Friday, May 14, 2010

All-Girls Education

What if this class were all women? How might it be different? Would you learn better, or at least differently? How might you be taught? How might you learn? How might you grow?

Excellence Girls in Bed-Stuy, the Spence School on the Upper East Side.

These are the answers I looked to find with a magazine article exploring the rise—or return, for after all, a century ago, this is how it was—of single-sex education in America, and particularly New York. Like many things, there are many camps surrounding this issue, those who argue boys and girls learn and behave differently, particularly at a younger age, and thus need to be separated. At the same time, there are those who simply believe in offering different choices to parents, advocates of charter schools and the like, a rationale I was not expecting to find. To further humanize this story, beyond talking to academics and experts, I talked to recently founded charter schools and decades-old private schools, all all-girl, to see what their approach is to single-sex education and how it has changed over the years, even visiting one of each to observe their approach first hand. The results may surprise you.

You Go Girls: How two all-girls schools in New York are reshaping the educational landscape

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