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Gender Equality Lessons to Be Taught in Guangdong Schools
Source:Chinese Women's Research Network | Release Date:2018-8-29-
Title: Gender Equality Lessons to Be Taught in Guangdong Schools
Author: Liu Yang
Source: CGTN
Release Date: 2018/8/24
Keyword: Gender Equality Lessons, Guangdong Schools

Primary and middle schools in south China's Guangdong Province are spearheading a renewed drive for gender equality in education.

From the new school year starting in September, a curriculum that focuses on areas such as gender policing and stereotypes will be rolled out in classrooms and taught alongside other subjects.

The provincial initiative is being undertaken by the Guangdong Working Committee on Children and Women and the Guangdong Ministry of Education.

It is, in fact, the latest phase of a plan to raise awareness on the major gender issues that goes back to 2012 when a pilot programme was launched in two cities in Guangdong – Zhongshan and Maoming, according to China Women's News.

That pilot was said to have made progress and the latest provincial initiative draws on that experience which highlighted that understanding about gender issues differs at stages of youth development and should be age-appropriate.

For example, the framework prioritizes learning about self-defense when it comes to first graders. For fifth and sixth graders, the emphasis is on how to detect sexual assault and harassment. As for the middle schooler, the stress is on sex education and gender roles, and deeper attention is given to gender norms and stereotypes for high schoolers, as well as on handling gender-related bias and prejudice.

Additionally, teachers also provide true-to-life examples in and outside of classrooms to help demonstrate the negative effects of gender policing.

As a way to equalize gender status, in Zhongshan City, classes had been taught to encourage girls to engage in sports and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields, and encourage boys to do more housework and bond with their fathers.

Other active demonstrations were also shown to bring forward gender norms and constructions of femininity and masculinity to young students, China Women's News reported.

Up to June, about 40 workshops and training classes were given to more than 5,000 teachers and lessons in 42 schools in Zhongshan City, local news Zhongshan Daily reported.

On Weibo, China's microblogging platform, the latest program has been widely lauded by netizens. Many are calling for it to be taught across the country.

The latest gender equality education comes as the city of Hangzhou in China's eastern Zhejiang Province introduced the first legal mechanism against on-campus sexual assault, which is also set to take effect next month as well.

(Source: CGTN)
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