Equality Versus Equity: the Empowerment of Caribbean Women Essay

1773 Words Apr 22nd, 2012 8 Pages
The search for gender equity and empowerment of Caribbean women through education has yielded mixed opinions. On one hand it is felt that social mobility for women is best realised through education, while on the other hand it is believed that current academic curriculums simply reinforce the subordinate, inequitable role for women to fulfil.
At women’s conferences around the world, many ideals have been targeted for actualization. Among them, the need to improve the quality and relevance of education for girls, ensuring equitable representation of women at all levels of the political process, and encouraging and enabling men to take responsibility for their sexual and reproductive behaviour. According to Bailey (2003), be it the
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110). Thus, Bailey insists that any correlation between academic indicators and gender equity has to be made in relation to the socio-cultural environment and the socioeconomic value-differential attached to certification between the sexes.
Whereas some educational concerns were reflected in the Post Beijing Regional Plan of Action to the Year 2000, these reflections do not adequately address the critical issue of value attachment between the sexes – a value distinction which entails an obvious imbalance. Indeed, many positives were cited throughout the Caribbean that contribute to a correction of gender issues unfavourable to women with educational elements as the conduit for change. For example, one report showed that, in Antigua and Barbuda, boys and girls have the same opportunity to pursue sex-linked subjects. It was also reported here that a “Work and Life Skills Programme” existed for young females who dropped out of school for various reasons. A similar programme was also reported to exist in Suriname. Another report showed that in Barbados, timetabling, selection processes and teacher expectation did not orient students into sex-linked subject areas (Bailey, 2003, p.112).
Whereas all these citation are good, Bailey (2003) adds that, from a qualitative perspective, the position of females in the school curriculum affords them a lesser

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