This question is currently closed for being off-topic. I am not the author of the question, but I find the idea very interesting.

It asks how to design a coed school that feels realistic. I believe "realistic" in this sense is the same as a "realistic" fictional tech. This site has allowed fictional science/tech that is just near enough with real life science/tech. As it stands, the question comes across to me as asking for some fictional sociology (or other social-science or psychology backed reasons) that can allow a setting to occur.

This bit here surely makes the question sounds like asking to solve a real-world, present-day problem:

mainly for plot/world building reasons, but also because I think it is an interesting concept to see how this could realistically work if implemented, either now or in the near future.

However, I see it as the social equivalent of "how can I make this available using near-future tech".

But apart from that -- and most of OP's other arguments that sound like they're trying to make this happen in real-world -- is the question really off-topic? If so, what can one do to make it more on-topic?

Or does the question assumes too much of modern-day Western human culture that it can't be made on-topic one way or another?

Thank you!

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ The question does not ask how to make a co-educational school. The vast majority of schools in most countries already are co-educational, and have been co-educational for more than half a century. The question asks how can a school run a hotel allowing unsupervised minors of opposite sexes, who are under the duty of care of the school, to sleep together without taking responsibility for the consequences. $\endgroup$
    – AlexP
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 17:11
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @AlexP Your interpretation is a bit off. The OP asks about mixed-gender dormitory rooms and how to address specific concerns related to them, including unwanted pregnancies. $\endgroup$
    – Otkin
    Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 18:47
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @AlexP That's an extremely cynical point-of-view of the world and teenagers, where because it "can" happen, it "will" happen 100% of the time. That's presuming first that noone can hold it together as soon as they are with the opposite gender, and that no-one have the means (intellectual and material) to use birth control. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 9:31
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexP as the OP I completely agree with Otkin & Tortilena, what you're suggesting is definitely not at all what I am asking and not a rational, logical interpretation of the question. Otkin & Tortilena are spot on with their interpretation $\endgroup$
    – FrontEnd
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 11:39
  • $\begingroup$ This post is now moot. The question has been vastly improved and reopened. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 21:50

2 Answers 2


Please allow me to clarify, the question does not ask about coed school in general. It asks for help with designing rules and floor plans for mixed-gender dormitory rooms. This is the interpretation confirmed by the OP (see comments) and we must defer to the OP when it comes to interpretations of questions.

This question is already on-topic.

  1. The problem it seeks to solve is a worldbuilding problem even within the currently popular definition of worldbuilding: 'building rules and systems of the world'. Please note that the official rules define the scope of worldbuilding much wider:

World building includes geography, culture and creatures for the world, not to mention magic and planetary physics, in short, everything from the physics underlying your reality to the entire universe you want to build.[...]

If a system, event or element of the world is causing you problems we are here to help. If on the other hand you aren’t sure what a character (be it an individual or organization) should do, that is out of scope for the site

  1. Even if we believe that the OP asks about a real-world problem, questions about real-world problems are on-topic if the following requirements are met:
  • Provide context. Giving other users context around why you are asking the question allows them to better understand why you are asking and what kind of answer you want.
  • Attempt to do your own research. If a quick google search will answer your question it may not be worth posting a question on the site. Generally, querents are expected to demonstrate what has been tried and why it was not sufficient or did not work. This too helps people answering understand what you are trying to accomplish as well as your level of knowledge on the topic.
  • Define your requirements and by what you will judge answers.

This question meets all 3 requirements:

  • It provides the context in the opening paragraph: 'I am trying to design a "progressive", every high schooler's dream high school/boarding school where grades 9-12 attend' [and so on];

  • It includes a quick summary of research (bullet points; whether you agree with this research or not is not relevant to the problem of question being on-topic or not);

  • The requirements are a bit vague ('to make this kind of setting work semi-realistically' and ) but also present.

It is worth noting that while this question conforms to the rules, it is not a type of question that the WB.SE likes. Unfortunately, only 1 out of 5 VTC'ers explained their reasons for close votes, so it is not perfectly clear what exactly they did not like.

The question can be improved to suit the preferences of the WB.SE community better. I would suggest the following:

  • include a description of the mainstream culture and ethics existing in the society that would implement mixed-gender dormitory rooms (personally, I am more or less fine with defining this culture as the present-day Western culture but most people here would like more detail or a specific culture/subculture as a reference);
  • include additional information about the currently envisioned rules and floor plans for the mixed-gender dormitory rooms to conform to the requirements of the tag better;
  • make requirements for the answers clearer (I would focus on achieving specific goals, e.g. preventing unwanted pregnancies, providing sufficient privacy, avoiding sexual harassment, etc.);
  • ask VTC'ers about their reasons for close votes and edit the question in an attempt to cater to their preferences (this is the most important for a successful reopening of the question).
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I'll personally add : I'm willing to reopen as long as we have a basic cultural background (e.g. one or two countries of reference). The others points would make it better, but it'd make more like obtain a +1 vote from my part ^^. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 20, 2022 at 20:38
  • $\begingroup$ I feel a bit guilty after reading how much effort you have put into the above so I will try to make some amendments to the question and include your suggested improvements $\endgroup$
    – FrontEnd
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 12:08
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @FrontEnd I am glad to see that the question was reopened. $\endgroup$
    – Otkin
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 17:34

Flipping the VTC to VTR

Two things to note: this response addresses both Otkin's excellent response and also the Meta question itself, since I am one of the folks who voted to close and then later voted to reopen.

As far as Otkin's answer, I really only disagreed that the Main query, as originally worded was on topic. As originally worded, it was simply a sort of unfocused fishing expedition with the hopes of creating a fan servicey, every 15 year old boy's wet dream of a HS . That does not really make for a great worldbuilding question, without some context to make it so.

The rest of the question pretty much followed the trend of the immature 15 year old boy's mindset. Of course it's "old fashioned", says the inner 15 year old! What testosterone soaked 15 year old boy wants to curb his own immature passions when there's the certitude of the school actually supplying one with easily accessible (though not necessarily convinceable) sex partners?

Without any kind of context to place this question in, it really becomes more of a plot-n-story question: the school is just there to fulfill the needs of the narrative. A good worldbuilding question would take this idea and make it about the culture the school exists in, rather than the story.

I voted to close the Main question because the hormones were clouding the underlying problem and the whole enterprise, hormones notwithstanding, lacked sufficient detail & clarity to overcome its initial problems.

Where I agree with Otkin's assessment:

  1. There is indeed a worldbuilding problem to be solved (this one needed help).
  2. Real world questions can be on topic (there are caveats).
  3. The OP demonstrated prior research (yay!).

Essentially, we disagree on what constitutes sufficient context. I didn't think there was any, nor did I think the requirements were terribly clear. I voted to close for those reasons only; I upvoted it because it's an interesting question that showed promise and also demonstrated some prior thought and research!

And now that the query has been reopened, I'd say that this Meta question has its best answer: How do you make this specific Main question more on topic? You do what exactly what the Main querent did which got his query reopened and thus declared on topic!

No reasoning like circular reasoning!

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ I think you're confusing intentions as off-topic close reasons. If someone wants to make a "very fan-servicey" story (#Ecchi - western definition) and need to design the infrastructure to do so, then asking questions about such infrastructure is worldbuilding (please side-note that I'm not saying it was the asker's actual intent).[...] $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 16:36
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "If a system, event or element of the world is causing you problems we are here to help", yet nothing in the overall theme or world/story intentions prevent from asking here. As I told to JBH, lacking cultural data or being cloudy/foggy is not being off-topic, it's "in need of details or clarity". $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 16:38
  • $\begingroup$ @Tortliena -- I think I was pretty clear in stating that I voted to close because the actual problem "lacked detail and clarity"; and also that the OP's edit improved the question sufficiently for me to VTR. And others thought the edit was sufficient as well because the query is now reopened. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 17:31
  • $\begingroup$ Then why do you say "I disagree with Otkin that the query as originally worded was on-topic"? $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 17:47
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ My senses are tingling that I'm not clear, so I'll extend a bit : While you tell that you closed it for lacking details, you provide a good paragraph to explain why you think it's off-topic. It puzzles me out, usually when someone talks about a decision -such as a closure- they go in details about the causes that lead to this decision. Yet you display a whole different thought process which'd normally lead to a different decision. And this I don't understand. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 18:00
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Tortliena --- That "good paragraph" is where I'm disagreeing with Otkin's present assessment that, essentially, creating a fan servicey thing was actually on topic. The whole point is: now that the background and worldbuilding context have been edited in, I have no problem whatsoever with building a fan servicey, every 15 year old boy's wet dream of a HS! Disagreement with Otkin is only relevant to this Meta question, not the Main question. I'll try to clarify! $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 21:26
  • $\begingroup$ @elemtilas there is no fan-service intentions behind this idea or this setting, it is exploring the idea of gender segregation in high schools and flipping it. Please understand that by describing it as "every high schooler's dream school" you should realise this includes female students as well, this does NOT only include the male students, which is what your comments are largely focused on. Your suggestions would completely alienate any female students attending such a school and definitely not be a dream school for that gender, which is not the intention at all. I hope that adds clarity $\endgroup$
    – FrontEnd
    Commented Feb 21, 2022 at 23:32
  • $\begingroup$ @FrontEnd -- That's how I read it originally. You've cleared up the point sufficiently. $\endgroup$
    – elemtilas
    Commented Feb 22, 2022 at 1:23
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Elemtilas I understand better now with your edit, ty for tying the tie! $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 22, 2022 at 1:25
  • $\begingroup$ I think you should apologise to the OP and edit your answer to reflect that your interpretation of the question is incorrect and explicitly opposed by the OP. Please also note that the OP provided the clarification for the question's meaning prior to your writing this answer. You still chose to disrespect their clarification. As for myself, we do not disagree on 'on what constitutes sufficient context'. We disagree on whether one should use the principle of charity or not. $\endgroup$
    – Otkin
    Commented Feb 22, 2022 at 20:16
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ In philosophy and rhetoric, the principle of charity or charitable interpretation requires interpreting a speaker's statements in the most rational way possible and, in the case of any argument, considering its best, strongest possible interpretation. $\endgroup$
    – Otkin
    Commented Feb 22, 2022 at 20:17

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