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Pilot Launched For Single-Sex Classes

By RASHAD ROLLE

Tribune Senior Reporter

rrolle@tribunemedia.net

THE government has launched a small-scale pilot programme involving single-sex classes following a promise made by the Free National Movement in its last manifesto.

Education Minister Jeff Lloyd Lloyd, in 2017, said his party would “immediately” implement a pilot programme to separate boys and girls in classes and schools, adding he believed they learn differently and that studies show young adults thrive better in single-sex classes.

This week, Mr Lloyd said a small-scale pilot programme was launched in the 2018-2019 school year and officials hope to ramp up the programme after the pandemic.

“We’ve not done it on a whole scale (level) but we did have an attempt at it in Grand Bahama and we are seeing in at least one district where that is bringing some benefits,” he said. “We recognise that that is something that some of our young men and young women need particularly in early grades.

“Obviously, the pandemic and there was (Hurricane) Dorian…as soon as we are able to kinda put our feet back flat on the ground again and really move the education system more aggressively without having the challenges that we are faced with in the last year, definitely we want to expand that pilot effort that we are seeing some good success in Grand Bahama with, we want to expand that throughout the system.

“We just did it with one school to see how it would work and what is required in order for it to work. We did it with grades five (and six) where I think it’s most needed with students coming into eight, nine, ten years of age, that prepubescent year when the recognition of male and female now becomes more acute. That has been shown to be very effective.”

Mr Lloyd has noted in the past that he once attended an all-boys school. He was also the executive director of an all-boys programme, YEAST, for over 13 years.

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