Wednesday, 06 December 2006 00:00
Single Sex ClassesWritten by Valerie Alker
Education officials in Charlotte County are considering making a move to single sex classes in one middle school.
Depending on feed-back from the community, math and science classes at Murdock Middle School may be segregated next year according to gender. Charlotte school’s spokesman Mike Riley says school superintendent Dr. Dave Gayler is considering the move based on the results of new research.
"he had a lot of research data. it was good data. it showed improvements in test scores for both boys and girls and the thing that was appealing somewhat was the discipline problems really dramatically dropped."
Riley says data shows some middle school students learn better in single gender settings. He says before any changes are made – parents, students and student advocates will have ample opportunity to talk about it with school officials.
If the School Board gives its approval, students at Murdock Middle in Charlotte County may find themselves in single gender math and science classes next year. The classes would teach the same material but would use gender-based teaching methods. School Spokesman Mike Riley says research indicates it’s an effective approach to teaching middle school students.
"socially, especially in middle school, their hormones are just spiraling off on every piston and they are a unique group of individuals and sometimes girls don’t want to show how smart they are and they want the boy to like them – you get individual situations like that."
Other school districts, including Manatee County’s have already decided to separate the sexes in some schools – and more have been considering it since a federal law was loosened in October.