Encourage K-12 schools in New York State and beyond to #teachaboutwomen and gender

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Petition New York State to set an example and teach about women in high school!


“I worshipped dead men for their strength, forgetting I was strong.” -Vita Sackville-West

Young women and girls need role models for leading lives of consequence, conviction and influence. High school curricula, especially in history, almost completely ignore women's experiences, priorities, and their individual and collective contributions to change. In a time when women are fighting for equal pay, mutual respect and to have their voices heard, we must correct this long-standing inequity.

The Problem: New York State's High School history curricula, like most around the nation, includes little to no information about women. ™As of the 2017/2018 school year, there are a total of 10 references to women and gender in New York State’s High School Social Studies Curriculum:

™In eight out of these 10 cases “women” appears on a list with other groups following phrases like “diverse groups” and “such as” or “including.”™ Here are all the references to women for the entire four years:

  1. –Once in the 9th Grade Global History Sequence (“Shifting roles of men and women” in the Neolithic Revolution)
  2. Twice in 10th Grade Global History Sequence (part of lists during the study of the Enlightenment and, later, imperialism)
  3. Seven times in the 11th Grade US History sequence (Role in Revolutionary War, Early 19th C, Reconstruction, World War I, the 1920’s, World War II, and finally the Second Wave Feminist movement). But, as of 2017, only 1% of the questions on the US History Regents Examination address women at all.
  4. Zero times in the 12 Grade courses on Participation in Government and Civics and Economics, the Enterprise System, and Finance

The Solution: Teach about women by putting women on the curriculum and making resources for teaching about women and gender readily available.

  1. Re-write the NYS Social Studies Standards, grades 9-12 to include rich material that addresses women’s experience, the accomplishments of individual women and questions of gender throughout the year.
  2. Add a criterion under Social Studies Practices, grades 9-12 – Civic Practices that includes “developing awareness of gender equity and its complex history.”
  3. Add “Read for underlying gender, racial or other biases” to the NYS Common Core Standards for English Language Arts, grades 6-12 under “Key Ideas and Details.”
  4. Build an online database that is free, easily-accessible, and dedicated to materials and resources that address women and gender, the accomplishments of individual women, sexuality, intersectionality, and the complex history of gendered relationships. In developing this database, topics and subjects should be sure to invite and support the inclusion of diverse aspects of the human experience including but not limited to questions of race, ethnicity, socio-economic class, sexuality, age, and ability. 


Our Mission: To change the stories we tell about women, gender, and power in classrooms and beyond. 

Our Strategy: We  harness the passion of educators and supporters to fight for change in 

  • Policy: Change educational policy and learning standards to include rich and intersectional material on women and gender
  • Classrooms: Give teachers the tools and skills they need to teach about women and the complex history of gender roles. To do so, we maintain a free database of educator resources and conduct workshops to show teachers how to implement them. 
  • The World: Build a mentorship network to connect young women and girls with mentors of all genders who can help them thrive and succeed beyond school in their personal and professional lives.

To learn more, contact Georgina Emerson at teachaboutwomen@gmail.com. 

Twitter:  @teachaboutwomen 

Hashtag: #teachaboutwomen 

Website: www.TeachAboutWomen.org

Today: Georgina is counting on you

Georgina Emerson needs your help with “Teach about women in schools! Sign a petition to put women and gender on k-12 curricula. #teachaboutwomen”. Join Georgina and 420 supporters today.