PARKERSBURG - And then there was one.
Kanawha County Schools announced this week it was ending single-gender classes, leaving VanDevender Middle School the only West Virginia public school offering separate boys and girls classes for the fall of 2012-13
The move follows a national campaign by the American Civil Liberties Union to do away with the single-sex classes.
Jim Withrow , a Kanawha County school board attorney, says in a letter to the ACLU's West Virginia chapter that the classes didn't violate the U.S. Constitution or Title IX, the federal law meant to promote gender equity.
The Charleston Daily Mail says Withrow wrote that single-sex classes at Stonewall Jackson Middle School will not be held during the 2012-2013 school year. He did not give a reason for the decision.
Single-sex classes at a Kanawha County elementary school were discontinued earlier due to logistics.
Kanawha County Schools announced it is ending its gender-specific classes at two schools.
The ACLU of West Virginia sent letters to Kanawha, Cabell and Wood counties demanding an end to single-sex classes. Cabell already had announced it would end classes at two of its schools due to logistical issues.
Van Devender Middle School is the last public school in the state to offer the gender-specific classes. The Wood County Board of Education will discuss the issue Tuesday.
Earlier this year, the ACLU sent letters to school officials Kanawha, Cabell and Wood counties, saying single-gender classes violate numerous provisions of federal law.
Nationally letters were sent to school systems in six states demanding an immediate end to gender-specific classes.
Vandy offers separate girls and boys classes for sixth- and seventh-graders in four core classes - English, math, science and social studies. The school has plans to expand the program to include eighth-grade student this fall.
Cabell County Schools ended single-gender classes at two of its schools this year citing staffing problems, but took issue with the ACLU of West Virginia claiming credit for the move.
Wood County Schools Superintendent Pat Law was on vacation Friday and could not be reached for comment. Calls to Vandy Friday were unanswered.
Mike Winland, director of secondary schools for Wood County Schools, said Vandy's classes will be a topic of discussion at Tuesday's Wood County Board of Education meeting.
"We're still evaluating the program, and we are looking at data as to how this has effected student learning at the school," he said. "There will be a presentation to the board at Tuesday evening's meeting. After we've had a chance to look at all of this, we will make a decision as to what the correct path is."
Winland said the school system also is scheduled to respond to the ACLU's letter in early July.
"We still believe, based on what we have, that Wood County has followed all the proper guidelines for this type of program," he said.
Winland also said decisions by the other two counties to end their programs likely won't play a role in any decision made by Wood County Schools.
"I think those are a bit different of situations," he said. "For Kanawha County is was more about a change in administration and a difference in philosophies. For Cabell County is was about logistics, and they left the window open by saying they may have these kinds of programs in the future."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.