In a boys only school context strong bonds of friendship and camaraderie with peers and teachers develop in such a way that the influence and impact of positive role models has its maximum effect. Boys will gain confidence in their academic potential without the fear of being compared to girls, who often mature more rapidly during adolescence.
An all boys‘ school focuses on boys and their specific scholastic and social needs. This can be the key to their academic success. Girls in general outperform boys academically all the way through secondary school, and increasingly even at undergraduate level. Boys – in society at large – are being short-changed and are losing confidence.
Here are some key advantages of boys only education …
1. Boys and girls learn differently.
There is now a convincing body of research that suggests that boys do learn differently from girls (eg. Boys and Girls Learn Differently! by Michael Gurian). Teachers in a boys’ school understand how boys learn and as a result are more successful in implementing more appropriate techniques for better teaching and learning (for example, lively banter, more competitive activities, learning as a team, more movement …)
2. The focus is entirely on boys.
When you don’t have to spend time planning the curriculum, lessons and events to include both sexes, you can focus on boys’ needs exclusively. Boys enjoy different kinds of activities from those enjoyed by girls. They develop physically, mentally and socially at a different pace than girls, especiallyin the critical teenage years. A boys’ school allows a boy to remain a boy for as long as he needs to. And that is important for his balance and wellbeing.
3. Less social pressure
Boys mature later than girls. Learning how to cope with and relate to girls on a daily basis in a mixed school can cause added stress in those early adolescent years; that’s exactly the time a boys’ school is able to come to the rescue and build confidence without the social distractions of a mixed setting.
4. Boys become comfortable with non-traditional subjects and activities.
In a coed secondary school, boys often shy away from joining activities such as choir and orchestra. To get involved in these activites might be considered effeminate. In a boys’ school, you can’t have a choir or an orchestra unless you and your classmates pitch in and make it happen. Breaking down the stereotypes that society has imposed on what are considered appropriate activities for boys is one of the many things boys’ schools do very well. And that makes for better, more natural and confident young men, able to cherish and develop their talents.
5. Boys learn that there are many routes to manhood.
Again, traditional stereotypes can be dismantled and replaced by a more thoughtful approach to maturation. Not every boy can be a star athlete or a maths genius. Competition is fine and to be encouraged. However, boys can also learn that the strong bonds of friendship, teamwork and social interaction are what matter most in later life.
What about interaction with girls? That is indeed a very important part of any boys’ school’s social calendar. Typically a boys’ school will have an established relationship with a nearby girls’ school. We hold social evenings, including dances, at the College. A range of such supervised activities gives both sexes ample opportunity to enjoy each other’s company. This works to their mutual benefit.
These are just a few of the ways that boys only schools can benefit boys.