Benefits of All-Girls

St. Mary Academy - Bay View has been educating and empowering young women since 1874. We are dedicated to the unique learning styles of girls and are proud to promote a culture of achievement and sisterhood. At Bay View, a girl occupies every roll. They are encouraged to speak their minds, without interruption, and use their voices first in the classroom, and then beyond, ready to serve a vulnerable world.


As members of the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools, we think there is no better place to find research about the benefits of all-girls education. We invite you to visit their website or stop by the Admissions Office at Bay View to pick up some of NCGS’s materials.


Considering a Girls' School?

We encourage families to ask questions of themselves and their daughter’s current school such as:

  • Are girls at my daughter’s school really on the front lines of leadership? Are they class president? Are they editors of the student newspaper?
  • Are girls at my daughter’s school actively called upon and encouraged to participate in class?
  • Are there fewer girls than boys in the upper level science and math classes?
  • Does my daughter’s school value girls’ athletic teams as much as the boys’ teams? Are budgets, staff and facilities equal?

These are just a few sample questions that are good for families to reflect on and think about as they are seeking the best school for their child.


Want to learn more?
Studies provided by NCGS

New Study: Fostering Academic and Social Engagement: An Investigation into the Effects of All-Girls Education in the Transition to University
Author(s): Tiffani Riggers-Piehl, Kyungmin Lim, Karen King
Institution: Higher Education Research Institute
Year of Study: 2018

Fostering Academic and Social Engagement: An Investigation into the Effects of All-Girls Education in the Transition to University focuses a lens on how graduates of all-girls schools today compares to female graduates of coed schools in terms of their academic characteristics and readiness for university. Drawing data from the well-known Freshman Survey conducted by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at the University of California, Los Angeles, the researchers used multilevel analyses to separate the effect of an all-girls education from other influences including socioeconomic differences, race/ethnicity, parent education, and the characteristics of the high schools attended. The data reveals a consistent portrait of girls’ school graduates who are more engaged academically and socially than their co-educated peers.

In summary, the researchers concluded that when compared to their female peers at coed schools, girls’ school graduates:

  • Have stronger academic skills
  • Are more academically engaged
  • Demonstrate higher science self-confidence
  • Display higher levels of cultural competency
  • Express stronger community involvement
  • Exhibit increased political engagement


Steeped in Learning: The Student Experience at All-Girls Schools
Author(s): Dr. Richard Holmgren
Institution: National Coalition of Girls’ Schools, Center for Evaluation & Education Policy at Indiana University
Year of Study: 2015

Girls attending all-girls schools are more likely to have an experience that supports their learning than are girls attending coed schools (independent and public). In particular, students at all-girls schools report:

Higher Aspirations and Greater Motivations

When asked what motivates them, 94.9% of students at all-girls schools (compared to 93.5% of girls at coed independent schools and 86.7% of girls at coed public schools) agree or strongly agree they are motivated by their desire to succeed outside of school and 83.9% by their desire to learn (compared to 81.0% of girls at coed independent schools and 66.1% of girls at coed public schools).

Challenged to Achieve More

Nearly 80.0% of girls’ school students report most of their classes challenge them to achieve their full academic potential. This is compared to 72.3% of girls at coed independent schools and 44.3% of girls at coed public schools.

Actively Engaged in Learning

Girls’ school students report more engagement with course-related speaking and writing than their female peers at coed schools. In particular, over 95% report participating actively in class discussions compared to 93.5% at coed independent schools and 80.4% at coed public schools.

Prepared for the Outside World

Girls’ schools encourage students to link concepts across problem domains. Over 80% of students at girls’ schools report having connected ideas from one area to another compared to 77.1% of girls at coed independent schools and 61.2% of girls at coed public schools.

Comfortable Being and Expressing Themselves

An atmosphere of respect provides girls’ schools students the opportunity to share their views openly and learn from peers. Girls’ school students report giving and receiving respect at higher rates than do their female peers at coed schools. Nearly 87% feel their opinions are respected at their school compared to 82.9% of girls at coed independent schools and 58.1% of girls at coed public schools.

Greater Gains in Academic and Life Skills

Almost 95% of girls' school students report their work has contributed to successfully reading and understanding challenging materials, which compares favorably to girls at coed independent schools (92.5%) and coed public schools (76.6%).

Simply put, girls' schools teach girls that there is enormous potential and power in being a girl. 

National Coalition of Girls' Schools