Feminism belongs in schools

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Feminism belongs in schools

by Jo Lateu

2013-07-22-teenagers-v3.jpg

Teenagers (kamshots under a Creative Commons Licence)

Amanda Hill-Dixon sent us this. She is from Feminism Belongs in Schools, a new and independent campaign Amanda writes:

A group of us wanted to support the teenagers who suffered bad sexist abuse after they started a Feminist Society in their school. I am a teacher in a secondary school in London and I have seen how many young people in our schools really need gender awareness and empowerment. We want to use this story to get more support for teaching about feminism in schools.

A couple of weeks ago the Guardian published a story from a young woman who recently set up a Feminist Society at her school. The school was not happy with this. When the girls in FemSoc took powerful photos of themselves with personal messages about why they need feminism, the result was aggression and harassment from boys in their group. But the school did not fight against this sexist abuse. Instead, they decided to stop the Feminist Society, to protect the girls.

The young woman said, ‘We, a group of 16-, 17- and 18-year-old girls, have made ourselves vulnerable by talking about our experiences of sexual and gender oppression. The boys have become angry at this. And our school did not take action against the boys’ aggression. Instead, they told us we must take down our pictures. With no support from our school, girls in the campaign felt alone. They faced a lot of verbal abuse and they knew the boys would not be punished for this.’

The school’s actions were bad for these girls and women and also for society in general. When we do not support the voices of girls, we also do not help the boys who need help to get more information.

Please help us to send a loud message to Altrincham Grammar School for Girls (and other schools around the country) that gender empowerment has a strong place in education!

Take a photo to support the girls!: feminismbelongs.tumblr.com

Sign Here and Ask Schools to Take Action Against Sexism!: ukfeminista.org.uk/take-action/generation-f/schools-against-sexism-pledge/

As this article has been simplified, the words, text structure and quotes may have been changed. For the original, please see: http://newint.org/blog/2013/07/22/feminism-belongs-in-schools-petition/