Dear Members of the Nagle community,
This Sunday, March 8th, we will mark International Women’s Day. The theme for the day is Choose to Challenge and we are asked to celebrate women’s achievement, raise awareness against bias and take action for equality. We want to live in a gender-equal world, one in which all voices are heard equally and where all people have equity in opportunity.
Gloria Steinem, the American feminist journalist and social activist said,
"The story of women's struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights."
All women should live their lives free of violence, discrimination and stereotyping. However, the challenge is to ensure that women are able to contribute to decision making. Women are still underrepresented in many areas of power and influence.
Whilst in Australia women’s participation in the workforce is at 61.2%, women hold around 25% of leadership positions in industry and business. Women represent 32% of seats in our Federal Parliament. In our schools, women make up 62% of the teaching profession but only 40% of principals are women. There should more places for women in leadership. With greater participation in decision making, women can help drive change that will contribute to a more equitable and just society.
At Nagle College, our girls are asked to be people who are Leading with Love. We have seen many examples where our students have answered the call to support works of social justice. With Nano Nagle as a very real role model, we know that the qualities of determination, courage and faith can fuel a person’s actions. We know that Presentation People make a difference here and around the world. The Presentation Sisters have a voice in the United Nations and are leaders in the work to bring equity and freedom to women who do not have those rights.
It feels like there is still a long way to go; we need to continue to challenge behaviours, practices and attitudes that devalue women and their contributions to our world. We are invited to Choose to Challenge.