This story is part of an occasional series from KUT called Gender Divide, which will tell stories about the communities in Austin ISD's new single-sex middle schools, while also exploring the debate over single-sex education.
Are there benefits to single sex education?
It's one of the major questions educators and parents are asking as more public schools nationwide create single sex campuses or single sex classrooms on campus. According to the U.S. Department of Education, there are 850 public single sex schools across the country.
UT Professor Rebecca Bigler is one person who says single sex education doesn't benefit students academically, or in any way.
Bigler studies gender stereotyping and social cognition in children. She also wrote a paper in 2011 about single sex education at the Ann Richard's School for Young Women Leaders, the first single sex school in the Austin Independent School District. The study argues single sex education doesn't affect academic performance, and increases gender stereotyping.
As part of KUT's series on single sex education called Gender Divide, KUT's Kate McGee spoke with Bigler about the national debate over single sex education: