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Professor Kate Myers gave a presentation on gender equality issues in the new Diploma. Colleagues interested in this area will be interested in the recent DCSF 'Gender Agenda'

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  1. 1. Gender Equality Issues 14-19 Professor Kate Myers [email_address]
  2. 2. <ul><li>The issue </li></ul><ul><li>The law </li></ul><ul><li>Some strategies </li></ul>
  3. 3. Frequently subject choice is based on gender stereotyping rather than ability or aptitude. Official figures have not yet been collected for diplomas but this slide shows the gendered choice made by young people for the IPF The increased flexibility programme (IPF) introduced in 2002 aimed to create enhanced vocational and work-related learning opportunities for 14-16 yr olds Source: Gender and Education: the evidence on pupils in England DCSF 2007
  4. 4. Learner numbers for diplomas by gender September 08 in 2 local authorities Girls Boys LA 1 Creative & media 30 15 Construction & BE 0 44 Engineering 1 55 LA 2 Society, health & Dev. 47 1 Engineering 0 20
  5. 5. ‘ The DES survey of 1975* showed how girls continue to limit their career choices at an early stage by choosing to study subjects traditionally associated with their sex e.g. biology & MFL and rejecting physical sciences, ‘masculine’ crafts & technology subjects’ *DES Curricular Differences for Boys & Girls Education Survey 21 HMSO 1975 Myers 1980 This is not a new issue…
  6. 6. <ul><li>Some things haven’t changed much: at least nine in ten workers in </li></ul><ul><li>the construction sector were male in both 1972 and 2005. Similarly </li></ul><ul><li>women predominated in health and educational services in 1972, </li></ul><ul><li>and they form the majority of workers in these sectors today. </li></ul><ul><li>Two sectors which have become close to balanced are public </li></ul><ul><li>administration, which used to be male-dominated, and distribution, </li></ul><ul><li>which used to be female-dominated </li></ul><ul><li>Sources: CSO (1973) Social Trends 1973; ONS (2005) Labour Force Survey Spring 2005 dataset. </li></ul>
  7. 7. More extreme segregation of young women and men is seen in apprenticeships. Over nine-tenths of hairdressing apprentices are women, whilst at least 98% of apprentices in construction, the motor industry and plumbing are men. Source: Learning & Skills Council (2005) Apprenticeship data: Report 2 – Quarterly cumulative startsand in learning August 2004 to April 2005. Subject segregation in FE and HE is almost as extreme. For example, in engineering and technology subjects 87% of FE students and 86% of HE students are male. Sources: Learning and Skills Council (2005) Further education, work based learning for young people and adult and community learning – Learner numbers in England 2004/05, ILR/SFR08; Higher Education Statistics Agency (2005) Students in Higher Education Institutions 2003/04.
  8. 8. Attainment <ul><li>Some boys do well, some </li></ul><ul><li>girls underachieve. </li></ul><ul><li>Inter-relatedness of the </li></ul><ul><li>equalities </li></ul>
  9. 9. Pay 38 years after the Equal Pay Act, women continue to earn less than men in G.B. Since 1999 women's hourly earnings have remained at just over 80 per cent of men's earnings 2006
  10. 10. PUBLIC SECTOR DUTY ON GENDER EQUALITY (‘GENDER EQUALITY DUTY’) <ul><li>Part IV of the Equality Act 2006, (effective April 07) introduces a general duty on public authorities which requires employers and service providers, to have due regard to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- the need to eliminate unlawful </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>discrimination and harassment; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>- promote equality of opportunity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>between men and women. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Choice <ul><li>Students at most vulnerable </li></ul><ul><li>Peer group pressure </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Rather than simply being a matter of choice, research has shown that there are strong penalties for children who fail to conform to gender norms’ </li></ul><ul><li>Skelton, Francis & Valkanova 2007 p17 </li></ul><ul><li>Throw-away comments… </li></ul><ul><li>How can choices be ‘informed’? </li></ul>
  12. 12. Suggested strategies on 14-19 website See the gender section in the equality and diversity part of the site <ul><li>Before </li></ul><ul><li>During </li></ul><ul><li>After </li></ul>
  13. 13. Encouraging atypical learners <ul><li>Before </li></ul><ul><li>Planning e.g. contextualise the curriculum content. Explain the purpose of learning </li></ul><ul><li>Make the links between students’ daily lives and their concerns about the wider social issues </li></ul><ul><li>Importance of IAG for parents/carers </li></ul><ul><li>Forge links with employers/HE/mentors/ </li></ul><ul><li>ambassadors/role-models </li></ul><ul><li>Visits to atypical learning sites – use of video links/web cams when more appropriate </li></ul><ul><li>Taster courses </li></ul><ul><li>During </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure all IAG promotes gender equality </li></ul><ul><li>Continue work with parents/carers </li></ul><ul><li>Use TIE groups </li></ul><ul><li>Visits </li></ul><ul><li>Links with atypical role models – peers and adult </li></ul><ul><li>After </li></ul><ul><li>support & nurture </li></ul><ul><li>atypical learners </li></ul><ul><li>keep in </li></ul><ul><li>touch with families </li></ul><ul><li>‘ grow your own’ – </li></ul><ul><li>establish critical </li></ul><ul><li>mass </li></ul>
  14. 14. Need to support atypical learners after choices have been made…
  15. 15. Factors that contributed to attracting girls… Establishing a steering group that included female role models e.g.. VP Aston university (female engineer); female rep from Land Rover fully involved in process. 2. Learning takes place at dedicated site –high tech new build– no grease in sight. Emphasis on sustainability in bldg e.g. powered by wind turbines and solar panels 3. Targeted higher attaining students (potential A/Bs) 4. Course emphasis on sustainability 5. Good quality publicity flyer which includes pics of 6 girls and 1 boy. 6. Open evening held at engineering dept in Birmingham university. Engineering in the 21st century explained to parents as well as career possibilities. Old stereotypes challenged. 7. Interested students taken to centre – met with course tutors and employers. Again traditional stereotypes of engineering challenged. 8. Students had to apply. Course oversubscribed. Contact: Dave Beards [email_address] Bucking the trend The Oaks Collegiate Academy Engineering level 2 10 Girls 22 Boys 5 schools – 1 b and 1 g single sex and 3 mixed
  16. 16. What can employers do … <ul><li>Make it clear in all publicity that the sector welcomes employees </li></ul><ul><li>regardless of gender, ethnicity etc </li></ul><ul><li>Deliberately target the under-represented group e.g. offer single </li></ul><ul><li>sex visits to work sites; encourage visits from parents; organise </li></ul><ul><li>publicity about the sector and its prospects written for parents & </li></ul><ul><li>teachers as well as prospective workers </li></ul><ul><li>Where possible use local role-models in publicity materials </li></ul><ul><li>Offer atypical role models/ambassadors/mentors to visit schools or </li></ul><ul><li>be accessible via video link/web cam etc </li></ul><ul><li>Make work experience a comfortable & enjoyable experience for </li></ul><ul><li>both sexes e.g. ensure that: work clothes fit and are appropriate </li></ul><ul><li>for both sexes; toilets are clean; the experience is gender neutral </li></ul><ul><li>(girls don’t spend all their time filing or making tea); organise same </li></ul><ul><li>sex mentors; where possible put atypical learners in contact with </li></ul><ul><li>successful same sex employees; ask for feedback during and after </li></ul><ul><li>the experience. </li></ul><ul><li>Encourage training providers to organise single sex taster courses </li></ul><ul><li>Offer to run or support ‘master classes’ </li></ul>
  17. 17. What can ITTproviders do? E.g. <ul><li>Model good practice </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure students understand the legal duty to promote equalities </li></ul><ul><li>If learner numbers in the diploma line are skewed towards one gender, discuss with students, what can be done in order to encourage a more balanced intake e.g. with regard to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>recruitment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>curriculum content and materials </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>teaching styles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>work related learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>support for atypical learners </li></ul></ul><ul><li>AND?? </li></ul>
  18. 18. For more information see: