Talk to your colleagues about how policing girls’ bodies can lead to self-consciousness, body monitoring, shame, and over-sexualization at a young age. Also, it occurs through sexual harassment in social interactions. They should be able to speak to any teacher and not feel like a fool. These examples of sexism are so subtle, she asserts, that educators "run the risk of continuing to hold onto those biases" unless they become aware of their own preconceptions. See the diagram below for an example of how the ‘arrow approach’ might work on a national scale: Figure 2: The ‘arrow approach’ that the education system should use. Another thing schools can do is be vigilant about sexism and sexual abuse. "We want girls to know they can do it," says DeFazio. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on the CfEY website. At LKMco, we will be keeping a close eye on the final guidance to see if sexism is addressed. Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure it required improvement. “We use the texts to address that, so in Romeo and Juliet, where Romeo’s says Juliet’s beauty ‘hath made me effeminate’, we look at this idea that falling in love makes him less of a man.”. So, they’re discouraged from reporting further incidents. Does a girl always end up being the “secretary/recorder”? It seems to be yielding results: while only a quarter of students taking A-level English at the school used to be male – around the same as the national picture – half this year’s year 13 group are boys. Some organisations are providing relevant training courses, but ‘tackling sexism’ is not part of all initial teacher training programmes or standard teacher CPD. As an educator and high school principal, DeFazio says she "feels very keenly that we need to serve all students." It will take a five-minute walk through a high-school to confirm that it exists, and is getting worse. But he draws their attention to it every time he teaches the text: “It only takes me five minutes to say, ‘Why is this man infantilising this woman? For the ‘arrow’ approach to work, this needs to change. “Isn’t that a horrible way to describe women?” The woman in question, Scrooge’s nephew’s wife, is peripheral to the tale; Pinkett’s students aren’t going to get a GCSE question about her. For example: When we consider the state of gender equality in Britain, it is unsurprising that sexism exists in our schools. “This year I’ve had working-class boys say things to me like ‘it’s OK to cry, isn’t it, sir?’. Having begun being pulled up for constantly calling girls “love” and “darling” and boys “fella” and “mate”, he swiftly went on to be a key player in the project. Schools should be more serious and make it a serious matter. Rudis attributes the boost in confidence to the girls' ability to meet high expectations. The report's authors reviewed more than 500 programs designed to improve the status of girls in public schools. Audit your bookshelf. 2014;47:225-60. doi: 10.1016/bs.acdb.2014.05.002. And, the school doesn’t punish the teacher that does this. So, they’re discouraged from reporting further incidents. Growing Smart, she says, offers "simple, inexpensive ways that schools can meet the specific needs of girls" without sacrificing the education of others. A year on, it’s become a passion. If it’s treated trivially, then nothing will ever change. Use schools to champion gender equality and tackle everyday sexism. Equalize air time. “The children do still see themselves in those very gender traditional roles. If my child is interrupted, she almost always stops talking. “She had a ‘ripe little mouth’,” he says. This is because they haven’t been told what’s right and wrong. Gibb agrees that when educators hold such expectations for girls, girls perform. He calls his drive to model an alternative masculinity ‘militant tenderness’. "Girls who didn't participate were more likely to let the boys take the lead.". But, if you take their complaints seriously, then they’ll feel more confident. Sexism is gender-based prejudice or discrimination. Don’t rely on the t-shirt graphic to give you insight into the child. The idea of special strategies for boys is “absolute rubbish”, he thinks, and is also counter-productive: teaching centred on topics that it’s assumed will draw boys in, such as competition or sport, merely plays to the stereotypes that encourage them to turn off school in the first place. on How To Improve Working Relationships In Your Business, on Improving Employee Morale in Your Workplace: A Guide, on How Your Business Can Improve its Productivity, on 5 Industries that Could Change Forever Quicker Than You Think. Go follow them! “I really emphasise gender as a construct and how society expects boys and men, and women and girls, to behave. Why? 11. A recent Guardian article highlighted the incredible work teachers Matt Pinkett, Caroline Ash and Mark Roberts do to challenge gender stereotypes in their schools (e.g. If a girl beats other classmates at sports, or shines academically, don’t console the boys or feel the need to shore up their self-confidence. I felt so affected when I was in school. Lynda Rudis' 4th grade class at Morley Elementary School in West Hartford participated in Project Parity. 8. Our chapter reviews the research on this topic. Work on your own anti-bias and stereotyping outside of the classroom. Get access to the Feminist Parenting Resource Library here, How To Start a Blog (with Step-by-Step Tutorial and Pictures). The myriad ideas outlined in Growing Smart reflect the unique needs of girls. Can you imagine if we assigned shapes to babies – only girls can have squares and boys can have circles? To conduct an audit of your classroom books, download Think or Blue’s gender representation book audit form here. Toys, Books & Clothes. Sexism is gender-based prejudice or discrimination. Reconsider discipline. Are they grouped for activities this way? How To Improve Working Relationships In Your Busi... How To Improve Working Relationships In Your Business, Improving Employee Morale in Your Workplace: A Guide, How Your Business Can Improve its Productivity, These Are The Gadget And Tech Trends Most In Demand. "The kinds of bias we're most concerned about are the subtle forms," says DeFazio. I’ve heard authors of girl-led books recount stories of educators wistfully declining an author visit because the boys wouldn’t be interested. Copyright © 1996 by Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. National Center for Biotechnology Information, Unable to load your collection due to an error, Unable to load your delegates due to an error. During group projects, have you observed whether they self-select certain roles? Furthermore, after being pressured to do so, the Department for Education issued guidance for schools on tackling sexual violence and sexual harassment between pupils. Am I pessimistic? And I agree – colors aren’t gender exclusive. Supportive teachers, parents, and friends can help girls overcome the negative effects of academic sexism and increase their participation in STEM fields. The most common example of this is a girl not being allowed on a sport’s team. I worked on the curriculum reforms between 2012 and 2014, and I’m heartened to see the increased…, Receive our latest thoughts in your inbox. 2008 May-Jun;79(3):685-704. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2008.01151.x. 15. Giving girls more opportunities to take such leadership is one way to help reduce gender bias in our schools and in our society, according to a report released last fall by the American Association of University Women (AAUW). The most common example of this is a girl not being allowed on a sport’s team. New Moon, she explains, shows girls how things should be. Boys are seeing that girls are just as able as they are and there’s a bit more respect there.”. Project Parity , a one-year model program funded by the National Science Foundation, was designed to address those biases and combat the attitudes that crush a girl's confidence in her ability to excel in science. This is an opportunity for policy-makers to support teachers in tackling everyday sexism in school and, consequently, wider society. on the matter, things will change. As a teacher, I did regular key word tests and awarded merit…, By Hardip Begol, Non-Executive Director at CfEY and CEO of Woodard Academies Trust One of the many pleasures of returning to the education sector from my former role within the DfE is seeing how certain issues have progressed.