Benefits of Single-Sex Education

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Findings from the Harvard Study on effects of all-female secondary schools on student achievement and attitudes.

A study conducted in 1985 at the Harvard Graduate School of Education determined that significant benefits are gained by students in an all-female secondary school environment.

Young women attending an all-female high school show greater educational and personal gains than young men and young women in co-educational schools. According to the study, young women enrolled in all-female schools:

bulletset higher educational goals;
bulletperceive themselves as being in control of their own choices, values and quality of life;
bullethold more positive attitudes about school;
bulletachieve at significantly higher levels in reading and science;
bulletovercome traditional sex-role stereotypes;
bulletshow greater acceptance of friends who do well academically;
bullethave fewer absences and discipline problems; and
bulletdo more homework and watch less television.
Valerie E. Lee, Anthony S. Bryk
1985 Harvard Graduate School of Educational Research
(This study was printed in its entirety in the October 1986 issue of the "Journal of Educational Psychology".)

For 137 years St. Mary's Academy has been privileged to share in giving young women quality Catholic education during the formative high school years. Our goal has always been to help them grow in faith, knowledge, and self-confidence. We're proud of the solid background we offer through our college-preparatory program. It's nice to have this study confirm our tradition.

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