By Rehema Ellis, NBC News correspondent
When I first started researching this story on single-gender education I wasn't surprised to learn that some kids test scores improved. I was however, surprised to learn that, at least in the school we visited outside of Orlando, Florida, the boys showed considerably more improvement than girls.
By allowing the boys to move all about the classroom -- on the floor, huddled in tents, or in rocking chairs -- the teachers essentially allowed the boys' energy and creativity to run free. There was no insistence on learning by sitting at desks and quietly raising their hands and waiting their turn. Instead, the boys got to respond to at will.
It's a radical concept.
Were this to is happen in a mixed class, or even in an all boys class, in a public school with an untrained teacher, I suspect there's a good chance those boys could be seen as unruly or labeled A.D.D. -- Attention Deficit Disorder. Many parents, and teachers will tell you they think there has been a rush to judge fidgety boys as inattentive boys. Maybe, just maybe, the labeling is not totally correct.
Yes, there is a furious debate in this country about the merits of single-gender education in public schools. But whether you think it's the right way or the wrong way to go--
It is working for some. And there could be a surprise benefit: our nation's educators might be learning something about our children that goes beyond how to improve test scores.