ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF CO-EDUCATION
Co-education means the teaching of both boys and girls in the same educational institution under the same roof. It also means imparting the same education to both the sexes without any distinction. This system aims at bringing boys and girls together. It allows free mixing of sexes without any inhibition.
The great Greek philosopher Plato had propagated the system in ancient times. He believed that co-education would create a feeling of comradeship between boys and girls. He also felt that if boys and girls taught together, it would develop their personality to the maximum. He advocated that it was the only method by which boys and girls could become useful member of the society. In ancient India, co-education was widely practiced. This system prevails in Europe and U.S.A. in India, more and more co-educational institutions are being established today.
Co-educational system has many advantages to its credit. The chief argument in favour of co-education is economy. It would be foolish to have two educational institutions at a place where only one will do. India is a poor country and it cannot afford to open separate schools everywhere for boys and girls. The second argument is that co-education promotes better understanding between men and women. After all, they have to co-exist in life. The girls will not feel shy in the presence of the boys. The boys will also not tease the girls. Thirdly, co-education will create a healthy competition among them. This will help them to work hard and pay serious attention to their studies. A feeling comradeship will also be developed. Thus they will have a balanced development of their personality. Boys will learn to behave decently in the company of girls. They will dress properly and talk decently. If taught together, they could no longer consider girls as strange creatures. Co-education will provide discipline schools and colleges.
Of course, some people have pointed out certain disadvantage of the system of co-education. According to them, this system is against our tradition. In their opinion, co-education lowers tone of discipline. It brings about shift in the mental make-up of the students. Learning is pushed to the background and sex attraction reign supreme. It will develop immoral relationships between boys and girls. Co-education promotes loves of fashion and extravagance. But these arguments do not hold today.