glossary

We thought it’d be useful to get some things straight because we don’t like to be misunderstood. Uttering the terms “gender equality” and “gender neutral” can stir up so much emotion that talking about it can become heated. We frequently see conversations going down rabbit holes over a term used and misunderstood. We don’t like long, tiring arguments over the definition of terms, in our opinion winning an argument by exhausting your opponent over definitions isn’t a true win - we’d like to nip those in the bud with our glossary.

gender

Let’s start off with the most contentious term we use; gender. The true definition of gender is a set of attributes (caring, emotional, strong, aggressive) assigned to a particular sex. Gender describes nothing about biology, it’s purely a social construct. The contention, is that attributes such as “caring” and “emotional” are applied to the female gender and “strong” and “aggressive” are applied to the male gender. My sex is female but I can be caring, emotional, strong and aggressive, sometimes all at once - and often I can be more strong and aggressive than I am caring and emotional. It could rightly be argued that the concept of gender is the very thing The GEC are fighting against. In forming the GEC we went round and round on this issue, we toyed with “gender/equality charter” but we decided to stick with gender equality charter. The main reason we use the term gender is because, rightly or wrongly, using gender to mean sex is a societal norm and is broadly understood. Trying to eradicate gender all together is a mission for another day.

So, at the GEC we say gender but what we really mean is sex. When we talk about gender equality what we mean is equality of the sexes.

You can read more about gender here.

Gender equality

Here is what gender equality means to us:

Gender equality means viewing and treating people as individuals, not as members of a gender or sex. 

Gender equality means equal opportunity, encouragement and support of individuals, regardless of gender or sex.  

Gender equality means recognising the needs and requirements of people as individuals and adapting ways of working, language and actions, to include, support and encourage individuals, regardless of gender or sex.

Gender equality means recognising, developing and rewarding skills, behaviours and achievements of individuals, regardless of gender or sex. 


A Gender Equal Institution

A gender equal institution (in which we include settings, schools, academies, 6th forms, colleges and universities) is one in which students are treated equally in terms of education, responsibilities, learning environments, uniform, sports and activities and in the use of language.

Assessment, grouping and management of students is based on their potential abilities, skills, characters and preferences, not their gender or sex.

A gender equal institution asks questions if one gender or sex is performing differently in particular area and seeks to analyse, adapt and act to redress the balance.

A gender equal institution incorporates gender equality into the education of students, actively seeking to challenge gender stereotypes, choosing teaching materials in which gender or sex is represented equally and regularly seeks to open up discussion with students on the topic of gender equality.

A gender equal institution personifies these values with its staff, governors and school community.

A gender equal institution shares resources, examples, best practices, data and learning with other institutions.

A gender equal institution seeks to encourage the involvement and the education of parents in gender equality and actively seeks to encourage parents to take steps to become a gender equal home.

A gender equal institution looks externally for inspiration, opportunities and for best practices that they might adopt.

A gender equal institution has gender equality as one of its core values.

Students at a gender equal institution discuss gender equality with confidence.


A Gender Equal Home 

A gender equal home is one in which individuals are treated equally in terms of education, clothing, games, toys, books and activities and in the use language.

A gender equal home is one where parenting is based on the individual children's abilities, skills, personalities, behaviours and preferences, not their gender or sex.

A gender equal home incorporates gender equality into the conversation, actively seeking to actively challenge gender stereotypes, choosing toys, clothes, books and entertainment in which gender or sex is represented equally.

A gender equal home regularly seeks to open up discussion, as a family, on gender equality.

A gender equal home shares resources, examples, best practices, data and learning with other homes/families and the wider community.

A gender equal home actively seeks to encourage their children’s educational institutions to take steps to become gender equal.

A gender equal home looks externally for inspiration and for best practices that they might adopt.

A gender equal home has gender equality as one of its core values.


A Gender Equal Business

A gender equal business is one in which individuals are treated equally in terms of pay & reward, responsibilities, working environments, uniform, activities, in the use of language. Assessment, grouping and management of staff is based on their potential, abilities, skills, personalities, behaviours and preferences, not their gender or sex.

A gender equal business is one which encourages employees to self assess to identify any biases conscious or unconscious with regards to gender or sex.

A gender equal business asks questions if there is a gender imbalance in a particular area and seeks to analyse, adapt and act to redress the balance.

A gender equal business incorporates gender equality in to the induction and training of staff, actively seeking to challenge gender stereotypes, creating recruitment materials in which gender or sex is represented equally and regularly seeks to open up discussion with staff on gender equality.

A gender equal business gives serious thought to the products it produces to ensure that in those products, gender is represented equally.

A gender equal business shares resources, examples, best practices, data and learning with other businesses.

A gender equal business seeks to encourage the involvement and the education of staff in gender equality and actively seeks to achieve gender equality.

A gender equal business looks externally for inspiration, opportunities and for best practices that they might adopt.

A gender equal business has gender equality as one of its core values.

A gender equal business seeks to work and do business, where possible, with other gender equal businesses who share their values.

A gender equal business takes an equal approach to the responsibilities of parental/family leave and flexible working.


A Gender Equality Profile

A profile, generated by either self assessment, employee assessment or external assessment, benchmarking where your home, institution or business is on the path to Gender Equality.


Self assessment

A questionnaire that is completed by homes, institutions and businesses to generate a Gender Equality Profile


External Assessment

An assessment of institutions and businesses, completed by an unaffiliated third party, to generate a Gender Equality Rating


Gender Equality Rating

A rating of institutions and businesses based on the level of Gender Equality they have achieved. The rating generates a Badge/Mark of Gender Equality: Working towards Gender Equality or Achieving Gender Equality (Silver, Gold, Platinum)


Badge of Gender Equality

Committed to Gender Equality

Awarded to homes, schools and businesses in exchange for signing the charter.

Working towards Gender Equality

Awarded to schools and businesses who have taken steps to baseline their institution by completing a self assessment and generating a Gender Equality Profile, and who have begun to work towards achieving gender equality

Achieving Gender Equality (Silver, Gold, Platinum)

Awarded to schools and businesses who have taken steps to baseline their institution and begin to work towards achieving gender equality

Gender Equality Advocate

Awarded to charities and other groups who, by the work they do, support the achievement of Gender Equality at home, at school or in the workplace and to individuals who support the achievement of Gender Equality at home, at school or in the workplace.