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Book of the week : Sex and the single school

Same, Different, Equal: rethinking single-sex schooling
By Rosemary C Salomone
Yale University Press pound;22.50

Rosemary Salomone's powerful analysis of the pros and cons of single-sex schooling opens impressionistically in Harlem, New York. Here, in 1996, the school district set up the Young Women's Leadership School, the city's first girls-only public secondary school.

There are 365 students, all African-American or Hispanic and all selected. They wear simple uniform and no jewellery, and all take maths and science to college-entry level. A Barbie doll hangs from a classroom ceiling, mute testimony to students' views of the American Woman. Everyone, from the principal down, is addressed by first name. The school is, says Dr Salomone, "an oasis of excellence and hope in a desert of poverty, crime and despair".

The Issue in Friday magazine on March 12 will focus on gender differences in learningnbsp;nbsp; nbsp;

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