Battleground: M-Z. Westport, CT: Greenwood Publishing Group.
Pomerantz et al. (2002). Benefits of coeducation in the early years of learning. Retrieved from: http://www.iggs.qld.edu.au/content/standard.asp?name=Benefits_Coeducation
Ridley, A. (n.d.). The benefits of coeducational environment. Retrieved on June 15, 2011 from: http://www.ridleycollege.com/ftpimages/180/download/download_group4184_id171639.pdf