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My principal has recently suggested moving our 9th Grade academy toward single gender classes.  That would essentially divide our 140 students into a male and female group in the core classes.  I am curious to see if anybody has seen any research to support or refute this? Let me know if anybody has any experience with this issue.

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I have always been interested in single gender classes and had inquired about this years ago. There were legal issues that tied back to the days of "separate but equal" assuming that you are talking about a public school. I have not done any research on this, but that is where I would begin. I am looking forward to reading more about your progress with this proposal.
Andrew - I don't have any official research to support or refute this. I know that I've alway been interested in the topic and have surmised that single-sex education would remove many of the problems we face in the classrooms/halls of our schools. I think stories like this one: http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2010/05/urban... would probably not have occurred if the school wasn't single-sex.
Actually, my school has had a single gender Freshman Academy for about 4 years or so. Our student's improvement after just the first year was around 40%. Not only does it keep students from being distracted by their male/female counterparts, but research shows that the female and male brain simply learns differently. Their is a Single Gender Conference that our faculty attends annually called NASSP. It is going to be in March this year. This is the link http://www.nasspconvention.org/. It offers great presentations and strategies from Single Sex Educators all over the U.S. and Canada. I think you will enjoy it.

Hope this helps,

Jaclyn Boyd
Booker T. Washington High School
Memphis, TN
Ms. Boyd,
Thank you for the heads up. My faculty is currently going through a good deal anxiety over this change and I am hoping to equip them for September. I am curious about the training that your faculty went through when you made the change to Male and Female Academies.

Andy Hall
The English High School
Boston, MA
I wasn't at the school for the initial implementation. I think what you should do now is really dive into what motivates your female and male learners. For one, when I teach my boys they enjoy more competitions and game oriented activities. My girls, on the other hand, enjoy relaxed environments discussing literature and reviewing on the couch in our class etc. I teach a reading class. Over the summer really check out some resources online and the link I sent you yesterday has books available also. Hope this helps some.

Thanks,

J. Boyd

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