General Article Single-sex schools breed high hopes

Topic Selected: Gender Equality
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A recent Ofsted report reveals that girls at single-sex schools are more likely to avoid preparing for ‘stereotypically female’ careers than their contemporaries in co-educational schools. Despite a downturn in admissions to all-girls’ schools, this report, alongside news that almost a third of independent UK girls’ schools are turning out 2012 Olympic hopefuls, suggests that it might be time to sit up and take notice of single-sex schools again.
In the recent Ofsted report Girls’ Career Aspirations, based on visits to 16 primary schools and 25 secondary schools, including 13 single-sex girls’ schools, it has emerged that girls in the UK are receiving poor careers education, making it difficult for them to take informed decisions about their future direction.
It seems that the traditional stereotypes are alive and well. Beauty therapy, childcare and hairdressing – careers which often go hand-in-hand with lower pay and fewer opportunities for progression – generally top the list of car...

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