On the move for equality: EI Women’s Conference 2018
Queensland Teachers' Journal, Vol 123 No 2, 9 March 2018, p4
In early February, I was a part of the Australian Education Union delegation to the third Education International Women’s Conference, in Marrakech, Morocco.
The conference offered an opportunity for women teacher unionists from around the world to come together, share their experiences and imagine a future where women and girls experience true equality and an environment free of gender-based violence and harassment at home, at school and in the workplace. It is the case around the world that women make up the majority of the teaching workforce and yet remain underrepresented in education leadership positions, senior levels of education bureaucracies and in our union structures and senior union leadership positions.
Keynote speeches and workshops I attended regarding leadership, trade union practices, the relationship between gender and power, use of social media and addressing school related gender-based violence and harassment were powerful and represented a great learning experience. However, I feel I learned most from the opportunity to meet and talk with women from around the world and to hear of the struggles they face in ensuring girls have access to education and that women are able to raise their voices as unionists and as professionals.
As one of the speakers noted as part of the panel on women’s leadership, “the role of a leader is to create more leaders”. What a great message to bring back and to continue the important work being undertaken in our Union under the leadership of our Women Teachers and Girls Education Committee.