The two styles of co- and single-gender education have often been contested. Annie Wright Schools (AWS) in the US is globally-known for its unique Upper School for Girls, and now its Upper School for Boys, this institution whole-heartedly believes in the many benefits of the single-gender approach.
Supporting the single-gender perks highlighted by the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools (NCGS) and the International Boys’ School Coalition (IBSC), Annie Wright has established an academic framework centered around student welfare.
One study made by the NCGS that correlates with the Annie Wright all-girls experience is the Dr. Linda J. Sax Report (2009). As it explains, students who attend all-girls schools are more likely to engage in college activities and have a much greater chance of displaying professional confidence upon graduation.
But how relevant is the role of single-gender learning in today’s everchanging education sector?
Inquiry-based programs for boys
Since launching the first class of the Annie Wright Upper School for Boys, professors noticed a strong sense of empathy and collaboration among students.
Without the co-ed classroom format, young men at Annie Wright feel less pressure to act a certain way in front of peers. By diminishing the taboos attached to displays of emotion, boys have a safe and trusted space to work on their personal growth and unravel their compassion.
Boys at Annie Wright have the freedom to question knowledge they are presented but also the freedom to question who they are during the most vital phases of education.
As AWS’s Director of the Upper School for Boys, Susan Bauska, explains, “There are many forms of leadership within the boys’ cohort and they are able to explore them all. It’s not just hierarchical and opportunities are not simply based on who is biggest, toughest, most handsome.”
She also adds that, “The all-boys experience is about relationships and understanding how to be partners and colleagues as well as leaders; relational leadership as opposed to conferred.”
Empowering education for girls
By effectively forming a learning environment that promotes educational equality and an atmosphere of acceptance, girls at Annie Wright are granted the flexibility and facilities to advance their expertise.
Since 1884, faculties at AWS have promoted relationships of support, trust and genuine care towards students. This school combines traditional techniques with contemporary concepts to create a balanced education, causing female learners from around the world to cherish their time at the school.
According to the Director of the Upper School for Girls, Jake Guadnola, Annie Wright empowers girls through the single-gender structure. “Without boys present, there are opportunities for girls to learn who they are and freely express themselves without the direct competition or pressure that can come in a co-ed environment.”
He also states that, “The girls are able to role model in the various leadership opportunities. The captain of the science team is a girl; the class president is a girl; all leadership roles are filled by girls, giving them the valuable opportunity to model and evolve their own independent leadership style.”
The Annie Wright advantage
All students from age three through to high school experience the Annie Wright advantage. By offering co-ed programs from preschool to grade 8, boarding and day options for grades 9-12 and separate Upper Schools for boys and girls, this is an influential institution that inspires lifelong learning.
With an abundance of accreditations and affiliations, endowed scholarships, community service programs and the beautiful location, there are countless reasons for you to send your child/children to attend Annie Wright Schools.
As the Director of the Upper School for Boys learned from her valued years at Annie Wright, “Having taught boys both in a co-ed environment and now in a single-gender one, I see a level of kindness and appreciation without the competition for attention from the opposite sex.”
She also respects that a single-gender learning environment may not be the right choice for every adolescent but that it’s great to have the choice. “We believe that this school provides a unique opportunity that sets students up for success.”
Single-gender equals graduate edge
At the Annie Wright Upper School for Boys and the Upper School for Girls, there’s a dynamic selection of leadership opportunities that enable students to unleash their professional and personal potential.
As observed in the International Boys’ Schools Coalition, students in a single-gender school have the chance to explore the full range of their character, innate creativity and imagination.
In a competitive world full of ambitious learners racing to secure their dream university degree or desired job role, it helps to develop these skills in the early stages of education.
That’s why single-gender schools grant students the graduate edge. Along with building confidence in the classroom, learners have the time and space they need to evolve into a self-aware global citizen.
Reaffirmed by the Director of the Upper School for Girls, “Academic classes are single-gender, but there are opportunities for intersection, providing social opportunities for boys and girls. With a coordinate single-gender campus that offers an all-girls program and an all-boys program, Annie Wright provides the best of both worlds.”
So, if you’re looking to enroll a student in an Upper School with a difference, Annie Wright welcomes all. Internationally-trusted for its supportive and engaging single-sex learning environments, it’s the best place for a student’s talents to prosper and grow.