Re: Title IX

Linda Purrington (
Wed, 18 Feb 1998 19:25:49 -0800

Nicely put; the push for gender equity is a drive to humanize the whole
society.--not to put down any sector of it. It is very important to
realize that neither here nor in any other nation/region has male
dominance of educational opportunities and employment opportunities at
all levels of interest and remuneration been even remotely overturned.
Regarding international initiatives, the United Nations notes that the
number of women left illiterate is more than double that of men. The
access to email is even greater, of course, because the access to
technology and especially computers is so disparate. Therefore, it is
important for "Each one, to teach one" (Paulo Freire). I trust Mr.
Weverka is helping by making his computer educational software company,
Optivision, which has a web site, available to women and girls,
especially those from foreign countries, or even in foreign countries,
free of charge of course. This reaching out of the advantaged to the
disadvantaged will help to humanize society . . .

Linda Purrington <>

Susan J. Smith wrote:
> Robert,
> In response to your initial question, the U.K. was included on my research
list  for several reasons. First, we want to compile information that will
allow us to compare gender equity efforts in both developing and industrialized
> countries. We also want to look at issues of class and ethnicity
> internationally. We think the U.K. will yield much that will be of interest.
> While there may have been progress in the U.K., from what we are finding in
> initial research, whether girls are doing better than boys there seems to be
> evolving discussion. An examination is underway to figure out what is
> to which girls and which boys. For example, there is a concern that reform
> efforts undertaken in the 1980s and early 1990s that took a color-blind
> and used the principles and discipline of the market-place as a means of
> standards for every child have, in fact, increased black-white inequality in
> English educational system. [See "Young black and failed by school: the
> market, education reform and black students," David Gillborn, International
> Journal of Inclusive Education, Vol. 1, No. 1, January-March 1997, pp. 65-87.]
> Issues also arise about what is happening in the larger society--whether even
> those girls who do well in school are rewarded in the labor force or are they
> still affected by occupational segregation and lower wages than their male
> counterparts. These issues are certainly ones that have resonance for the
> with charter privatization efforts and talk about increasing standards so high
> on the education agenda, and in the continuing gender segregation in the U.S.
> labor force. Also in the emerging efforts to look at the interrelationships
> race, class, ethnicity, disability and language in gender equity efforts in
> country.
> I have some suggestions for you about where to find U.S. statistics about
> equity in education. Please look at the "Report Card on Gender Equity"
> by the National Coalition for Women and Girls in Education as part of the 25th
> anniversary celebration of Title IX, as well as "Title IX: 25 Years of
> Progress, A Report of the U.S. Department of Eduation." Both were released
> June, 1997 and are available on the WEEA web site <>.
> The Report Card gives the U.S. an overall grade of C in its progress so far in
> achieving equity in nine key areas of education: access to higher education,
> athletics, career education, employment (in schools), learning environment,
> and science, sexual harassment, standardized testing, and treatment of
> and parenting teens. As you will see, girls and women have hardly taken over
> the educational system or the high-paying jobs in the labor force. [The
> site also has lots of other information about educational equity including our
> current catalog and links to many wonderful organizations.]
> I think your question about boys and boys' programs raises an important issue.
> For some who over-estimate the progress of women and girls in the U.S. (and
> elsewhere), there seems to be this underlying notion that gender equity
> advocates are the enemy and not gender role stereotyping and gender bias.
> helping girls, must, by necessity, harm boys. If our goal is to create a
> gender-fair, multicultural education system that promotes the full development
> of ALL students, we can't pit males and females against each other. Gender
> equity, by definition, must encourage increased options for both genders. And
> believe gender equity advocates already have been working to achieve that. As
> Susan McGee Bailey, of the Wellesley Centers for Research on Women wrote: "The
> notion that helping girls means hurting boys amounts to a defense of the
> quo and the acceptance of a set of stereotypes that are serving few of our
> students well. It is as important for boys to learn about the contributions
> women to our nation and the world as it is for girls to study this
> Adolescent pregnancy and parenting are issues for young men as well as young
> women. Boys as well as girls benefit from instructional techniques that
> encourage cooperation in learning. [See Research Report, Fall 1997, Volume 2,
> Number 1, p.2.] What more can we add to this list?
> I think some people genuinely do not understand that gender equity is meant
> expand the possibiliites for both males and females and we need to do a better
> job of educating them. However, I think we also have to be vigilant about
> who would use "harming males" as a smokescreen. In the last couple of
weeks, I
> have been looking for information about gender equity and males, primarily on
> the Internet (and in a few books and articles). I have found some
things that
> talk about the culture of violence and how restrictive gender roles create/
> contribute to this culture--although not much of this was related to education
> in school. Frankly, most of what I've found is the worst backlash hogwash
> imaginable. It's not about equity but about putting women back in their
> "place." If anyone has found better info, please let me know. I just found
> that the National Coalition for Sex Equity in Education (NCSEE) has a Male
> Issues Task Force that has been looking at how gender equity helps males. I
> looking forward to learning more from them about that effort.
> I appreciate the dialogue that you and Linda began and look forward to hearing
> others' views on these issues.
> Susan J. Smith
> <>
> WEEA Equity Resource Center at EDC

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