With middle school comes puberty, raging hormones and the growing awareness of the opposite sex.
The big change in life many 11-14-year-olds are going through makes the transition period from elementary school to the responsibilities of middle and high schools that much more difficult.
Learning often comes in a distant second.
Some middle schools are recognizing the competition between academics and hormones, and are creating gender-separate classrooms.
Cynthia Lawson, principal at Second Street's middle school grades, said she's seen changes since the school moved to single-sex classrooms at the end of the last school year.
"Academically they are doing better, because there are less distractions," said Lawson. "It's better for both teachers and students."
For more on this story, see the latest State Journal.