Friday, August 10, 2012

Same-sex schools. A yes by administrators, a no by students

Austin’s Pearce and Garcia middle schools in Northeast Austin are talking about creating
two single-sex schools.  Of nearly 500 students, 81% said they would not be interested in this kind of school, according to an online survey done in May.  Board trustee Cheryl Bradley supports the creation of the separate schools because she believes that this could help lower teen pregnancies and dropout rates.
This is something district leaders have been considering for as early as the 2013-14 school year.
My opinion on this matter deals with the cost.  The district estimates it would cost $860,833 more to operate the two schools as single-sex schools in the first year than they spent for them in the 2012-13 school year.  Even though more money will be spent I feel that this cost could help cut other costs the Texas government takes care of, for example, healthcare resources.  I know that amount is only after the first year, so I’m making a judgment only by this information.  Separating children could lead to fewer pregnancies which could have cost Texas hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Board President Mark Williams said he doesn't know whether single-sex schools are the answer but said he knows something must change.
I agree with Williams in that a change is necessary.  I feel that this is a good time to make this change because next spring congress will be back in session, and this could be a very strong debate topic for our state.  To further strengthen this point I’d like to point out that according to the CDC 825,000 students in grades 6 to 12 are having sex each year.  Maybe by cutting back the time they spend with each other will help cut this number back and bring Texas out of the top 4 states in America with high pregnancy rates.

1 comment:

  1. I do not agree with the idea of segregating genders. I think that plan would be as ineffective as teaching abstinence as the only option for birth control. Our education system in Texas is failing, and it would be irresponsible to use almost $870,000 on a hypothesis that has no proof of success.We cannot prevent teens from having sexual contact, and since that is done outside of school this idea is redundant.

    I think a better plan would be to improve the education and self worth of our youth. Teens with long term goals are less likely to become pregnant at a younger age. Statistics show that the more educated a woman is the less children she has. If a student receives quality public education and better preparation for the future, I think the teen pregnancy rates would decline. Practicing safe sex goes along with being educated, and conservative law makers need to stop being naive about the issue of teen sex. It is impossible to prevent teen relations, but with better all around education the teen pregnancy rates will decrease.