Investigating: Sexism In The PE Department

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As promised in this issue we are looking deeper into the issue of sexism, this time within the PE department. The areas of discussion fall into three categories: Facilities, sports, and teaching
FACILITIES

* Girls have one changing room, while boys have two: although the girl's room is much larger.
* Girls have shower cubicles, allowing them to shower in privacy, while boys have walk-through open showers which require them to strip naked and shower in the presence of their friends. Might this not cause deep emotional trauma for those who are less than happy with their appearanceven when dressed!


SPORTS

* Boys have football as part of their compulsory PE, and girls have netball but no reverse provision is made.
* Girls have extra-curricular football, but boy don get netball.
* Boys cannot take part in aerobics lessons (yrs 10 & 11 only), in case they start to oggle at girls (to quote a male PE teacher). If this oggling does occur, it is sexist to suggest it does not work the other way. As well as this why should oggling not take place in other sports activities?


TEACHING

* These claims are controversial but we have received reports which suggest that in PE girls are favoured by the PE teachers, and treated in a more favourable manner. Examples of this include different responses to what to do when it starts raining - more often the girls go straight in while the boys have to remain out in the rain.
* Another example used to be different treatment to pupils forgetting their PE kit. It used to be the case that girls often got away with no punishment while the punishment for the boys depended on the teacher. This situation has been changed recently as there is now a PE orgotten kit policy where a forgotten kit leads to a lunchtime detention, while a repeat results in an after school detention.

You may be thinking "but do boys want to play netball anyway?" Well maybe not, but it's the fundamental belief that boys and girls should be equal which is important here. It the same as skirts and trousers. Although girls can wear both only girls can wear skirts, and boys cannot. Again there is nothing to suggest that boys would want to wear skirts, but its having the option which is important. In law the two sexes are equal, so why not at school?

This may not seem overly important, but it is another example of unfair treatment of pupils at RMGS and Overmark hopes that these issues can be addressed over the summer break.