Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2010


In 2003, three Philadelphia middle schools with similar demographics and failing student achievement levels were taken over by an educational management organization. Two were transformed into distinct single-sex academies within the original school buildings and a third remained coeducational. Students did not have the option where to attend, eliminating selection bias. Through funding from a Spencer Foundation grant, data was collected on 1,000 students for 2002-03 through 2004-05 to examine impacts of gender-segregation. We find students in single sex schools witness greater improvements in standardized test scores, with boys gaining the most, and no differences on Rosenberg’s Self-Esteem Scale.


Originally published in Pennsylvania Economic Review, Volume 17, No. 1 & 2, Fall 2010. Copyright by the Pennsylvania Economic Association.