TES is reporting that a recent study has raised concern over whether young girls are being encouraged to study Stem subjects.
The gender divide is as strong at age 4 as it is at 14 when it comes to children’s career choices, a major new study has revealed.
The figures, based on the decisions of hundreds of thousands of children, reveal that gender stereotypes about potential career choices are firmly in place well before the teenage years and then remain.
The data raises significant questions about the impact of high-profile interventions designed to encourage girls to study Stem subjects and consider careers in engineering. One teachers’ leader warned this week that society had “gone backwards” on tackling the gender divide.
Mary Bousted, general secretary of the ATL teaching union, said that tackling such stereotypes was difficult for schools and the data was indicative of a wider problem in society.
“The tragedy is we are going backwards,” she said. “In the 1980s, there was lots of work done around gender stereotypes, getting girls into maths and science, and looking at the curriculum and pedagogy. But I don’t think we take the issue seriously enough anymore.”
Do you agree that there is a gender divide? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or via Twitter. ~ Meena
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