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Helping Girls Grow

When educator Donna Johnson pitched the concept of a girls charter school specializing in science, math and technology, the community response was overwhelmingly positive.
When educator Donna Johnson pitched the concept of a girls charter school specializing in science, math and technology, the community response was overwhelmingly positive.

Single-gender charter schools that operate independently of school districts are an emerging trend, and research indicates they are more conducive to learning.

Initially, the San Diego Unified School District's legal department balked at the idea of a girls-only charter school. Lawyers cited state law requiring it to accept all students. Federal law also prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender.

That prompted Johnson to revise her application to say that her school would be open to all. The school's mission statement, however, stresses producing female leaders in math, engineering, science, technology and political science.

Johnson has a doctorate in educational administration from the Teachers College at Columbia University and did her dissertation on high-achieving black girls in suburban schools.

This article, written by Helen Gao, appeared in the October 27th, 2005 publication of the San Diego Union Tribune.

Published Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2005

Helping Girls Grow

When educator Donna Johnson pitched the concept of a girls charter school specializing in science, math and technology, the community response was overwhelmingly positive.

Single-gender charter schools that operate independently of school districts are an emerging trend, and research indicates they are more conducive to learning.

Initially, the San Diego Unified School District's legal department balked at the idea of a girls-only charter school. Lawyers cited state law requiring it to accept all students. Federal law also prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender.

That prompted Johnson to revise her application to say that her school would be open to all. The school's mission statement, however, stresses producing female leaders in math, engineering, science, technology and political science.

Johnson has a doctorate in educational administration from the Teachers College at Columbia University and did her dissertation on high-achieving black girls in suburban schools.

This article, written by Helen Gao, appeared in the October 27th, 2005 publication of the San Diego Union Tribune.
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