The Independent is reporting claims from an independent school head that girls who attend single sex schools face being at a “huge disadvantage” in the world of employment because they may be unable to communicate with boys.
“They may have a clutch of A*’s (at A-level) and a first class degree but if they cannot meaningfully communicate with male colleagues they will be at a huge disadvantage,” said Richard Cairns, headteacher of top-performing independent school Brighton College – itself co-educational.
In an article for the magazine Independent School Parent, he predicts the gradual demise of single-sex schools, arguing that parents are “voting with their feet now – there are now a third fewer girls’ only schools and half as many boys’ schools as there were 20 years ago – a trend I believe will continue”.
“Boys in single sex schools tend to create their own their own artificial hierarchies where only those in the 1st XV rugby team are truly valued while girls-only schools sometimes suffer a degree of emotional intensity that can lead to bullying.
“Contrast that with a co-educational world where girls admire the boys who dance, sing or act and so, therefore, do the boys. Contrast that, too with a mixed environment where the emotional intensity of all girls is diluted by the boys.
“In other words, there is a place for everyone and an environment where girls and boys can be themselves.”…
We reported comments on a similar theme from Richard Cairns a few months ago, although in that case he seemed more concerned with boys’ schools.
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