St Peter’s Prep is a non-selective boarding school in Devon, offering a high-quality educational environment for children from Nursery to Year 8. Our pupils are given the opportunity to work in an array of ways, including through exploration and research, allowing them to acquire a mix of knowledge and skills.
Part of what makes our learning environment so successful is the fact that we are a co-educational institution. We believe that any child can contribute positively to our independent primary school, regardless of gender, and this inclusive environment is integral to a child’s social and behavioural development.
What Are Co-educational Schools?
Co-educational schools are the most common schools in the UK. They are a system of education that allows male and female students to be taught together in mixed sex classes and socialise together outside of lessons.
Below, we’ve explored just some of the benefits of co-education, and how it could help to shape your child’s attitude to the opposite sex in the future.
1. Learning to Cooperate With Both Sexes from an Early Age
One of the most significant advantages of co-education is that pupils learn to cooperate with both sexes, from an early age. Men and women work together at home and in the workplace, and pupils who attend a co-educational school are introduced to this type of collaboration well in advance of entering a working environment.
The mutual understanding that occurs as a result of being co-educated in schools, colleges and universities means that pupils know how to respect each other. Pupils are aware of each other’s strengths and weaknesses and, as such, can develop the ability to accept them as they are.
Why Send Your Child to a Co-educational School?
When you choose to send your child to a school with both girls and boys, they will benefit from higher levels of social skills, an increased self-esteem and it will better prepare them for a diverse world where both men and women play an important role.
This kind of inclusive environment teaches pupils about having respect for all of their peers, exposes them to varying viewpoints, and may even help to break down gender stereotypes.
Team-building activities during the early stages of education can also help both boys and girls recognise the importance of co-existing in a way that can only be provided in the co-educational system.
2. Co-education Increases Healthy Competition
Competition is an essential part of life and, in education, it’s vital to have healthy competition amongst peers, whether that’s in the classroom or when taking part in physical activities. For example, it is said that girls perform better in competitive sports at co-ed schools than at single-sex schools. This is due to being part of a diverse group, having more motivation and being around a higher number of more competitive students.
Not only does healthy competition drive pupils to feel passionate about subjects and strive for success, but it also helps children to cope with failures. When it comes to healthy competition with the opposite sex, co-education helps pupils to maintain dignity in the face of failure.
3. Overcoming Fears of the Opposite Sex
This collaborative environment, be it as a team or against each other, can help some children overcome a fear of different genders. Various behavioural differences can bring fear and hesitation to start a conversation with the other sex for both boys and girls. A co-education system provides a balanced environment where they will be compelled to talk to each other, thus establishing the means for positive relationships in the future.
This comfort zone created by co-education will shape children’s behaviour in the future; learning to work together at a young age ensures they can take these skills into later life and eventual workplaces.
4. Mutual Respect and Understanding of Both Sexes
A recent study has revealed that children tend to behave decently in the presence of the other sex, as long as they have been exposed to the opposite sex for a significant amount of time. In this sense, co-education is a key part of character building for both boys and girls, emphasising the importance of respecting and listening to those who are different from you. Misunderstandings can lead to quarrels among peers, be it at home, in the workplace or within educational institutions. The inclusive environment that comes from a co-educational system promotes a better understanding between children, reducing any discrimination and increasing respect towards each other, regardless of gender.
5. Increased Social Skills From Co-education
Children who are in co-educational schools have been said to demonstrate increased levels of confidence and comfort in social situations and find it easier to make friends of the opposite sex.
As well as increased social skills, it also boosts children’s self-esteem when learning in a co-ed environment. This is due to expressing opinions and views in front of the opposite sex. This increases levels of self-esteem, putting co-ed students at a distinct advantage throughout all stages in their life.
Here at St Peter’s, our pupils naturally work well together, regardless of gender, as a co-educational learning environment is a normality for them. As well as mixed classrooms, both boys and girls also participate in mixed gender sports, including cricket, hockey and rounders. Our pupils also enjoy many school trips that we offer to places such as Rome, France, Iceland and Sorrento, where all activities and lessons are of mixed gender.
If you’d like to learn more about our welcoming school or have any further questions regarding co-educational classrooms at St Peter’s Prep, please don’t hesitate to contact us today!