It is commonly assumed in Taiwan that once educators are given appropriate

It is commonly assumed in taiwan that once educators

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It is commonly assumed in Taiwan that once educators are given appropriate training, guidelines or teaching materials, gender biases can be expected to eliminate. Is it that 1 Yenlin Ku, one of the pioneers of the women's movement in Taiwan, established Awakening in 1982, a magazine to encourage women's self-awareness and to raise public concern about women's issues. Later on, in the hope of mobilizing more women, improving their social conditions and striving for their rights, Ku and a group of women set up the Awakening of Women Foundation in 1987. 2 The educational system in Taiwan is composed of four levels: primary school (six years), junior high school (three years), senior high school (three years), and college or university (four to seven years), one to four years of a master’s programme and two to seven years of doctoral degree programme. Since 1968, the first nine years of schooling have been made mandatory and free of charge. 3 TFSA consists of members affiliated with colleges, universities, and/or non-governmental organizations. Its objectives are to expand feminist activities on campus in order to consolidate feminist consciousness among university students, to timely respond to current gender-/sex-related events or issues and actively pursue and protect women’s rights, and to establish networks for information sharing among feminist activists and scholars. 4 Feminist scholars in Taiwan sought to present ‘evidence’ to the government and with which placed greater pressure to enact reform. They also sought to institutionalize women’s studies in the 1980s and 1990s. For the time being more than seven Research Center for Gender Studies have been set up in universities and three graduate institutes of gender studies have been established recently. 2
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simple? Occasionally good policies in design are poorly implemented in the field (Stromquist, 1997: 31), let alone we do not know yet if gender education policies in Taiwan are ‘good policies in design’. Implementation 5 is significant after the stage of policy formulation and authorization (laws passed). Take United States for example, despite the passage of legislation in relation to gender education in the 1970s 6 , ‘Americans schools continue to be rife with gender inequalities’ (Bank, 1997: 7). One of the possibilities, Bank argues, is the ‘complexity of policy implementation’ (ibid.) 7 , thereby giving rise to what she calls the ‘policy paradox’: ‘The more things change, the more they remain the same’ (ibid.: 5). Yet where and how do these complexities come from? Bank has a clear explanation, A law, executive order, or court decision is not an unambiguous rule that everyone understands in the same way, that can, must, and will be supported and followed by everyone, and has a clear and anticipated consequences (Bank, 1997: 8) Policy formation does not end with the legislative moment (Bowe, Ball & Gold, 1996), ‘for any text a plurality of readers must necessarily produce a plurality of readings’ (Codd, 1988: 239). Admittedly, the school is composed of administrators,
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  • Gender Equity Education

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