Gender Healthy Respectful Schools
Foundation Awards Over A Quarter of a Million
Dollars to Gender Equity Projects in Boston/Cambridge Schools
In the second year of its "Gender Equity Mini-Grants
Program," the Caroline and Sigmund Schott Foundation has awarded
over $250,000 in grants to 23 teams of teachers in Boston and Cambridge
public schools. Said foundation president, Greg Jobin-Leeds, "Extensive
research has shown that gender bias, discrimination, and sexism
persist in schools and harm girls and boys. The Schott Foundation
is using its resources to support the development of gender healthy
The Foundation will launch this year's activities
with a Gender Equity Institute, September 22-23 at Northeastern
University featuring Dolores Grayson, Executive Director of Graymill
Consulting. Dr. Grayson is the creator of the nationally recognized
GESA (Generating Expectations for Student Achievement) Program.
Her keynote speech, "Equity: The Key to Excellence," on
September 22 at 6:15 p.m. will be open to the press.
The 2000-2001 projects address frequently discussed
gender equity issues like sexual harassment; increasing girls' participation
in math, science, and technology; and nontraditional career education
(list attached). And they also include issues that are just beginning
to emerge nationally such as gender issues in bilingual education,
media, the arts, and cultural differences. The grants include support
for: professional development for teachers, counselors, and administrators;
strengthening and expanding the network of activists and advocates
for gender equity; and raising awareness of gender inequities among
district administrators, principals, policy makers, parents, and
"These projects are working to ensure that Boston/Cambridge
public schools move closer to gender equity," said Schott Foundation
project manager, Shirley Mark. "It seems impossible that at
the beginning of the 21st century students' educational opportunities
are still limited by gender. We need to develop leaders in the public
school system to advocate for gender equity," she said.
A unique aspect of this program is that the Foundation
has also awarded funds to the Gender and Diversities Institute at
Education Development Center, Inc. to provide training to the teacher-teams
in implementing and evaluating their projects. "Generally foundations
give money without recognizing that grant recipients may need other
kinds of support. The Schott Foundation's innovative program could
become a model for other gender equity efforts around the country,"
said Susan J. Smith, technical assistance project director. The
evaluation or 'reflective action research' component is critical
to ensuring that the valuable lessons learned about gender equity
can be shared with others," said Maria-Paz B. Avery, project
director for the evaluation component.
The Gender and Diversities Institute, located at
Education Development Center, Inc. in Newton, Massachusetts, is
a global institute that brings together scholars, practitioners,
parents, students, businesses, and community representatives committed
to understanding the relationship between education and gender,
inclusive of race, ethnicity, language, ableness, and sexual orientation.
Established in 1999 and housed in EDC's Center for Education, Employment
and Community, the Institute brings over 20 years of expertise gained
from the technical assistance work of the federally-funded Women's
Educational Equity Act (WEEA) Resource Center.
The Caroline and Sigmund Schott Foundation, a family
foundation with its headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts has
an office in New York.