Gender Equity in the classroom

Gender Equity in the classroom - TheGenderedClassroom MYRA...

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The Gendered Classroom MYRA SADKER, DAVID SADKER, LYNN FOX, AND MELINDA SALATA Gender Equity in the Classroom: The Unfinished A g enda '-'- j'lnmyscif~~~c.1ass the teacher never ca!lsonme, and I feel like I don't exist. The other night I had a dream thatlvanished."l. Our interviews with female students have taught us that it is not just in science class that girls report the "disappearing syndrome" referred to above; F~male voices are also less likely to be heard in history and math classes, girls' names are less likely to be seen on lists of national merit finalists, and women's contributions infrequently appear in school textbooks. Twenty years after the passage of Title IX, the law prohibiting gender discrimination in U.S. schools, it is clear that most girls continue to receive a second-class education. The very notion that women should be educated at all is a relatively recent development in U.S. history. It was not until late in the last century that the con- cept of educating girls beyond elementary school took hold. Even as women were gradually allowed to enter high school and college, the guiding principle in edu- cation was separate and unequal. Well into the twentieth century, boys and girls were assigned to sex-segregated classes and prepared for very different roles in life. In 1833 Oberlin became the first college in the United States to admit women; but these early female college students were offered less rigorous courses and re- quired to wait on male students and wash their clothes. Over the next several decades, only a few colleges followed suit in opening their doors to women. Dur- ing the nineteenth century, a number of forward-thinking philanthropists and ed- ucators founded postsecondary schools for women-Mount Holyoke, Vassar, and the other seven-sister colleges. It was only in the aftermath of the Civil War that coeducation became more prevalent on campuses across the country, but even here economics and not equity was the driving force. Since the casualties of war meant the loss of male students and their tuition dollars, many universities turned to women to fill classrooms and replace lost revenues. In 1870 two-thirds of all universities still barred women. By 1900 more than two-thirds admitted them. But the spread of coeducation did not occur without a struggle. Consider that as late as the 1970s the all-male Ivy League colleges did not admit women, and even now state-supported Virginia Military Institute fights to maintain both its all-male sta- tus and its state funding. 220
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CYCLE OF LOSS not just in science to above. Female ~s, girls' names are len's contributions passage of Title IX, ear that most girls a relatively recent ltury that the con- ~n as women were ; principle in edu- ry, boys and girls different roles in to admit women; IS courses and re- the next several ; to women. Dur- thropists and ed- yoke, Vassar, and 1e Civil War that :>untry, but even :asualties of war Liversities turned two-thirds of all nitted them. But
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This note was uploaded on 09/16/2010 for the course SOC 450x taught by Professor Weiss during the Spring '09 term at Purdue.

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Gender Equity in the classroom - TheGenderedClassroom MYRA...

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