As the idea of introducing boys to Dunnotar girls school in Reigate is considered, a local mother gives her reflections on co-educational vs girls-only schools
I have always wanted a single sex education for my daughters. And I appreciate that some say that this creates a protected and false environment for them. I think that is true, and I also think that is a good thing!
It gives our tricky, pubescent darlings, a space to grow without male observance and competition. I personally think it is the progressive and empathic choice, appreciating the different learning styles that dominate the two sexes.
The news that Dunottar was threatened with closure felt hard for my family as, where we live, there is no other practical girl-only option. I even discussed moving house to a place nearer a suitable school with my husband. That’s how serious I am.
So now the idea of a co-ed Dunottar has been raised. Knowing of a lot of boys who would benefit from the non-judgmental, supportive ethos of Dunottar, where every child is cherished for their unique abilities, I think this may be a very smart move. And certainly one that will offer us the best chance of preserving our brilliant school.
Let me be clear, this is not my ideal, yet I believe in compromise and now is the time for us to be creative and exploratory. One thing that this whole episode offers us as parents and as a community is the opportunity to demonstrate to our kids how we deal with challenge and ambiguity.
It may be the biggest lesson the school gets to teach us and our children.
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