A Celebration Of Feminism In Schools
On Thursday 5th July, students from Bow School were invited to the Houses of Parliament, Westminster to share and celebrate the work that we have done in school to promote feminism and political engagement amongst girls.
We heard from MP Vicky Foxcroft who hosted the event, MP Ellie Reeves, Ava Berry (Ambassador Programme Director, 50:50 Parliament Campaign); Charlotte Gerada and Labour Party Councillor Sakina Sheikh. They shared their experiences of being female Members of Parliament and the impact this has had on politics and decision making. There was also lots of encouragement to explore careers in politics.
A few facts about how we have/have not moved on in 100 years after some women got the right to vote:
- In 2018 in the UK, 442 MP’s (Members of Parliament) are men and 208 are women – meaning women are outnumbered by more than 2.1
- Of around 800 peers, approximately 200 are women – meaning women are outnumbered by 4.1
- Only 12 extra women were elected in 2017
- It is estimated that it will take 50 years for gender equality
- There are 40+ countries in the world with a better gender balance than the UK
- These statistics reveal sexism in the political system
Which means there is still a lot of work to be done!
Did you know that there is now a Nursery at the Houses of Parliament to make it easier for working parents (particularly mothers who can return to work without the stress of childcare).
Some small children even go to vote with their parents when voting is much later in the evening.
Alongside other school students from schools across London, our Year 11 students delivered a presentation on how we, as a school, promote gender equality. The presentations from all students were inspirational and powerful - demonstrating there is great work going on but still lots of work to do.
Students spent lunchtime in Parliament Square exploring statutes of iconic political figures including that of Millicent Fawcett - the first statue of a woman in Parliament Square that was unveiled earlier this year after a two years campaign to get female representation outside the Palace of Westminster. The bronze statue of Millicent Fawcett joins 11 all-male statues including those of Sir Winston Churchill, Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi.
We look forward to the next annual Feminism Conference in November!
Rising to the Challenge, Celebrating Success, Embracing Diversity & Working Together – The Bow Way