It appears that a focus of this discussion will be on the recent notice of
"intent to regulate" published by the Department of Education. One
point is that the option for public single-sex education (for girls)
exists across the country. Notable examples are the Philadelphia High
for Girls, the Women's Leadership School of East Harlem, and Western High
School in Baltimore. In the case of Philadelphia, the presence of the High
School for Girls provides female students with approximately twice the
of slots to attend an academically oriented high school.
In addition, there is academic gender segregation within more traditional
schools. Recent data shows that female students are over-represented in
advanced classes, while male students are over-represented in what are
sometimes called "general" or "remedial" classes. Since the newest
are usually assigned to the "general" classes, while the most experienced
teachers reserve the "advanced" classes, a gender difference in quality of
education can frequently be observed.
I do not believe the status quo can be supported. Either OCR should
vigorously enforce existing regulations, and these regulations should be
revised to outlaw the three schools mentioned above, or the opportunity for
what amounts to a single-sex education should be made available to all
students. I don't have a personal preference either way.
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