There was a time when it was believed that boys and girls should be taught in separate institutions. In ancient gurukuls, there were only boys who were given education then. In spite of this, women generally had good education in ancient India.
After Independence, several education commissions and committees were set up. They generally advocated co-education in schools up to 10+2 level and separate education for boys and girls at the university level till graduation. This policy is now by and large being followed in our country. There is, however, co-education again at post-graduation level.
Some people believe that co-education should not be there. In their opinion this can lead to attraction between boys and girls which are neither good for their health, nor character, nor studies. Some other people are of the view that co-education can bring about a healthy competition between boys and girls and thus it can be of mutual benefit to both sexes. It can mean better discipline since in the presence of girls the boys will not talk irrelevantly or obscenely in the class.
The most potent argument advanced by co-education lovers is that it can help both boys and girls in the development of their personality. They can come out of their enclosed shell-like personality and get rid of their unwarranted hesitation and shyness.
This can make boys and girls more expressive, progressive and forward in outlook and attitude to life which can be of great advantage to both sexes. It must, however, be noted that some reservations are also there and even in a country like England, exclusive schools for girls are now being set up.