Education

Forward march

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For many, empowering women starts at home, in the neighbourhood, and at school and college. A few eminent persons speak on what can be done in this direction.

Dr. Divya S. Iyer, Sub-Collector of Thiruvananthapuram:

“Gender sensitivity in institutions and workplaces is the need of the hour. More colleges should set up gender-sensitive cells to deal with gender-based violence and periodically conduct sensitisation programmes.”

Geeta Ramaseshan, Advocate, Madras High Court:

“The stress on formal education and performance is bringing a disconnect between the “performers” and the less privileged. Innovative programmes that foster a spirit of social consciousness must be made a part of the curriculum. Also, educational institutions must equip young women to deal with sexual harassment.”

Professor Santa Ono, President and Vice-Chancellor of University of British Columbia, Canada:

“Research shows a strong correlation between female education and development, and regions that are committed to the education of girls and women see definite social and economic progress.”

Anu Prasad, Senior Adviser, Central Square Foundation and Co-Founder of India Leaders for Social Sector programme (ILSS):

“Educating a woman is like elevating her to be a leader. Female education also results in greater national economic growth.”

G. Viswanathan, founder and chancellor, VIT University:

Institutions should encourage students to stand up for their identities and speak up for their rights: “Female students who temper their nurturing, maternal qualities, with a sense of self-identity are empowered individuals, and an invaluable asset to society.”

Mercy Kuttan, former Indian athlete and an Arjuna Awardee:

“Sports help break barriers and have huge potential to empower girls. But, how seriously are we taking sports? Are sports a part of the curriculum in every school? Do institutions have the facilities, and are we setting benchmarks in sports education? These are questions we need to ask ourselves. State governments could institute a ‘Best District Award’ so that sports are adopted in a healthier and more innovative way.

As told to Spatika Narayanan, Aswin V.N., Neha Rupeja and Liffy Thomas.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2020 9:06:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/forward-march/article22917251.ece

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