Skip to main content

Full text of "ERIC ED285264: Making Progress: Women in Management in Primary & Secondary Education in Australia. Report of a National Conference (3rd, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia, August 1-4, 1985)."

See other formats


ED 285 264 EA 019 606 

AUTHOR Randell, Shirley, Ed. 

TITLE Making Progress: Women in Management in Primary 6 

Secondary Education in Australia. Report of a 
National Conference (3rd, Canberra, Australian 
Capital Territory, Australia, August 1-4, 1985). 

INSTITUTION Australian Capital Territory Schools Authority, 

Canberra.; Australian Coll. of Education, Carlton, 

REPORT NO ISBN-0-909587-35-3 

PUB DATE Oct 85 

NOTE 22 5p. 

PUB TYPE Collected Works - Conference Proceedings (021) — 

Reports - Descriptive (141) 

EDBS PRICE MF01/PC09 Plus Postage. 

DESCRIPTORS *Administrators ; Elementary Secondary Education; 

*Equal Opportunities (Jobs); *Females; *Sex 
Discrimination; *Women Faculty; Workshoos 



This report describes the third conference that the 
Australian College of Education has conducted on women in educational 
administration in Australia. Over 150 educators attended, 90 percent 
of whom were women. Meetings and workshops were designed to canvass 
four major issues: (1) a political view of imperatives for change; 
(2) research reports on women's current position in government and 
non-government systems and schools; (3) progress reports; and (4) the 
design of strategies for change. Following introductory essays by 
Shirley Randell and Ros Kelly, the papers appear under three major 
headings. Under the first heading, "The Current Situation for Women 
in Management in Primary and Secondary Education," four papers are 
listed: "Women Teachers and Promotion: A Search for Some 
Explanations" (Shirley Sampson); "Women Principals in Australia" 
(Judith Chapman); "Laywomen as Principals in Catholic Secondary 
Schools?" (Janice Nash); and "Women in Management in Independent 
Schools in Australia: Is Our Past Still Ahead of Us?" (Di Fleming). 
Under "State Overviews," nine papers appear: "The Development of an 
Equal Employment Opportunity Management Plan in New South Wales" 
(Kerry Hyland); "Making the Invisible Visible in Victoria" (Veronica 
Schwarz); I'Changing the Position of Women in the Primary Schools of 
the Victorian Education Department" (Marilyn Jamieson and Barry 
Sheehan); "Teaching: An Attractive Career for Women?" (Ann Scott and 
Eddie Clarke); "The South Australian Experience" (John Steinle); 
"Gender Equity Policy in the Education Department of Western 
Australia" (Warren Louden); "Women in Educational Management in 
Primary and Secondary Schools in Tasmania" (Beverly Richardson, 
Margaret Lonergan and Jan Edwards); "Women in Educational Management 
in the Northern Territory" (Lyn Powierza); and "Women in Educational 
Mahsgement in the Australian Capital Territory" (Barry Price). Under 
"Making Progress," six papers are listed: "Women in Management in 
Unions" (Di Foggo and Jennie George); "Women as Candidates for 
Educational Administration: A Second Interpretation" (Peter OBrien); 
"Lessons from the Affirmative Action Pilot Program" (Maureen 
Bickley); "Getting Past 'Shock-Horror': Stages in the Acceptance of 
Equal Opportunity in an Organisation" (Hester Eisenstein); "Making 

<^ gress" (Rosemary Gracanin); and "Toward the Year 2000--Ref lections 
ERJCthe Nairobi End of the United Nations Decade for Women Forum and 
^ " gOTi ference* (Gail Radford). Included are seven appendices. (MLH) 

o««:i?k5J!?S2fRr:i^S^^^ -permission ;o reproduce thi 



This document has been r^^^'s^wced as 
^\ received from the person or oroanization 
^orjgtnating it 

□ Minor changes have been made to improve 
reproduction quality 


• Po<ntsofvteworop*nionsstatedtnthisd(cu^ m TMc cm ir atiam ai Dccniicir>e 
ment do not necessarily represent official THE tDUCATIONAL RESOURCE 
0ER1 pos.t.on or policy INFORMATION CENTER (ERIC)," 

.ri#;Ayfiip^iff ?^8S, * CiilffliBRlU, ACT 








Edited by 
Shirley Randell 

The Australian College of Education, 
Carlton, Victoria 

October 1985 

Published by: The Australian College of Education 
James Darling House 
916 Swanston Street 
Carlton, Vic. 3053 

c The Australian College of Education 

Copies may be made of material from this publication 
without prior reference to the Australian College of 
Education and the Australian Capital Territory Schools 
Authority provided only that: 

(i) they are used for educational purposes and 

(ii) the source is acknowledged. 

National Library of Australia Card Number and ISBN 0 909587 35 3 

'At present my chances for promotion are so remote that I'll have to 
work out some way of getting up the system, e,g, open positions. I'm 
a bit cynical about them though. Some open positions appear to be 
written for one person and you don't get a lot of encouragement 
towards promotion if you're a so-called nice, middle-class married 
lady. The fellows get the support and the career expectations, but 
there's a lot of women who'll just accept what I'd see as a 
subservient role. They really often do seem to get pushed around. 
Some friends of mine are like that ~ the salary is good, the holidays 
are good, they enjoy the sense of fulfillment ,,, it's not fulfilling 
for me. They're very much the second income earners. If the kids 
are sick, they are the ones to take time off. In our family it's 
often easier for ipy husband to take time off when the children are 
sick. I think a lot of the reason that there's so few women in 
senior positions is societal conditioning and expectations of little 
girls. They see themselves as serving and helping in secondary 
roles. That, plus the fact that women teachers had to resign on 
marriage in the past and be on temporary employment,' 

Cited in: Sk inner, K. (1980) Wo/nen and Proutotion : sows women ' s 

perceptions of the inf luences on their teaching careers 
South Australian Education Department, Adelaide. 



The editor is indebted to the following persons and organisations: 

To Dr Greg Hancock, Chief Education Officer, and staff of 
the Australian Capital Territory Schools Authority for 
jointly sponsoring the enterprise. 

To the Council of the Australian College of Education 
through its Projects Committee, for funding and other 
support . 

To government and non-government education authorities, 
principal, teacher and parent associations for their support 
in enabling representatives to attend the conference. 

To the authors for their contributions. 

To the Conference Steering Committee, the chairpersons of 
conference sessions, the leaders of conference workshops and 
all participants in the conference for their contribution. 

S^ir ley RandeJl 



The Australian College of Education is a professional association 
which represents educators at all levels and in all parts of 
Australia. Its members include infant school teachers; administrators 
and teachers from the government and non-government sectors, primary 
and secondary schools, universities and TAFE sectors. 

The College is not affiliated with any political body, union or 
other group. Its charter specifically excludes an industrial or 
union-related role. It can, therefore, speak for education in an 
objective' manner. In recent years the College has set out 
deliberately to sponsor informed debate on a number of significant 
issues affecting the Australian education community. A key issue of 
interest to a high proportion of members relates to the role of women 
in educational rranagement. In 1985 the College co-sponsored with the 
ACT Schools Authority the third of the series of conferences 
addressing this issue. Evidence of the significance of this issue is 
found in the level of participation at each conference, support for 
the recommendations arising from these and the popularity of the 
proceedings. Within the College itself there has been a noticable 
increase in the proportion of female members. Although women 
currently represent about 25% of all members; in 1985 over 40t of new 
members were women. This reflects the College's new emphasis on 
equitable representation in all its activitie9. The moving force in 
each of these developments has been the Prefi'ident-elect, Ms Shirley 
Randell, I take this opportunity to congratulate her and her steering 
committee on these initiatives. 

The papers printed in this volume reflect the concerns of those 
who attended this third conference. Their recommendations are 
designed to contribute to current debate in all school systems. The 
College is delighted 'to be able to publish the proceedings from this 
important third conference in the hope of fur he" progress for women 
in management in school systems. 

Dr P B Botsman, A,M, 





Peter Botsman 


Shirley Randell 


Shirley Randell 

The Imperatives for Change H 
Ro3 Kelly 


Women Teachers and Promotion: a sear^ h for some 16 
explanat ions 

Shirley Sampson 

vJomen Principals in Australia 79 
Jvdith Chapman 

Laywomen as Principals in Catholic Secondary Schools? 46 
Janice Nash 

Women in Management in Independent Schools in Australia: 51 
is our past still ahead of us? 
Di Fleming 


The Development of an Equal Employment Opportunity 57 
Management Plan in New South Wales 
Kerry Hyland 

Making the Invisible Visible in Victoria 61 
Veronica Schwarz 



Changing the Position of Women in the Primary Schools of 
the Victorian Education Department 

narilyn Jamieson and Barry Sheehan 


Teaching: an attractive career for women? 81 
Ann Scott and Eddie Clarke 

The South Australian Experience 100 
John Steinle 

Gender Equity Policy in the Education Department of 104 
Western Australia 
Warren Louden 

Women in Managemeiit in Primary and Secondary Schools in HI 

Beverley Richardson, Margaret Lonergan and Jan Edwards 

Women in Educational Management in the Northern Territory 119 
Lyn Powierza 

Women in Educational Management in the Australian Capital 122 

Barry Price 


Women In Management in Unions 129 
Di Foggo and Jennie George 

Women as Candidates for Educational Administration: 137 
a second Interpretation 
Peter OBrien 

Lessons from the Affirmative Action Pilot Program 156 
Maureen Bickley 

Getting Past 'Shock-Horror': stages in the acceptance of 161 
equal employment opportunity in an organisation 
Hester Eisenstein 

Making Progress ^ 
Rosemary Gracanin 



Towards the Year 2000 - Reflections on the Nairobi End of 
the United Nations Decade for Women Forum and Conference 
Gail Radford 


Appendix 1 Recommendations and Strategies 


Appendix 2 Participants 


Appendix 3 Issues for Discussion at Pre-Conf erence 


Appendix 4 Issues from Introd ictory Workshops 


Appendix 5 List of Resources and Papers Produced by the 
Education Department of Western Australia on 
Gender Equity In Education 


Appendix 6 Proposed Procedures and Criteria for 

Evaluation for Promotion in the Education 
Department of Western Australia 


Appendix 7 Contributors to this Publication 



Shirley Randell 

When *The Year of Women' was first announced it was considered by 
many men and women to be a rather humorous event • But the declaration 
by the United Nations of International Women's Year and the subsequent 
Decade for Women have been instrumental in raising awareness of 
women's issues in all countries of the world. 

New initiatives, original research and ground-breaking decisions 
have emerged from the Year and women realise that this new awareness 
is still only beginning. The Decade for Women has brought home to 
many that women are half the world's people and ^hold up half the 
sky'; that women represent half the world's wisdom, strength, labour 
force and intelligence. 

Women are a factor in public life which can no longer be 
overlooked; they have been taking initiatives and pioneering 
activities for justice, development, peace and equality in education 
and in many other fields. Society's great institutions, including the 
church, the law and education, hav become aware of their often 
oppressive attitudes about women. 

It is thus fitting that this publication which records progress in 
Australian schools and school sypteins towards the participation of 
women in educational decision making is published in the year which 
celebrates the End of the Decade for Women. Equal employment 
opportunity is now recognised as Justifiable on the grounds of equity, 
efficiency and effectiveness. While there is still a long way to go 
before equality of opportunity in Australian society is attained, the 
way ahead is clearer and a start has been made upon it. 

Schools and school systems have a great responsibility to become a 
credible sign of a truly inclusive community of women and men, by 
transforming their structures and abandoning all discrimination and 
marginalisat ion based on sex, race or class. 


Shirley Randall 


In 1982 the national Projects Committee of the Australian College 
of Education declared the issue of the participation of women in 
educational management to be a priority. In February 1983 the Council 
approved a grant for a national conference as the first stage of a 
national assessment of this topic. The Council approved a further 
grant in 1984 towards the sponsoring, jointly with the Institute of 
Higher Education, UniverrHy of New England, Armidale, of a second 
conference on the participation of women in higher education 
management. The proceedings of these conferences have been published 
in Changing F^cus: The Participation of Vomen in Educational 
ttanagement in Au^tra 1 i a and The Way Forward* Women in tUgher 
Education nanagement in Australia . This publication reports the 
proceedings of a third conference in the series, jointly sponsored in 
1985 by the College and the Australian Capital Territory Schools 
Authority, on the participation of women in mana^emerit in primary and 
secondary education in Aistralia. 

Aims and Outcomes 

The aims of the conference were: 

to share knowledge about the extent of participation of women in 
educational management and the policies, programs and processes 
being developed by practitioners in the systems and schoolts; 

to identify attitudinal and structural barriers to greater 
participation by women in educational management; 

to access avenues for the prof e ;'3ional development of women in 
educational management; 

to formulate proposals for action consistent with the principles 
of equity in relation to decision-making structures, curriculum 
offerings, industrial relations, ant i- discr iminat ion legislation, 
financial planning, policy formulation and personnel; 

to disseminate findings throughout Australia; 

to recommend appropriate action to the participating 

Participan ts 

Invitations were sent to directors-general of all State and 
Territory education departments in Australia requesting tliem to 
support the conference by sending a team of men and women, including a 
senior administrator, a senior policy maker, a member of the equal 
employment opportunity committee, a '-egional administrator, a 
secondary school principal and a primary school principal. In 
addition, invitations were extended to national and state Catholic 
education offices and independent school associations, government and 


- 2 - 

non-governmant principal, teacher and parent asBociations and to 
senior women known to be interested In the topic. This group included 
Aboriginal women and women from non-^English speaking backgrounds. 

The response was gratifying - over one hundred and fifty people 
attended, although less than 10 per cent were men (Appendix 2). 

Pre~Conf erence Activity 

Prior to the conference a set of education readings was 
dictiibuted to all participants. Theoe included the recommendations 
relating to higher education from the 1983 Melbourna Conference on the 
Participation of Women in Educational Management, a paper by Eileen 
Byrne ^Legislative and non-legislative concepts of direct and indirect 
discrimination', a preliminary report by Shirley Sampson ^Teachers and 
promotions study, 1984', publications by Judith Chapman Selection and 
Appointment of Australian School Principals and Veronica Schwarz 
Women in the Education Department of Victoria, and abstracts of 
papers to be presented at the conference. 

A set of issues for consideration was also included for discussion 
at pr e-conf erence meetings which were held in most States (See 
Appendix 3). 


The conference, held on 1-4 August 1985 at the O'Connell Education 
Centre of the ACT Schools Authority in Canberra, was organised by a 
steering committee consisting of system udmini strators and school 
principals from the Authority, members of the College's national 
projects committee, a management educator, the director of the 
Commonwealth Schools' Commission's Education of Girls Unit, and 
corresponding members nominated by the directors-general of state 
education departr. ents. 

Three workshop groups were arranged. The first workshop groups, 
representative of levels of education, states and interests, met once 
to identify issues of concern to participants. These issues were 
synthesised into areas for ten workshops and participants elected to 
attend one of them (Appendix 4). This second series of workshops met 
six tiines to analyse key issues, consider questions and form 
recommendations and strategies. The third workshop groups focussed on 
state location and were designed to stimulate the formation of local 
networks and the organisation of follow up meetings. 

The program was designed to canvass four major issues; a political 
view of the imperatives for change; research reports on the current 
position of women in government and non-government systems and 
schools ; reviews of progress being made across Australia, and the 
design of strategies for change. 

The conference was opened by the Chief Education Officer of the 
ACT Schools Authority, Dr Greg Hancock, who welcomed participants to 
Canberra. The immediate past President of the Australian College of 
Educat^'on, Professor William Walker, provided some background to the 
event. The Commonwealth Minister for Education, Senator Susan Ryan, 
was unable to attend because of cabinet commitments and Mrs Ros Kelly, 

o T3 
ERIC - ^ - 

MHR, Member for Canberra gave the opening address. She outlined three 
imperatives for change: firstly, the importance of redressing the 
obvious inequalities that exist in education systems; secondly, the 
need to encourage organisations to utilise all the human resources 
available to them an efficient and effective way; thirdly, the need 
to acknowledge the skflls and abilities of all the components of 
Australia's population* 

On Friday morning the opening session was devoted to a report from 
Dr Shiri.ey Sampson, Senior Lecturer in Education, Monash University on 
a national 1984 survey of qualifications and prior experience. The 
report examined perceptions of discrimination and attitudes to 
promotion of 2,380 female and male teachers in primary and secondary 
schools in all states. It was found that women teachers wanted 
promotion for similar reasons to men but that they had not been 
allocated apprenticeship' experiences to administrative roles* Tasks 
distributed by principals and senior staff were quite unequally 
allocated to men. An analysis of perceptions of discrimination 
revealed uniformity in the views of many women and men* Dr Sampson's 
study provided substantial evidence of the importance of a small 
number of factors which retard women's advancement and must be dealt 
with by education systems* 

Other sessions on the first day outlined the current situation for 
women in management in pr imar y and secondary education in both 
government and non-government sectors* Dr Judith Chapmman, Senior 
Lecturer in Education, Monash University, reported the results of two 
major national studies on Australian school principals* In addition 
to providing important benchmark data on the personal and professional 
characteristics of principals and detailed information on the 
procedures adopted in principal selection, the studies drew attention 
to alarming statistics* In 1983 only 23 per cent of Australian school 
principals were female, and recent evidence about principal selection 
in Victoria where community participation has been introduced showed a 
deteriorating situation for women* Dr Chapman made suggestions about 
the constitution of selection committees, the consideration of 
evidence, the framing of interview questions and the procedures fc^r 
reaching decisions* She argued that local selection committees must 
be er'ucated to look analytically at what constituted an effective 
principal in order to avoid a reliance on traditional images of 
leaders and stereotypic notions of leadership behaviour* 

Ms Janice Hash, English/History Co-ordinator at St Andrew's 
Cathedral School in the Sydney Archdiocese, New South Vales, reported 
on research she had conducted examining why there were so few laywomen 
as principals in Catholic secondary schools. The numbers of men and 
women from the teaching orders capable of filling executive positions 
bar declined and male lay principals have generally replaced the 
re.Mgious* Unintentional systemic discrimination included 
ineligibility because of lack of experience in administratioii, the 
expectation that women will spend more time at the classroom level and 
the lack of incidental professional training. Factors attributed to 
women teachers themselves included lack of aspiration, ambition and 
self-confidence* Societal attitudes, beliefs and practices were also 
seen to prejudice women in the promotional stakes. In particular, the 
Catholic church was perceived as endorsing traditional attitudes 
towards the role cf women in Australian society. Realistic strategies 

to lessen the disadvantages for women seeking promotion positions in 
Catholic educatic.i were suggested* 

A case study was used by Ms Di Fleming, Vice President of the 
Australian Council for Educational Administration, to illustrate one 
administrative response to co-education in relation to the position of 
women in educational management in independent schools. The co- 
educational movement has led to many women in single-sex schools 
losing their management positions to men. In Victoria the principals 
of all coeducational and single sex schools for boys are men whereas 
less then 50 per cent of the principals of girls schools are women. 

The second day of the conference was devoted to State experience, 
with the emphasis on positive steps being taken to redress the balance 
for women in management. 

Ms Kerry Hyland, Equal Employment Opportunity Co-ordinator , New 
South Wales Department of Education, reported on the Department's 
Equal Employment Opportunity Management Plan for the Education 
Teaching Service. The management plan provides a profile of relevant 
departmental policies, practices and personnel against which changes 
can be measured. 

The plan involves a review of personnel practices including 
recruitment techniques, selection criteria, conditions of service and 
transfer, and promotion patterns and opportunities. Strategies 
developed by senior officers in the department will improve personnel 
practices and the representation of women at various levels in the 
Education Teaching Service. 

There were two contributions from Victoria. Ms Veronica Schwarz, 
Policy and Planning Officer, Education Department of Victoria, 
reported on her research detailing the basic data on the position of 
women in the department in 1984, The number of women in senior 
positions in the teaching service since formal equality was instituted 
in Victoria in 1972 has actually deteriorated, and the distribution of 
male and fema}e teachers in 1984 was no better than in 1925 when 
artificial ratios were created to limit the number of women in danior 
positions. Ms Schwarz argued that the invisible barriers of attitudes 
ana social expectations must also be highlighted - made visible ar^d 
highly unacceptable. She drew attention to the sexual division of 
labour and the current concept of masculinity as two of the most basic 
impediments to women's progress. The status of women will only change 
as the relationships of men and women are radically changed, beginning 
with focusing equal opportunity programs equally on girls and boys, 
their attitudes to themselves and each other. 

Ms Marilyn Jamieson, Senior Education Officer, Education 
Department of Victoria and Dr Barry Sheehan, Director^ Melbourne 
College of Advanced Education, examined the common traditional 
perception of primary teaching as both a female occupational 
stronghold and, until recent years, a fail-safe route for social 
mobility against the perspective of gross gender imbalances in favour 
of men at the senior levels of primary school administration and 
beyond. The relative absence of women from senior administrative 
levels was explored in terms of several standard explanatory models. 
Ms Jamieson and Dr Sheehan argued that primary education could be a 


- 5 - 'J 5 

particularly vulnerable sector for a major and effective strategic 
push for redress of structural imbalances in the system, and that the 
career structure itself should be the subject of critical focus* 

The Queensland paper, by Dr Ann Scott and Dr Eddie Clarke, 
Education Officers in the Policy and Information Services Branch of 
the Queensland Department of Education, was in three parts* Following 
a brief overview of the history of women in educational management in 
Queensland, recent developments in the United States were described 
and a hypothesis developed about the future of teaching and education 
management as a career path for women* This hypothesis was tested 
against Queensland statistics to show that assumptions upon which 
women's career structures and opportunities were based in the past are 
now inappropriate* Overall career structures within the teaching 
profession should be re-examined to ensure the quality of education in 
Australia, as well as to meet the sectional interests of women* 

Mr John Steinle, Director-General of Education, South Australian 
Education Department, described structural changes introduced in South 
Australia to encourage women to seek managerial/promotional posts* He 
identified distinct and positive differences in the way senior women 
in South Australia approached and performed their Jobs and anticipated 
the development of more gender-inclusive models of management which 
would be far more attractive to aspiring women* Mr Steinle paid 
particular attention to the desirability of moving out of an era in 
which discriminatory practices were curtailed into one where 
differences in the workplace and the social responsibilities that 
v/omen have traditionally fulfilled are valued* 

Dr Warren Louden, Deputy Director-General of Education, outlined 
the dramatic changes over the last two years in policy on gender 
equity in the curriculum and in staffing in the Education Department 
of Western Australia* From a curric«^lum point of view a substantial 
program of system support for schools has been introduced* The aim is 
to facilitate the development in every school and classroom of an 
action-oriented policy on gender equity* With respect to staffing 
policies and practices, the last of the regulations which directly 
discriminated against women was removed in 1984* A number of other 
changes * '^ve introduced employment conditions specifically geared to 
further x. .e interests of women teachers* Further, a program of 
affirmative action to increase the number of women in promotional 
positions has begun* Dr Louden provided an overview of these 
initiatives, pointing out both the successes and the hurdles still to 
be Jumped* 

The Tasmanian paper was presented by three women : Beverley 
Richardson, Deputy Director (Student Services), Jan Edwards, Sen jr 
Education Officer in the Tasmanian Education Department, and Margaret 
Lonergan, a Primary Representative from the Tasmanian Teachers 
Federation* The results of the Tasmanian Teacher Mobility Stvdy 
were reported and strategies to encourage women to apply for positions 
were outlined* They described the work in schools to change attitudes 
of both boys and girls* 

Dr Barry Price, Senior Director (Resources) , ACT Schools Authority, 
described the current limited representation of women in the ACT 
Schools Authority* He outlined the major? ^rriers to improvement as 


In reporting lesBons to be learned trom the Commonwealth's 
Affirmative Action Pilot Program, Ms Maureen Bickley, Consultant, 
Affirmative Action Resource Unit, Office of the Status of Women, 
Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, reviewed the results of the 
voluntary participation of 28 of Australia's leading companies and 
three higher education institutions in the program* Participants in 
the program have undertaken a series of steps designed to introduce 
affirmative action for women into their organisations and each has 
pursued an individual program with these steps forming the common 
framework. The program has made it obvious that increasing women's 
participation in non-traditional areas requires a concerted effort by 
both employers and educators. Employers need to ensure that there are 
no barriers present in their personnel policies and practices* The 
education sector should accelerate activities designed both to prepare 
women and girls for non-traditional work and encourage them actively 
to seek such work* 

Ms Hester Eisenstein, Assistant Director, Office of Equal 
Employment Opportunity in Public Employment, New South Wales focused 
on successful strategies adopted as part of the affirmative action 
program by the New South Wales Government to increase the numbers of 
women in management positions. She drew examples from the experience 
of tertiary education institutions, the education department, 
techT ical and further education institutions and other public service 

In summarising the theme of the conference ^Making Progress' Ms 
Rosemary Gracanin, Assistant Director of Education, Education 
Department of South Australia tried to untangle ths ^web of stretched 
rubber bands' which had become evident during the conference. 
Participants had />ained a clearer picture of current practice but 
confirmed that there was still a long way to go, with only 23 per cent 
of women in principal positions. However, women were beginning to 
feel secure as part of a national network of able, capable, successful 
men. At this conference men participated as speakers and full-time 
members and contributed to the feeling of equality as participants 
helped each other in a non-competitive way, showing that men and women 
can function in a co-operative, collaborative manner in overcoming the 
inequality of women in management positions. She highlighted emerging 
issues as selection procedures for senior positions, composition of 
panels, social attitudes towards women in management, the changing 
role of the manager, personal career planning and research. 

Papers delivered at the conference are included in the main body 
of the report and the background of contributors is listed in 
Appendix 7. 


Recommendations developed in workshops were presented during the 
closing plenary session of the conference (Appendix 1). The response 
of workshops was overwhelming. Most recommendations were based on 
principles enunciated throughout the conference: namely, the 
fundamental right of women and men to be equally responsible for the 
management of schools and education systems; equitable representation 
of women and men in policy formulation and decision making in schools 
and education systems; improved access to professional development in 


- 8 - 

management which may entail special provision for women and improved 
information collection and dissemination relating to educational 
management. Thfc recommendations were wide ranging, covering policy 
and programs, funding, structure, statistics, personnel, professional 
development and research and were directed to the Australian College 
of Education, the Commonwealth Schools Commission, the Office of the 
Status of Vomen, Commonwealth and State Departments, government and 
non-government education systems, and authorities, teachers' unions 
and participants. The recommendations were subsequently forwarded to 
all participants for endorsement. 

Since the conference the Council of the Australian College of 
Education and the ACT Schools Authority have approved the publication 
of the report and referred recommendations to relevant people, 
authorities and organisations. f^tate action groups have met to 
continue the momentum beyond the conference. Progress has been made 
in the area of women in educational management but that progress is 
still alarmingly slow and more needs to be done. 

The Canberra conference was a fruitful third stage of the 
Australian College of Education's national assessment of the 
participation of women in educational management. In 1986 the College 
hopes to sponsor a fourth conference which will focus on some of the 
issues raised since 1983* 

In closing the conference Shirley Randell referred again to the 
Nairobi Non~Gover nment Organisations Forum and United Nations 
Conference to mark the end of the UN Decade for Women on Equality, 
Development and Peace. A report of these meetings was given at the 
conference dinner by Dr Gail Radford, Director of the Equal Employment 
Opportunity Bureau, Commonwealth Public Service Board and Salamo 
Fulivai, a Tongan participant. A major outcome of the UN meetings had 
been an acknowledgment that the struggle of women for change cannot be 
isolated from the struggle of other marginalised groups; blacks, the 
poor and oppressed. And indeed women's struggle for change cannot be 
successful without the support of men. Women especially need to be 
united in their efforts to change the world, even though there may be 
diversity in those efforts, working non-violently , patiently, learning 
from each other how to change the unjust structures of society. Women 
need to act, to speak up, to assert themselves at home, at work and in 
the community. This struggle for change is one for strong, sensitive 
women to engage in, and is delightfully captured Marge Piercy's 
poem For strong women. 

A strong woman is a woman who is straining. 
A strong woman xS a woman standing 
on tiptoe and lifting a barbell 
while trying to eing Boris Godunov. 
A strong woman is a woman at work 
cleaning out the cesspool of the ages, 
and while she shovels, shr. talks about 
how she doesn't mind crying, it opens 
the ducts of the eyes, and throwing up 
develops the stomach muscles, and 
she goes on shoveling with tears 
in her nose. 


A strong woman is a woman in whose head 
a voice is repeating, I told you so, 
ugly, bad girls, bitch, nag, shrill, witch, 
ballbuster, nobody will ever love you back, 
why aren't you feminine, why aren't 
you soft, why aren't you quiet, why 
aren't you dead? 

A strong woman is a wouan determined 

to do something others are determined 

not be done. She is pushing up on the bottom 

of a lead coffin lid. She is trying to raise 

a manhole cover with her head, she is trying 

to butt her way through a steel wall. 

Her head hurts. People waiting for the hole 

to be made say, hurry, you're so strong. 

A strong woman is a woman bleeding 
inside. A strong woman is a woman making 
herself strong every morning while her teeth 
looEen and her back throbs. Every baby, 
a tooth, midwives used to say, and now 
every battle a scar. A strong woman 
is a mass of scar tissue that aches 
when it rains and wounds that bleed 
when you bump them and memories that get up 
in the night and pace in boots to and fro. 

A strong woman is a woman who craves love 

like oxygen or she turns blue choking. 

A strong woman is a woman who loves 

strongly and weepB strongly and is strongly 

terrified and has strong needs. A strong woman is strong 

in words, in action, in connection in feeling; 

she iiS not strong as a stone but as a wolf 

suckling her /oung. Strength is not in her, but she 

enacts it as the wind fills a sail. 

What comforts her is others loving 

her equally for the strength and for the weakness 

from which it issues, lightning fiom a cloud. 

Lightning stuns. In rain, the clouds dispeise. 

Only water of connection remains, 

flowing through us. Strong is what we make 

each other. Until we are all strong together, 

a strong woman is a woman strongly afraid. 

Marge Piercy, The Moon is 

Ajways Female 


- 10 


Ros Kelly 


This is the third conference that the Australian College of 
Education has conducted on women in educational management in 
Australia. The Australian College of Education ie to be conunended for 
organising this serie^3 of conferences and for the work it has done in 
raising debate about the issues relating to women in education. It is 
pleasing that the Australian Capital Territory Schools Authority is 
co-operating with the College in sponsoring this particular conference 
which will concentratc3 on the needs of women to obtain management 
positions in primary and secondary education, both in schoolu and 
systems throu.^hout Australia. 

The serious imbalance that exists in the relative positions of 
women and men across the whole spectre of education in Australia is 
well known. It is enough to look at the statistics for school 
principals. While almost 60 per cent of teachers in Australia are 
women, 76 per cent of school principals are men. And rather than 
improving, this situation is tending to deteriorate as single-sex 
schools become coeducational and women principals are replaced by men. 

Rectifying Inequalities 

The first imperative for change then must be to rectify the 
obvious inequalities that exist iu education systems and introduce 
measures to overcome them. 

Many reasons have been put forward in the past to explain the 
enormous imbalance that exists between the number of women employed in 
our schools and the number that occupy senior adminis ' -ati ve or 
management positions. The situation of men in the higher 
administrative posts and women in the lower sections of the hierarchy 
persists not only in the schools but in the school systems as well. 

Women have been accused of not wanting promotion, not being as 
mobile as men and not being as qualified as men. Women teachers it 
has been said, have not sought promotion because of their outside 
family responsibilities and because they have regarded their husband's 
careers as more important. 

While there may have been some elements of truth for some women in 
these allegations in the past, recent research, particularly that 
carried out by Dr Shirley Sampson, has shown that there is very little 
basis for these assumptions today. The structures and attitudes 
within the education organisation should be examined more closely, 
especially the tired old myths and attitudes about women's 
capabilities which have handicapped women across the full breadth of 

Women are perceived as being subordinate and dependent with no 
administrative potential. Consequently their participation in the 
school system has been largely confined to the humanities and junior 
primary levels. Men, on the other hand, are seen as the leaders, the 

administrators and the teachers of mathematics and science. As a 
result of these attitude'i, when the out-of-classroom activities are 
allocated in pchoola, all too frequently the male teachers are given 
the a.'.mini8t fat ive and organisational tasks and women are left with 
the caring and supportive roles. 

This situation persists In spite of the fact that in schools with 
largely female staff, wosinn havo demonstrated th^ir ability to perform 
competently the range of duties and tasks required in school 
organisation and administration. Their non-participation in those 
same activities when there are male teachers on the staff indicates 
some deliberate decision making and perceptions about the relative 
abilities of men and women teachers. The rerult of this selective 
allocation of tasks i& that while women obviously have the ability to 
undertake administrative tasks, they are not given the opportunity to 
gain experience in this area and are therefore seriously hampered in 
the promotion stakes. 

Vomen are also disadvantaged when seniority is a major 
consideration for promotion. Many women take breaks in their careers 
of up to tGn years to devote themselves to child bearing and raising. 
Are thsse years of caring and relating to children and educating them 
outside the fi.rmal structures of no value?. 

If we limit the opportunities for women in our systems and schools 
we are denying those systems and schools of a pool of talent which 
could be tapped to make the best use of the hum&n resources available 
to them. Our second imperative must be to encourage organisations to 
utilise all the human resources available to them in an efficient and 
effective way. 

Utilising Human Resources 

The commonwealth government is committed to encouraging policies 
which enable women who wish to ent(^r the labour force to participate 
fully in employment. In 19S4, the government enacted the Sex 
Discrimination Act. In doing so i' was i^cognised that, as important 
as anti-discrimination policies are, they cannot by themselves improve 
women's position in the labour market or totally open up a greater 
range of Jobs to women. Nor can the> ensure *"hat women can compete on 
equal terms with men for protriotion. For these reasons additional 
measures are required to enable women to improve their labour market 
prospects . 

In June 1984 the Prime h*. ister tabled in Parliament a policy 
discussion paper on affirmative action for women. One of the 
proposals arising from this paper was the setting up of the 
Affirmative Action Pilot Program involving twenty-ei^ht of 
Australia's leading private sector compani es and three hi gher 
education institutions. There have been a^ least two outcomes of the 
pilot program, which are relevant for this conference. 

Firstly, the pilot has produced tangible results in terms of 
revised recruitment advertising which encourages girls and women to 
apply for the full range of Jobs available. Already some companies 
ar? reporting more applications from women. Data bases have been 
established by individual organisations to identify women's current 


- 12 - 

position in their labour force and perfeonnel policies and practices 
have been reviewed to eliminate any discriminatory practices. Career 
counselling and special training programs for women have been 
established or extendea. Women's networks have developed and will 
maintain the momentum created by the pilot program. As well unions 
are beginning to take a more active role both Ki Lhin their own 
organisations and in preparing their members for an active role with 
employers on affirmative action isFues. These are all real 
improvements for women workers. 

Secondly, the pilot program was essentially a matter of 
accelerating labour market processes. Changes which have occurred in 
patterns of women's employment have been far too slow. These 
organisations accelerated their activities and at their final meeting 
in Canberra on 28 June 1985 they called on the education ticcto'* to 
accelerate its activities - to play its role in equipping and 
encouraging girls to apply for the non-traditional Jobs now open to 
them - to challenge more vigorously the concept of women's Jobs and 
men's Jobs* 

Each sector has had the excuse that the other was not initiating 
change; the schools blaming the employers and the employers blaming 
the schools. And we cannot deny that our education system is 
responsible for many of the attitudes that permeate our society. It 
may not have initiated them but it has certainly r3inforced the 
status quo rather than been an agent of reform. 

Australia can only be enhanced by providing the groups within 
society with the opportunity to work to their full abilities and 
extend their capabilities. The third imperative for change must be to 
improve Australia as a place to live and work by acknowledging the 
skills and abilities of all the components of its population. A 
society which is stratified and role-confined is '"estricted in its 
ability to be dynamic and f orwa. d thinking. This is particularly 
important in the education system which plays such a significant role 
in framing the values and attitudes of young people. 

Acknowledging Skills and Abilities 

The fact that women are substantially under-represented in 
executive positions in schools has farreachlng consequences for boys' 
and girls' attitudes. Teachers provide models of sex-appropriate 
behaviour for their students. What has happened in the past is that 
young women aspired to be classroom teachers and no more because that 
was the female role in education with which they were most familiar. 
Mathematics and science teachers tended to be male and so reinforced 
the idea that these subjects were not female ones. 

Girls' aspirations and choices have been shown to be closely 
related to messages in the media and school materials and in 
traditional school arrangements. School curricula have tended to 
reinforce girls' perceptions of themselves as subordinates to, and 
less competent than, boys and their values and opinions as less 
important than those of males. A non-sexist approach should permeate 
the whole curriculum with emphasis on skills and understanding which 
are valuable to both girls and boys. Influences which limit girls' 

potential also limit their ability to contribute to the life of the 

Government Action 

The commonwealth government has taken a number of initiatives to 
diversify and expand girls' educational skills and experiences. It 
recognises that this is essential to increasing the numbers of 
qualified women able to take advantage of affirmative action programs 
in employment. 

Since becoming Minister for Education, Senator Susan Ryan haa 
taken steps to ensure that the needs of women and girls have been 
catered for under al] the commonwealth's programs in education at the 
primary, secondary and tertiary levels. She has requested that all 
portf'^li agencies include the names of women in panels of names of 
persons submitted for her consideration for appointments within the 
portfolio* This has resulted in a significant increase in the number 
of women appointed to the education commissions and other senior 
appointments, including the secretary of her department, since 1983. 

The ACT Situation 

The ACT Schools Authority endorsed an Equal Opportunity Policy in 
September 1984. This policy gives a commitment to non-discriminatory 
policies and practices as well as undertaking to monitor the effects 
of these and to introduce affirmative action programs. 

However, in the ACT there are particular problems promoting women 
to promotional positions in our school system because of the size of 
the system. 

When the ACT school system was first created with additional 
Band 3 positions, those with Band 2 qualifications had the opportunity 
to move quickly. Also some teachers stayed with the New South Wales 
system and many Band 4 positions became vacant. However, most of the 
people appointed in 1974 are still in those positions and most are 
men. In fact, these days there is very little movement in the system. 
Many women have Band 3 eligibility but there are no positions for them 
to move to. 

An example, is a friend of mine: she has had 25 years teaching 
experience and in 1974 was a Band 2 when the change occurred. In 1977 
she was an acting Band 3 but in 1985 is still a Band 2. She has 
applied for five Band 3 positions and has had two on higher duties 
(Acting Band 3) but still no substantive position. 

This is a fundamental problem which must be addressed if women are 
to obtain equality in our school system and the question must be 
addressed because the character of each school in the ACT is very much 
determined by the principals of the school. That is not to say that 
all male principals are incompetent, rather that there should be role 
models for women in schools and colleges in the top positions and 
opportunities for good women teachers to get through the system. 


In this conference one of the issues which should oe examined is 
the question of establishing all~firl classes in mathematics and 
science. Overseas research has indicated that even with teachers most 
sensitive to the needs of girls, the majority of face-to-face 
teachers' time in mixed classes goes to the demanding boys, especially 
at the high school level. 

This conference provides the opportunity to explore the 
initiatives that each state and territory has been undertaking and to 
clarify ideas about what progress has been made, what more can be done 
and how it can best be done. The results will be of considerable 
interest to the commonwealth government. 



- 15 - 



Shirley Sampson 

Introduct ion 

During third term 1984 with the help of all teacher unions 
affiliated with the Australian Teachers' Federation, and with 
financial assistance from Monash University, a questionnaire was sent 
to a J per cent sample of union members in schools in each state and 
territory. Its purpose was to seek information from women and men 
concerning experiences, motivations and activities related to 
promotion within the public teaching services in which they worked. 
Without follow-up contact replies were received from 2,380 teachers a 
response rate of 55 per cent of whom 61 per cent were ferrale and 39 
per cent male. This paper reports findings from that study. 

Survey Response 

Teachers who replied to the questionnaire used in this study 
clearly were those who were concerned or involved in issues to do with 
promotion and no further effort was made to secure a larger sample. 
This group may not be adequately representative of those women and men 
for whom promotion is entirely irrelevant but they represent an 
adequate sample of teacher union members from every state as shown in 
Table 1. 



Quest iopnai res Repl ies 

Sent Received 
as a percentage as a percentage 

New South Wales 28.57 29.91 

Northern Territory 1,29 1.38 

Australian Capital Territory 2.07 2.^*7 

Victoria 29.71 29.53 

South Australia 8.57 8.40 

Western Australia 8.20 10.97 

Queensland 15.14 13.15 

Tasmania 3.71 4,20 

Total sample: 100 per cent = 140,000 100 per cent ^ 2,380 

Evidence from all states in Australia shows that women teachers 
are still at, or close to, the bottom of all education employment 
hierarchies. Since th:s is their situation and since so many legal 
barriers have heen removed which previously blocked their upward 
career paths, it could be expected that there would now be large 
numbers of talented women applying for promotion. This is not the 
rase . 


- 16 ~ 

Whereas 46 per cent of male respondents in this study had applied 
for promotion in the last five years, only 24 per cent of women had 
done 80. Of these, over 50 per cent were between the ages of 30 and 
39 years, in fact over 70 per cent were under the age of 40* Thus it 
is younger women who now form the bulk of applicants. 

More teachers (37 per cent female l .d 48 per cent male) had 
applied for promotion within the school in which they were teaching. 
While such wi thi n-school appointments could be used as valuable 
experience they are generally not permanent and would not secure a 
footing on the career hierarchy of any departmental workforce. 

In this survey a minority of respondents clearly rejected the idea 
of promotion altogether (about 9 per cent) but among those who 
expected to reach a higher level in the future women aspired less 
highly than men. Forty-two per cent expected to remain as class 
teachers compared with 15 per cent of men. Thirty-two per cent of 
women and 31 per cent of men aimed to become senior mistress or master 
but 44 per cent of men and only 17 per cent of women dought 
principalships or work as a central or regional office administrator. 

Reponses reported here show that a much smaller proportion of 
women than men are seeking promotion of any kind and reasons were 
sought to explain this sex difference. Respondents were asked to 
describe the importance to them of a number of reasons commonly given 
^or seeking or not seeking promotion. 

Reasons for Seeking Promotion 

On matters related to their professional lives, men and women 
showed somewhat similar levels of motivation. The challenge of more 
responsibility and the opportunity to influence the system, the 
organisation of schools or the curriculum were important or very 
important to over 60 per cent of all female and male respondents and 
the differences in responses of each sex were small and not 
significant (ns). 

A slightly greater proportion of female than male respondents (44 
per cent female and 39 per cent male, ns) were interested in promotion 
because they were dissatisfied with their present position or because 
they wanted a change of subject or particular responsibility (52 per 
cent female and 49 per cent male, ns). Much more important was 
resistance by women to getting right out of the classroom as 63 per 
cent (of 46 per cent men) said that an important reason for not 
applying for promotion was that they would have less teaching 



- 17 - 

time with pupils (p<0. 001)1. So, although more than half of all women 
seek responsibility or a change in their present position they do not 
want to lose touch with their students. This finding could well 
explain some of women's reluctance to apply for oromotion compared 
with men, for whom this was not such an important factor. 

Financial reward. Salary is a more important influence for men than 
women both as a reason for applying for promotion (71 per cent male 
and 62 per cent female) and as a reason for not applying. Sixty per 
cent male and 48 per cent female named 'lack of financial incentive' 
as important or very important. Sex differences were significant for 
all responses but most significant among those indicating that an 
increase in salary was a very important reason for seeking promotion 
(31 per cent male and 21 per cent female, p<0.001). Despite these 
findings it is obvious that a majority of women teachers are 
interested in salary as a reason for proniotion (62 per cent) thus, 
this factor does not explain why they are not applying as often as 

Family related reasons for not seeking promotion. Much greater 
differences between men's and women's motivation towards promotion 
emerged when family related factors were considered. Although more men 
had children living in the same household (62 per cent male but only 
38 per cent female) women were much more likely to be solely 
responsible for a child for more than four hours per day(65 per cent 
of women who had children living in the household compared with 28 per 
cent of men, p<0.0001). Also, although there were 62 per cent of 
women who had no children living in the household, women teachers 
across all age groups did much mere housework of various kinds than 
men (88 per cent female and 65 per cent male performed three or more 
tasks for themselves as well as others, p<0.001). 

The second shift. In line w*'h these family responsibilities, 
women, far more often than men, named as reacons for not seeking 
promotion that they felt unable to cope with the extra demands and 
responsibilities (37 per cent female and 20 per cent male, p<0.0001); 
that they were reluctant to devote the necesseary time to extra 
responsibilities (56 per cent female and 39 per cent male, p<0.0001); 
that they perceived a conflict of after-school commitments and 
domestic responsibilities (63 per cent female and 52 per cent male, 
p<0.01). Clearly these factors illustrate a most important reason why 
many women do not seek promotion. If it is important to incorporate 
women's as well as men's experience into decision making within our 
schools and systems the burden of women's family responsibilities must 
be faced squarely. Women's family ties have also been used to explain 
their reluctance to apply widely for more senior positions and may 
help to explain why more women are applying for positions within 
schools than for promotion generally. 

Certainly women, more often than men, gave their partner's career as 
an important reason for their unwillingness to seek promotion (54 per 

1. All statistical tfsts of significance used in this paper are chi- 
squared tests. 


cent female and 40 per cent male, p<0.001). However, when asked 
whether their own career was less, equally or more important to the 
household than their partner's, 61 per cent of women replied that 
their own career was equally or more important (these responses were 
given by 67 per cent of men). 

nobility for promotion . In addition, 38 per cent of women (though 
more men, as might be expected, 55 per cent) replied that they would 
be prepared to take a Job which necessitated moving and a chonge of 
job for their partner. 

From findings such as these it can hardly be alleged that large 
numbers of women are not taking their careers seriously. This factor 
(lack of mobility) is no longer quite such an important factor as it 
may have been in times past for women. Men's careers, too, are now 
influenced by that of their partner. Forty per cent of male 
respondents named their partner's career as equally important and 45 
per cent replied that they would not take an appointment which meant a 
change of job for their spouse. 

Men are not so mobile now. These findings help to explain a rather 
unexpected finding Indicating men's reduced mobility. Evidence from 
the questionnaire showed that of men who had applied for promotion in 
the last five years, 89 per cent had applied for less than five 
positions (compared with 95 per cent of women). It is still true 
that a greater proportion of men were more mobile than women, for 6.6 
per cent of men had applied for twenty or more positions within 5 
years (compared with only 2 per cent of women). Nevertheless, a 
large number of men now appear to be less than completely mobile. 
Current sex differences in mobility cannot explain the present 
position of women relative to men in educational hierarchies, though 
they may explain past patterns of promotion. 

In reviewing these findings on the influence of family factors on 
promotion it is obvious that more women are affected by these 
responsibilities than men. In the past this issue has been shelved 
by educational system authorit^?s as the individual's responsibility. 
But it is not for women alone to face unpalatable choices between work 
and family tasks. If society as a whole is convinced that women, who 
comprise nearly 60 per cent of all teachers, have a wealth of 
commitment and experience to contribute to the effective organisation 
of schooling, it behoves administrators themselves to examine 
critically the male advantage derived from present forms of 
organisation (or lack of it as in the case, for example, of child care 
provision and job sharing). Also to be examined are the assumptions 
inherent in the present arrangements about men's lack of involvement 
with their own families. Are such men the best administrators for 
schools and schooling systems? 

Other reasons 

Finally, among the reasons given by individual men and women for 
not applying for promotion were two which require much more extensive 
investigation because they were so highly significant or so widely 
supported. The first relates to women's perception that they larked 
experience, a reason advanced for not seeking promotion by 45 per cent 


of women compared with only 28 per cent of men(p<0,0001 ) . The second 
concerns perceptions of discrimination on likely outcomes of promotion 
applications and will be discussed in a following section. 

Women^s Qualifications and Experience 

In order to investigate whether it is a fact that women teachers 
lack experience in relation to men, a number of findings which were 
intended to explore evidence of equal competence will now be 
presented. In this research, questions were asked concerning sex 
differences in initial and further qualifications, in-service 
involvement, early experiences of organisational/administrative tasks 
as beginning teachers, familiarity with a range of leadership tasks, 
as well as perceptions of support or lack of it from significant 
others, including those at home and in the school system. 


Women are not initially less qualified than men to enter teaching, 
in fact many more women than men proportionally had three years or 
more of training (73 per cent female and 64 per cent male, p<0,01). 
In addition, 32 per cent of women and 33 per cent of men had degrees 
or degrees with diplomas at the start of their teaching careers. 

It is in improving their qualifications that men secured some 
advantage. Not only had they increased their initial qualifications 
more frequently (62 per cent male and 53 per cent female, p<0,01) but 
also they had done so at a more advanced level. Seventeen per cent 
of men gaining qualifications after entry to teaching had obtained a 
second or highe»~ degree compv-^red with only 10 per cent of women and 
this was a highly significant sex difference (p<0,0001). 

It cannot be irguti that pieces of paper automatically improve the 
quality of teaching or administrative capacity or practice but mere 
possession of further qualifications indicates effort to continue 
learning and to update skills, Th'.s must remain a significant factor 
in any promotion sy.item based on merit. However, data from this 
study show that over aalf of ail female teachers have added further 
qualifications since entering the service so that many more women than 
now do so could apply for promotion equally on this basis with men. 
The fact that more women do not apply is an indication of their 
understanding that qualifications are not the only essential 
prerequisites for the upwardly mobile teacher in state education 

Inservice activities 

The question of administrative studies was not asked in relation 
to gaining further qualifications. But specific information was 
sought about participation in and the types of inservice activities in 
which teachers had been involved. Men undertook more of this re- 
training (80 per cent male, 74 per cent female) and were significantly 
more likely to have had two days or more of such activity in areas 
related to administration (alone or in combination with other topics) 
such as running a department, training for senior management or 
timetabling (33 per cent male compared with 18 per cent female, 
p<0,0001). Women were more involved than men in curriculum and 

ERIC - 20 -^^ 

pastoral care activities but these differences were not as 
significant. Predictably, perhaps, in view of common stereotypes, of 
those taking part in inservice men were significantly more involved 
with computer activities (31 per cent of men compared with only 22 per 
cent of women, p<0.01). 



Type of activity2 Percentage of those doing any inservice 

activity who were 

as a peicentage 

as a percentage 

Administrat ion 17.8 33.1 

Pastoral Care 35.5 30.5 

Computers 22.1 30.7 

Curriculum 79.3 74.4 
Other (TUTA) .46 .26 

Total No. of Persons 1073 744 

percentage of all respondents 

(by sex) who had undertaken 73.8 80.1 
inservice in last 5 years 

The sex differences in participation and type of inservice 
activity undertaken by women and men may hypo t he t ica 1 ly be an 
indication of either the cause or the result of the position in the 
promotional hierarchy of each sex. Women may not be interested in 
administrative inservice or they may be prevented from attending an 
inservice activity of their choice more often than men since fewer of 
them are in control within schools. In this study, only 7 per cent 
of female respondents (3 per cen*- of males) gave 'opposition of a 
superior' as their reason for being unable to undertake such activity. 
Women much more often than i^en were prevented from attending by reason 
of family commitments (13 per cent female and 3 per cent male, 

More women indicated that they had wanted to attend some form of 
inservice (33 per cent female and 23 per cent male) but had been 
unable to do so for reasons such as those above as well as distance, 
residential requirements, teaching commitments and lack of relief. 

An overview of inservice participation as an indicator of training 
or preparation for proniotion into administrative levels of the 
education system reveals one further reason why women might not apply 
for promotion pb often as men? they appear to undertake less training 

2. 1817 respondents had undertaken two days or more of inservice 
training in the last five years, however many had been involved in 
more than one type of activity. 



- 21 - 

for administrative posts. This may be the consequence of post hoc 
training - that is, the people who are trained at administration 
inservice activities have already been appointed as administrators of 
one kind or another. Alternatively it may be that women do not 
choose to undertake such activities or that thev do not receive notice 
of them or that they are not often encouraged to attend. This 
research did not provide evidence which would enable a more definitive 
analysis to be undertaken. However, some indication of past 
departmental practices encouraging women into administration can be 
gauged from the following section relating to sex differences in tasks 
allocated to beginning teachers. 

Apprenticeship experiences 

Teachers were asked whether in their first five years of teaching 
they had ever been allocated organisational or administrative tasks of 
any kind. Only 57 per cent of females replied in the affirmative 
compared with 73 per cent of males (p<0.0001). Vhen the nature of 
these tasks was examined, clear differences in 'apprenticeship' 
experiences were revealed. It was found that these women teachers, 
far more often than the men had been allocated work to do with 
children or teaching and the library. This research revealed that of 
all respondents 61 per cent of male teachers had experience of 
organisational or administrative tasks in their first five years of 
teaching compared with only 45 per cent of women teachers (p<0.0001). 
It is clear that an important factor in women teachers' reluctance to 
apply for promotion compared with men could be firstly, lack of early 
apprenticeship to organisational or administrative tasks and secondly, 
the resulting legitimation of stereolvped perceptions concerning 
appropriate roles for women and men in schools. This was a process 
which continued long after the first years uf teaching, as other 
evidence showed. 

As every teacher is aware, there are multitudes of tasks within 
schools which are shared around among staff, more or less often. 
Even though many teachers have senior appointments entitling them to 
perform up-front or leadership tasks, assistant level staff are asked 
to carry out these duties from time to time. A selection of 
experiences of this kind were listed in this study and teachers were 
asked whether they had ever carried out such duties and whether the 
task had been by choice or by allocation. 

It is apparent from findings presented in Table 3 that women have 
had fewer opportunities than men to try themselves at any of these 
every day organisational activities. Those who had performed such 
tasks had also been allocated these duties by others within the school 
less often than men. task had been by choice or by allocation. 



Have you ever taken major responsibility for any 
of the following tasks in schools in which you 
have taught? Where response is Yes, was this 
by choice or allocation? 


I Ytf 




Orfaniutioa of Mjor sdwoi 
•ctivitin facb «f sports/opM 
dtjf, partntf aiglitf 

Arr«o|tMat of stodtnt CMpi 
or tr«Ttl 





Z Yes 

Task Levtl of 
allocatod sifDificuct 

78.2 22.8 
81.7 15.3 








LMdini/coBTtaiai coMltttt oa 

.covrti carricoloi 






.stoloBt discipliat 






.pastoral cart 






Drafing-np tiaitabl* 






Bvnnini a school assaibly 






When only responses from assistant level teachers are Considered 
emerges. Assistant level men were significantly 
more likely to have performed all these tasks. Differences ranged 
from 18 per cent fewer women who had ever organised a student camp or 
travel to 4.5 per cent fewer who had ever convened a pastoral care 
committee (which was the smallest sex difference among these 
responses). If it is considered that some women who are at assistant 
level are likely to be highly experienced while a greater proportion 
of men are likely to be younger, considering men's present promotion 
rates, the sex differences in experience offered tc this lowest level 
but most diverse group of teachers become even more blatantly one- 


23 - 

Results reported here support earlier evidence that young women 
teachers are not asked to perform administrative tasks as often as 
young men, and that women are stereotyped as 'not administration 
material'. This was a comment frequently made by both men and women 
which will be discussed in a following section of this paper* 

In concluding this discussion on experience therefore it must be 
accepted that when 45 per cent women gave 'lack of experience' as a 
reason for not applying for promotion, they may have been perfectly 
coriect. When the proportion of women compared with men who have had 
the opportunity to try themselves out at administrative tasks is 
examined, it is clear that individual women would not often have the 
experience of seeing other women do well at such tasks, nor to try 
them for themselves to develop their own sense of competence by doing, 
as men do* This is an aspect of the findings of this study which 
clearly warrants consideration and action within departments of 
education, at conferences of principals and administrative staff, 
especially with regard to affirmative action programs* 

Sense of Competence 

For a majority of both women and men teachers, the feeling that 
they could do a senior Job better than others was an important or very 
important reason for applying for promotion (53 per cent female and 60 
per cent male, ns)* Sex differences were significant only among 
those who saw this as a very important motivation (16 per cent female 
and 22 per cent male, p<0*01)* 

A related finding occurred in response to an attitude question 
asking whether respondents felt they were excellent, as good as the 
general run, not particularly good or did not know how to rate 
themselves on performance of administrative tasks in schools* 
Twenty-five per cent of males rated themselves as 'excellent' compared 
with 18 per cent of females (p<0*001)* 

These exercises in self assessment in comparison with others 
reveal commonly found sex differences in estimation (Macoby and 
Jacklin, 1974)* However, in view of the evidence given above 
concerning actual experiences allowed to them, women's sense of 
competence must be seen as not far below that of men* 

Perceptions of encouragement 

Throughout their lives women do not receive the kind of social 
'messages' which men do, encouraging them to aspire to the top, in 
particular to managing or controlling other people, or that it is 
appropriate for them to be leaders of people* Many ime^eB 
relating to c^tstanding women are negative or threatening ones 

(Horner, 1969; Leder, 1984). 

Respondents were asked whether certain officers with whom they 
would have had contact in schools had ever invited or encouraged them 


- 24 - 

to apply for promotion. Sex differences were highly significant. 
Inspectors, superintendents or other departmental officers had 
encouraged 36 pf.r cent of males to <ipply for promotion compared wifh 
only 21 per cent of women (p<0.0001). Principals who must be more 
personally familiar with women teachers' competence diH encourage 
females rather more r^ten than their departmental suj-ariors but even 
so, men got this message more frequently than women. Forty two per 
cent of women reported the encouragement of their head or principal, 
but so did 50 per cent of men (p<0.00i). 

Equal proportions of females and males reported that their 
immediate superiors at school had invited or encouraged them to apply 
for promotion but men reported more often than women that their spouse 
had done so, 42 per cent of males and 35 per cent of females p<0.01 . 
In addition, 98 per cent of males compared with 90 per cent of females 
believed they had support of males on the staff in performing school 
organisational tasks. Thus the social perception that leadership cr 
decision making in administration was appropriate for males was 
confirmed by significant others for men teachers. The question was 
not apked as to perceptions of discouragement for either sex. 
Hovevf?r, it is clear from these responses that men teachers receive 
personal affirmation more often than do their female counterparts to 
apply for promotion in the teaching service. 

It is not surprising that as reported in an earlier section men 
teachers gave 'superior competence' as a reason for wanting to do a 
more senior job. They are more often encouraged to believe that they 
Cdn do it. In the view of this researcher, the really surprising 
finding, in the light of this lower incidence of encouragement, is 
that so many women, over half of all women respondents (53 per cent), 
believed that they could do a senior job better than others. 

Perceptions of Discriminatio n 

Respoi"\ dents were asked whether they thought women were 
discriminated against in promotion, either explicitly or implicitly, 
in the system in which they worked and to give reasons for their 
response. Fifty-four per cent of women and 24 per cent of men 
replied in t. ■» affirmative, and of those who gave either response 
(n=2,286), 62 per cent wrote ref*sons in support of their reply (889 
females and 526 males). Inere were striking differences among states 
in the proportions of women and men who did or did not believe that 
women were discriminated against (see Table 4). On the other hand, 
those who gave either an affirmative or a negative reply to the 
question wrote open ended replies, some of considerable length, which 
indicated a large area of agreement between the sexes. A single 
person, the researcher, coded all responses to this question. 


■■ 25 - 



■Sf ITT 
f ■ f . 

ACT fie SA 
f ■ f ■ f ■ 

f 1 

Qld Us 

f m f m 

Total Z 

f m 

I m 


52.8 25.5 38.1 20.0 

68.4 33.3 49.9 25.2 54.7 15.3 

61.9 27.3 

64.0 27.4 50.8 10.3 

54.4 24.1 


♦7.2 74.5 61.9 80.0 

31.6 66.7 50.1 74.8 15.0 85.0 

38.1 72.7 

36.0 72.6 49.2 89.7 

45.6 75.9 


528 157 21 10 

38 21 371 306 75 113 

118 132 

175 124 59 39 

1385 901 

Yes, women are 

discriminated against in 


The reason most often advanced by 

men for 

this belief was 


women are not perceived by men as having administrative potential (30 
per cent of males) and secondly that men run the schools (29 per cent 
of males). Women thought so too: 37 per cent suggested the latter 
reason and 31 per cent the former and these were the first and third 
most i:nportant reasons advanced by women for their belief. The 
second mo.-?t often advanced reason for women (36 per cent females) and 
the fourth most important for men (25 per cent males) was that malep 
are prejudiced against females. Thus there appears to be a quite 
surprising unanimity in the importance of these factors among female 
and male teachers who perceived discrimination. 

Both sexes were also in substantial agreement about the influence 
of women's dual role, which confirms findings reported earlier in this 
study. That women have to look after their families or husbands was 
suggested in explanation by 27 per cent of women and 23 per cent of 
men, indicating that the.^e duties are now seen as either handicapping 
women or advantaging men in a discriminatory fashion. Combined with 
the fact that woiren take a break in service which undercuts 
advancement in systems where seniority is the most important factor in 
promotion, family related reasons were next in importance after those 
suggesting male-specific factors such as prejudice, stereotyping or 
the exercise of power. 

Both men and women (27 per cent males and 20 per cent females) 
still saw departmental regulations as an important factor, despite 
changes in most states. It was the most, or second most, important 
reason advanced by South Australian and West Australian women and men 
and the least important for teachers in Tasmania and the territories. 

Another important group of reasons advanced by both sexes supports 
a finding of this study relating to women's lack of administrative 
experience. The study shows that women are not given the chance to 
get experience (12 per cent females and 7 per cent males) or are not 
encouraged to apply for promotion (7 per cent females and 9 per cent 
males) and were less frequently advanced. But it suggests that both 
sexes had noticed the common distribution of tasks within their 
schools and considered it discriminatory. 

Ten per cent of women and 11 per cent of men also suggested that 
women are discriminated against because they lack confidence and do 


- 26 - 

not apply for promotion. But this tends to blame the victim rather 
than to explain why the system discriminates. Such ambivalence was 
more often a feature of explanations sugges^.ed by those who did not 
believe there was discrimination. 

No, women are not discriminated against in promotion 

Over 45 per cent of men and 47 per cent of women who gave reasons 
why women are not discriminated against believed that the regulations 
were fair and equal. A further 27 per cent (men) and 25 per cent 
(women) of these respondents asserted that there was evidence to prove 
that there was no discrimination. Another common assertion (13 per 
cent males and 25 per cent females) was that they personally had never 
seen or were unaware of any discrimination. 

Another set of explanations tended to excuse rather than explain. 
Twenty per cent of women and 10 per cent of men suggested that women 
were disadvantaged by their family ties or by the consequences of past 
discrimination (17 per cent females and 16 per cent male). 

Other suggestions were more sexist and concerned stereotyped 
characteristics such as that women do not want promotion or do not try 
(20 per cent females and 17 per cent males), that they are incompetent 
or cannot do the job (7 per cent females and 3 per cent males) or in 
the extreme, that males are biologically superior and women inferior 
(2 per cent females and 6 per cent males). 

A final reason, but one which was second in importance among men 
responding in the negative (38 per cent males and 11 per cent femaleL) 
was that it was not women but men who were discriminated against. It 
was clear, from the kind of replies giving this and the last reported 
suggestions, that hostility and resentment of moves to advance women 
were very close to the surface for some male teachers. 


This study has found evidence supporting the rationale ad\'anced by 
many women that they lack the experience to seek promo ion to 
administrative ranks. Tasks which are often distributed by 
principals and senior staff are quite unequally allocated to men. 
School affirmative action plans would clearly make a start at 
improving this situation. 

Although 62 per cent of women teachers have no children living in 
their homes, family related factors have been found to be important 
handicaps to women who would seek promotion. This is important 
especially as it is now younger women in their thirties (that is, with 
younger children) who comprise a great proportion of applicants for 
promotion. Teacher unions for many years have argued for changes to 
remove some of these barriers. A more concerted attack within 
departments of education might now produce consensus and real action 
towards key advances necessary to lessen the weight of such 
disadvantages which are borne almost wholly by women. 


- 27 - 

Inhere there remain perceptions of discrimination effort is clearly 
necessary to publicise and advocate more obviouslyi signs of equality 
within promotion systems where Ihoy exist* The facts should be 
published so that teachers know that there is mora than token 
representation of women on interview panels* The appointment of 
women to many more decision-making committees or posts should be 
sought and examination of the implementation of promotion criteria and 
procedures should be undertaken* 

This study has provided substantial evidence of tha importance of 
a small number of factors which are retarding women's advancement in 
the promotion stakes* In line with major Australian companies and 
commonwealth and state public services, departments of education must 
address the problems describsd in order to find ways of increasing the 
numbers of women in positions of responsibility within their ranks* 

t it it H t it 


Horner, M. (1969) Fail: bright women, Psychology Today. (November)* 

Leder , G* (1984) What price success? The view from the media The 
Exceptional Child. 13(3). 

Macoby, E. and Jacklin, C. ( 1 974 ) The Psychology o^ Sex 
Differences Stanford . 


- 28 - 


Judith Chapman 

Thp woman who is resolvpd to Ijp respected can 
make herself so, even amidst an army of soldiers, 


/ n f rj).d uc t i on 

In 1^83 two major studies were undertaken in relation to 
Australian school principals: A Descriptive Profile of Australian 
School Pr incipals and The Selection and Appointment of Austral ian 
School Principals. These studies, funded as part of the 
Commonwealth Schools Commission's Projects of National Significance 
Program, provide important benchmark data on the personal and 
professional characteristics of principals and detailed information on 
the procedures adopted in principal selection. As such they provide 
the starting point for this paper. 

T he Woman P rincipa l 

Data collected in the preparation of A Descriptive Profile of 
Australian School Principals revealed the following: 

Twen t y-- three per cent of Australian school principals are 
women . 

Only in Catholic primary schools art- women more likely . han 
men to be principals (63 per cent female). But the majority 
of these women are serving as principals in their capacity as 
members of religious orders. Moreover , f emale principals of 
Catholic schools are more likely than their male colleagues 
to be over 45 years of age , 

Relative to other groups, women are least likel^ to b? 
principals of government schools. Throughout Australia, 
women constitute only 15 per cent of principals in governmen*' 
primary schools, 9 per cent of principals in government 
secondary schools and ? per cent of principals in government 
schools combining both primary and secondary levels. 

In Independent schools women constitute 2^ per cent of 
principals in priT.dry schools, 20 per cent of principals in 
secondary schools and 35 per cent of principals in schools 
combining both primary and secondary levels. 

The subsequent three sections present a more detailed profile of 
the woman principal in the three major sectors of school organisation 
in Australia: government, Catholic and independent. 


29 - 

Profile of the Female Principal of a Government School 

The female principal of an Australian government school is likely 
to be in her mid forties, Australian born (89 per cent) and raised in 
a capital city, 32 per cent (other city 10 per cent, town 28 per cent 
or rural community 31 per cent). Her mother, after having completed, 
on average, nine years of formal education is likely to have been 
employed exclusively in home duties (71 per cent)* Her father, after 
ten years of formal education, would have been employed in one of a 
range of occupations, most commonly, farming (20 per cerft), profession 
(14 per cent), manager (9 per cent), draftsman/foreman (14 per cent), 
clerical worker (10 per cent), self employed (10 per cent)* More 
often than not, the principal will be married (59 per cent) to a man 
employed most commonly in the professions (for example, teaching 36 
per cent, architecture and law 12 per cent) or in farming (11 per 
cent ) * They will have on average, two children, who will have 
completed school and be undertaking tertiary study or be in full-time 

Her secondary education would have been completed at a government 
school (71 per cent) or in some instances a Catholic school (19 per 
cent) and her initial tertiary qualification received from a 
government teachers' college (76 per cent), a university (11 per 
cent), or college of advanced education (12 per cent)* Her initial 
tertiary qualification i*' likely to have been a certificate (64 per 
cent), diploma (19 per cent) or bachelors degree (15 per cent)* If 
not specialising in general primary curriculum she would have most 
commonly specialised in early childhood education (19 per cent or 
arts/social sciencc/languages/humanities (12 per cent)* These 
studies would have been undertaken fulltime, on campus, with financial 
support (88 per cent) in the form of a government scholarship or 
allowance (100 per cent)* The courses taken would have been directly 
relevant to a career in education (95 per cent) and contpleted prior to 
the commencement of her teaching career (81 per cent)* 

The principal wou''d have continued formal study after having 
completed her initial tertiary qualification and after having 
commenced teaching* Studies for her highest tertiary qualification, 
leading to the conferring of a degree (bachelors 37 per cent; masters 
8 per cent) or a diploma (20 per c&nt) or certificate (20 per cent) 
would generally have been undertaken in a university (38 per cent), 
college of advanced education (28 per cent) or government teachers' 
college (24 per cent) in the fields of education (69 per cent) or in 
the disciplines - most commonly arts/social science/languages/ 
humanities (14 per cent)* The<3e studies would have been undertaken 
on (47 per cent) or off (43 per cent) campus, without financial 
assistance (64 per cent) or time release (80 per cent)* The studies 
would have been directly relevant to her career in education (88 per 
cent). Prior to the completion of this qualification the principal 
is likely to have spent nine years or more in teaching/education. 

The principal is unlikely to be currently undertaking further 
tertiary study. Those among her peers who are studying (18 per 
cent), however, are most likely to be reading for a bachelors (48 per 
cent, or masters (22 per cent) degree* 


- 30 - 

In total the principal will on average hold two tertiary 
qualifications and have spent three years in full-time and four to 
five years in part-time study qince leaving secondary school. 

Prior to her first appointment as principal the female principal 
of a government school is likely to have been employed in four to five 
schools teaching general primary curriculum, english, mathematics, 
science or social science. In most instances, she will not have had 
experience as an acting or relieving principal prior to the 
appointment. Neither is she likely to have undertaken specific study 
in administration (approximately 70 per cent), either before or after 
having assumed the principal position. She is likely to have served 
as principal in only one or two schools. 

Her current school is likely to be located in a capital city (36 
per cent), (other city 11 per cent, town 14 per cent or rural 
community 39 per cent) and will be concerned with primary level only 
(81 per cent), secondary level otily (9 per cent) or both primary and 
secondary levels (3 per cent). The pupil composition will almost 
certainly be co-educational (96 per cent). 

The principal will spend 46 ti 50 hours per week in the 
performance of her duties as prir xpal. In most instances, she will 
also be involved in nine or more hours of timetabled teaching per \-epk 
(66 per cent). 

She will belong on average to three professional groups and 
subscribe to three professional journals. During the period 1980 to 
1982 she is likely to have attended six or more local /regi onal 
conferences. In addition she may have attended two state 
conferences . 

She is not likely to have been employed in a different school or 
school system (77 per cent) or have been employed in a field other 
than education (77 per cent). 

Profi l e of the Fema le Pri ncipal f a Catholic School 

The female principal of a Catholic school is likely to be 40 to 44 
years of age, Australian born (86 per cent) and raised in a capital 
city 42 per cent (town 23 per cent or rural 28 per cent community). 
Her mother , after having completed on average nine years of formal 
education would probably have been employed exclusively in home duties 
(77 per cent). Her father, also after nine years of formal 
educ.tion, would have been employed in one of a range of occupations, 
most commonly farmer (18 per cent), clerical worker (11 per cent), 
craftsman/foreman (9 per cent), labourer (7 per cent). The principal 
will rarely be married. The few among her peers who are married (14 
per cent) will have husbands employed most often as craftsman/foreman 
(22 per cent), managers (17 per cent) or professionals, for example 
teachers (17 per cent). These principals will have on average three 
children who in most instances will be currently in secondary school, 
tertiary education or full-time employment. Without exception the 
female principal of a Catholic school v:ill be a regular churchgoer. 
In fact it is most likely that she will be a member of a religious 
order ( 78 per cent ) . 


Her secondary education would have been completed in a Catholic 
single sex (82 per cent) or co-educational (14 per cent) school and 
her initial tertiary qualification received either from a non- 
government teachers^ college (47 per cent), a government teachers' 
college (21 per cent) or university (12 per cent). Her initial 
tertiary qualification is likely to have been a certificate (45 per 
cent), diploma (36 per cent) or bachelors degree (16 per cent), 
specialising in general primary curriculum or if in the disciplines, 
most commonly in arts/social science/language/humanities (14 per 
cent). These studies would have been undertaken fulltime and on 
campus. During these studies she usually would not have received 
financial support (58 per cent). The courses taken would have been 
directly relevant to her career in education (97 per cent). While 
she is likely to have completed the qualification prior to commencing 
her teaching career (66 per cent), among her peers there will be a 
considerable number (34 per cent) who would have spent on ave.*age four 
years in teaching/education prior to their initial qualification being 
completed . 

The principal would have continued formal studying after 
completing her initial tertiary qualification and after beginning 
teaching. Studies for her highest post-initial tertiary 
qualification, leading tc the conferring of a bachelors (32 per cent) 
or masters (11 per cent) degree or a diploma (32 per cent) would have 
been undertaken at a university (43 per cent), a non-government 
teachers' college (21 per cent) or a college of advanced education (15 
per cent/. These studies wcnld have been in the fields of education 
(49 per cent), or arts/social science/languages/humanities (16 per 
cent) or theology (11 per cent). In general the principal would have 
undertaken these studies on a part-time basis without financial 
support (77 per cent) or time release (68 per cent). Almost 
certainly the studies would have been relevant to her career in 
education (98 per cent). Prior to the completion of this 
qualification she is likely to have spent more than nine years in 

Although the female principal of a Catholic school is not likely 
to be currently undertaking further tertiary study, a considerable 
number of her peers (33 per cent) will still be doing so. Such women 
will generally be studying for a bachelors (34 per cent), masters (13 
per cent) or doctoral (3 per cent) degree or a diploma (24 per cent). 

In total the principal on average will hold three tertiary 
qualifications :nd have spent three years in full-time and five to six 
years in part-time study since leaving secondary school. 

Prior tc her first appointment as a school principal the female 
principal of a Catholic school is likely to have been employed in four 
schools teaching general primary curriculum, theology, english, 
science, cJassical studies or mathematics. Prior to the appointment 
she will not have had experience as an acting or relieving principal 
(73 per cent) nor is she likely to have undertaken specific study in 
administration (76 per cent). After having assumed the principal 
position, however, such studies may have been undertaken (54 per 
cent). In most instances she is likely to have been a principal in 
two schools, with her first school differing only slightly from her 
present position in terms of size and location. 

' 32 - 


Her current school is likely to be located in a capital city (48 
per cent), city (14 per cent), town (25 per cent) or rural community 
(12 per cent) and will be concerned with primary level only (78 per 
cent), secondary level only (17 per cent) or both primary and 
secondary levels (3 per cent). The student composition will be co- 
educational (80 per cent) or girls only (14 per cent). It is highly 
unlikely that boarding facilities will be available (95 per cent). 

On average the principal will spend 46 to 50 hours in the 
performance of her duties as principal. She will also be involved in 
timetabled teaching (70 per cent) of eight hours or more per week. 

She will belong to two to three professional associations and 
subscribe to three to four professional journals. During the period 
1980 to 1982 she is likely to have attended six or more local/regional 
conferences/seminars/inservice activities. She may have attended two 
state conferences but it is extremely unlikely that she would have 
attended any such activity in the national or international arena. 

The principal is not likely to have been employed in another type 
of school or school system (82 per cent) or in a field other than 
education (70 per cent). 

Profile of the Female Principal o f an Independent Schoo l 

The female principal of an independent school is likely to be 45 
to 49 years of age, Australian born (73 per cent) and city bred (67 
per cent). Her mother, after nine ycjars of formal education is 
likely to have been employed exclusively in home duties (67 per cent) 
or else been self employed (7 per cent) or employed in clerical 
occupations (iO per cent) or in the professions, for example teaching 
(7 per cent). Her father, after nine years of formal education, 
would have been employed in one of a range of occupations, most 
commonly being self employed (17 per cent) or employed as a 
craftsman/foreman (17 per cent), a professional, for example architect 
or lawyer (13 per cent), a manager (13 per cent) or clerical worker 
(13 per cent). The principal is unlikely to be married. In most 
instances she will have never married (4J per cent), although among 
her peers there will be some who are separated or divorced (16 per 
cent) or widowed (7 per cent^. Among her married peers (33 per 
cent), the overwhelming majority (91 per cent) will be married to men 
in professional (for example teachers 55 per cent; architect, lawyers 
18 per cent) or managerial (]8 per cent) positions. They will have 
two to three children, most of whom w:J 1 currently be undertaking 
tertiary study or be in full-time employnent. 

Her secondary education would have been completed at a government 
(53 per cent) or independent single sex (37 per cent) school and her 
initial tertiary qual i f i ?at ion received from a university (50 per 
cent), government teachers' college (33 per cent) or college of 
advanced education (10 per cent). Her initial tertiary quail f icat ior, 
is likely to have been a bachelors degree (pass - 33 per cent, honou/ s 
~ 10 per cent) or a diploma (30 per cent) or certificate (2"^ per cent) 
specialising in arts/social science/language/humanities (31 per cent), 
early childhood education (17 per cent), general primary curriculum 
(17 per cent) or mathematics/science (10 per cent). These studies 
would have been undertaken fulltime on campus with the aid of 


financial assistance (80 per cent) generally in the form of a 
government scholarship or allowance. The courses taken would have 
been directly relevant to her career in education (83 per cent) and 
completed prior to the commencement of her teaching career (80 per 
cent) • 

The principal would have continued formal study after hr^ving 
completed her initial tertiary qualification and after having 
commenced teaching. Studies for her highest tertiary qualification, 
leading to the conferring of a bachelors (30 per cent), masters (17 
per cent) or doctoral (4 per cent) degree, diploma (26 per cent) or 
graduate diploma (13 per cent) would have been undertaken at a 
university (48 per cent) or college of advanced education (30 per 
cent) in eaucation (60 per cent) or if in the disciplines, most often 
in arts/social science/languageg/humanities (17 per cent). These 
studies would have been undertaken on campus (78 per cent), without 
financial assistance (76 per cent) or time release (83 per cent). 
The studies would have been directly relevant to her career in 
education (91 per cent). Prior to the completion of this 
qualification she is likely to have spent nine years or more in 
teaching education. 

It is unlikely that the principal is currently undertaking formal 
study, however her peers who may be doing so (21 per cent) would be 
studying for a bachelors (67 per cent) or doctoral (33 per cent) 

In total the principal, on average, will hold three tertiary 
qualifications and have spent three to four years in full-time and 
three years in part-time study since leaving secondary school. 

Prior to her firsw appointment as principal the female principal 
of an independent school is likely to have been employed in four 
schools teaching general primary curriculum, english, mathematics, 
science, social science or classics. Rarely will she have had 
experience as an acting or relieving principal prior to the 
appointment (67 per cent). Neither is she likely to have undertaken 
specific study in administration (approximately 80 per cent) either 
bef')re or after having assumed the principal position. In most 
instances she will have been a principal in only one school (86 per 
cent) . 

Her current school is likely to be located in a capital (50 per 
cent) or other city (23 per cent) and will be concerned with both 
primary and secondary levels (52 per cent), primary only (24 per cent) 
or secondary only (93 per cent). 

The principal will spend on average 46 to 50 hours per week in the 
performance of her duties. In addition she will spend five hours or 
more of timetabled teaching each week. 

- 34 - 

She will belo:ig to three professional associations and subscribe 
to three professional Journals* During the period 1980 to 1982 she 
is likely to have attended three local or regional conferences/ 
seminars/inservice activities and two state conferences. In a few 
instances she would have attended a national conference. However it 
is extremely unlikely that she would have attended an international 
event . 

In most instances the principal would not have been employed in a 
field other than education (75 pf r cent). However she may (^4 per 
cent) have been employed in a different type of school or school 

The _Fut ure for Women in the P r inci palshi^ 

The existing data on the proportion of women in the principalship 
is alarming. More disturbing however, may be the statistics of the 
future. In Catholic schools for example, with the retirement and 
withdrawal of female religious, young men are increasingly being 
appointed to principal positions. In independent schools with the 
amalgamation of boys and girls schools, men are being appointed almost 
exclusively to head the co-educational bodies. In government 
schools, with the trend towards greater community involvement in 
selection, a sizeable number of women are simply not applying for 
pr i nc i pa 1 poR i f i ons . 

In this rpspect it is important to note the position in Victorian 
government schools. There, in an attempt to resolve the considerable 
tension between the centralised concern for consistency, economy and 
efficiency, which has characterised the traditional selection 
practices in government schools, with respect for localised, 
individual autonomy in the pluralist society of Australia in the 
1980s, the education department has introduced school council 
involvement in the selection of principals and deputy principals. In 
the first three rounds of community involvement in selection in 1984 
and 1985, of the total 9^6 applicants, only 86 applicants were women 
(9. 1 per cent ) . 

With the increasing trend in all systems towards greater community 
involvement in the selection of principals what is the situation for 
women likely to be? The results of research in the selection of 
school administrators in tne United States (Baltzell and Dentler 
1983), the United Kingdom (Morgan, Hall and McKay 1983) and Australia 
(Chapman 1985) are not encouraging. 

Problems Confron t i ng Women i n S c^h o o 1 s W he r e There i s C o mmuni t y 

Involvement in t he Sele ction of Principals 

The nature of the selection process 

In the selection process there is an element of 'intuition' or 
trust in one's judgment. But trust grows from experience. There 
are simply too few people on selection committees who have had 
experience wi^'h women in top administrative positions. At that 
critical point when selectors mcke their final judgment, 'intuitively' 
they are less likely to select the woman. 


- 35 - 


Given this, it is essential that the selection process be 
carefully planned, tightly structured and based on clearly articulated 
criteria and valid and reliable evidence. Everything must be done to 
reduce reliance on 'intuition' and 'gut reaction'. 

Indeed, in the United States it has been found (Baltzell and 
Dentler 1983) that committees which do not have explicit, clearly 
articulated, perf ormance-related criteria rely not only on 'intuition' 
but upon 'leadership images'. Unfortunately, members of the 
community do not have as many 'models' or 'images' of successful women 

With few 'images' of successful women, members of the selection 
committeeti tend to lack flexibility when assessing female applicants. 
Unless a woman fits a particular mould, she has few chances. There 
is little scope for 'difference'. A woman applying to an independent 
school in Australia for example was commended as having initiative, 
enterprise, and forward vision. It was said that she was 'unique' 
but as there was some doubt about the likelihood of her surviving the 
'confines' of the school it was suggested that her appointment would 
be too great a 'risk'. 

Yet while it is clearly unwise to be perceived as too 
unconventional, women principals cannot afford to be seen as too 
'desirable'. In conservative communities in particular, women 
aspirants to the pr incipalship face the barriers associated with 
sexual jealousy, and common gossip. In one Victorian country town, a 
woman applicant was told informally that as a single, attractive woman 
in her early 40s she would not be successful gaining appointment as 
principal in the local government school, not merely because of male 
attitudes (all members of the committee were male) but because women 
in the locality were 'suspicious' of her. 

The chairn»an of the board of an independent girls' school 
confirmed the 'sexual factor' as a problem. As a prominent citizen 
and solicitor he indicated that he could not afford the gossip which 
may occur if a woman was appointed head. He liked to interact with 
the principal in informal settings and with a male principal he 'could 
talk about school council business...over a glass of ale wi thout 
engendering gossip or innuendo'. 

It is apparent throughout Australia, that men constitute the 
majority of councillors in government and non-government schools and 
they do feel that the real business of running a school can only be 
done between men. A woman applying for the principal position in a 
government school was told: 'Men simply cannot get down to Ihe nitty 
gritty of runni*^g a school with a woman'. 

Attitudes of women 

In speaking to women throughout Australia there is no doubt that 
many women underestimate their worth and their suitability for senior 
administrative positions. Women speak of not applying for positions 
because t-hey do not believe they 'deserve' them. Emphasis is placed 
on the irrportance of 'credibility'. In many respects these attitudes 
reflect a sense of powerleesness and 'distance' from the real sources 
of power. Clearly women have high expectations of senior positions 

- 36 - 

and of themselves in those positions Perhaps more time working 
spnior administrators as interns or in acting positions would give 
women a more realistic picture of the deinands of a role and of the 
'rr.atcn' between their own compf?tencies and those required by the role 

less harsh in judging their own suitability and worth. 

7he changing nature of the principalship 

In government schools, especially in Victoria, increased 
decentralisation and devolution has brought a new conception of the 
principalship and new bases for the principal's power. No longer can 
the principal rely on the legal authority associated with a 
bureaucratic position within the- department. While this change In 
the power base affects both male and female principals some womer feel 
that they have suffered most from the change. 

Such women feel particularly disadvantaged in respect to building 
'informal' power bases in the wider educational community. One very 
experienced and successful principal in a Victorian government school 
indicated that she would not apply for another school under the new 
arrangements (although she may have done so in the past) because she 
simply did not have that extra energy required to establish herself, 
not only with staff and students, but with the community as well: 'I 
just do not want to have to kesp putting out so much ener v'. 

There is no doubt that it is more difficult for women to establish 
themselves in the community. Women have traditionally not been 
active in those ar^as of public or community life from whi'^h many of 
the schools' influentials are drawn, for example, Rotary, Apex 
sporting clubs. It is particularly difficult for those married women 
who, even in the society of the i980s, simply do not have tho 
additional time for pub 1 i c /c ommun i t y activities, given their 
r esponsibi 1 ities in the home . 

Recommend a t_i ons for I mp ro vi ng the Se Ijsc ti on Proces s to Enhanc e the 
Oppo rtuniti e s fo r Women 

Research on school administrator selection in the United States 
(Baltzell and Dentler 1983), the United ^'.ingdom (Morgan, Hall and 
McKay 1983) and Australia (Chapman 198*^, ]985) r'^veals that to achieve 
equity, the entire selection process must be continually nionitored to 
ensur' that none of the procedures adopted are potentially 
discrimin?tory. In particular, the f allowing strategies should be 
implement c?d . 

Announcing the vacancii and informing potential applicants 

Every attempt should be made to ensure that there is a sizeable 
proportion of women in the applicant pool. However, women do not 
have access to the informal channels of communication which are widely 
available to men. Women do not get ho know informally the 'unspoken' 
needs of the school. It is the responsibility o^ all women who are 
now beginnir._, to assume more senior 'Positions, to \ ^ the formal and 
informal channels that do exist to inform women of vacancies and to 
encourage them to apply. Informal or 'insider' knowledge will be of 
particular assistance to female applicants in the preparation of 

incumbent . 

As a result women may be less overawed by positions and 


- 37 - 

applications which highlight the 'match' between their experience, 
personal qualities, knowledge and professional 'skills', and the 
specific ^requirements of the school* Experience in the United States 
(Baltzell and Dentler 1983) reveals that women will create and 
communicate through networks of their own devising if there is an 
understanding that schools or school districts are seriously 
determined to act affirmatively. 

Ensuring representation of women among membership of the selection 

Much has been written about the importance of having women among 
the panel of selectors. This may be difficult to monitor at the 
local level where members of the select^.on committees are elected or 
nominated by their constituents especially as most school communities 
see fit to elect a majority of men to their school councils. But in 
systemic schools achieving some balance in gender representation 
should be made a responsibility of the system. As "ell ae 
contributing to effective selection practices in Victoria, tho^e wooien 
who have served as the director -general ' s nominens on selection 
committees have found the experience extremely beneficial in 
familiarising theni with thfe process of selection which in turn has 
assisted them whon they have been applicants in the selection process, 

Vie first meetMg of the selection committeo 

Before actually embarking cn the process of screening applicants, 
it is imperative that a committee raise and discuss any issues about 
which members may hold particular biases and prejudices. Thit is 
especially important in rospect to the attitudes of committee member*^ 
towards ?-'omen. Those responsible for maintaining the integrity of 
the sele.tion process and ensuring the equal treatment of all 
candidates chould see this as o fundamental part of their role* 

Sorue questions which may lay the basis for discujsion at the fi ac 
meo xng would include: 

Do selectors have any objections to appointing a woman? 

Do selectors believe that appointing a woman would be a 
greater risk whan appointing a man? 

Do selectors hold any particular views about women's ability 
to discipline boys, to stand up to pressure, to work 
effectively with others? 

Such issues, faced openly and directly at the beginning of the 
process, should in part reduce the possibility of the subtle, negative 
biases penetrating the committee's deliberation at later stages. 

Identification o£ criteria 

Selection criteria must be reviewed to ensure that there are no 
barriers to discriminate againsl women. A school which has conducted 
a thorough needs assessment leading to a detailed school profile and 
position analysis is less likely to derive criteria which are vague, 
inconsistent, unrelated to performance, or heavily dependent on 

- 38 - 


'leadership images'. Thorough preparation and planning by the 
school's governing body is thus an essential pre~requisi te for fair 
and equitable selection* 

Conaideration of evidence 

The chairperson of the selection commi ttee must constantly 
challenge selectors to ensure that they are not making different 
Inferences about the information r<»ceived from women as compared with 
that received from men* In particular, are the same assumptions 
being made for both sexes in respect to personal and professional 
priorities, dotnestic responsibilities, ability to supervise and 
maintain discipline, and ability to administer a co-educational 
school ? 

Conducting the interview 

At the interview stage selectors must be confronted with the fact 
that Lhey are likely to have more 'models' of men as heads and many 
more * i mages ' of successful male principals than they will have 
Mmages' of successful females. Thorough consideration of each 
female applicant and stress upon flexibility in the assessment of 
women mut be built into the process. 

Similarly, the chairperson must alert selectors to the differences 
in personal st.le among mnu und women. The less assertive style of 
women and the tendency to attribute success to the product of 
circumstances or the contributions of others must not be 
mi sinterprc led . 

Needl'.^QS to say members of the selection committee should be 
cautious :* the questions t) ey ask. For example, if information about 
availability is rc»quired, all applicants, both male and female, should 
be asked: 

Will you be able to fulfill the time requirements of the 
posi t i on? 

Will you be able to regularly work at night or weekends? 

At the final coint of deci<?ion making 

A selection committee will feel most confident that its final 
decision is free of bias and prejudice, if, on reflection it is 
convinced that the entire process has been closely monitored and that 
in its deliberation it has had availaole to it the best possible, 
performance-related evidence on each applicant* 

In the following section those characteristics which seem to best 
typify 'good' selection practices are outlined in some detail. 

Characte ristics of Effective Sel ection 

Recent research on administrator selection in Australia (Chapman 
1984, 1985), Canada (Musella 1983), Great Britain (Morgan. Hail and 
Mackay 1983) and the United States of America (Batzell and Dentler, 
1963) hat? indicated that there are certain characteristics associated 


- 39 - 

with effective selection procedures and practices. Th3se 
characteristics and concerns, distilled from research and li.?ted 
below, serve as a useful guide ro those responsible for planning and 
monitoring the selection process* 

there is efficiency in the use of time and in the use of 
financial and human resources, 

there is adequate preparation at all stages of the process, 

there is clarity about proper procedures and respective 

there is scrupulous adherence to all procedures, 

there /ire checks and balances built into the entire process, 

there are rigorous standards applied to the consideration of 
applicants and the assessment of the process, 

all applicants ar^ assessed on the same criteria, using the 
same procedures. 

The selection committee 

the committee represents broad interest groups, 

the selectors have the skills necessary to produce a valid 
and reliable result, 

the selectors are familiar with current changes in education 
and society and are attuned to the future needs of children, 

the selectors are fully informed on the external factors 
that impinge upon the selection proce^is, for example, legal 
and policy constraints and government guidelines, 

selectors are thoroughly briefed end 'inserviced' before 
embarking on the process, 

selectors have a clear understanding of tneir roles, their 
respective responsibilities and the constraints under which 
they operate prior to the process of selection. 

Selection criteria 

the criteria are approved by the school governing body, 

a complete set of criteria is developed encompassing all the 
duties and skills required, 

the criteria ai e directly linked to the specific position 
under cons i deration , 

the criteria are well formulated and clearly articulated, 


- 40 - 

a decision is made, in advance of screening, of tne type of 
evidence to be considered appropriate in appraising 
appl'cants on the baais of the criteria, 

the criteria are made public so that applicants fully 
understand what is expected of them when preparing theii 
appl icat ions , 

The natvre of evidence 

every effort is made to ensure that I he evidence i ^ 
comprehensive and directly relevant tr the criteria, 

evidence is performance based and reflects practicf- over 
time , 

at each stage in the process, all evidence and supporting or 
rejecting judgments are recorded in writing and used to build 
up a composite profile of tne applicant, 

selectors continually monitor evidence and discuss the typ'^s 
of inferences they are di awing from th*? information leceived. 

Application forms 

application forms are structured to enable systpmatic 
assessments and comparisons, 

application forms are explicit about the information 

ap;licatinn forms enable assessments to be made of 
applicants' *trark record' and career d^ivelopment . 


reference request forms a»'e explicit about the information 
requirrd . 


the interviews are structured, 

prior to each interview the selectors have in tiheir 
possession a profile of the applicant based on evidence 
accumulated to date, 

prior to interviews the selectors have a clear understanding 
of the procedures to be foilowea, the questions to be asked, 
the means by which interview data is to be recorded and the 
manner in which interviews ^re to be assessed. 

Avrivim at a final decision 

a final point of decision making i'A not rushed, 



- 41 

in arriving at a decision there is a svetematic evaluation 
of each short-listed applicant based on a thorough review of 
all the evidence accumulated throughout the selection 

final evaluations are based on comparisons of applicants 
against the criteria. 

Recommendations for Women Aspiring to Principal Positions 
Long terra preparation 

Throughout your career be courageous enough to ask 
colleagues for feedback on your performance. Learn how 
others see you. Learn how you ''present' yourself. 

Gain experience in public situations where you must 'think 
on your feet' and clearly articulate your opinions and 
feelings. Force yourself to talk up in public forums, to 
chair meetings and to take ascemblies. 

Establish a trusting relationship with a personCs) with whom 
you can reflect on experiences and who can give a wider, 
informed perspective. This person should provide you with a 
sounding board. He/she should give you constructive help 
and confidence in your professional life. 

Establish a name in your community. Realise it is no longer 
sufficient to 'do an honest day's work within the school'. 
Be visible In all aspects of the life of the school 

Learn not to be afraid of rejection. Realise that yoa will 
not please everyone. Have the confidence to fall. Be 
prepared to >ut yourself on the line'. 

Realistically assess your value. Recognise that you 
deserve the job as much as any one else of comparable 
experience and qualification. 

Come to know yourself and recognise your strengths and 
weaknesses. If you have weaKnesses confront them and learn 
to handle them constructively. 

Carefully look at your career path. Ide-itify a goal which 
you would like to attain, a dream you would wish to fulfill. 
Lecrn how others have attained that goal and identify the 
paths which can be followed to its attainment. 

Do not be embarrassed about recognising and admitting to 
your strengths. Let people know you are an 'able' person. 
Build it into their set of expectations about you. Build up 
their confidence in you. 

Do not 8h> away from addressing difficult issues. 



- 42 - 

Develop opinions, positions and moat importantly, develop a 
personal philosophy, your vision for education. 

Become the initiator rather than the support person. 

Short Term Preparation 

Carefully prepare a written application. 

Read the school profile and the job advertisement. 

Contact and if possible visit the school and obtain as much 
additional information about the school, the position and the 
community as is possible. 

Speak informally with those who may be familiar with various 
aspects of the school and its community. 

In your letter of application: 

state your case in clear, succinct language that will be 
readily understood by the professional educators and the lay 

specifically address your application to the neeu^ the 
school and the major areas of responsibility as detailed in 
the school profile and the job description; 

state clearly the fundamental tenets of your educational 
phi losophy ; 

ensure that within your application letter you effectively 
display the ^vision' you have for the school; 

refer to actual behaviours/accompl ishments which provide 
evidence that you do indeed K->ssess the relevant skills and 

provide substantiating evidence for your claims. In most 
instances this evidence can be included as appendices to your 

Selecting confidential referees: 

Contained within your letter of application, either as an appended 
list or within the body of the letter itself, will be the details 
of your 'confidential' referees. Your choice of confidential 
referees will be a major factor in determining the success or 
failure of your application. Choose them with care. 

Ensure that your confidential referees are men or women who 
will be respected and considered credible by the members cf 
the selection committee. 

Select referees who will be considered by members of the 
selection committee to be 'honest and frank'. 

Select referees who will be enthusiastic in their support 
for your application* This can be guaranteed to a greater 
extent if you provide prospective referees with substantial 
information about the school and the position* 

Stress to your confidential referees the necessity for them 
to address their comments to the specific requirements of the 
school ana the position and to any specific issues raised by 
the selection committee* They should validate your claims 
of experience and expertise* 

Prior to Interview: 

Identify potential problem areas; the areas where selectors may 
hold potentially discriminatory attitudes towards women. Be well 
prepared to answer questions on discipline, your ability to take 
pressure, the breadth of your experience, your involvement in the 
wider commu,iity, your preparedness to devote time and energy to 
the school, your personal and professional priorities, your 
ability to relate to others, especially to the men who are likely 
to constitute a sizeable proportion of your staff and your 
governing body. 

At the Interview. Ask for feedback from the committee: 

What attracted this committee to my application? Would the 
committee have any misgivings about appointing me? Show that 
this is important and that you are very serious ;ibout being 

Present yourself with conviction. 

Avoid those aspects of 'fem;=ile' language patterns whirh 
reflect uncertainty. Say things in a positive way, instead 
of 'I would hope to,..' say 'I would do..,' 

Learn to turn everything to your advantage. If the 
interviewer detects a weakness in your application or 
preparation do not buckle under. Lead the discussion along 
bo a Dositive resolution. 

Display your ^vision' for education anr for the future of 
the school. 

Take charge of yourself and the interview. Show you are 
^master of your world'. 


Baltzell, Catherine and Dentler, Robert A, (1983) Selecting 
American School Principals^ Research Report. National Institute 
of Education. Washington D.C. 

Chapman, Judith D. ( 1984) A Descriptive Profile of Australian 
School Principals. Commonwealth Schools Commission, Canberra, 

Chapman, Judith D, ( 1984) The Selection and Appointment of 

Australian School Principals. Commonwealth Schools Commission, 

Chapman, Judith D, ( 1985) School Council Involvement in the 
Selection of Admini strators. The Institute of Educational 
Admin is t rat ion, Melbourne, Victoria, 

Chapman, Judith D, (1985) The Selection of School Administrators. 
Procedures and Practices . The Institute of Educational 
Administration, Melbourne, Victoria, 1985, 

Morgan, C, Hall, Valerie and McKay, Hugh, (1983) The Selection of 
Secondary School Headteachers. Open University Press, London, 



Janice Nash 


Within the different Australian education systems, the 
principalship is dominated by men. Studies from the United States 
of America, Canada, Great Britain and New Zealand point to the 
existence of the same situation in their schools. 

Until recently Catholic schools in this country were not 
characterised by such an imbalance. However, the decline in the 
number of men and women from the teaching orders who are capable 
of filling executive positions has necessitated the appointment of 
lay principals. These principals are mostly men. Although this 
trend conforms with the general pattern, it requires closer 
scrutiny because the under-r ep r es en t a t i on of women in the 
principalship is now occurring in a system where traditionally 
women have held that position in approximately the same proportion 
as men. Furthermore, women seeking promotion to the principalfihip 
in that system are not disadvantaged to the same extent as wo»Ten 
in Australian government schools by a formal promotion structure 
which places emphasis on seniority and which has set criteria for 
eligibility to each level or list position in the hierarchy. 

Failure to cpply for promotion certainly provides a simple 
explanation for the situation. A recent study in Victoria showed 
that in a questionnaire involving 349 women respondents only 9 (or 
2.6 per cent) had ever applied for a secondary principalship in a 
Catholic school. The head personnel officer in the Sydney 
Archdiocese likewise indicated the general failure of women to 
apply for either the deputy principal or principal positions. But 
this response of failure to apply only prompts further questions: 

What are the factors or barriers confronting women in Catholic 
secondary schools which might explain their under-representat ion 
as principals? 

Are these factors similar to those in other systems? 

Are theie factors related specifically to the Catholic system? 

Although the degree of influence appears to vary, the factors 
or barriers which offer an explanation for the situation are 
basically the same as those which are found in other education 
systems. Further, they can be categorised into three groups: 
those factors which arise from indirect institutional 
discrimination; those factors which are attributable to women 
teachers themselves; and those factors incorporating attitudes or 
beliefs, conscious or unconsc ious , leading to uni-^tentional, 
direct discrimination. 

Indirect Syst emic D l ccr in ina t ion 

The factors which emerge in the category of indirect, systemic 
discrimation are more closely related to the nature of the 


- ^7 

Catholic education system than those factors in other areas. The 
following list identifies only the most obvious ones. 

Women are ineligible through lack of administrative 

The continuing presence of religious in the positions of 
principal and deputy principal hinders both men and women. 

The tendency is for women to st<ay at the classroom level or 
at least spend more time there before seeking promotion. The 
expectation of this career pattern must influence those who 
promote, and ultimately disadvantage all women. 

Women do not seem to acquire co the same extent as men 
incidental professional training that could assist them in 
seeking promotion. 

Factors Attributable to Women Themselves 

Kany of the factors which stand in the way of women attaining 
the pri ncipalship are attributable to women teachers themselves. 
However, it must be appreciated that these factors are not easily 
isolated and are intertwined with those in the other two 
categories. The actual failure of women to apply for the 
pr incipalship is a superficial outcome of the points detailed 

There is evidence to suggest that women, overall, are not as 
well qualified academically as men are for administrative 
posi tions. 

The aspiration or ambition to pursue an administrative career 
is seemingly not a strong motivating factor for most women. 

Closely allied to the relatively low career ambitions of 
women is their lack of confidence in their ability to assume 
successful leadership positions. 

The most outstanding factor which accounts for v.omen not 
seeking the principalship and which underpins the three points 
already mentioned is that home commitments receive their first 
priority. Moreover the importance placed upon the family unit 
in the Catholic Church undoubtedly gives moral strength to 
home life receiving this position. But apart from Church 
teachings, there is, within Australian society, a strong 
pressure upholding the notion that a female's role of wife and 
mother should take precedence over any other role. 

Another pressure centres on the lack of support women are 
given in the home. Most females who pursue a career do so 
while maintaining a family and all other home 
responsibilities. Thus, many commonplace difficulties 
encountered can be attributed to job overload. An 
administrative position would simply add to that load. 


- 47 - 

The desire of women to remain in the classroom because it 
gives them satisfaction is offered by some women as a reason 
for their not seeking promotion. A few certainly find the 
classroom level preferable to the male career pattern with its 
associated pressures and it apparent unattractive awirds. 
Nevertheless^ this factor must be viewed with caution as it is 
frequently proffered unjustifiably as an excuse for not 
providing women with opportunities? in school administration. 

Social Attitudes, Beliefs and Pract ices 

The third major category centres on those factors which arise 
from attitudes held in society, especially those concerning the 
role of women. 

There is overwheli.ung evidence indicating that thcjre are 
deeply entrenched attitudes in Australian society which 
perceive men as leaders and women as followers. This lessens 
the possibility of women, despite their competence, assuming 
leadership roles. In other words, sex role stereotyping leads 
individuals to hold, in varying degrees, negative attitudes 
concerning the appointment of women to the principclship which 
is viewed essentially as a masculine domain. 

Consequently, although it is generally recognised that women 
have the characteristics essential for a good principal when 
compared with men, they are not seen to have these essential 
characteristics to the same extent. 

Most important in this category are the attitudes of those 
who are in a position to employ or promote. In the Catholic 
system the promoters/employers are perceived by teaching 
personnel as being conservative because tney are identified 
with the attitudes and practices of the Catholic Church. It 
is unlikely that they will regard women as being as well 
suited as men for the leadarship role of principal. 

The distinguishing aspect of Catholic education, that is, its 
Catholicity, also appears to contribute to the near absence of 
women as principals. The Catholic Church is seen to support 
and perpetuate in its own structure and practices traditional 
attitudes concerning the place of women in society. The all- 
male hierarchy is often pointed to as the obvious example of 
the Catholic Church's endorsement of a woman's place being 
that of a follower. Thus it is inconceivable that the 
discriminatory attitudes towards women being perpetuated by 
the Church should cease to function in the vital area of 
eduration and, more precisely, in the appointment of its 
principal teachers . 

It is useful to refer back to the question posed in the 
introduction. Firstly, it appears that the under-repr esentat io'" 
of women in Catholic secondary schools is an outcome of the same 
or similar factors which are functioning in other systems. 
Nevertheless not all factors are of equal influence. Secondly, 
the Catholic Church, by upholding traditional attitudes on the 

r^ a 48 - 

rolej? of women in society, must greatly influence the choice of 
roles considered suitable for women to play in Catholic education. 

Recommendations for Changing the Under-Representat ion of Women as 

This paper maintains that women can perform competently in 
educational administration. The underl,ying barrier to most women 
reaching this pr i nc i pal shi p is found in societal attitudes, 
beliefs and practices. Without doubt the situation will not be 
rectified until some change occurs in those attitudes, beliefs and 

Meanwhile, the following strategies and policies are suggested 
as approaches which might contribute to hastening the change. The 
majority would have to be implemented through professional 
associations, sucii as teachers' unions, or through official groups 
administering education. 

Information should be provided to the community, to the 
employers and to the aspiring women administrators about the 
imbalance of females in administration and the factors 
accounting for this. 

Those w< men who have successfully fulfilled administrative 
positions should be made visible and even access*'ble so tha^ 
they might give encouragement and actively help other women. 

Negative stereotypes of women as administrators, which 
perpetuate the beliefs that women are weak, emotionally 
unstable, indecisive and lack leadership skills, should be 

Courses, particularly in leadership skills should be provided 
for women so that they might acquire basic skills in personnel 
management and organisational procedures as well as a sense of 
confidence in their own abilities. 

Support for individuals should be built through the 
establishment of organisations concerned with women in 
educational administration. Such organisations would be in a 
position to communicate or negotiate with authorities or the 
public, with more strength than the individual. 

The alliance of anyone or any group who is concerned with 
social justice should be sought. At the school level, the 
experiences of women snould be broadened deliberately by 
exposing them to a range of administration activities, formal 
and informal. 

In girls' and co-educational schools at least one woman in a 
senior administrative position should be appointed. This may 
require positive discrimination. 

Women themselves should make a positive effort to gain 
experience in diverse administrative situations; to build up 
networks; to pursue opportunities that will display their 

talents; to upgrade their qualifications, to plan their 
career; to work conscientiously, and to view themselves as 


In a society where men are the dominant group, they largely 
determine the criteria against which goodness and appropriateness 
are judged, C'^nsequent ly women face an overwhelming task in 
trying to formulate realistic strategies to eliminate 

So far attempts to alter formal structures in order not to 
disadvantage women have met with limited success. Indeed, it is 
unlikely that the status of women will change appreciably in any 
sphere of life, until many sex role stereotype attitudes are 
dismantled and women are perceived as being capable of fulfilling 
leadership roles. Hence, to pursue consciously strategies and 
policies, like tnose put forward in this paper, is imperative if 
there are "-o be more women principals in Cat ho lie secondary 
schools . 


This paper is based on reseach which was done for a thesis, The 
Promotion of Women to the Principalship: A Case Study, submitted 
to the University of New England for the degree, Master of 
Educational Administration • 


McArthur, J. 1984. An Analysis of Some of the Haln Findings of 
a Survey of Female Lay Teachers in Catholic Secondary Schools 
in Victoria, 

Anti-Discrimination Board. 1979. Examinations of a Practice in 
New South Uales Secondary Teaching Service. 



Di F cminq 

I nt rodu ct ion 

Though it might be fashionable in some quarters to perceive 
independent schools as a monolith, such a perception would be spurious 
in the extreme. There is little commonality in philosophy, aims, 
goals and objectives. But there is one common denominator to these 
schools. They serve a community where clients, that ^ the parents, 
are able to make a choice between educational institu.ions for their 
chi Idren . 

ThePogit t on for Women 

Appointment of staff within independent schools is an individual 
matt:?r without the constraints of either seniority or industrial 
agreements? which are reflected in the government system. In general 
all independent schools have application Processes, methods of 
selection, criteria for selection, ratification/approval, rights of 
appeal and conditions of appointment. What ia common to non- 
government schools is that they have built-in structural and 
attitudinal characteristics which mitigate against the appointment of 
women in positions of management. 

There is no point in presenting the current statistics on the 
number of women in management in independent schools in this country; 
the picture is similar to that of the government system. Elementary 
school teaching is still very much gendered labour. When one takes a 
horizontal perspective, sisterhood is alive and well. When one 
transcends classroom management, the vertical distribution of gender 
ratios reinforces the reasons as to why this conference has been 
convened. The majority of primary school teachers are female whilst 
the majority of administrators are male. 

There are two major concerns confronting us: firstly the lack of 
women in management /deciF.iOi.-making positions and the gendered labour 
scene which continues '.o reinforce the social, stereotypical influence 
and attitudes in the young people in this society. It is damaging for 
children to see only males in power positions, especially in primary 
and junior schools. 

How to precisely quantity the extent of these problems within the 
independent sector presents some difficulty. Within independent 
schools in Victoria, there is no documentation which is equivalent to 
Schwarz's study. Women in the Education Department in Victoria. The 
information found on people in power is mainly descriptive and to 
generalize from such would be seen by many independent schools as 
either offensive or erroneous when applied to their mode of operation. 
Whether such a reaction is justifiable is a difficult judgment. What 
can be said is tnat the lack of quantifiable information about 
management positions in such schools is probably symptomatic of the 
notion of independence. It is not unfair to suggest that independent 
schools may well enjoy a real sense of 'exclusiveness' *^!.»ough this 
degree of anonymity, A3 s general rule the education community, let 
alone the general community, knows what independent schools want it to 

know. Despite being accountable financially to the state for use of 
public funds and to their own communities for private input, the 
policies and practices of such schools remain the property of the 
internal groups which dominate their ins t i t t i onal i sed political 
processes. Poiicieo and practices relating tc women in management 
positions are no exception. Both proponents and opponents of 
independent gchools might well see this as the actual demonstration of 
what has been determined the independent ethos'. 

In the May 1985 edition of Independence, the journal of the 
Headmasters' Conference of Australia, Robert Nethercote provided an 
analysis of deputy principal positions in independent schools. 
Nethercote described the lack of research, providing a comparative 
general analysis of the 'Role of Deputy Principals n Independent 
Schools in Victoria'. Mr. Max Howell, Headmaster of Brisbane Grammar 
School presented four stereotypes by which the role can be 
categorised : 

the old man of the tribe 

the hatchet maii 

the witchdoctor 

the general dogsbody 

I am unsure if t .e fourth stereotype is in tuct the onJy 
androgynous category or if there could possii^ly be a misprint which 
should read General Dogsbody, 

Questionnaires were sent to all He.'idmas t er s ' Conference (HMC) 
schools and ^he Association of H'jads in Independent Girls' Schools 
(AHIGS) in Victoria - the titles of the two organisations further 
enlightening us as to the reasons why the above stereotypic categories 
are alive and well. The good news is that at the end of 1985 in all 
its End of the Decade for Women significance, both bodips will 
combine. The interest ^'ng question for women in management will be, 
'Through coalescence, will the new chairper on be male or female?' If 
the past is to be our future, and if history repeats itself, the 
appointment is sure to be a male. A r ecommenda t i -^n from this 
conference might be to the chairpersons of KMl and AHIGS that they 
negotiate and make suitable constitutional amendments to enable an 
alternate sharing of this position between men and women. 

Nethercote's study of deputy principals quantifies present 
understanding of the situation (Table . 

A further recommendation from this conference r.ight be that either 
organisation such as NCIS or an individual undertake a major study of 
management within independent schools, which would clearly identify 
the problems of discrimination and add strength to an argument which 
is currently very difficult to quantify. 


TAeLS 1 


(n = 46) 

Highest Academic Male Female Total(f) Cumulative 

Qual i f i cat ions Total ( Cf ) 






Mast r De'j'ree 





Bachelor DegreeCs) 



















In addressing attitudinal and structural barriers to greater 
participation by women in educational management, it must be said that 
many independent schools are responsible for the perpetuation of 
sexist socialisation and consequent discrimination. Now, more than 
ever before, society should be interpreting the world through an 
androgenous paradigm, yet many independent schools are social 
constructs which deliberately reject such an interpretation. Single 
sex schools can hardly be classified as societal microcosms, given 
their si^xually exclusive curriculum and practices. There can be no 
denying that a great numoer of students from these schools transmit 
the effects of their socialisation to th^ workplace and their 
pervading sphere of influence. 

De spite the findings and r e commend a t ions of the Commonweal t h 
Schools Commission report. Girls and TomorroWt it may well be that 
single sex girls' schools are necessary for a period of time in 
providing environments for girls when their self esteem and self 
concept is at its lowest ebb. Although it may be advisable to stream 
classes on a gender basis this is not an argument for single sex 
schools from K ~ 12. The real world comprises of males and females; 
the existence of siigle sex schools whether for males or females is a 
parody of that reality. 

A Case Study 

One of the objectives of the conference is to share knowledge 
abcu*- the extent of the participation of women in educational 
management and the policies, programs and processes bein£ developed by 


- 53 - 

practitioners in the systems and schools. Wesley College Melbourne 
may be an appropriate case study. It is now 118 years old and the 
last decade may well be seen as a move by the College towards 
accepting the notion of Paula Silver which states 'I believe that 
educators have a moral obligation to use knowledge to change their own 
"natural" tendencies in the interests of enhancing social equality'. 

Wesley College Council and the Principal, Mr. David Prest, made a 
decision to change from a single sex boys college to a co~educat ionai 
college. This decision had diverse ramifications for the total 
College community: philosophical, administrative, curricular and 
envi ronment al . 

What effect has this decision had on women in management? There 
is not time to document in detail the degree of change over the last 
ten years; however, the present situ^titn demonstrates the welding of 
idealism -ind pragmatism. 

There are tijl^t'een key administrative positions encompassing both 
campuses, Prahran and Glen Waverley, for 1986 as set out in Table 2. 



Wesley College, Melbourne 
Principal (M) 

Glen Way erley 

Head (F) 

Deputy Head (M) 

Preparatory school 

co-ordinator (F) 

Prahra n 

Head (M) 

Deputy Head (F) 

Junior school 

co"ordinator (F) 

Junior school 

co-ordinator (M) 

Middle school 

co-ordinator (F) 

Middle school 

co-ordinator (M) 

Senior college 

co-ordinator (M) 

Director of curriculum (M) and Director of outdoor education (M; 
(responsibility across the College) 

Out of the thirteen senior positions, five are held by women, the 
middle f.chool co-ordinator at ^rahran will be a caretaker position 
held by a male while thn apoointed woman undertakes postgraduate 
studies in the United States of America in 1986 - the welding of 
idealism and pragmatism needs to be amply resourced. Commitment to 
equal opportunity has been reflected in the organisation framework and 
the encouragement of women to apply for all senior management 



- 54 - 

In many ways, Wesley College is atypical* Most other co- 
educational independent schools have not addressed the key issue of 
affirmative action* Appointment of staff is critical. Without a 
gender balance across each class level and within the administrative 
structure the questions of sexually inclusive curricula and school 
practice cannot be adequately addressed* A school which pays lip 
service to co-education through a sexually exclusive administration 
and practice loses credibility with students, especially girls, and 
with its parent clients. Is equal opportunity within a school 
attainable when girls and boys see an administrative model which is 
mainly male? Where are the mentors for your women aspiring to 
management positions and where are the Professional role models for 
all students, male and female? 

Wesley College has gradually redressed the historical dominance 
through affirmative action but the appointment of staff is only the 
first step. Equal opportunity and the implementation of appropriate 
practice is confronted daily. The following areas give a few basic 
examples of critical practice. 

School as3ewb] ies 

Administrative line-up of male and female role models. 

Visiting speakers representing men and women active in non- 
traditional work roles. 

Equal recognition of sporting achievements by both male and 
female students. 

School leadership 

Male and female students working in partnership. 

Balanced representation in student representative bodies. 

Careers counsel 1 ing 

No discrimination with respect to guidance and advice on 
future life-paths. 


Constant evaluation of sexist material. 

Wesley College is co-educational to Year 10 and while the current 
senior college is all male, it is the last bastion of the school's 
single sex past. At the end of 1984 an analysis was undertaken on the 
basis of student performance for that year. Year 9. It was found that 
tnere was no significant difference between the performance of girls 
and boys in all subjects. In July 1985 the SCOPE Questionnaire was 
administered to all Year 10 students and the following trends became 
apparent . 


- 55 - 

There is still a concern with traditional sex stereotypic 
choices in the areas of foreign language and performing/ 
creative arts for girls, while males continue to demonstrate 
their inclination towards mathematics, science and computer 
science. The important trend is the closing gap between girls 
and boys in their subject choices at Wesley College. 

In the 'Profile of Interests in Each Job Area Percentage of 
Each Sgx in Year 10 Students', the correlation betw3en gender 
was more diverse than the profile demonstrated across Victoria. 

Cone lusions and Recommendations 

In conclusion, the following issues need to be analysed as 
providing structural barriers for women in manager<ent in independent 
schools • 

School councils: the historic domination of successful males 
and the consequent influence on the appointment of principals 
and indirectly of staff. 

The role of the church in a number of independent schools: its 
traditional adherence to the dominance of males in decision- 
making roles. 

Single sex schools: the peculiar effect of such institutions 
on the process of both management and role stereotypes, which 
increasingly fails to reflect the changes in gender roles over 
the I'-^st two decades. 

Old 3t:udent network: the tendency of such formal and informal 
organisations to perpetuate the conditions applicable to their 
own half remembered schooling experiences. 

This paper proposes three recom ^ndations: 

The Australian Council for Educational Administration with the 
Australian College of Education should be approached to under- 
take a thorough analysis of staffing in independent schools in 
Australia. Whilst the trends might be anticipated, 'he results 
would provide a substantial power base for action. 

Independent schools should be urged to take cognisance of 
their social responsibility as policy makers for affirmative 
action. Policies affecting leadership models and attitudes 
which are not cognisant of the social spectrum will never 
achieve their goals, nor will the students for which 
independent schools are responsible be ful'/ equipped to 
participate in the twenty-first century. 

Each man and woman should work within their specific sphere of 
influence to maintain the issue of women in management as item 
onr on their agenda. The power of implementation of recommend- 
ations from this conference is with the individual. Without 
individual acLion our past is certain to be our future. While 
governments continue to legislate, organisations and 
individuals still discriminate. 

- 56 - 



Kerry Hyland 

Intro duction 

Equal employment opportunity programs in New South Wales 
developed out of the shortcomings of the 1977 complaint-based 
Anti-Discrimination Act, as well as from the recomr^endat ions of 
the Rev^few of NSW Public Administration carried out by Dr Peter 
Wilenski . 

In 1980 an amendment to the 1977 legislation was passed. This 
was Part IXA, which established the Office of the Director of 
^qual Opportunity in Public Employment in NSW rind required all 
gcvernmenv departments and statutory authorities to d<*velop equal 
emoloyment opportunity management plans, 

NSW Management P lan 

In the NSW Department of Education, the Equal Employment 
Opportunity (EEO) management plan for the teaching service to k 
four years to complete, drawing on considerable human resources. 
The completed plan provides a profile of the organisation in terms 
of the representations of the target gro :p covered under the 
legislation - people from non-English speaking backgrounds, 
Aboriginal people, women and people with physical impairments. 

In compiling this EEO management plan four processes were 

Analysis of personnel statistics whirh form the base mark 
against which KEO programs can be examined on an annual 
basis , 

Review of personnel practices with a view to the 
identification of discriminatory practices and effects. 
This included a review of recruitment techniques, selection 
criteria, training and staff development programs, 
promotion and transfer opportunities and patterns and 
conditions of service. 

Collection and analysis of empirical survey data which 
provides information not available from other sources, 
including profiles of people of non-English speaking 
backgrounds, those with physical impairments, and 
subjactive data concerning "ndividual and group experiences 
of working with the organisation. 

Development of strategies for change addressing obstacles 
which the organisation ha^ identified by a thorough 
research program. These strategies are designed to expose 
and overcome discrimination against women, Aboriginal 
people, people from non-English speaking backgrounds and 
people with physical impairm€*nts. 


57 ^ r^c^ 

It should be noted that the management plan .s a 'living' document 
designed to change over time as a result of its implementation, 
evaluation and development ( f further initiatives. 

Input was also gathere! from community agencies and 
organisations including the Anti-Discrimination Board, the Office 
of the Director for Equal Opportunity in Public Employment, the 
Social Dev lopment Unit in the Office of the Minister for 
Education, the Ethnic Affairs Commission, the Overseas Teachers' 
Association, the NSW Aboriginal Consultative Group, the NSW 
Federation of Parents and Citizens Associations, the Federation of 
School Community Organisations, the Royal Blino Society of NSW, 
the Adult Deaf Society, the Disability Council of NSW, the NSW 
Teachers' Federation, the Institute of Inspectors of Schools and 
Senior Educational Administrators of NSW, and the teachers and 
other departmental officers who participated in the two EEO 
surveys , 

In tne NSW Department of Education, the Director of EEO during 
the period of the development of the management plan was the then 
Deputy Director-General, Mr Bob Winder, who had a close working 
relationship with the Director-General. The selection of such a 
high ranking officer as the director of EEO has highlighted the 
considerable importance and status that has been given to and has 
been perceived to be given to the EEO program. This has been an 
important feature in its success. In July 1985 Mr Winder was 
appointed Director-General of Education assumin^^ major 
responsibility for the implementation of the EEO management plan, 
with the Director of Industrial Relations, Mr Geoff Baldwin, being 
appointed as the Director of EEO. 

The most significant feature of the EEO management plan is 
that it is truly that - a management plan. Once the research 
was completed and the issues identified, ninety-ore strategies for 
change were drafted and refined by the senior management of the 
department. Included in this process were the then Director- 
General, Mr Doug Swan, the then Deputy Director-General, the four 
Assistant Directors-General and the Directors of Education. 
Consultation with Regional Directors of Education was carried out 
during the three to four month period in which the strategies were 
developed . 

Consultation with and involvement of senior management ensured 
that the direction of the EEO program was consistent with all 
other educationa] programs undertakpn by the department. The 
process had a further benefit in that it led to a serious 
commitment from senior management to the successful implementation 
of the EEO program. This commitment has been maintained through 
the initial phase of the launch and distribution of the EEO 
management plan. Many senior officers have been publicly involved 
in supporting che EEO program as well as explaining the benefits 
expected to the educational system as a whole through enhanced 
management pr act ices , 

The management plan, which was officially launched by the NSW 
Minister for Education, Mr Rod Cavalier, sets out positive 


- 58 - 

initiatives for upgrading personnel practices for women, the 
largest target group affected. 

Ob jectives of the Plan 

The plan does not intend to positively discriminate on behalf 
of women employees but to redress the imbalances of the existing 
employment system, 

A significant effect of the plan for women teachers will be to 
improve the access of women to permanent positions and to provide 
better promotional opportunities. At 60 per cent of the 
workforce, women are well represented in the teaching profession 
b ^.t their representation in proiwotion positions is low with only 
25 per cent in primary and 21 per cent in secondary schools. 

The proposed affirmative action program will, over the five 
years of operation, significantly improve the representation of 
women in promotion positions particularly at the levels where it 
is presently critically low. At th^ level of deputy principal of 
a secondary school, representation of women will, on projected 
estimates, be increased from 6.4 per cent in 1983 to 21.7 per- 
cent. For principals of secondary schools the increase projected 
is from 7.4 per cent in 1983 to 14 per cent in the fifth year of 
the affirmative action program. In the primary arena where the 
numbers of principals of first class schools are smaller in 
number, representation would still be improved. It is projected 
that the 1983 figure of 5.3 per cent would be increased by 2.6 per 
cent to 7.9 per cent in five years. 

The results of such a program will not only bring improvements 
in the overall representation of women but having many more women 
in promotion positions will provide children with more female role 
models in positions of authority in government schools. 

Also included within the plan is a major proposal to 
restructure the promotional opportunities for all teachers. It 
proposes to offer 10 per cent of vacant promotion positions to 
eligible applicants by selecting the 'best' teacher for the job. 
This method of appointment radically departs from the present 
mechanism of seniority. 

Implementation Strategies 

The EEC management plan is an important program for some women 
who along with mature-age entrants and people employed with 
overseas qualifications, have had their career opportunities 
retarded by the seniority system's rules which rely upon 
continuity of service. For the most part women teachers still 
accept the major responsibility for child rearing. If they have 
periods out of the service to raise their children they e^oerience 
penalties upon re-employment, which either exclude or retard their 
promotional opportunities and thus they have difficulties 
competing with teachers who have continuous service. 

As the proposed program intends to offer 10 per cent of vacant 
promotion positions to be filled through selection, women who may 


not have the seniority but who are capable, qualified and talented 
teachers will have the opportunity to compete for positions 
P4*eviously out of reach* In addition the plan will improve the 
provisions for accreditation for child rearing to allow greater 
access to benefits for women who have had broken service as a 
result of their family responsibilities. It will also provide 
opportunities for women at various levels to participate in 
departmental commi ttees • 

Female promotion prospects have been particularly affected by 
post-maternity leave rules. The plan provides for greater 
flexibility in this area* 

The status of temporary staff, of which 80 per cent are women, 
has been a major problem* To achieve permanent status teachers 
need to join the state superannuation fund and be prepared to 
serve anywhere in the state, factors which make it very difficult 
for women to conform with the requirements for permanent status. 
The proposed introduction of new categories of permanent 
appointments will ensure that women have access to the 
professional and monetary benefits associated with permanency. 


The department's commitment to the implementation of an 
effective EEO program is receiving broad acknowledgment. Many of 
the proposals have been widely welcomed by parent and community 
groups who see Ihem as providing positive initiatives which will 
improve the quality of education in the schools for the students, 
teachers and the community. Opposition to some of the proposals 
from some teachers is being addressed by the department through an 
education program explaining the proposals, their objectives and 
benefits to teachers* This program is being undertaken by the EEO 
co~ordinator and EEO liaison officers located in regions and 
supported by senior officers of the department. 


- 60 


Veronica Schwarz 


Let us begin with an old but still relevant ri 'le. A man 
and his young son were riding along on a motorbike when they were 
struck by a speeding truck. The man was killed instantly and the 
boy was rushed to hospital with serious injuries. The hospUal 
called the top surgeon to operate immediately. On entering the 
theatre the surgeon took one look at the boy and said 'We'll have 
to get another surgeon to operate. I can't. That's my only son!' 
Who was the surgeon? 

In Victoria 

A report Uoj^en in the Education Department published by the 
Education Department of Victoria, detailed the basic data showing 
the position of women in that department in 1984. The report 
traces the changes in the positions of women in the teaching 
service since formal equality was instituted in Victoria in 1972. 
The figures show that in a system of formal equality, the 
proportion of women in the senior positions in schools has 
declined. The distribution of male and femal'^ teachers is no 
better than in 1925 when artificial ratios wsre created to limit 
the number of women in senior positions! 

Recently, a number of moves have begun in further attempts tc 
improve women's position in the Victorian Education Department. 

Equal opporunity legislation, a public service action plan for 
women: and major changes in family leave provisions and the 
introduction of permanent part time work, have recently provided 
further potential for the technical removal of barriers to the 
promotion of vfomen in the Victorian Education Department. The 
Director-General of Education, Dr. Norman Curry, has been 
continually supportive in attempts to improve the position of 
women in the department. 

The department has an Equal Opportunity Co-ordinator , an Equal 
Opportunity Unit, and Equal Opportunity Resources Centres in four 
of its twelve Regions. Within the Personnel and Industrial 
Relations Branch, a senior administrator has been given the 
additional role of Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)(Public 
Service. Co-ordinator in line with the Public Service Board's 
recent requirement . 

The Deputv Director of Personnel has been given the additional 
role of EEO (Teaching Service) Co'-ordinator . These EEO co- 
ordinators work with two consultative committees consisting of 
department representatives and teacher and public service union 
representatives respectively. These committees have drawn up 
specific action plans c.nd will monitor thr^ir implementation. 

Working with them is a full-time EEO Consultant responsible 
for EEO matters relating not only to the teaching st 'ice but also 


61 - 

to public servants employed in the education department - 25,118 
men and 36,163 women as at March 1985. In July 1984, local 
selection of post-primary school principals ar i deputy principals 
was introduced and the option has since been extended to primary 
schools. In this way, mer t as determined by a local selection 
panel replaces seniority as the criterion for appointment* The 
effect on women is not yet known. However, with all these formal, 
visible structures in place, it would seem that, if the position 
of women can be improved, Victoria has an excellent chance of 
accomplishing it. 

Making the In/isible Visible 

However, past experience teaches ue that removing visible 
barrie'^s does not always result in women occupying positions 
previously unattainable or difficult for them to attain. The 
invisible barriers of attitudes and social expectations must be 
highlignted - made highly visible and highly unacceptable. The 
major invisible barriers to women's progress lie in the often 
unconscious attitudes of men to women and the attitudes of women 
to themselves. 

While the regulations and formal structures of our systems can 
be and should be changed and Victoria has made considerable moves 
in this direction, it is useful to examine the often subliminal 
barriers to change. While a conference such as this should make 
practical recommendations for systemic change, as conference 
participants the underlying causes for ^omen's position can be 
profitably explored in order to provide a theoretical star chart 
to guide a course of action. The Pandora's Box of gender identity 
and social relationships should be opened. 

In focusing on the position of women, we often neglect the 
concept that it is a relative one that is, relative to the 
position of men, and cannot be viewed in isolation from that. 

Currently, gender identity in Australian society takes the 
form of polarisation of possible human potential and 
characteristics. Little boys are steered towards and rewarded for 
accepted ^masculine' behaviour while little girls are encouraged 
to be 'feminine'. The cluster of characteristics acceptable in 
boys and men include independence, stoicism, strength, action, 
initiative, leadership, control, competitiveness and 
aggressiveness. For girls the opposite is usually the case 
though, within limits, the tomboy is acceptable. These statements 
have been around for a long time and the nature/nurture argument 
still rages. But one aspect that is not often highlighted is that 
the attitudes of men to women are linked with their own grander 
identity as masculine' beings, the apparent requirement for an 
other, an opposite which is 'feminine' whose characteristics are 
taboo for them. Thus, not exhibiting 'feminine' characteristics 
is an integral measure of 'masculinity' perhaps even more basic 
than exhibiting 'masculine' characteristics. Maintaining the 
'feminine' is a necessary c^^ndition for the existence of 
'masculinity'. Small boy<? learn to repress and regard as weakness 
in themselves those characteri sties seen as appropriate in the 
female. The attitude of most boys in our schools to girls is 


62 - 

usually quite evident from the earliest grad'»s« Can they like, 
respect or be friends with people who exhibit characteristics they 
have learnt to despise? 

'Strong' characteristics are seen as appropriate for the male 
and those include leadership, control and decision making. Not 
only doas this place these areas firmly in the 'masculine' domain, 
it also results in generalised assumptions about the potential of 
females and the roles that are appropriate for them. By the way - 
the surgeon was the boy's mother. 

The poi n t is that by def ining 'mascul ini ty' not only in terms 
of what it should be but also in terms of what it should not be 
and equating those negative characteristics with the 'feminine', 
we have effectively put women in a double bind. Women are defined 
as the 'opposite' sex whose characteristics fit them for a 
different role from the male. The concept of women as leaders, 
administrators and managers runs contrary to an ideology learnt at 
an early age. It also strikes at the roots of male gender 
identity as it is currently defined. 

Women's attitudes to thems^^^lves have, like men's, been formed 
at an early age. The frequently documented lower self esteem and 
confidence of girls is well established by the end of primary 
school. Studies of classroom dynamics and playground interaction 
in mixed sex situations give us the key to where, as educators, we 
might start raising the status of *.'Oinen and girls generally. 

Schools need to focus not only on girls in their ^equal 
opportunity' programs but equally on boys' concepts of themselves 
and their attitudes to girls. This is the long range, 
evolutionary way to change. 

Invisible barriers to women's progress begin with tne 
attitudes developed in childhood. Schools can ensure that at 
least they do not reinforce the process but their responsibility 
goes much further than this. The aim of schools is to develop the 
potential of their students and this runs directly counter to 
acceptance of unexamined beliefs about the capabilities of any 
group, including females. 

Again, all this has been said before. The suggestions and 
recommendations for c anging schools are known. They've been 
repeated over and over since 1975 ~ teacher awareness, classroom 
dynamics, curriculum content and language, subject choice, c:ireer 
education, physical education and self esteem. And yet, disbelief 
and even hostility still greets the raising of the issues of 
girls' education and women's lack or promotion in education 
syptems. Why? 

Ge*^ Mng our House in Order 

Let's open Pandora's Box a little further and focus or 
relationships. The status of women will not be improved until we 
radically change the relationship between men and women. 


- 63 

In her recent Australia-wide research on Women Teachers and 
Promotion t Dr Shirley Sampson of Monash University identified 
several areas where wo»7\en were still disadvantaged in the 
education system. She found that although men and women were 
equally well qualified at the start of their careers, differences 
began to emerge as they continued their careers. These 
differences were in the areas of further qualifications, nature of 
inservice, experiences gained through task allocation, 
encouragement from superiors and spouses, and family 
responsibilities. Why should this be? 

When young teachers start their careers, they appear to begin 
on an equal basis, bringing to their work their enthusiasm and 
energy. If they marry or share a household, they tend nowadays to 
share domestic responsibilities, although the woman is still 
likely to be seen as basically responsible. If thpy have children 
the female's career pattern will change? in most cases the male's 
will not. If the woman stayn home with the children while her 
partner continues his career to earn their livelihood sne will 
usually take on full responsibility for childcare and domestic 
tasks. He will often undertake further study to improve his 
career while his partner cares for the children and keeps the 
house running. With their children at school she will probably 
resume her career. With both partners once again in the workforce 
a strange thing happens. They do not return to the arrangement of 
shari^^g responsibility tc the degree they did before the birth of 
the children. The pattern is set and domestic and child care 
arrangements firmly remain her responsibility. She now has cwo 
jobs! Those women who do not marry or have children are not in 
quite the same overloaded position but, unlike most men, women are 
not provided with the support nor the domestic services of a wife. 
That women do as well as they have is the surprising thing. 

When a woman undertakes her career and full dojnest^c 
responsibilities several things are happening - some quite obvious 
and some more £?ubtle. The obvious comparison of men and women's 
career possibilities show the inbuilt handicaps. Women in the 
two-job category must split their energy, time and concentration, 
their possibilities for study at night are reduced and they 
already have a surfeit of responsibilities without applying for 
more. They do not go home and relax while someone else prepares 
dinner every night. They do not reach into a wardrobe and expect 
a clean outfit magically to appear. They must not only do these 
things for themselves but for several other people as well. 

On the subtle levea the assumed responsibility of the female 
for childcare and domestic tasks has even more devastating effects 
on her position in the workforce. Firstly, it reaffirms the 
* naturalness ' of sexual divisions of labour - the concept of 
^men's work' and ^women's work' which permeates the entire 
workforce, including the education sector. Secondly, it defines 
appropriate work for women as derivatives of their domestic and 
childcare roles. Thus appropriate careers for women involve small 
children or caring for others or being assistants or secretaries 
to men. 



- 64 - 

In Australian schools the men's work/women's work dichotomy 
can be seen in the allocation of organisational, administrative 
and leadership tasks to men as vsdll as responsibility for teaching 
the older students while women are more frequently given the 
pastoral responsibilities and the younger classes. Experience 
required for promotion usually resides in the first set of tasks. 

There is no intention to apportion blame here - that serves no 
purpose. Nevertheless men need to face the fact squarely that 
they have played a not inconsiderable part in maintaining the 

In the relationship between men and women only one thing at 
the moment is constant - women have the children. Beyond nine 
months gestation and an optional period of lactation everything 
else is negotiable. There is no genet ic imperative involved in 
cooking and cleaning. Like many things contributing to women's 
position in society the issue appears trivial. Do not be 
deceived. It is quite basic. 

While women have re-entered the workforce in ]ara9 numbers and 
contributed financially to families men have ;iot in corresponding 
proportion taken on a fair share of donestic and childcare 
responsibilities. While women are working in two jobs up to and 
more than twice the hours that men do and curtailing thei»" 
energies and time In their profession as a result but are still 
Sf>en as ^naturally' dependent on men, women are frankly exploited 
and their potential wasted. What is needed is a personal 
revolution in our relationships with each other, starting with 
ourselves and our relationship with our own partners if we have 

Women who care about the position of women need to take a firm 
ptand with male partners in insisting on equally shared 
responsibilities couplea v.ith respect and concern for each other's 
^.ai f.fers . 

Men who are concernod have initially the much more aifficult 
Icisks of aji/ing up sevnral privileges and comforts, of working 
icngar hours and rurlailir.g certain freedoms. It will take a 
great deal of f ai r-mi'^idedness for men to change. Jt has been a 
comfortable arrangemenl for them. 

Conference participants, male and female, could undertake to 
begin this ^personal revolution' and change the position of women 
in their perirenal 3ives. 

Conclusio n 

The major purpose in this paper is to draw attention to what 
may be two of the most basic impediments to women's progress: 

the sexual division of labour which takes its cue from 
the family scene and colours the attitudes of both men 
and women to concepts of men's work and women's work; 

ER|c - 65 - 

the current concept of masculinity which requires an 
opposite to give it definition. 

Each of these issues should be tackled at a personal level - 
in our social relationships, in our teaching young people and in 
our own careers - and we should use the understandirg of the 
underlying issues to inform our strategies at system level. 

This is not to deny the importance of systemic and structural 
change which other speakers have discussed. The personal and 
systemic should be simultaneous, Ths* current changes in the 
Victorian Education Department which I have outlined provide 
excellent examples of possible structural strategies. In order to 
aevelop the ideas, contribute to change and maintain the impetus 
of this conference, participants in state groups should maintain 
contact with each other within states and among states. 

Remember that the riddle at the beginning of this paper is 
still incomprehensible to many people - try it on a few 
colleagues. The sexual division of labour - men's work/women's 
work - is alive and well. That is the basic concept which should 
be changed. Women can and should be principals and major 

decision makers ,,, and senior administrators ,,, and Directors- 
General, And it is time they were! 


Marilyn Jatnieson and Barry Sheehan 

Bac kground 

Many of the problems in education in Victoria in the 1980s have 
clear roots in a forty-year history of crisis management. The 
demographic explosion together with tho explosion of expectations in 
the wake of the Second World War took everyone by surprise and led to 
enormous problems in the education sector. The rapid increase in the 
birth rate after 1945 and the admittance of five year olds to 
Victcrian primary schools from 1946, together with the impact of 
Australia's immigration policies in the 1950s, compounded the legacy 
of severe economies in the 1930s and wartime labour shortages. 

Despite the building of an average of 15 new primary schools each 
year and the addition of over 17000 new classrooms beyond that, 
between 1950 and 1970, classrooms were greatly overcrowded until well 
into the 1960s. Enrolments more than doubled from 186,000 in 1950 to 
375,000 in 1972. (Blake, 1973:392) Between 1945 and 1960 it was 
difficult to recruit the number of teachers needed. Had it not bt?en 
for the employment of temporary teachers hundreds of primary "choolg 
would have closed. During the early 1950s the situation was even 
worse in secondary schools. 

The intensification of recruitment campaigns led the award of 
bursaries, scholarships and studentships to thousands of senior school 
students, the employment of people with hardly any academic 
qualifications, the mounting of crash prog*"ams of teaching training, 
and the recruitment of teachers from ovcreaas. Nevertheless, c /en in 
the early 19609, there were still bome primary classic of o\«?r 6v 
pupils (ABS 1984, 538) although the g&neral staffing si^uat ion had 
improvec' to the point that some prima^-y teachers could be transferred 
for duty in post-primary schools whi^h were by chen taking the bn.r.t 
of the bulge. 

The source- of recruits for staffing thp schools can be viev/ed in 
the perspective of two interesting dimensions - gender and 
socioeconomic status* 

As 57 per cent of qualifi3d teaching service personnel, women 
predominated only slightly over ^.en in the teachiiig service the 
Victorian Education Department in 198'» (Schwarz 1984, 13). Primary 
school teaching, on the other hand, ."s a traditionally female 
occupation. At the older primary teachers ' col leges (Melbourne, 
Ballarat, Bendigo and Geelong) enrolments had always been 
predominantly female and while th'^ proportion of male exit students 
increased slightly during the boom, when new primary colleges were 
opened at Toorak (1951), Burwood (1954} and Coburg (1959). women 
continued to make up 72 per cent of the primary teaching force which 
stood at almost 25000 in 1984 (Schwarz: 1984), Of ths C52 terrporary 
teachers in Victorian primary schools in the i,rme year, 88 per cent 
were women. A similar profile is evident in the United Kingdom, fanada 
and the United States of America. 


67 - 


Although it is cleor that primary school teaching remains a 
feminised occupation it is not so clear whether primary teaching is or 
really ever has been a route for social mobility. While there is some 
evidence that females from lower socioeconomic backgrounds attend 
universities and become secondary teachers, thus increasing both their 
economic and occupational status, the evidence in relation to primary 
teachers is extremely tenuous. 

It appears, more from the general literature than any reliable or 
quantified data, that primary teaching has always provided an 
occupational niche for girls, in particular from middle socioeconomic 
levels. It was never as 'profitable' to be a primary college student 
(as against a secondary studentship holder). While it is likely that 
the proportion of the intake from lower socioeconomic groups increased 
during the late 1940s and into the 1950s simply because of the overall 
competition for labour during that period, and would always be likely 
to do so during phases or high demand for teachers, that does not 
appear to be a constant pattern. Despite the relatively low 
occupational status of primary teaching it has traditionally been an 
'acceptable' occupation for women. Its status among feminised 
occupations has been relatively much higher than among occupations 
generally and nossibly because of its association with traoitiona] 
concepts of maternal responsibility for young children. 

During the current period of low demand for primary teachers, with 
continuing high enrolment in courses preparing them the relative 
proportion of enrolments by gender does not appear to have changed 
significantly but there does appear to be some evidence that - at 
leadt in metropolitan colleges - the social profile of the student 
intake has shifted to favour those with lower socioeconomic status. 
The theory that primary teaching is a fail-safe route for the upwardly 
mobile therefore appears to be highly questionable. Even the 
vicarious mobility embedded in the 'catch a husband' motive cynically 
attributed to a certain proportion of female college students in the 
boom periods cannot stand up against the evidence that potential 
husbands were a bit thin on the ground in colleges with up to 87 per 
cent female enrolment! 

Established women primary teachers in the Victorian Education 
Department have a tough row to hoe. The fol lowing much-r ^produced 
table indicates the status and classification of men and women primary 
teachers in March 1984. 


Tl^e structure shown in Table 1 represents a transition period 
between an old and a new career structure, hence the number of people 
shown as interim senior teachers, interim special and interim 
principals. These teachers were given from March 1982 to December 
19.'^-4 to apply for positions in the principal class and P-^.nd 4 and 
sufficient positionc were created for them to do so. (Memorandum to 
Principals and Head Teachers of Primary Schools. 'New Primary Career, 
Structure' from H.A. Nixon, Acting Director of Primary Education, 
30 Mar::h 1982). Relative seniority within those classes was to be 
restored to 'chose who obtained a position before 31 December 1984 but 
not after that date. Onp hundred and fifty-sever per cent of teachers 
had not (March 1984) adjusted their positions; 43 Per cent- ^.rp wo^^ei^ 
and 57 per cent men. The bulk of these numbers consists of men in the 
interim senior teacher class. 


- 68 - 





Women % 

Women as 
of Total 

in Category 

Principal Grade A 
Principal Grade B 
Principal Grade 1 
(Interim Senior 
Teacher ) 





Band 4 

(Interim Principal) 
(Interim Special) 
(Interim Senior) 
Band 4 








Band 3 

(Interim Senior 
Teacher ) 
(Head Teacher) 
Band 3 









RanH 9 ^UooH 
nanci i» vneaa 

Teacher ) 

Band 2 





Band 1 (Head 

Tq o o f* 1 

Band 1 

1 1 7 


1 an 
1 iv 



Z'i 1 


luinLi* Lia^jSiriea 





TemDorarv Toanhoro 




1 ODZ 



1 7851 



Source : Pol i cy and 
Department of Victoria, 

Planning Unit (1984) Women in the 
Education Department of Victoria, 


While Table 1 provides a recent picture of the distribution of men 
and women by levels, activities relating to the position of women 
within the primary division (as it once was) have been marked by three 
fairly discrete periods since the early 1960s. 

1960-72 were years nominated by the move towards equal pay and the 
Teachers' Tribunal debac^ over the establishment of a Common Roll, 
that is, the abolition of two separate rolls for men and women '-»nd the 


- 69 - 

preparation of a joint roll which would classify male and female 
teachers in a combined rank order of seniority. 

1972-75 was ostensibly a period of poa*tive discr irination for 
women when a Teachers' Tribunal regulation ;as introducx'^d to ensure 
that at least one of the three top positions in any Class A school had 
to be filled by a woman. It might have been reasonable to expect that 
this would have resulted in a significant number of women enlerint* 
senior administration positions, and that the model of a woman as a 
primary principal would have become well established in the primary 
school community. 

The final period, 1976-1985, covers the period of the introduction 
of the Equal Opportunity Act in Victoria, and the removal of sex 
tagging tor the top three positions within Special Class schools. 
1982 was a year in which great internal changes occured in the 
education department, and it was known that those who did not apply 
for promotion in 1982 would be severely limited in the next few years. 
The termination of the three divisions on 1 April 1983 meant that 
senior administration positions would be open to a wider number of 

In September 1984 a letter sent by the Director of Personnel to 
all Regional Directors suggested that: ^management id€-ntify and 
encourage possible women applicants for future administrative 
vacancies in their biaiiches'. 

It would be generous to suggest that it may have been the 
^maternal responsibility for young children' argument, rather than no 
argument at all, which led to determination to keep women in the 
classroom and have men do the administering of the primary school (not 
to mention the primary division and the educa ion department itself). 
In any event, prior to 1972 the administrative and formal leadership 
of Victorian primary schools rested exclusively in the hands of male 
head teachers. Regardless of qualif icf^tions and teaching experience 
women were not eligible for appointment to the principalship, but were 
confined to the dizzy promotional level of infant mistress and would 
^normally be regarded as the deputy principal' who would understudy 
Miim' while having major responsibility for the ^administration of the 
organisation and instructional program within the infant department' 
(Gazette 1972). 

State governments, both Labor and Liberal, have actively worked 
towards changing regulations and the implementation of existing 
regulations to allow the appointment of women to principal positions. 
A change in the regulations in 1972 enabled women to apply for senior 
jobs; but contrary to expectations, as Veronica Schwarz points out, in 
1984 *the dis^ribution of male and female teachers (was ) no better 
than in 1 925 when artificial ratios wer created to limit the number 
of women in senior positions' (Schwarz 1984). Shirley Sampson notes: 

that this paradox has occured at a timr when most legal barriers 
to womer/s advancement in the Educalion Department have bren 
removed - the marriage bar to pe. manency for women; separate rolls 
for males and females; entire loss of seniority after breaks in 

service for chi Idbearing; r^les-only remote allowances and other 
perks - and all the positions are technically open to either sex. 

(Sampson, 1982) 

v/hile the Labor Party piedges itself, inter alia, to examine the 
^more subtle factors' which are ^still at work keeping women from 
decision-making positions in schools', women appear to be becoming 
increasingly confined to classroom teaching and low level 
administration activities, and students continue to be conditioned by 
an authority structure which is dominated by men. 

There appears to be awareness among researchers and sympathetic 
policy irakers that despite legislative changes, government policy 
commitment and open gender access to principal positions, women are 
still not fi? ing those positions in a.iything like the proportion cf 
their representation in the profession. But a compJex social system 
cannot b'3 chan^eed merely by introducing stimuli at particular points. 
It is like a tangled web of rubber bands. Relationships within it are 
intricate, elastic and capable of accn Tiodating all sorts of 
pressures, yet retain their shape under ti>e .nsion of many forces and 
counter forces and, of course, are very taut much cf the time. It will 
be increasingly important and difficult, therefore, to continue to 
convince governments, educators, administrators and planners that 
women are still a disadvantaged group, that the removal of the most 
obvious legal impediments tor women has not and will not remove 
structural discrimination and the effects of social conditioning which 
are the outcomes of a society in which men have been the ones who have 
framed laws, policies and programs; where men determine what is 
important and what ir not; and in which men allocate resources. The 
neglect of pre-school child care and education in our society iz a 
gross example of this. 

FitzGerald points out: 

'Forming' the f at ire has two equally important aspects: the 
bringing i n o operation of the things needed tc reduce the 
'pqudiity gap' betwepn the sexes, and the prevention of retrogradp 
frictorB operating to wid^n thp existing gap. 

(Fi tzGerald 1981 ) 

RHffrf> t hp nbvjnun imb<^i3nrec pxplored abr^ve can be addressed by 
>^ t r a » p 1 ^, r rhan^ i* is nf^f-en^i^r y to seek explanations for thf^m. 

• ' ^ f •* Y I r f ' W' , ' 1 ' • J i . 1 ' . / J v' <• 

* * ' ♦ I ' t * * f i 1 ' ' . »• I ^ J r' ' < 1 f ly . < 

♦ ► . ' ' ♦ , , ' t . ' ' , ' I J ' 1 » » • i • , ♦ 

• i y ' * J • ; J t ,''<<-» , 

Weber, Feldman, and Poling (1981) in turn classify the theories under 
the headings of Personal and Social roles, Personal and Family 
Constraints, and Discrimination Patterns* 

While there are many variants the models can be classified into 
three main types. The first stresses factors inherent to the 
individual and assumes that these factors can be generalised to 
explain why women do not pursue careers in educational administration. 
The second emphasises a role model for women, particularly within the 
profession of education, which shapes the expectation of women 
entering the field, leading them to focus on classroom teaching rather 
than on administration tasks* The final model highlights the impact 
that the organisation has on constraining the advancement of women 
from lower authority and low status positions through to the 
decision-making levels. While each model places an emphasis on one of 
the components it is necessary to reiterate that they all recognise 
t^e necessity to look at the interaction of other aspects. There is 
no one factor or group of factors which can be seen as the explanation 
for the continuing unequal distribution of senior administrative 
positions between men and women* 

The Woman^s Place Model 

Kanter ( 1975-76) attributes the s<>x typing of occupations and 
professions to the fact that mar.y occupations are nearly exclusively 
filled by members of one sex anu therefore come to have a gender label 
assigned to them* The so-called ^helping professions' - education, 
social work and nursing - are grouped as areas where the number of 
females employed wo>'.ld be greater than the number of males* Within 
the^e professions there is a further distinction between male and 
femals employment. 

In an extension of Kanter's point, it is important to note that 
there is a vital connection between the social *-xlocation of domestic 
roles to women and the sex differentials which operate in the 
workplace because the creation and perpetuation of separate labour 
markets has come out through the interaction of market forces, with 
attitudes prescribing ^proper' roles for men and women* The profile 
of the workforce smply illustrates this connection* Wherever one 
looks, not only in education, but in the professions, government, 
business and industry as well, the proportion of women rises as one 
moves down to the base end of the statistical measures* They are 
invariably under-represented at the executive and managerial levels. 
Thuj? , Frasher and Frasher ( 1979) suggest that women who teach are 
engagi^e in socially designated bahaviours. Male teachers by a 
certain age are more likely to be in socially expected management 

Thp Woman's Place model argues that wome'^ also accept the 
<1ifff>r*-ricp in the roles because of the influence of socialisation 
profpfi';r'p. Few women have been exposed to role models of women in 
'UT. lor % \ si r eit we pofiitions in education. Estler (197S) notes 

Mwit thi.ri* )n rirt dbfj^MK^e of women from the faculty of educational 
I'lnir ^tr-j'i r. foarn^M. i o \ hf^ iJn i t pd Spates Universities and Briggs 
i'''^ (' • I'yM/*, h.iv^' ur,fo6 rimiiariy for students in the Australian 

The small number of women in the role of primary principals in 
the United States of America (20 per cent in 1973) and Western 
Australia (55 per cent in 1980) and Victoria (21 per -ent in 1982), 
for example, may lend support to this argument. On the other hand 
there have been two principals of co-educatinal teachers' training 
colleges in Victoria - Ida Lowndes (Coburg Teachers' College from 1959 
to 1975) and Alice Hoy (Principal of the Secondary Teachers' College 
from 1950 to 1957) so that there would have been a number of men and 
women who had been exposed to a woman in a senior administration role 
even at a time when women were denied direct access to principal 
positions of primary schools. Some women teachers, educated in 
non-government schools, would also have experienced the situation of 
seeing women as administrators. Nevertheless the total number of 
women acting as models in dominance positions has always been 
relatively small and is not likely to have been influential. 

A key argument advanced by those who employ the Woman's Place 
Model is ♦■he supposed link between the declining number of women in 
senior administrative positions and the level of aspiration of women 
teachers, and the view that men tend to identify long- term career 
goals in education earlier in their employment than women. The stock 
answer to such an assertion is to ask whether the differential 
aspirations of men and women are n effect of limited opportunity or 
born of deliberate choice. The two are , of course , not separable: 
choice is determined in relation to perceived opportunity. Further* 
however, it is a glaring nonsense to argue that most women lack Veal 
ambition'. Very few men have a driving ambition sustained for years 
and decades which enables them to reach the top in their chosen 
fields. If around 10 per cent of males are high achievers, 90 per 
cent are not. A high proportion of the men who 'make it' have the 
support of what Kanter described as the 'wcatn's auxilliary', whereas 
those few women who do attain senior positions do not appear to have 
the same level of support, (Gross and Trask 1976). Given that 
'aspiration' is as conditioned as ^expectation', it is difficult to 
design any valid and reliable measure of what women could or would 
aspire to if they dared to dream! In this context it is also 
difficult to ease ot t in any macro sense to what extent the 
aspirations of women ore in fact set by the particular conflict 
between 'career' and 'family' and whether or not women accept that 
their public and private domains are incompatible, the implication 
being that the two choices are mutually exclusive, "^he socialisation 
of girls is still heavily influenced by this dichotomy of choice and 
may be argued to influence their level of aspiration. 

The Woman's Place Model is often associated with trait theories 
emerging from the Jungian animus/c>nima dichotomy. While the construct 
validity of such theories is questionable, there has Leen much 
discussion, of course, about the need to balance the so--called Alpha, 
or masculine leadership style with the Beta, a more feminine 
leadership style. The Alpha male power style is characterised as 
being more direct, aggressive and competitive, and based on a clear 
win or lose philosophy, whereas the Beta style, generally perceived as 
feminine, is based on synthesising, intuitive, qualitative thinking, 
more holistic than the Alpha s*tyle, and more concerned with the growth 
and quality of life. 



It is sometimes argued that the Beta style is better able to deal 
with change, while the Alpha style focuses on the short range, 
perceiving change as chaotic or disruptive and relying on order to 
control it. It is not certain whether the argument extends to saying 
that men are structural functionalists while women are critical social 
theorists! As far as is known no studies have indicated that these 
behavioural terdencies are innate to one sex or another but it is 
clear that sex role expectations tend to polarise the behaviours. 

In examining why some women in leadership appear to function just 
as ruthlessly as some men and why many younger women moving up in 
traditionally male dominated fields test higher than males in the 
dominant Alpha mode it has been hypothesised that women believe they 
have to assume male-associated attributes to ensure success. The 
syllogistic relationship is clear: success requires achievement 
oriented behaviour? achievement behaviour requires competitive 
behaviour. Competitive behaviour is a sublimated form of aggressive 
behaviour. Aggressive behaviour is regarded as unfeminine. Therefore 
success is regarded as unfeminine. Deveson reports Schwartz (a leader 
in Alpha-Beta research) as saying that this Mf you can't beat 'em, 
Join 'em' syndrome would be dangerous to society: 

The current paralysis is in part a function of the dominance of 
the masculine style of leadership. If it continues to be the sole 
model of leadership available, it is likely to lead us 
increasingly in the direction of an authoritarian and homogeneous 
society. Balancing Alpha and Beta leadership, the male with the 
female in both men and women, is necessary to break the deadlock 
and to preserve a free and diverse society. 

Most commentators who argue thus would hasten to acknowledge thp 
feminist axiom, Simone de Beauvoir's principle that the notion of 
^'i-n'.inini ty' itself is a fiction. There is no feminine nature, only a 
femininp situation which determines the character of its subjects. 
Irrespective of the na t u r e /n u r t ur e argument, the reality that, 
'femininity' is a concept assented to by society, has to be 
confronted, although the term ^ f eminisat ion' is used to apply to a 
focus on a social change rather than personal characteristics. 

Also associated with the Woman's Place Model are the fear of 
failure a'^4d fear of success theories. The fear of failure theory is 
commonplace. Horner (1968) postulates, however, that women avoid 
promotional moves because of their fear of success - a challenge to 
their own sexual identity in a field where they ar<= competing with 
men. The argument is that wom^n internalise the predominant social 
belief in respect to what is appropriate achievement for W0ii.en in the 
workforce. In this way wotpen themselves help to maintain the 
separation of roles, heedless to say, institutions also reinforce and 
perpetuate these differences. 

The varieties of th*2 Woman's Place Model tend to embody deficit 
assumptions: women are not equal to men because women are ^deficient' 
in certain abilities and skill possessed and valued by men. It is not 
particularly relevant in this argument whether the cause of the 
inequality is perceived to lie in the person or in her experience or 
both, for both represent a devaluing of women -nd ^assume that 

(Deveson 1982,5) 

dominant male mainstream culture is intrinsically more valuable than 
any other' (Gray 1984,16), Blaming the 'victim' detracts from the 
problems inherent in the nature of the organisation and may even have 
the effect of reducing the promotional mobility of certain groups to 
senior positions. 

T he Discr imi nation Mode l 

It is the means by which the reinforcement and perpetuation of the 
separation of roles occur that constitute Estler's discrimination 
model. The structure of an organisation determines the constraints 
placed upon the promotional opportunities and determines who decides 
on the allocation of rewards. 

A further explanation often advanced is that there is de facto 
positive discrimination in favour of the appointment of men in 
administrative positions. The status of women in sorial work, for 
example, demonstrates that whil^» women account for two-thirds of the 
workforce ♦'here is a disproportionate number of men in administration 
and control-oriented jobs and a disproprotionate number of women in 
direct practice and care-oriented jobs. The jobs ascribed status as 
'men's work', that is, policy and administration, are invariably paid 
more than those designated as 'women's work'. The parallel with 
primary teaching isi obvious. The irony of the situation in social 
work, which also has some relevance to primary and pre~school 
ed' ation, is that meii were encouraged to enter the profession in the 
hope that the image and status of the profession would be upgraded by 
removing the notion that social work is a 'woman's profession'. 

It is apparent that both active and passive forms of structural 
discrimination operate against women to prevent them from gaining 
access to principal positions, largely because those who have been 
/-^sponsible for determining the eligibility of applicants for 
promotional positions are overwhelmingly men. There was not &7en one 
female district inspector in Victoria until 1976. It is also notable 
that f rom 1972 to 1975 attempts to introduce positive discrimination 
for women teachers was thwarted by moves initiated through the Primary 
Men's Branch of the Victorian Teachprs' Union. 

The discrimination model assumes that women cannot advance even if 
they want to and even if they have the qualifications and experience 
required to fill a position. While it is illegal in Australia to 
formally state barriers which are blatantly discriminatory in gender 
terms, it is apparent that the jobs held by most women workers i- 
comparison wit) those of their male counterparts tend to hcve shorter 
chains of opportunity associated with them and to contain fewer 
achievement opportunities. Males, for the most part, still reserve 
the ability to distribute rewards. Those who associate wi^h other 
power holders are in a stronger position to take advantage of 
favourable mobility prospects. 

It is important to know (and for the information to be made 
public) whether there was an increase in the number of applications 
from women for administrative positions once the obvious 
discriminatory barriers v.ere removed; and what was the composition of 
promotion committees in the Victorian Education Department., (Both 
authors think they have noted, how^^ver, a clear tendency on the p.^rt 


~ 75 

of women on selection and promotion committees to be much tougher on 
their sisters than the males on the committees.) 

The Meritocracy Model 

The Meritocracy Model advanced by Estler is the obverse of the 
Discrimination Model and is predicated upon the assumption that the 
most competent people are promoted according to their ability. It 
would follow from this that males have filled the bulk of principal 
positions because they were more competent than women teachers 
(competence in the traditional education department sense beting 
defined in weberian terms relating to seniority, qualifications and 
performance, generally in that order). Where the most competent 
people are promoted or appointed on ability alone and there are no 
systematic barriers constraining members of any group from achieving a 
given goal, a truer meritocratic mode] exists. 

It is clear that if the meritocratic modsl puts a high premium on 
performance, and performance in the classroom is the first hurdle for 
getting out of it, v;omen should be much more heavily represented in 
administrative positions. According to Gross and Trask (1976) women 
principals were generally higher achievers than their male 
counterparts at secondary school and college. It is an arguable 
hypothesis that the average female student destined for the teaching 
profession is more able than the average male teacher student. Lat^r , 
however, women probably tena to take more education and curriculucn 
subjects rather than administration oriented courses. 

The model also adopts a somewhat simplistic view of the sociology 
of organisations, the study of whic!* seems to have largely overlooked 
the position of women in organisational structures. When an 
organisation is viewed as a large complex social unit in which many 
groups interact, gender can be seen rs an important variable affecting 
the lives of groups. The gender composition of a group appears to 
have impact on behaviour around issues of power and leadership, 
aspirations, peer relations and the relative involvement or isolation 
of group members. 

On the other hand the meritocratic model is non--sexist, 
incorporating respect for values and aspirations while seeking to 
eliminate sex bias. It does Hi* tie, however, to suggest remedies for 
a situation where groups are suffering di sadvan tage ♦ Cende: -f ree 
concepts continue to advantage the beneficiaries of the status quo. 
Similarly, the suggestion (emanating from the Woman's Place Model in 
our classification) that women could he freed from the restriction of 
rigid gender-role stereotypes by accepting the androgynous view and 
taking on Alpi^^ characteristics (and that men should adopt Beta 
characteristics), while gender inclusive insists that jmen become 
more like men and continues to represent devaluation of whatever it is 
that is different about won.en, irrespective of its basis, biological, 
psychological or sociological. 


More affirmative or fem^riist models not sufficiently accounted for 
in Estler's examination recognisp that the question of change is 


- 76 - 

political. As Spender (1983) argues, it is about power ^ who is to be 
valued, who decides - and the issue of power must be confronted. In 
this context, however, it is argued that liberation may be more 
significant than equality per se , and liberation requires a 
rejuvenation of the concept of power. Power is a fundamental category 
of all human experience but it is badly misunderstood and often taken 
to be an immoral chacteristic belonging to those who oppose or ignore 
the various forms of Judaeo-Christian ethics. It has become something 
of a bad word in western culture. Yet power is part of everyone's 
daily life, and we need to learn how to talk about power and to 
participate effectively in the various -ower relations in which we 
inevitably find ourselves (as parents, teachers, lovers, spouses, 
employees, employers, citizens, voters, group members and neighbours). 

In other words, accessibility to our own aspirational construct is 
a freedom and much of the argument embedded in all of the modf^ls 
implicitly highlights the relationship between power and freedom. The 
attitudes which consign to power a negative meaning have undermined 
the social awareness and occupational responsibility of men and women 
alike. A clearer understanding of what power means in ordinary life, 
how it is related to acting freely and what it can contribute to a 
renovated ethics of organisational behaviour is critical to the 
success of a sustained program to improve the lot of women in 
education department schools. Women in particular must seek power 
over power, to influence decisions about who decides. 

Power over power implies the possibility of changing what is 
considered to be important. It is argued that the so-called Beta or 
feminine characteristics - th^ different ways in which women as a 
result of experiental factors see and deal with the world ^nd 
relationships - are of enormous value in all spheres of endeavour and 
particularly education. In any educational organisation, mutual 
understanding and agreement as to what the organisation's goals ars 
and the means by which th.^y are to be attained is at the core of 
administration and teaching. 

The people who are b'^st qualified to teach are those with the 
appropriate attitudes and skills for the task. There seems to be 
ready acceptance of tne success of women in this task. Regrettably, 
however, thore is not a career structure at the classroom level where 
outstanding t-eachers can be promoted to very senior levels in t»^rms of 
both prestige and material reward. Rather, at this point 'the system' 
loses sight of its own purpose and things arr organised in such a way 
that the further away from the classroom one gets, the more prestigp 
and money one is likely to be accorded. 

'Administration' in this absurd system is raised to a level of 
quasi-religious significance. There can be little question, however, 
that the best managers at any level are those with the most stake in 
the outcome. It is also axiomatic that those usually recognised as 
good managers share at least one common attribute: that is, a tendency 
to the view that it is not necessarily their j^b to make sound 
decisioiis but to see that sound decisions are made. The concepts of 
particip^' .o.. which are now prevalent in educational institutions are 
designed in an attempt to ensuie that conditions of work are created 
where people understand the objectives, have a stake in the outcome 

77 - 

and where their ideas make a real contribution the results 

This concept of participation is based on the notion that wnen 
people can think, when they have influence on outcomes, they 
support rather than comply or resist... The probability is 
♦ncreased that solutions achieved will De sound and fundamental, 
not needing constant review and revisior People are able to give 
the best of themselves, rather seeking the best for 
themselves, as is often time when one's contributions are not 

The 9.9 (most desirablp and effective) managerial style identified 
by Blake and Mouton is, notabJy, that which is dependent upon those 
characteristics associated with the Beta or feminine type. The 
Weberian bureaucracy is in many cases, whether at the s'^hool or 
departmental level, dying on its feet. The slowness of schools and 
education systems to respond to the social and economic needs of tht 
young can be laid at the same feet, that is, the bureaucracy with a 
heavy stake in the false security of the status quo which has 
provided rewards for the competitive, the tough-minded and the 

Thus, in terms of strategies a two-pronged argument emerges, 
firstly, it has been suggested that administration is an occupation 
which is peripheral to ♦'he fundamental purpose of education and should 
be forced back into that position in decades to come. In other words 
administration should be organisationally redefined to redress the 
situation in which its social meaning and expansion have been in the 
interests of increasing the situational power of men and have 
implicitly denigrated the importance teaching as a career. 

Such an approach must be integrated with a rejuvenated concept of 
power and leadership resting heavily on ethics of personal and 
professional behaviour. Leadership must come from the central 
educational domain rather than the administrative periphery. 

To achieve such changes will require considerable commitment and 
revolutionary discipline but if the goal remains clear and cogent 
while the old guard is gradually replaced the new order which is 
required for elementary justice will begin to emerge. 

In promoting such changes, however, there now appears to be the 
danger of a potentially destructive element in the increasing 
popularity of androgyny as an 'answer' to the problems of the 
subjugation of women. While the concept is essentially neutral and 
has clear advantages in freeing people from traditional and rigid 
sex-role stereotypes it req»jires that women should be more like men. 
There is a strong case that men should be more like women and that 
society should concentrate on valuing the things women do and are. 

Anne Deveson has stated that: 

men have disowned, and indeed are fearful of those qualities whic.i 
they have relegated to women, the ability to be open and shut 

(Blake and Mouton 19f^,144) 

abouf emotions and feelings, the willingness to relate... Women 
have projected on the men responsiDiMties for decision-^making, 
for being assertive, for taking action where action is required... 
It is hard for men to dare to be vulnerable. 

(Deveson 1982,6) 

We would also have to admit to having little concern about jibes 
directed at 'token' women. Many women have and will start off in some 
areas as token representatives but at leact get the opportunity to 
engage in the learning experience and many do becoir.e extremely 
effective despite the isolation they oft.en feel. It is important 
whether a woman starts off as a token or not, for her to acknowledge 
when she is in a status position that it is not always easy to think 
like a woman in a man's world. She should not shed the female 
experience or discount hereself because her integrity resides in her 
being a woman, not an eresatz man, and that is important at times of 
inevitable confrontation. 

Women, by virtue of their numbers and the removal of form.:^l 
barriers to advancement do have the incipient power to change the face 
of the career structure in primary education. They must not be 
satisifed to have merely the rights associated with equal opportunity, 
but must claim and implement them. 


Australian Bureau of Statistics, (1984) Victorian Year Book I9f\4. 
Australian Bureau of Statistics, Canberra. 

Hlake . L. ed. ( 1 97 3 ) Vision and Real isation , Vol 1. Education 
Department of Victoria, Melbourne. 

Blake, R and Mouton, J. (1964) The Managerial Grid. Scientific 
Methods Inc. Austin, Texas. 

Briggs. D.K. and OBrien, P. Women as candidates for educotional 
administration, in R. Burns and B. Sheehan (eds.). (1984) Women 
and Education, ANZCIES, Bundoora, 251-59. 

Deveson, A. ( 1 982) Woman power - or how to avoid extinction. The 
Caroline Chisholm Lecture, La Trobe University. 

Education Department of Victoria Education Gazette and Teachers' 
Aid. 29 January 1972. 

Estler, S. 0975) Women in Education, Signs: Journal of Women In 
CuliMte and t:ociety 1(2) 363-86. 

FitzGerald, 0. (1981) The Seven Stages of Women: Approaching the 
End. The Caroline Chisholw Lecture, La Trobe Univ^-rsity. 

Frasher, J.M. and Frasher, R.S. (1979) Educational administration: a 
feminine profession. Educat ' on-j 1 Adwinistrat ion Quarterb/f 
15(2) i-n. 


- 79 - 

Gray, A. Concepts of disadvantage and models of remediation, in 
Burns and Sheehan, eds, ( 1984) Women and Education ANZCIES, 
Bundoora . 

Gross, N. and Trask, A-E- ( 1976) The Sex Factor and the nanagement 
of Schools. Wiley, New York, 

Horner, M.S. ( 1960) Sex differences in achir^vement motivation and 
performance in competitive and non-competitive situations, Ph, D, 
Dissertation (unpub.). University of Michigan. 

Kanter, R.M. ( 1975-76) The impact of hierarchical structu.^es on Lhe 
work behaviour of women and men. Social Problems 23(1), ^15-30. 

Sampson, S. (July 1982) Address to Women in Education conference, 
(duplicated) Monash University, 

Schwarz, V. (March 1984 ) Women in the Education Department of 
Victoria, Report prepared bv the Policy and Planning Unit, 
Education Department of Victoria, 

Spenaer, D. (1983) Bluestocking 45, December. 

Trotman, J. ( 1980) Women work and research: the case of education 
systems, forking Papers: Second Women & Labour Conference, 2. 
La Trobe University, 

Weber, M.B», Feldman, J.R. and Poling, E.G. (1981) Why women are 
under-represented in educational administration. Educational 
Leadership Journal of the Assoc i ation for Supervision and 
Curriculum Development , January, 320-322. 


- 00 - 


Ann Scott and Eddie Clarke 


The argument put forward in this paper is that despite current 
high unemployment levels, if improved career paths are not offered to 
women within education, an overall decline in the quality ot the 
teaching service is likely to take place. 

Queensland is used as the case study upon which the argument is 
based, though there is little reason to believe that the Queensland 
experience is markedly different from that ef other states. 

The paper will draw on three main sources. Firot, a monograph 
written by co-author, Mr Eddie Clarxe, historian with Ihe Queensland 
Education Department, entitled Female Teachers in Queensland State 
Schools 1860 - 1983: A History. An overview of this ; aper will draw 
attention to some long-term trends in the ^mploymer ' of women teachers 
and their role in educational management In Queensland. 

Second, a paper ^Contradicti ons, Ironies, and Profpjgpg 
Unfulfilled* A Contemporary Account of the Status of Teaching^ by Gary 
Sykes, published in Phi Delta Kappani which craws attention to some 
disturbing trends affecting the teaching profespion in the United 
States • 

Last, a hypothesis suggested bv the Sykes paper, examining 
statistics contained in the Queensland Tertiary AdmissionE Centre's 
annual reports from the l^ce 1970's, will be tested. 

Women and the Teaching Profession in Queensland (based on Clarke) 

The employment of women in the Queensland education 6/stem has 
bee \ the subject of trends and influences which will be familiir to 
those concerned with patterns of employment of women. From 
constitutional separation from New South Wales in 186^. until 1875 the 
recruitment of women was relatively high because it was difficult to 
attract males into teaching. From about 1876 to 1880 more males were 
available so the recruitment of womwn dropped. From 1881 to about 
1890 the Colony underwent rapid expansion and the range of openings 
for males resulted in the education system again depending heavily on 
the recruitment of females. There was a period of general stagnation 
during the Depression from 1891 to about 1894. Although this led to 
an increase in the recruitment of males, the education system itself 
was expanding so rapidl/ that female recruitment did not suffer. This 
was followed by a period of recovery, then growth until the outbreak 
of the First World War, 

The First World War saw an increase in the role of women within 
the education department, including an increase in the number of 
female classified teachers. A period of expansion followed, until the 
Great De^^ression in the 1930s, when there was again a decline in the 
number of women teachers employed. 


81 - 


The Second World War served to break the pattern established 
during the Depression and 1940 marked the re-employment of married 
women on a temporary basis reversing a regulation made in 1902 
requi; ing women to resign when they married (which had consolidated an 
existing social practice). This reversal culminated in a provision 
for the permanent employment of married women in 1969, 

Teaching was an attractive occupation for women during the 
nineteenth century. 

While some encouragement was given to women to occupy professional 
positions, teaching was the onlv profession generally available to 
women. They were just beginning to enter medicine in the 1890's, 
which at the time was nrt regarded as a respectable profession for 
women. Other professions continued to exclude women, and the 
public service remained closed to females until 1902 when women 
were permitted to enter the lowest echelon. 

Consequently, woiking class and middle class females with 
intellectual ability were interested in the teaching profession. 
It provided, in the patriarchal society of the time, a ♦ospected, 
if not prestigious, position in society before marriage and a 
permanent occupation for those who chose not to marry or who had 
become the sole bread-winners of a family. 

(Clarke 1985) 

However, the employment and promotion practices which existed in 
th^ nineteenth century were not particularly favourable to women. The 
Queensland education syster. at this time depended on three levels of 
teacher: the provisional (or unclassified) teacher, the pupil-teacher, 
and the certified teacher. 

Provisional Teachers 

Provisional schools were first established in 1869 to cater for an 
average attendance of between 12 and 20 students. These schools 
usually operated until a state school was establisheo. The system of 
staffing provisional rchools operated against the interests of women. 
Provisional school teachers had little or no educational 
qualification, were unclassified, and therefore not on the promotion 
ladder. District inspectors reported that th^ise women were superior 
to the men. One asserted that female teachers were better adapted to 
the work of small provisional schools laan males, and the department 
intended to replace tho men with women as opportunities arose. 

However, when the enrolment of a provisional school rose above an 
average attendance of 30, the (female) provisional schoo3 teacher was 
replaced by a married male classified teacher (who was provided with 
an official residence). The majority of the women so displaced were 
offered the opportunity of employment in a small community elsewhere. 

The department became heavily dependent on provisional school 
teachers. Between 1892 and 1902 the percentage of provisional 
teachers ranged from ?2 to 26 percent of all teachers in the 
Department. Initially they ti:^d mainly been men, but the perce^ntage of 
women quickly rose (see Table i). 


- 82 - 

In 1909, changes in educational regulations reduced the number of 
provisional schools, but after this there was little change in the 
number of provisional schools (about 60) until the 1960s when they 
were phased out. Most of the former provisional schools became small, 
one-teacher state schools. Many remained under the control of 
unclassified teachers, most of whom were female. During World War I, 
with a teacher shortage, the department increased the percentage of 
female unclassified teachers. 

Pi:pil Teachers 

From early on, females formed a major: :y of pupil-teachers. Many 
head teachers gave the large classes in the lower Isvel of the school 
to pupil-teachers, while the assistant teachers took small classes in 
the upper school. Thus, in the early 1870s, 70 per cent of pupil- 
teachers were female and assistant teachers in the upper school were 
nearly always male. 

But the percentage of female pu p i 1 - t e a che r s fluctuated 
significantly between the period 1860-1900. Decreases in the 
proportion of female pupil-teachers tended to coincide with the 
si owing down in the increase of the school population (1875—1880) and 
with the Depression after 1891. Because job prospects were so poor, 
the department wao able to employ more males during the Depression and 
so decrease the proportion of female pupil-teachers. 

Classified Teachers 

Once pupil-teachers had completed their examinations they oecame 
classified teachers. The heavy dependence on female provisional 
teachers was reflected in the smaller percentage of classified female 
than cl jified male teachers (see Table 2). 

Promotion was based on passing examinations and receiving 
satisfactory reports from ir.spectors. Until 1899 females doing at a 
lower standard than the males and were not required to study 
mathemat i cs. 

A much lower percentage of females Lhan males went on to p-iss the 
Class II and Class I examinations. Amongst a variety of explanations 
put forward for this from various sources, it was suggested that males 
had many more head teacher posts available to them as an incentive. 
This question of incentive will be discussed later in tht paper. 

The curriculum differences were eliminated in 1898, when algebra 
and Euclid were added to the primary curriculum, and female teachers 
had to update their knowledge by studying mathematics in their own 
time at technical colleges. Despite the fact that the female pupil- 
teachers now had to cover more in their training than did the malos 
(who were still not required to learn to sew), they still managed to 
obtain better examination results than the males. This may have been 
because the brighter females had fewer occupational choices than the 
males and greater numbers of females were attracted to teaching. 

In 1890 a policy was established not automatically to employ 
pupil-teach jrs on completion examinations, thus enabling positive 
discrimination in favour of males. Through the period between 1902 
and 1940 the department ai<-^ed, with varying degrees of success, to 
restrict the employment of female teachers to a certain percentage* 
This targ€?t figure varied from 33 per cent in 1910 to 40 per cent in 
1928. To iichieve this, the department continued to discriminate in 
favour of m<ile entry when a policy of upgrading entry requirements was 
begun in 1920. Scholarships to the new teacher training college 
(esLablished in 1914) favoured males, as had an earlier system for 
training secondary school teachers. While males did not always take 
up the places reserved for them at the college, especially in the 
19208, there was strong competition between women applicants who, as 
student teachers, tended to be more academically abl^:. 

After 1920 the percentage of female classified teachers rose at a 
faster rate than the males. From 1920 to 1940 the percentages of 
classified females rose from 52 p3r cent to 88 per cent and the 
percentage of classified males rose from 72 per cent to 92 per cent. 

Salary Differentials 

Females were paid at a different salary from their male 
counterparts. In the period up to 1902 the majority of females 
received between 50 and 80 per cent of the male salary rate, with the 
exception of the wives of men in charge of small mixed schools who 
received no direct payment for assisting their husbands. 

In 1874 an official explanation for retaining the differential 
included the following: 

The equalisation of the salaries could only be done by augmenti-^.g 
those of the females, or diminishing those of the males; the 
latter would be unwise, the former is impracticable - the cost of 
naintaining our educational institutions K"*uld thereby be 
increased by about one-third. The present gei.eration of the 
stronger sex will therefore, I fear, prevent any serious action 
designed to reguls^te the matter contrary to the lav/ of supply and 

(General Inspector of Board of General Education, A.R. Campbell) 

In 1900 the Minister of Education told a delegation of women 
seeking a salary increase that while it was cruel to talk about the 
law of supply and demand, he could find no other wa> of describing the 
situation. Because a teaching career was not sufficiently attractive 
to young men, the department had set males' salaries at a higher rate. 

But neither the majority of women teachers nor the teachers' union 
supported the minority who sought equal pay. Indeed, a leading 
article in the Queensland Education Journal in 1900 opposed it. 
However women did react when the differential between male and female 
salaries was changed, increasing the disadvantage of female te-^.chers. 


- 84 - 

This change took place in 1898 when the salaries of male assistant 
teachers were raised but the salaries of female assistant teachers 
remained unchanged. When the women tried to stir their Union 
(QTU) into action, they initially had a lethargic response. A 
study of the Union's Journal, the Queensland Education Journal 
of 1900 leads to the conclusion that the editor was not 
sympathetic towards; the women's cause. He dared them to fight, 
but his tone suggested that he did not believe they would. 

Uhen the women became more militant, the Journal quickly became 
more supportive on the issue, as did the union as a body. After the 
women had demonstrated an independent spirit, the Journal exhorted 
them not to disregard the union. 

The equal pay issue was not resolved for half a century. In 1967 
the issue went before the Industrial, Conciliation and Arbitration 
Commission which ruled that equal pay should be introduced. This was 
phased in over the ^lext four years. 

Throughout the period 1904 to 1939, the policies of the department 
of Public Instruction were strongly influenced by J D Story, a public 
servant prominent in education over many decades. Story was appointed 
to inquire into the reorganisation of the public service and in so 
doing stated that women should fill the lower Jobs: 

The higher positions should be filled by malea for economic and 
administrative reasons, and because of their family 
respons ibilities. 

The Department of Education followed the course of action 
advocated by Story. Women were restricted wherever possible to the 
lower rungs of the public service and males benefitted from positive 
discrimination, even in the lower rungs. 

Significant changes in the pattern of employment of women in the 
education service in Queensland have taken place recently. From the 
1960s improved conditions, especially for married women, have led to 
more women undertaking teaching as a life-lcn^ career. For example, 
since 1969, married women have been entitled to apply for permanent 

However, during the last four decades there has been a reduction 
in the number of small primary schools and an increase in the number 
of large primary schools. This has created strong competition for the 
direction of the one-teacher school, the lowest rung in the 
promotional ladder. Up to the 1930s a majority of these schools had 
females in charge. By 1980 this situation had changed completely. Of 
the 111 Class VI (one-teacher) schools, only 15 had female principals. 

Furthermore, the precedent established in 1976 allowing women to 
be appointed to the position of principal of a mixed high school has 
not led to a significant increase in the number of women in such 

(Clarke 1985) 

(Clarke 1985) 


Recent changes in employment policies have thus resulted in equal 
pay. They have also contributed to the alteration of employment 
trends observed in past depressions and recessions. During the 
current recession, the percentage of female teachers employed has 
risen instead of falling, and the percentage in 1983 (60 per cent) has 
been surpassed, since 1860, only in four other years, those between 
1918 and 1921. 

However, the percentage of principals' positions occupied by 
females, which j^.adually declined after the 1880s has continued to 
decline during the last decade, even though fewer impediments to 
female promotion appear to have existed over this decade. 
Paradoxically, the recent gradual elimination of the categories of 
male and female positions of responsibility within the Department of 
Education has operated more to the advantage of males. Furthermore, 
no female has yet risen above the rank of inspector, the first one 
having been appointed in 1919 (see Table 3). 

The Underlying Assumption 

One of the major assumptions underlying the employment of teachers 
has been that while males have to have positive inducements to join 
the profession, similar incentives have not been necessary for 
females, who choose teaching faute de mieux, because of the absence 
of satisfactory alternatives. Other incidental lessons can be dratvn 
both from the reluctance of the union to be drawn into the struggle 
for greater equity, and from the reluctance of many women themselves 
to be similarly drawn. 

The question might also be asked as to why the promotion of women 
into management positions has actually declined while so many other 
inequities have been eliminated. 

If the trend of low promotion rates among women continues three 
effects may be expected; first, the morale of those women of high 
ability already in the teaching prof ^sion is likely to decline, and 
low morale may well lead to a lowering of teaching effectiveness; 
second, education systems will be likely to lose women with high 
administrative ability because of better opportunities elsewhere; 
third, the evident lack of career prospects will discourage the most 
able women from entering the teaching profession. 

The United States of America (based on Sykes) 

While bearing in mind this apparent decline in opportunity for 
career advancement for women Wxthin the Queensland education system, 
an assessment will be made of the current state of the teaching 
profession in the United States of America, put foi'ward in the article 
by Sykes. 

Sykes sees tne teaching profession in the United States as 
imperilled. He bases his assessment on the analysis of three topics: 
the teaching occupation and its position in the US occupational 
structure; the i ns t i t ut i onal i sa t i on of teacher education in the 
multipurpose university; and the prevailing view of the relationship 
between knowledge and practice in teaching. It is the analysis of the 


• 'O 

- 86 - 

position of the teaching profession in the occupational structure in 
the United States which may have significant parallels in Australia. 

The picture Sykes portrays of the development of the US teaching 
service is similar to that in Australia, The largely feminine 
workforce du-'ng the period from 1840 to 1950 'was characterised by 
high turnover ahd low salaries'. 

Recruitment and work rewards, together with a unique position in 
the occupational structure, combined to supply the necessary 
members. Teachers gave up income and advancement opportunities in 
return for the fulfillment of ideals related to service, a 
convenient work schedule, and a certain esteem (albeit shadowed) 
tendered by the community. 

(Sykes 1983, 88) 

He lists other characteristics, then concludes: 

Finally, the critical - though hidden - element that kept the 
teacher workforce adequate in size was the blocked career path for 
educated women and minorities. 

(Sykes 1983, 88) 

Sykes continues by identifying a series of trends which has upset 
the balance of attractions and circumstances that served in the past 
to attract teachers. In particular, two of these trends are 

First, the loss of occupational prestige: 

No longer the best-educated members of many communities, teachers 
feel an intangible but nonetheless real loss of standing, 
especially in the eyes of their college-educated peers. Some 
unpublished evidence indicates that, between 1963 and 1980, public 
school teachers suffered a greater loss of occupational prestige 
than any other occupation in the study. 

(Sykes 1983, 88) 

Sykes dcis not mention the additional loss of esteem resulting 
from the persistent and frequently ill-considered attacks on teacher 
competence, attacks which appear to have become increasingly 
politically acceptable in the United States as well as Australia. 
Rather than facilitating improvements in teaching, these attacks perve 
further to deter able people with alternatives open to them from 
choosing teaching as their career. The currently fashionable non 
sequitur that education systems are tc blame for the high level of 
youth unemployment can only add to this decline in the attraction of 
teaching as a career. 

The second point, that women and minorities (principally negroes 
in the United States) suffered blocked career paths elsewh»-.e, ia the 
one which led to the investigation of recent patterns of course choice 


- 87 - 

in Queensland which follows. Historically, men have had alter. lative 
career choices, and the education system had to compete with these 
alternative choices in order to retain able male teachers. Sykes 
draws attention to the effect of the recent broadening of occupational 
choices foi women: 

The occupation of teaching (now) stands little chance of 
attracting the academically talented. Although the standardised 
test scores of teachers have always been low, the decline in these 
scores between 1972 and 1980 has be^-^n somewhat steeper than the 
national average. Studies show that scores among women in 
teaching have declined in particular, a situation that is probably 
related to the expansion of career opportunities for bright 
females. Another study reveals that the proportion of high 
scorers in teaching has declined markedly - evidence that the 
cream is being skimmed. 

As a broader range of careers has opened up for these groups and 
as pressures on women to work have increased, the best and 
brightest among col 1 eg^e-educated blacks and women have turned to 
more lucrative and more prestigious careers than teaching - 
careers that were denied them until recently. Ironically, social 
progress has taken a heavy toll on the occupation of teaching. 

Trends in the Queensland ^Occupational League Table"^ 

Since 1980, the Annual Reports of the Queensland Tertiary 
Admissions Centre, have separated out statistics on female applicants. 
They were examined to see what courses the most able females were 
choosing and whether there were any trends evident which might support 
Sykes' thesis that the most able women were increasingly choosing 
other career options than teaching. 

In particular, ♦'hose courses which were unlikely to be followed by 
a Diploma in Education, and thus the least likely to eventually lead 
to school teaching were examined. The trends in social work 
enrolments were also perused, in the light of Sykes' assertion that 
teaching, nursing and social work no longer enjoy a monopoly on the 
powerful occupational motivation of service careers that promise 
meaningful work with and for others. These were compared with 
education course intakes. 

Table 4 demonstrates what can only be described as the 
institutional league table, based on the choice of institution by 
Tertiary Entrance Score. From this one can see that the University of 
Queensland tends to cream off che most able students, having a minimum 
entry of 880, and a concentration of students in the 900b. 

Table 5 provides the mirror image graph of percentage enrolments 
in the University of Queensland, male and female. The percentage of 
women has risen steadily since 1950 (when the figures on which this 
was based started), to 1982-84 where enrolments have not been far 
short of 50 per cent. 

(Sykes 1983, 88-89) 

- 88 - 

Table 6 shows the increase in the percentage of women enrolled by 
faculty. From this it will be seen that while the percentage in 
education has increased and in social work has remained steady, there 
has also been a considerable rise in faculties such as medicine, law 
and veterinary science. 

Thi s can be c ompar ed with the median tertiary entrance score, by 
course rather than by faculty (Table 7)* For the sake of comparison 
some courses outside the University of Queensland are included as they 
appear to conform to a general trend. From this one can see how the 
occupational league table looks, with medicine consistently taking the 
highest ability students, followed by pharmacy, arts/law, engineering 
and law. What is particularly significant about this table is that 
the social work median tertiary entrance (TE) score has dropped, as 
has the B Ed Studies. Commerce degrees both at James Cook University 
and at the University of Queensland have been able to demand an 
increasingly high TE score, whereas the oducation courses appear to be 
lowering their TE requiroments . 

Tabl es 8 and 9 gi ve the numbe r s of women enrol led in a range of 

courses during 1980-84. These also seem to confirm the impression 

that the most able female students now condider that other careers may 
hold more promise than the teaching profession. 

The tertiary entrance score is a measure of secondary school 
achievement, expressed in an aggregate score. It does not represent a 
form of standard intelligence test as does the American Scholastic 
Aptitude Test. Looking at TE scores indicates which courses the best 
secondary achievers are rating highly. It may be that there are 
complex explanations for these trends which contradict this 
interpretation. However, when figures to corroborate Sykes' point 
were sought, they were found very easily. 

There are also indications that this is probably a general problem 
within Australia. The Beazley Report records that, in Western 
Australia, teaching is attracting a lower entrance score than the 
other professions, and the recent Commonwealth report. Quality of 
Education in Australia, also alludes to the problem of declining 
quality in teacher recruits. 

The purpose of presenting the figured is to lend support to the 
suggestion that education systems, though faced with the dilemma of 
increasingly tight funding, cannot afford to ignore the potential 
decline in the intellectual ability of its recruits. Despite current 
high unemployment levels it is no longer safe to aosume that the most 
able women will be entering the teaching profession. The supply and 
demand arguments which have traditionally been used to support 
applying different employment policies to men and women should be 

Sykes asserts that recent developments have irreversibly undercut 
the relative attraction of teaching; the only recruitment resource 
that remains is a working schedule fitted to the demands of 
childrearing and affording ample opportunity for recreation' . (page 89) 


It may have been realistic to recognise, as did the Queensland 
General Inspector Randal MacDonnell, in 1865, that: 

While the teaching profession opens an honorable and profitable 
career (perhaps the only one in this country) to educated women, 
it is by no means so attractive either in its immediate gains or 
in ultimate pecuniary prospects, to young men who ... can turn a 
moderate education to better account in the banks and offices of 
the city. 

If those currently administering the education system are not 
alert to the dangers, more and more yoking women may also turn a 
moderate education to better account in the range of careers now 
offering to them. While it will always be possible to recruit some 
female teachers, withoL*t the expectation of equitable care'^r prospects 
ahead of I hem it may prove increasingly difficult to recruit the most 
able women to teaching. 

Teaching appears to be slipping down the occupational league table 
for females as well as males. If this trend is allowed to continue it 
i^.ay contribute towards setting Australian education on wh^it Sykes 
describes as 'the downward spiral in quality'. It is therefore as 
important for the quality of education as it ia for the principle of 
equity, that women's prospects in educational management in primary 
and secondary education be re-evaluated. 

In the interests of the quality of the teaching service it is 
essential to ensure that women perceive teaching as offering a career 
which provides recognition for academic, teaching and administrative 
ability in which the opportunities tor advancement are palpably as 
available to able women as to able men. Rather than saying "this is 
not fair" perhaps we should be saying "this is unwise". 


Beazley, K. (chairperson) (1964) Education in Western Australia, 

Report of the Commi ttee of Inquiry into Education in Western 
Australia, Perth, Western Australia. 

Clarke, E. (1985) Female Teachers in Queensland State Schools 1860- 
1983 - A H i storg t Policy and Information Services Branch. 
Department of Education, Queensland. 

Karmel, P. (chairperson) ( 1985) Quality of Education in Australia: 
Report of the Review Comittee. AGPS, Canberra. 

Sykes, G. (1983) 'Contradictions, Ironies, and Promises Unfulfilled: 
A Contemporary Account of the Status of Teaching', Phi Delta 
Kappan, October , 87-93 . 


- 90 - 



In 1909, the number of Provisional Schools was reduced to about 60, 
the others being re-classified as Statn Schools. 





Women as % of 
all provisional teachers 

Women provisional teachers as 
% of all women teachers 

ro in 

00 00 





























After 1946 the number of Classified Teac}' 
continued to rise until it reached 100% 


30 . 


10 - 

Male classified teachers 
as % of all classified teachers 

— "-'Ma3e classified teachers 

as of total maie teachers 

Female classified teachers 

as % of all classified teachers 

Female classified teachers 

as % of total female teachers 


o lo 

CO 00 












75 ff^ 

o o ^ 







O - Agriculture 




^< K Law 

— — Medicine 

—* — ^ Science 

• • • • Social work 

Q~ - ^o Veterinary Science 




























€^^r^i»l i>«ork/UQ 


, . .»,/HQ <TE^20) 


social work/UQ <TE-10) 

, ^r.,w>..rf-,./JCU (TE-«^25) 

b. business/DDI AE (TC+IS) 

Bocial Mork/JCU (TE-10) 

pach/DDIftE (TE-15) 



165 W-gd.Studi«» 







B. Social Work 


TP 9:^ (-t^30) 

TE 905 (-5) 

" tE 990 (no chanq>) 

-f E 975 ( + 10 ) 

980 (•♦-IS) 

TF- 980 (+20 ) 

jQ B. Engine ering 

ERIC 5 t 










John Steinle 

It would be gratifying in a parochial way to be able to claim 
that ^ the South Australian experience' for women in primary and 
secondary education is remarkably different from the current 
status quo in other states but that is not the case. The South 
Australian system has carried a similar historical and cultural 
burden and it is only comparatively recently that the evidence of 
that burden - our structures and attitudes - has been challenged 
by equal opportunities philosoph/. 

In South Australia the education system's efforts to remove 
structural barriers and discriminatory practices is done in the 
context of an overall government policy to promote equal 
opportunity. In this regard, the department has been at the 
forefront in the promotion and implementation of that policy, 
mainly because of the calibre of the leadersnip in the Women's 
Advisory Unit established in the mid-seventies. 

The department has been fairly diligent in the past decade to 
remove overt discriminatory barriers to women's participation on 
an equal basis in the workforce. Both the Sex Discrimination 
Act and changes in departmental policy have been instrumental in 
this regard. 

There have been some impor tan t achievements in removing 
structural barriers to women's opportunities for promotion in 
schools but, partly because of the overall squeeze on resources 
and promotional opportunity, at this stage there has not been a 
significant rise in the number of women occupying managerial 
positions at the school level. 

The structural changes which have been introduced include; 

• The introduction of ^open' positions. Over 50 per cent 
advertised principal and deputy principal positions 
are not filled through hhe inflexible ^order of 
promotion' system. This means that any person who has 
been assessed as eligible may apply for these positions. 

If teachers take leave of absence for child-rearing 
purposes and they are eligible for promotion their years 
of absence are now counted towards eligibility. 

T^ere has been a five-year exemption from the South 
Austral i an Sex Discrimination Act to allow women to 
er. ter secondary deputy positions. This is positive 
discrimination towards a more balanced gender profile in 
the leadership of secondary schools. It does, however, 
depend on a demand coming from the school communi ty for 

There is a policy of permanent part-time teaching, which 
gives flexibility to people with child-rearing and other 
commitments, without forcing a break in service. 


- 100 - 












H W 

< o 

O Q 














980 989 
















































920 929 













































































































1 7 








1 27 






0 1 







730 739 



















































905 ' 


Several thousand teachers have taken advantage of this 
arrangement • 

Parenting leave has been introduced, in addition to 
accouchement leave for teachers, although this cannot be 
granted automatically. 

It is compulsory for all interviewing panels to include 
an equal opportunities representative. 

Equal opportunity policy statements apply at all levels 
in the system. 

However, despite these measures there has not been a 
significant rise in the number of women occupying managerial 
positions. The publication Equals put out by the Women's 
Advisory Unit makes clear that on an overall percentage basis in 
1984 only 6.6 per cent of all women in the teaching profession 
held promotional positions, compared with 32.3 per cent of men. 
As women made up 57 per cent of the teaching population and men Ai 
per cent this meant in effect, that men held 79 per cent of all 
promotional positions, and women 21 per cent. While at this point 
these statistics paint a somewhat dismal picture, what is of 
interest is that while women continue to predominate in the junior 
primary principals range, the gender balance in the previously 
Impervious secondary school promotions area is just beginning to 

Apart from the specific equal opportunity changes mentioned, 
the department has recently put into place a new corporate 
management structure of area (decentralised) decision making which 
has resulted in the appointment of a significant number of women 
to senior posts - director, assistant director -and superintendent 
levels. While this is not an example of improvement for women 
currently at the school level, some of these senior women have 
been drawn direct from primary principals positions. 

In addition, part and parcel of the new area structure is the 
provision of superintendents for equal opportunities. They belong 
to Student and Community Services (SACS) teams in each of the five 
area offices. (Four of the five assistant directors responsible 
for SACS are women. ) 

While it could be predicted that these changes in the 
corporate structure will have a positive influence on promotion of 
women at the field level, this theory remains to be tested. 

The final point to be made in the 'structural' context is that 
the South Australian Education Department is one of eight 
government departments in South Australia which have recently set 
up equal employment opportunity committees. The education 
aepartment's committee will be assisted by a senior project 
officer and will develop an equal employment opportunities 
management plan to cover public servants, teachers and ancillary 
staff, with the focus on disadvantaged groups, including women. 
This is an ambitious task and will involve senior officers in the 
Department, including the Director of Resources, Helga Kolbe. 


While these structural changes have been an achievemen^, , many 
women would argue that they do not go far enough and that positive 
discrimination, particularly during the current promotional 
squeeze, ought to be extended. This is where the far more complex 
and deep-seated problem of attitudes must be confronted. One of 
the reasons why Equals felt it necessary to underline the 
statistics on women's promotion was the evidence of a new 
mythology - that women were moving into all the promotional 
positions at the expense of talented, capable males. The backlash 
had begun. If an analogy is drawn between the 1952 and subsequent 
desegregation rulings in the United States then it can be 
predicted that the attitudinal barriers to the equal participation 
of women in the workplace will be of far greater significance than 
the legislative and policy barriers ever were. 

The attitudinal restraints not only come from a defensive (and 
powerful) male workforce, generally convinced of its superiority 
in all matters managerial. They also come from women themselves 
who, unlike their male counterparts, often lack encouragement from 
their male superiors and who constantly fight a mental battle 
about the worth of climbing into a male defined managerial world. 
These barriers are far more pervasive, subtle and resistant to 

Then of course therp are those who see the moves in the equal 
opportunities area to be a sign of weakness on the part of 
administrators. One instance will suffice. 

Within the education industry itself dissenting voices have 
be&n even rarer in Australia than among politicians. Senior 
bureaucrats have rarely been personally convinced by radical 
nostrums, but they have been terrified of being labelled as 
reactionary, as sexist, as racist, or indeed as fascist, if 
they resisted the spread of the Left Ascendancy. John 
iinle, the Director-General of Education in South Australia, 
IS a typical example of a political innocent ever willing to 
make concessions to pressure groups so that conflict and 
unpleasantness might be avoided. In a recent brochure 
entitled Equal Opportuhities , which was distributed by the 
thousand in South Australia, Mr. Steinle writes that, ^This 
Department recognises that particular groups are disadvantaged 
by our present education system. The largest of these groups 
is girls.' If he believes this to be true he ought to have 
resigned, since he rose to power in a system he condemns as 
discriminatory, but Mr. Steinle cannot seriously hold for one 
moment that girls in the schools of South Australia are 
disadvantaged educationally simply on account of their gender. 
Such statements are made in fear of the antagonism of the 
angry wimminfsic), just as gross statements about the 
educational discrimination suffered by all children whose 
mother tongue is not English are mere genuflections designed 
to show solidarity with groups which apparently wiald 
considerable political clout. 

(Partington, G. (1985) After the Sheridan 
Affair. Quadrant June.) 


- 102 - 

How can these people be challenged? 

Firstly, as mentioned above, there has been a significant 
increase in the number of women in the senior echelons in the 
department. There are distinct and positive differences in the 
way these women approach and carry out their jobs. They are in 
sufficient numbers to have an impact on the male definition of the 
^successful' manager in education. As more women are able to 
enter senior management positions, one can anticipate more 
^gender-inclusive' models of managemen t which are far more 
attractive to aspiring women in the field. 

Secondly, Professor Eileen Byrne has made reference to the 
need to ensure that women are given experiences in timetabling and 
other administrative ^male' provinces, ^not merely counselling and 
social infrastructure' responsibility areas. This prompts another 
perspective. As education systems belong to the broad category of 
human services perhaps they need to consider how they can place 
more value upon these vital ^social' responsibilities. 

In this context the South Australian system is currently 
examining ways of rewarding teachers who take on additional 
assignments within their schools for defined periods of time. This 
will provide an opportunity to elevate some of the school tasks 
traditionally considered less important and to reward outstanding 
teachers whose prospects are limited by the promotional 

Thirdly, professional development opportunities for women 
which enable them to have a greater personal and professional 
influence within the school environment are vital. The Women's 
Advisory Unit has done an enormous amount to support school-level 
change and in the long term this will have far greater impact than 
any top-down approach could achieve. 

Fourthly, education, not Just of girls but also of boys, must 
be relied upon if we are to overcome the att^tudinal problems 
inherent in our society. 

To close, while the South Australian experience is fledgling 
and as yet unreir.arkable in the area of women's promotion to senior 
school positions, tribute should be paid to the many women in the 
system who have worked solidly to gain attention for the issues 
and then to develop the ensuing equal opportunities policies which 
are now in place in the state. They have achieved much in a 
difficult climate when apart from the general resources squeeze, 
the needs of other disadvar/ aged groups are placing new d mands on 
the energies of educators. They have created a threshold, a 
beginning, and have shown the way forward. 


" 103 


Warren Louden 

The Education Department of Western Australia is committed to a 
policy of equal opportunity. It sees this as being achieved in two 
major ways. The first is through the overhaul of the staffing system 
to remove direct and indirect factors which may result in 
discrimination on gender grounds and ho redress current inequities 
through affirmative action. The second major direction which is long 
term in its application is concerned with changing the social 
expectations and attitudes of the community so that women may compete 
on equal terms with men for senior positions within the education 
department « 

Staffing Policies Prior to 1984 

The education department employs some 13 250 fulltime teachers. 
Of these 5 500 are men and 6 200 are women employed in primary and 
secondary schools. Despite the fact that there are more women than 
men, men outnumber women by more than three to one so far as 
promotional positions are concerned. This imbalance would be far 
greater if the department has not retained sex linked deputy principal 
positions in all primary schools with eniolments of 300 or over and 
all secondary schools. The legitimacy of retaining sex linked 
positions may be challenged under the recently introduced equal 
opportunity legislation. 

The existence of sex linked positions has tended to disguise the 
Imbalance of men and women in senior promotional positions. In the 
senior administration, only one woman occupies a position at the 
director level. There are fourteen positions at or above this level. 
There are only eighteen women at the superintendent (inspector) level 
out of some 107 positions. Of these ten are in what might be termed 
sex stereotyped roles (junior primary, home economics, commerce, equal 
opportunity). There is no right of appeal against departmental 
decisions to appoint at this level. The imbalance however exists 
because the previous promotional history of male applicants gives them 
significant experiential advantage over f emal e appl i cants when 
appointments are being made. In addition males often have a 
qualifications advantage. 

Further evidence of the imbalance is evident if the position of 
principal is examined. There are over 500 male principals in primary 
schools but only 30 women. At the secondary level men outnumber women 
by 137 to five. It is clear that if any reasonable balance is to be 
achieved then there is need for affirmative action. 

For several years the department has been attempting to increase 
the number of women in senior positions. The results have not always 
been as anticipated. Two examples may serve to illustrate. Prior to 
1982 there were separate promotional streams to primary and junior 
primary pr incipalships. With restricted opportunities in the latter 
area which was restricted to females, the decision was taken to 
integrate the lists to give women greater access to primary schools. 
The result was the filling of junior primary pr incipalships , almost 


- 104 - 

all of which are in the metropolitan area, by males who gained 
experience with young children as teacher~in-charge of small schools 
and who were able to transfer to the more advantageously located 
Junior primary schools from country primary schools of like 
classification. A second device was the creation of senior assistant 
positions which required teachers to have special strengths in one or 
more or a variety of specialised areas, for example, early childhood 
or remedial education. It was believed ♦'hat these positions would be 
particularly attractive to women. However the bulk of the positions 
are now occupied by men. 

The Committee of Inquiry 

During 1983-84 Western Australian education was thoroughly 
examined by a Committee of Inquiry, chair'^d by Kim Beazley. The 
committee directed a great deal of attention to staffing matters and 
recommended the extension ot a system of promotion by merit. At 
present cnly two in five positions in secondary schools and one in 
three primary promotions are filled on the basis of merit. 

The committee proposed that by 1990 all promotional positions 
should be filled on merit, that merit should be based on formal 
evaluation, that formal evaluation should be based on the widest 
possible range of relevant data, including input from professional 
colleagues, and that all promotional positions should be filled for a 
limited term (five years). The person formerly filling the position 
would be eligible for reappointment under this recommendation. 

The Beazley Committee also endorsed the principle of affirmative 
action. The recommendation relating to this provision was that women 
receive at least 50 per cent of all promotions over the next five 
years or at least should be appointed in proportion to the number of 

Implementing the Recommendations 

A joint working party consisting of departmental and union 
officers was charged with the responsibility for advising the Minister 
on the implementation uf Beazley recommendations. The committee met 
frequently during 1984 with the intention of implementing changes on a 
pilot basis in 1985 with effect from 1 January 1986. 

In reviewing the existing system of promotion in primary schools 
it became clear that geographic mobility has be<?n an extremely 
important factor. In this state there are fi/e classes of schools 
graduated according to student enrolment. Appropriately qualified 
teachers may avoid passing through the smallest of these schools by 
accepting other promotional positions. However, in order t- o gain 
promotion to larger schools, typically it is necessary to take up an 
appointment in a small school (enrolment 32 plus). The majority of 
these schools are located in rural areas and thus willingness to 
accept a country posting is an almost essential ingredient in the 
promotional system leading to the primary school principalship. It 
was this factor which ensured that almost all such positions were 
filled by men who tended to be more mobile. The system requires 
principals to serve for two years in such a position before becoming 


dligibie for placement on the promotion list for tne next largest 
clafloif icaticn of school. As a result, teachers must spend at least 
threo years in c small sirhool before moving to a larger school. 
Typicalx/i however, pro^refa'Sion io very much slower than this. Few 
wciiien have sought promotion through this route. They have tended 
instead to fill the sex linked deputy principal positions which are 
approximately equal in statub to the position of principal of the 
second largest class of sci'ioo] . Several years age, in an attempt to 
encourage women to take up promotional positions as principals, a 
change to the previously existirg practice was made. This change 
allowed women who were deputies in th«j largest (Class lA) primary 
schools to be placed on the promotion list for appointment to Class II 
schools. These schools have enrolments between 100-300 students. It 
might ha*'e been expected that such a move would have led to a number 
of women gaining promotion. This, however, was not the case. There 
were two reasons. The first was that, as the most recent additions to 
the list, they were too low oi the list to receive 'general' 
promotion, that is, automatic promotion based on the list placement. 
However, to qualify for the one in three 'special' positions, all 
applicants must signify their willingness to serve wherever required 
in the state. There are many Class II primary schools in the 
metropolitan area of Perth. These, however, are normally filled by 
the transfer of principals from country locations. Thus women who 
aspired to the pr incipalahip had to be prepared to accept a country 
appointment for at least two years and few proved to be willing to do 

The situation at the secondary school level is less acute s-nce 
there are less grades of secondary schools. Pr incipalchips of schools 
which cover the year range 1-10 are available to both primary and 
secondary applicants. Eligibility to apr.'v ie based on one of several 
alternative promotional positions, including the sex linked deputy 
position; however, only two women have accepted such appointments. 
Promotion -to the prlncipalship of a high school (years 8-12) requires 
the applicant to have been a deputy principal or principal of a 
district high school (years 1-10). Typically, these positions are 
achieved after a period as a senior (subject) master. Because of the 
shortage of women applying for deputy positions in the more remote 
schools it has been possible for some f-^male applicants to bypass the 
positions. The result has been that there are & few relatively young 
female deputy principals. To preserve equity with males these women 
were required until recently to have served as long as males before 
coming eligible for promotion to the pr incipalship. The removal of 
this requirement recently has >.i to the appointrant of a number of 
women but they still comprise ci .y a very small percentage of high 
school principals. 

A^f f irmativf? Action Provisio ns 

The working party, in deciding what should be recommended to the 
Director -General, realised that to change the existing distribution of 
principalshi s within primary schools within the five year period 
specified by the Beazley Report, strong affirmative action measures 
would be n<?ressary. The working party examined the length of total 
service and thf amount of service in administrative positions of males 
CiChl- ing promotion to principals of Class I schools and recommended 
thac women with a comparable period of total time and experience as a 



deputy of a Class I primary school or a more senior position, should 
be eligible to apply for ^special promotion', that is, promotion by 
merit to a Class I school. This recommendation which was accepted by 
the Director-General cut across the long standing tradition of 
graduation to the pr i nc i p a 1 s h i p of larger schools through the 
pr incipalship of smaller schools (Appendix 6). 

It was not surprising that there was a great deal of concern among 
males expressed in the main through the Primary Principals' 
Association. Opposition also came from male deputy principals, the 
wives of principals in small schools and, somewhat surprisingly, from 
female teachers who signed protest petitions which were circulated in 
primary schools. 

In the face of this very strong opposition there was almost no 
support from female teachers. It is interesting to note that of the 
several hundred letters received on the topic, few objections were 
raised to the principle of affirmative action but the assumption was 
made that this could be done in a way which did not discriminate 
against males. The Primary Principals' Association which was totally 
opposed to the scheme was invited to suggest alternative methods by 
which the objective of providing a more equitable distribution of 
promotional positions between males and females within the overarching 
requirement t^at such promotions should be merit based. No acceptable 
alternative proposal was received. 

As a result of this change to the regulations some 50 women were 
made eligible to apply for special promotion to large primary schools. 
Only nine availed themselves of the opportunity. Eighteen men also 
applied for the sixteen positions which became available. 

Appointments to promotional positions in primary schools are made 
through an Appointments Board. They are made on the basis of 
references which come respectively from a superintendent, 
supe r or dinate , a peer and a subordinate. On the basis of these 
references the Appointments Board recommended four women for the 
position of principal Cl^ss I primary school. 

In the opposition prior to the appointments being made the opinion 
had frequently been expressed that if women were appointed they would 
be younger than their male counterparts, lacking in significant 
administrative experience and would have done little country services* 

Uhen the appointments were made it became clear that this was not 
the case. The average length of total service of the successful women 
was marginally grea^. er than that of males receiving similar 
appointments. The average length of time during which women had 
occupied promotional positions of the level required was somewhat more 
than that of successful male applicants and the average length of 
country service of the successful women was 12 years. 

The promotion by merit scheme will be extended in 1986 to include 
promotion to smaller schools and an affirmative action component is 
included in these proposals also. 

The working party in mking its recommendations concerning 
affirmative action had rejected the Beazley Committee's recommendation 

erJc - ><" - 

that 50 per cent of all promotions should go to women. It did so on 
two grounds. The first was that any scheme based on quotas was 
inconsistent with the concept of promotion by merit. Further the view 
was taken that since women had been denied promotion in the p^st the 
50 per cent quota might give less positions to women than if merit was 
the only criterion applied. Pragmatically also the view was taken 
hhat if this were to be done there may be insufficient applications, 
particularly for the more remote schools. Instead of moving to a 
quota system, therefore, the Committee instead chose to give increased 
eligibility to women for a period of five years while extending tha 
promotion by merit scheme to all promotional positions within the 
Education Department of Western Australia. 

Difficulties in Achieving More Women in Management 

The woiJcing party's recommendation is that once a ful] promotion 
by merit scheme is implemented the requirement that all applicants for 
special promotion should indicate their willingness to serve wherever 
required will be phased out. While on the face of it this will 
increase the likelihood of well qualified, experienced and capable 
women achieving promotion without the need for extended periods/ of 
country service, in fact, it is doubtful if this will occur. The 
reason lies in the priority which is given to teachers who are 
transferring from country locations over those who are being newly 
appointed to promotional positions. While this requirement remains, 
and it is necessary to retain it because of the large nu^-ber of very 
remote schools in Western Australia which must be st.iffed by teachers 
of high quality, it is unlihely that the number of women who will 
achieve principal positions will increase dramatically. It may be 
that some form of incentive payment or accelerated promotion for those 
willing to take positions in remote locations may reduce this problem. 
However, there is a good deal of evidence which suggests that this is 
unlikely. It therefore seems that until such time as community 
attitudes change to the extent that it is socially acceptable for the 
male and family to accompany the female family member who must 
undertake country service then women will continue to be under- 
represented at the school management level. Alternatively womeii may 
commute from reasonable accessible country locations as males have 
done for many years. It is in the bringing about of changes in 
community attitudes that the schools program described below is 

As mentioned earlier, women have difficulty in competing for the 
most senior Jobs because of lack of relevant experience or possibly 
qualifications. In the recent past there has been a conscious effort 
to ensure that women are considered for travel and study scholarships 
which will help redress this situation. 

Many previously existing structures which have inhibited the 
promotion of women have been identified and removed in recent years. 
However, there are many hidden and often subtle disincentives to women 
to seek promotional positions. It is to identify these with a view to 
their removal th%t an Equal Employment Opportunity Branch has recently 
been set up within the department. 

This section, which will work directly to a policy committee 
chaired by the Deputy Director-General of Education, will not only 


- 108 - 

identify and recommend measures designed to increase the number of 
women in promotional positions but will monitor progress towards this 
end and will be involved i.. ensuring that women have access to the 
training opportunities which encourage them to seek promotion. 

Curriculum Reforin and Women's Role in Educational Management 

A strong commitment to curriculum reform pertaining to gender 
equity is an important accompaniment to industrial and personnel 
policies aimed at making schools more equitable workplaces. In the 
long term a significant and equitable number of women in management 
positions can only be assured if there exists in society an unbiased 
faith in the abilities of both men and women. In this context the 
current commitment of the Education Department of Western Australia to 
equality of educational outcomes for male and female students is 

Gender equity policy in curriculum in Western Australian schooly 
seeks equality of outcomes for male and female students in areas such 
as levels of self esteem and self confidence, patterns of 
participation and achievement in all formal and informal curriculum 
offerings and ability to be economically, socially and personally 
independent and competent. Adoption of such a policy has two 
important consequences for the likely role of women in management in 
primary and secondary education. 

Firstly, commitment to gender equity for students seeks to ensure 
that the coming generation of teachers who are currently students in 
our schools, experience schools as places providing equal scope for 
personal and career satisfaction for males and females. Hopefully 
when these youngsters become teachers affirmative action will not be 

Secondly, it is clear that sexist policies and attitudes are 
prevalent in schools which delimit the educational experiences of 
girls and boys. These policies and attitudes have at their root the 
same factors which cause the lack of opportunities experienced by 
men as teachers. The professional development process pursued by 
teachers when working on school policy to benefit their students has 
been found to generate an understanding or consciousness of gender 
equity issues which bears fruit for women in the staffing and duty 
allocation within schools. In other words, the environment in which 
counter-sexist education is emerging is itself becoming less sexist 
for female staff. 

In Western Australia, the lynch-pin of curriculum policy on gender 
equity is that every school will be rxpected to develop a 
comprehensive, across-fche-curr iculum action plan aimed at stimulating 
equality of outcomes. Each teacher will be expected to monitor his or 
her own classroom and to develop strategies for countering sexist 

Support for the process in schools was increased in 1984, with the 
establishment of an Equal Opportunity Branch headed by a substantive 
superintendent. Currently 5.5 centrally-based professions! officers 
provide a consultancy and resource base for schools. A Policy 
Advisory Committee on Equal Opportunity, chaired by the Deputy 


Director-General was established. Other key elements of the education 
department's program in this area include: 

Appointment of co-ordinators of school policy on gender equity to 
a number of pilot secondary schools. Each has 0.2 time teach2r 

Conduct of a series of seminars for teams of teachers from 
primary and secondary scho- le to equip them with skills and 
knowledge needed to commence and maintain a whole school approach 
to gender equity policy. Teacher relief is provided for these 
seminars . 

Conduct of a series of teacher in-servire courses (mostly with 
teacher relief) focusing on key issues in gender equity. In 1985 
topics addressed include the secondary school sports program, self 
esteem development, classroom dynamics and girls and computers. 

Development of a collection of counter-sexist teaching resources 
for use in schools. 

Production of teaching and other resources when needed (Appendix 

Establishment or harnessing of communication channels throughout 
the system to stimulate debate on the topic. (This includes 
running an annual Women in Education Conference.) 

Provision consultancy service? to schools on this issue. 
Provision of support for adoption of a genc'ar inclusive 
perspective to general processes of policy develonment, and 
curriculum materials production throughout the department. 

Supporting a very innovative action research/teacher development 
project entitled *Person-to-Person' on the topic of classroom 
dynamics. This project has support from the Projects of National 
Significance Program. 


Western Australia, like other states, recognises the educational 
and industrial concerns arising from the imbalance of women and men in 
management positions in schools. Western Australia is, perhaps, 
unique in the strength of its current commitment to positive 
discrimination for women. Even before state affirmative action 
legislation was enacted this year, the education department was firmly 
committed to this program. A promising start has been made in Western 
Australia to achieving more equal represantation of women in 
management positions. However, it should be recognised that shifts in 
pol icy somet Imes create less real change in the first instance than 
the rhetoric promises. This has certainly been our experience in 
Western Australia. It is essential therefore that efforts bx- 
continued in both the short term through affirmative action programs 
and in the long term. It is likely that until a generation of girls 
have had the experience of regarding themselves as equal there will 
not be achievement of the goal of equity irrespective of gender. 


- 110 - 


Beverley Richardson , Margaret Lonergan 
and Jan Edwards 

The Current Position of Women 

In Tasmania the proportion of males and females in the staffing 
quota for the teaching force is detailed in Table 1. 



Level Males 




Primary education 76 


Secondary education 42 


Special education 75 




Tables 2 to 5 detail the senior positions in the primary, 

secondary, tertiary and services/administration 

sec*"or . 





Level Females 




Senior teacher 188 



Vice-principal 31 



Infant miBtress/master 36 



Principal 27 



111 - 




Females Tota^ Percentage 


Senior master/mistress 100 451 22 

Vice-principal 15 79 19 

Principal 2 54 4 



Level Females Males Percentage 


Senior teacher 14 17 82 

Vice-principal 1 2 50 

Principal 8 16 50 



Females Total Percentage 


Senior education 8 31 26 


Supervisors 3 15 20 

Principal education 2 14 14 


Officers paid above 5 28 18 

principal level 


I The one area of seniority where females hold about as many 

^ positions as could be expected from their numbers in the teaching 

force is that of senior teacher in primary schools. 


I The Department is conscious of the need to equalise the 

distribution of senior positions. The hope is that the senior 
teachers will be applying and getting future Jobs as vice-principals, 

! and, eventually, as principals. This cannot be a rapid process. 

I Reference to Table 1 will show that if 76 per cent of vice-principals 

were female (the proportion of females in the teaching force) it would 
be 90 people. At the moment there are 31 female vice-principals, 
which leaves a shortfall of 59 people. In the past few years, only 
two to five vice-principal positions have been adverLised in the 
primary section each year. Even if all future positions were to be 
filled by women in the ratio 7:3 it is easy to see that the process of 
equalisation will be a very long one. 

The other tables indicate that there is a long way to go before 
the proportions of males and females in the teaching force are 
reflected in the senior positions. 

The Promotions Proceas 

All promotable positions in Tasmania are advertised openly and 
have been for nearly twenty years. There are no barriers and any 
person may apply for any position. 

The main criterion is suitability. However, in practice anyone 
applying for a position must have a current report and assessment. 
The report is written by a Principal or other senior officer, and this 
is the only access a Principal has to the Promotions Committee. The 
assessment is given by the appropria' superintendent or Inspector and 
this is the only access the superintendent has to the Promotions 
Commi ttee . 

The Promotions Committee consists of one elected primary and one 
elected secondary representative from the Tasmanian 
Teachers'Federation, one nominated primary and one nominated secondary 
representative from the department plus a department nominated 
chairperson. In 1985 the chairperson is male and there are two female 
representatives and two male representatives. 

Balance of Applications and Appointments 

In 1984, 1050 male and 225 female applications were received to 
fill 103 positions, and 79 positions were filled by males and 24 by 
females. From January to June 1985, 719 male and 126 female 
applications have been made for 46 positions which have been filled by 
33 men and 13 women. It is interesting to note that for four vice- 
principal positions there were 168 male and 21 female applications. 
One was filled by a man and three by women. 

Table 6 lists perc^-ntages of male and female applications and 
appointments in 1984/85. 


113 - 






* Applications 1984 
% Appointments 1984 



* Applications 1985 
X Appointments 1985 




The Mobility Study 

The study of the mobility of teachers in Tasmania was completed in 
1983. The research was conducted over a period of two and a half 
years and sought to discover what options for mobility, other than 
promotion, teachers would support. 

The study was a combination of group discussions of representative 
groups, individual interviews and a questionnaire distributed to a 20 
per cent random sample of teachers at all levels. The response rate 
was 80 per cent of ueable material. 

There were fifteen options presented and of these five were 
strongly supported in general and in personal application: 

master teacher (same difficulty in implementing) 
task-related staffing 
paid positions of responsibility 
automatic review after ten years in a position 
mandatory retirement at age 60 

There were differences between male and female responses in: 

(more female support) 

permanent part-tine positions 
task-related staffing 

automatic review after ten years at one school or in one position 

(more male support) 

temporary paid posts of respo.;sibility 
secondment to industry and commerce 
interstate exchanges. 

114 - 

There were systems-wide perceptions of how to obtain promotion and 
these were not collated on a male/female basis but they are 
interesting, nonetheless: 

being male 

having a university degree 
moving between schools 

not spending more than five years in one school 

being involved in further study through inservice or post- 
graduate work 

being heavily i^ivolved in extra-curricular activities in the 
school and the community 

making a usef^Jl and valued '^nr tr ibut ions at school and systems 

having a string sense of a career timetable, career map and 
strategy, indicating goa'.s and how they intend to accomplish them 
obtaining the first promotion in a minimum time (approximately 
five years) 
being lucky 

obtaining and mainta* ling a sponsor or sponsors which may mean 
conforming to the views of the principal or other superiors 
willing to wjrk in un'ieslrable work locations 
gaining administrative type experience 
being seen as o competent class teacher. 

Reason for seeking promotion 

The following main reasons, which do not appear in any particular 
order of relevant importance, were given by interviewees regarding why 
they seek promotion. 

For some teachers promotion appears to be necessary if thev are 
to satisfy the motives which brought them into teaching. 

The spur to seeking promotion may come from the accumulation of 
experience which gives teachers confidence that they can do a good 
Job at a higher level on (he promotion ladder. 

One motivation is the wish to earn more money. 

Some, as a result of observing their colleagues, come to the 
conclusion that they could do a better Job than those who have 
already achieved promotion. 

Some seek to establish new professional challenges due to a 
feeling of boredom in their current post. 

Some seek promotion a? a matter of pride or because they feel 
that if they do not seek promotion it is a public admission of 

Some apply for promotion after receiving encouragement from 
professional peers who say such things as 'you can do it' or 'we 
think you would make a good senior teacher'. 

Some want the public systems level recognition of competence 
which promotion implies. 

- 115 - 

Some want the increased influence and power which promotion 

It would appear that the most important reasons for teachers 
seeking promotion were: 

wish to maximise their influence and power within their school 
and/or the education system with a view to improving that school 
and/or system; 

wish to have more freeedom in their work; 

need to establish new challenges in *-^r^^r to relieve or reduce 
the threat of boredom. 

T eachers in Promotions Positions 

Table 7 details the status of teachers in senior positions in 1984 
including all full-time personnel in schools, colleges, and 
administrative and service branches (including the Division of 
Recreation) at 2 July, 1984, but excluding those with the status of 
superintendent or higher, and all Division of Further Education 
personnel . 










Infant mistresses 







Senior masters, mistresses 




Senior teachers 




Regional guidance officers 




Senior guidance officers 








Principal education officers 




Senior education officers 











Self-esteem Programs in Tasmania; a case study 

In Tasmania i priority has been placed on the need to change 
attitudes and awareness levels of people in schools. Tue department 
is trialling a significant strategy for bringing about changes in 
relations between women and men and girls and boys. It i j an 
extremely popular, we 1 1-r ecei vod program supported by children, 
teachers and parents. 

- 116 - 

In 1983, Tasmania was funded for a Cowaonuealth Schools 
Contwission project of National Significance. The program was 
initially aimed at girls who were perceived as being 'at risk'. It 
involved trialling strategies designed to increase their self image 
and to help them feel that they were in control of their own lives. 
It began in five high schools and one district school with two part- 
time project officers. In the early days, the project officers were 
often seen as ^pushy' women with some kind of grievance about 
opportunities for girls. Optimistically the program was called 

In 1985, the program has taken off and is growing rapidly. Self- 
esteem programs are funded and supported by the Participation and 
Equity Program. They are for boys as well as girls. Non-government 
schools are also involved through the Commonwealth Schools 
Commission* s Professional Development Program and its School 
Improvement Scheme. The Professional Development Program also 
provides in-depth training courses for teachers in the area of 
interpersonal relations. The self esteem project has one full-time 
officer and two part-time field workers. 

Until 1985, courses have been taken in single-sex groups. A few 
schools that have been involved longe- are working with mixed groups. 
Some men are taking these school -based self-esteem courses with 
students. Usually, they begin by helping students and in the process 
learn a great deal about themselves and their relationships with 
others, particularly women. The projei^t assumes that men and boys 
must also be involved in efforts to change attitudes and behaviours. 

Some Emerging Trends 

During the two and a half years of the project's operation several 
trends have emerged: 

Women who have been part of the staff development programs have a 
better sense of their own worth. 

There is an improved sense of team work for greater numbers of 
ptaff. The project makes it easier for teachern to be involved in 
group decision-making processes. Factions and cliques in 
staffrooms have become harder to sustain. 

Some schools are beginning to look at their internal arrangements 
and organisational patterns. Leadership tasks are being 
reallocated. I/omen are being given a high profi> while men are 
being seen in a more caring capacity. 

Parents are supportive and interested and in several cases take 
part in the inservice programs. 

Parents report better relationships with their children, 
particularly daughters who become less surly and better able to 
listen, to talk calmly and to reason. 

Girls feel confident about expressing their point of view in 
class. They do not blush and feel as embarrassed as they did 

ERIC -nil^B 

Boys at first are startled to find that they are competing for 
the teachers' time. 

Some schools are beginning to feel that the work is valuable and 
they are seeking to have it included in the normal budget. How to 
further mainstream the strategies into the curriculum is being 
investigated. There are signs that Vings is already beginning to 
change the secondary school environment and make it more empathetic 
towards women and their experiences and contribution. The program is 
bringing about a climate of acceptance where a wide range of issues 
relating to women and girls can be addressed sensibly. Appropriate 
strategies such as these for working at school-level change must be 
found if women are to avoid frustration and antagonism in their 
efforts to achieve equality. 


Education Department of Tasmania (1984), Wings - A pilot project to 
increase self-esteem in girls. Tasmania Government Printer. 



- 118 - 


Lyn Powierza 

The CompoBition of the Teaching Service 

The evidence in the composition of the Northern Territory Teaching 
Service is that there is the same hierarchical ranking of women and 
men that is reflected in teaching services throughout Australia, even 
though the Northern Territory Teaching Service is the most recently 
formed and the traditional barriers of continuous service and 
seniority are not present within the promotion system. D^affpite the 
fact that women constitute 71 per cent of teachers at the Band 1 level 
(that is, the classroom teacher level) their proportion decreases 
dramatically in the move up the seniority ladder (see Table 1). 



Position % Female 

Teacher Band 1 71 

Teacher Band 2 primary 57 

Teacher Band 2 secondary 44 

Teacher Band 3 primary 29 

Teacher Band 3 secondary 14 

Teacher Band 4 primary 21 

Teacher Band 4 secondary 21 

Note Band 1 equates with classroom teacher 

Band 2 equates with senior teacher 

Band 3 equates with deputy principal 

Band 4 equated with principal 

The Northern Territory has had a system of peer assessment leading 
to eligibility for promotion since the Commonwealth Teaching Service 
was first introduced in 1973. This is a particularly time-consuming 
process as far as individual classroom teachers are concerned so there 
is a suggestion that this mitigates against women in the sense that *c 
is too taxing on the limited time available from family 
responsibilities and professional concerns. The average age of the 
population is much younger in the Northern Territory than in other 
parts of Australia and this means that there are larger numbers of 
young children. A very high proportion of mothers of young children 
work, due in part to the very high costs of living. Teachers are no 
exception to this and the demands of child rearing are very dominant. 


As seniority or country service are not prerequisites for 
promotion it is my suspicion, borne out by evidence which emerged in 
Shirley Sampson's research, that women see themselves in the role oi 


119 - 

the nurturers within the family structure and pay the consequence 

However, this is by no means the whole of the story. Women do not 
appear to be under-represented in the professional associations and so 
are apparently prepared to make the requisite time commitments to be 
involved in activites they see as relevant and worthwhile. 

But within the advisory and administrative segments of the 
Department women are under-represented (Table 2). 



JUNE 1985 




% Female 

Education officers 




Senior education officers 




Principal education officers 








Why so Few? 

Some of the reasons that women do not try for promot ion are 
proffered in the following few lines. Many do not apply for 
office-based positions because they prefer school hours and holidays, 
as these enable them to cope with their family responsibilities. Many 
wish to remain in the school situation because that is where they see 
themselves having the most effective role. Possibly they have little 
idea about office-based responsibilities or lack the confidence to see 
themselves in an v%dvisory position. Whatever the reasons they 
continue to give dedicated service in the classrooms and are largely 
ignorant of the wider spheres of interest within the department. 
Would it be too naive to suggest that they do not understand the 
department and therefore do not progress within it? 

It appears that many women are not aware of what extra 
responsibilities are involved in senior positions at either the school 
or head office level. It could be that very often they would find the 
senior positions and responsibility less taxing than the constant, 
demanding attention and concentration needed within the classroom. 

Women in the main centres of Darwin and Alice Springs have the 
opportunity to attend women in management and women at work courses 
which are conducted under the auspices of the Equal Opportunity Unit 
within the Public Service Commissioner's Office. There has been a lot 
of interest ahown by women in education in the courses which give a 
historical perspective of women in the work force and concentrate on 
developing confidence and career paths for participants. 

120 - 


The Northern Territory has a very high turnover of staff on a 
regular basis. It is not difficult for women to become the head of a 
department or to take up a senior position if they are interested - 
often there is no competition. However, once in the job there are 
assumptions made about the level of knowledge. It is assumed that 
promotees automatically know everything they should by virtue of 
having the position. There is a real need for the development of 
seminars to be run at schools so that seniors who need professional 
instruction into the mysteries of the school timetable and other 
vagaries of school administration can receive such information in a 
professional way. Women often tend to blame themselves rather than 
the system for what they do not know. Is this because of their 
inexperience and low self confidence? Men are also affected but 
because of expectations and relationships have a better idea of how to 
seek information. 

Teachers in the Northern Territory participate in course writing. 
Often two or three days are set aside to produce a course. It is 
difficult to feel happy with the results and participants often feel 
inadequate. The majority of teachers are not trained in curriculum 
writing and without bridging and information courees tend to feel as 
if they have been thrown into very deep water. When women see others 
wrestling with heavy responsibilities without adequate support it is 
understandable that they lose interest in assuming similar burdens. 

Women are discouraged by a male hierarchical system. It is 
difficult to imagine that their problems will be recognised as 
important. They could give each other valuable support through groups 
or committees within the school or work place wherein common areas 
could be identified, discussed and acted upon. It is the perception 
of some that one of the ironies of life is that female principals can 
be harder on women than on men - perhaps because they have set 
themselves such high standards. 

The Future 

Changes have begun. The responsibility for equal opportunities 
has been included in a superintendent's position. A position of 
education for girls officer has been established and that person has 
done much to show that girls are at the same disadvantage within the 
Northern Territory system as they are in other places. There are 
moves afoot to have an equal opportunity representative on selection 
panels. The department has declared itself to be an equal opportunity 
employer. Every selection panel must have both sexes represented on 
it. It is proposed that organisations and associations be asked to 
nominate both a woman and a man when putting forward nominees for 
committees so that a reasonable ^alance can be established in the 
departmental committee structure. A working party is looking at the 
training needs of promotees. 

There remains much to be done, including the development of an 
equal employment opportunity policy, giving particular attention to 
the training needs of women. The attitudes of both women and men will 
also have to change towards each other in society at large. Women 
have to seo» themselves in leadership roles and strive to get there. 
There is no doubt that they have the ability. The challenge is to 
find the strategies to enable them to utilise their full potential. 

ERIC - 121 . 


Barry Price 

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy 

As a commonwealth statutory authority, the ACT Schools Authority 
has accorded a high priority to achieving Equal Employment Opportunity 
(EEO). The stage of ensuring that EEO becomes a routine part of 
management and supervision functions and setting of targets in the 
implementation of objectives has been reached. The Authority's 
emphasis in accelerating the progress of women into middle and senior 
management positions is through personal professional development. 

The Authority has moved to involve women in educational management 
through its EEO Program. This program has the full support of the 
Authority as a result of its decision in 1984. At that time the 
Authority, which is the participative policy-making body (the term is 
also used for the government school system), made a commitment within 
the framework of the merit principle to: 

policies and practices which do not discriminate against 
individuals on the Lasis of political affiliation, race, colour, 
ethnic origin, social origin, religion, sex, sexual preference, 
marital status, pregnancy, age, physical or mental disability or 
any other unjustified ground; 

a continuing process of monitoring policies and practices to 
determine whether they have direct or indirect discriminatory 
effect on its employees; 

the introduction of affirmative action programs by which groups 
3een as disadvantaged may achieve equality of employment 
opportunity within the Authority. 

At the same time that the Authority adopted its policy statement 
in relation to EEO, it also defined the concepts of affirm tive 
action, discrimination and sexual harassment in line with the 
definitions used in commonwealth legislation as follows. 

Affirmative action consists of a planned, outcomes oriented 
series of programs and changes designed to overcome indirect and 
systemic discrimination embedded in apparently neutral practices 
and procedures. 

Discrimination occurs when a distinction is made resulting in one 
person or group being less favourably treated than others in 
similar circumstances. 

Direct discrimination in employment occurs when a person or 
group of people is specifically denied a benefit or 
opportunity on the basis of a personal characteristic 
irrelevant to the Job requirements. 

Indirect discrimination in employment occurs when a policy, 
rule or practice which may appear neutral and is applied 



- 122 - 

impartially nas an adverse outcome for a substantially larger 
number of one group than another thus reducing the chance 
that a member of the particular group will benefit. 

Systemic discrimination is a term which describes the system 
of discrimination created by a network of rules and practices 
which constitute indirect discrimination. Systemic 
discrimination is self perpetuating because each 
discriminatory action which disadvantages one group 
simultaneously s'/rves to advantage another group. Therefore 
these processes are cumulative and self reinforcing. Direct 
discrimination contributes to systemic discrimination through 
the cumulative effects of discriminatory attitudes and 
bel ief s. 

Sexual harassment is a form of discrimination which covers a 
range of unsolicited behaviour which constitutes a deliberate 
verbal or phys ical affront of a sexual nature agai nst another 
person. It includes such unwelcome actions as sexual advances » 
requests for sexual favours or other conduct of a sexual nature 
such as comments or physical contact. Where the recipient of such 
behaviour has reason to believe that a rejection of the advance, 
refusal of the request or objection to the conduct would 
disadvantage the recipient in his/her employment or possible 
employment, the recipient may seek redress through grievance 

The Chief Education Officer (CEO) was given the respons? bill I ty 
for the achievement of EEO due to his functions as the re'-'evant 
authority in relation to staffing under the Public Service Act and 
the Commonwealth Teaching Service (CTS) Act. The Schools Authority 
defined the following duties for the CEO: 

devise programs to achieve the aims of anti-discrimination 

communicate policies and programs to all employees; 

collect and record appropriate information as part of the 
continuing review of personnel practices within the Authority, 
including recruitment techniques, selection criteria, training and 
staff development programs, promotion and transfer policies and 
patterns and conditions of service with a view to the 
identification of any discriminatory practices; 

set goals or targets, where these may be reasonably determined, 
against which the success of ^ a management plan in achieving its 
aims may be assessed; 

propose strategies for the evaluation of policies and programs; 

and report regularly to the Authority on equal employment 
opportunity matters. 

To assist the CEO the Authority gave formal recognition to the EEO 
Committee which had been formed in July 1983 at the time when the 


- 123 - 

Band 2 position of EEO Coodinator was established. The Authority 
decided that this committee should be chaired by the Senior director 
(Resources) and should also include: 

a nominee of the CEO 
two ACT Teachers' Federation nominees; 
two Australian Public Service (APS) union nominees; 
the non-sexist education consultant; 
the EEO coordinator (executive member). 

The terms of reference for the committee are to Provide advice to 
senior officers of the Authority in relation to: 

. development, implementation and review of the EEO management plan 
for CTS and APS staff; 

priorities and targets in the implementation of objectives; 
evaluation of initiatives when implemented; 

data on the employment of women and disadvantaged groups as the 
basis for planning future initiatives; 

reports from the CTS and APS coordinators; 

. other relevant matters which arise in the context of EEO 
objectives . 

The committee meets monthly and works closely with the relevant 
flections of the Office of the Public Service Board. It alflo repo. t3 
bimonthly to the CEO and flenior cfficerfl. 

The initial operational objectives, which were devised by the EEO 
Committee early in 1984 as a means of progressing towards the 
achievement of equal employment opportunity were commended by thp 
Authority. They are as follows: 

to achieve senior management commitment to the objectives of 
equal employment opportunity for all Authority staff; 

to promote management understanding of, and cooperation in, the 
implementation of the Authori'.y's EEO policy pertainir to APS and 
CTS staff; 

. to ensure that EEO r e-po ,s i bi 1 i t i es become a routine part of 
management and supervision functions; 

. to eliminate all c 1 sc r imi na • ory practices in selection and 
promotion procedures; 

to ensure proportional representation of women on all Authority 
committees, task forces, working parties, selection panels 
appeals committees; 

. to increase the numbers of women in promotions positions and 
declPion making roles; 


- 124 - 

to acquaint all staff with their rights and responsibilities 
under the Sex Discrimination Act 1984; 

to provide appropriate grievance procedures for dealing with 
alleged discriminatory behaviour; 

to ensure that data on m'lle and female employees is kept 
systematically in a format that enables data to be retrieved 
readily for research; 

to raise awareness of the i&suee and forms of sexual harassment 
of both staff and students in educational institutions. 

Profile of Women in ACT Educational Management 

As the following statistics illustrate, the ACT has been typical 
of education systems in its assumption that women do not aspire to 
careers in education management. 

Only one of the top seven positions in the Authority's office is 
held by a woman and only two of twelve section heads are women. 

Sixty-seven per cent of all personnel in the Commonwealth 
Teaching Service (CTS) are women and in the primary area 86 per 
cent of all positions are held by women. 

Women comprise 70 per cent of all Band 1 positions, 52 per cent 
of all Band 2 positions, 32 per cent of all Band 3 positions and 
10 per cent of all Band 4 positions in the CTS. 

There are no women in Band 4 secondary school positions. Only 
five of the hundred positions at Band 3 and 4 levels in secondary 
schools are heJ.d by ^omen. Three women from primary backgrounds 
currently hold Band 4 secondary classified positions in the 

Two women holding Band 3 secondary positions hold eligibility for 
Band 4 positions. 

Eligibility has been a prerequisite for promotion to a substantive 
position at each band level in the CTS. Four years of recognised 
teacher training is a prerequisite for substantive promotion to 
positions classified as secondary at the Sand 3 and Band 4 levels. 
Table 1 sets out the position for personnel having eligibility but no 
cubstantive position. 






Pr imary 



Band 2 





Band 3 









Rand 4 










Barriers to EEO 

Some of the major barriers to be overcome in the EEO program are: 

the effects of the eligibility system; 

the insensitiv: ty to EEO issues of selection panels; 

the assumptions of senior management (particularly in secondary 
schools) in relation to women's career aspirations; 

the number of promotion positions likely to be available; 

lack of mobility between pre-school/pr imary and the secondary 
sectors . 

Overcoming the Barriers 

El Igibi ] ity . Senior staff no longer regard eligibility as mandatory 
and have considered proposals to remove it as a prerequisite for 
promotion. However, the ACT Teachers' Federation currently has a 
policv in support of its retention. Recent conferences indicate that 
just short of a majority of federation members are dissatisfied with 
it. The strongest justification for replacing the eligibility 
procedure with direct application for positions is that eligibility 
adds to the existing selection barrier for women seeking promotion. 
This is possibly the biggest single barrier to speedy implementation 
of a program designed to see women more influential in educational 
management . 

Selection procedures for all vacant APS and CTS positions. Selection 
criteria for all APS and CTS positions now include an EEO criterion. All 
advertisements for positions contain the information that the authority is 
an EEO employer. All selection panels receive a briefing on their EEO 
responsibilities and provide the EEO coordinator with a report on progress 
toward the achievement of EEO at the end of each semester. Each panel 
contains a mix of men and women. Guidelines for selection panels are being 
developed to: 

alert panels to indirect discrimination (anecdote method); 


- 126 - 

put emphasis on future potential as well as past experience in 
interpreting the concept of ^merit'; 

clarify the relevance of ^personal qualities' to overall 
efficiency for candidates in designated groups. 

The barriers which are still to be overcome include: 

effective staff training for all potential selection panel 
nominees ; 

provision of women nominees on selection panels in proportion to 
their representation within the service; 

the clarif icati on of the concept of merit in a situation where 
seniority is a criterion required by the CIS Act in appeals when 
candidates are equally efficient. 

Career aspirations , Much has yet to be done to adapt work patterns 
and career structures to accommodate family responsibilities. There 
has not been a systematic survey of the assumptions of senior 
educational managers in ACT schools. However, women setting out their 
grievances in relation to discrimination in eligibility and promotion 
procedures have frequently mentioned these a.'sumptions . During 1984 a 
workshop on EEO issues was held for Authority members and senior 
Office staff. In March 1985, <i? a first step to sensitise senior 
management in schools to non-sexist education issues, the Authority 
coordinated a successful conference for 31 senior school managers. 
However, there is a need to provide extensive EEO awareness training 
for all senior personnel. Inservice courses have been provided since 
1983 in assertiveness training, job application writing and meeting 
procedures and on the Sex Discrimination Act 1984. 

At the same time, through school-based committees action is being 
taken to promote career planning for wc*wn. Women are invited to help 
draw up career plans for themselves. Senior managers are being asked 
to identify and encourage female subordinates or colleagues to involve 
themselves in this career planning and then to apply for jobs. Women 
do not apply for as many Jobs as men and a wider range of women should 
be encouraged to apply for a broader range of jobs. Concurrently it 
is aimed to offer women more varied work experience. There will be 
stress on women taking up short-term higher duties allowance positions 
so that they may increase their management skills. 

All schools have been requested to provide a senior officer and 
one other officer to manage EEO. For example, at Lyneham High School 
and Narrabundah College, the EEO coordinator has been invited to 
assist their EEO committees to draw up school-based programs. These 
will include a staff survey, data base and personal career planning. 
Selection for promotion positions of less than six months is 
determined at the school level. An important component of the school 
EEO plans will be the adoption of selection procedures ii. line with 
EEO principles. 

Progress has been made in ensuring that there is at least one 
woman member on all committees and task forces at the system level. 

- 127 - 

Number of promotions positions. In spite of the opening of new 
schools, the size of the school system is fairly static. However, the 
number of teachers in promotions positions who are approaching 
retirement is increasing. Some 64 per cent of teachers occupying 
Band 3 positions and some 93 per cent of teachers in Band 4 positions 
are over the age of 45. This represents a marked change from a decade 
ago when most older staff in promotions positions had returned to New 
South Wales at the beginning of the ACT school system. This situation 
could provide more promotion opportunities in the next ten years. In 
the immediate future, however, staff reductions announced in the 
commonwealth's May Economic Statement will reduce opportunities; at 
some band levels there will be no promotions opportunities for the 
1986 school year. Women currently have been forced to define their 
professional satisfaction in terms of their classrom skills. An 
important factor in changing women's definitions of career 
satisfaction will be to develop predictors of the availability of 
promotions positions and to make this information accessible to women. 

Hobil ity . Psychological barriers betwen pre-school/primary and 
secondary sectors in education remain. Traditionally, management 
skills in primary schools have been considered as less than those in 
secondary. Selection panels have consistently been reluctant to 
promote applicants from another sector. This is a matter which has 
national implications and is one on which this conference may wish to 
make a recommendation. 

Future Directions 

The Authority is currently working on its EEO management plan 
required under the Public Service Reform Act ?984 early in October 
1985. The Authority is using the guide provided by the Public Service 
Board (PSB) and adapting it to its needs. It is also participating in 
the PSB Survey on EEO which will provide a data base for monitoring 
progress on the management plan. 

The shortage of child care facilities, the public transport 
system, the design of cities, shopping, banking and office hours, the 
general separation of public and private life - all reflect the way 
women have been and still are used to underpin the public careers of 
men. As Peter Wilenski remarked at the recent conference in Sydney of 
EEO coordinators, it is necessary now to consider how to challenge and 
change the ^culture' of a masculine-dominated bureaucratic 
organisation. The Authority has taken up the challenges and is 
committed to achieving an educational management structure which 
promotes merit-, and is gender inclusive. Progress is slow but the 
results are becoming visible in those aroas of the structure with 
potential change agents. 

Note: The assistance of Cathy Robertson in the preparation of this 
paper is gratefully acknowledged. 





Di Foggo and Jennie George 

The Australian Teachers' Federation (ATF) is an organisation of 
over 167,000 members comprising the major government school teachers' 
unions in all states and territories. Coverage includes in excess of 
100,000 women members and tL.a level of membership of women in 
affiliates is in the vicinity of 60 per cent. 

Recent research into the representation of women in ATF and its 
affiliates shows that the strength of women's membership is not 
reflected in the decision-making bodies or office structures of their 
unions (see Table 1). Women do not have power commensurate with 
membership, nor equal power, nor equal participation in the 
organisations which pur«ue their industrial and professional concerns. 

Historical Aspects of Women in Unions 

In understanding the level of representation of women in unions it 
is useful to draw on some economic factors and historical perspectives 
which liave, in part, determined the situation in which women now are 

The structural changes occurring within the Australian economy, 
particularly evident in the decline of the manufacturing sector and 
the growth in the services sector, have significant effects in terms 
of the composition of the workforce and union membership. 

The growth of female employment in the services sector, in health, 
education, banking, insurance, clerical and administrative areas is 
reflected in the growing proportion of women unionists as a per- 
centage of the total workforce that is unioni sed . In 1954 , the 
composition of trade union membership was 81 per cent male and 19 per 
cent female? by 1976, 70 per sent male, 30 per cent female and in 
1983, 67 per cent male and 33 per cent female. 

In the eight years to December 1983 new female union members made 
up 73 per cent of the total increase in union membership and in that 
same period women's membership rose by 16 per cent as against an 
increase of ?..6 per cent in male membership (see Table 2). 

However, the proportion of women workers who are actually members 
of unions has remained relatively stable during that same period, 
around the A6 per cent mark. As women comprise 77.13 per cent of the 
part-time workforce it is highly likely that under-unionisation is 
o curring in this area, which has traditionally proved difficult to 

Since 1983 many unions in the public sector, for example, teacher 
unions and state public service unions as well as a number of 
significant ones in the private sector, for example .Australian bank 
employees, the Miscellaneous Workers' Union and the Australian 
insurance employees now have women as a majority of their membership. 
But, witn the notable exception o; one or two unions, women do not 
have anywhere near the proportion of membership either in the 
decision-making bodies or office structures. 


- \29 - 



(as at June 1985) 


H z r Z 

H Z F Z 

H Z F Z 


H Z F Z 

H Z F Z 



(Stat€) Council 
Klected officers 
Appointed offlcerf 

39 67.2 19 32.7 
6 60 4 40 
16 59.2 II 40.7 

48 34.5 91 65.5 
2 40 3 60 
I 100 
9 50 9 50 

2 66.6 1 33.4 
13 59.1 9 40.9 
6 50 6 50 

53 69 24 31 
2 66.6 I 33.4 
13 66.6 2 13.4 
II 73.3 4 26.7 

2 66.6 I 33.3 
5 50 5 50 
12 70.5 5 29.5 

1 100 - 
4 50 4 50 
9 56.3 7 43.7 







(State) Cooncil 
Klected officers 
Appointed officers 

29 63 17 37 
3 75 I 25 
7 50 7 50 
7 77.8 2 22.2 

63.1 36.9 
^.8 34.2 

20 77 6 23 

7 77.8 2 22.2 
3 37.5 5 62.4 

8 66.7 4 33.3 

3 75 1 25 
I 100 - - 
12 70.5 5 29.5 

3 SO 3 50 
14 77.8 4 22.2 

1 33.4 2 66.6 
6 66.6 3 33.4 



Gender 1976 1983 Variation ^Increase 


Male 1956.7 2007.2 50T5 2.6 

Female 843.3 978.0 134.7 16.0 

Total 2800.0 2985.2 185.2 676 

% COOO) 

Male % of total increase 27 50.5 

Female % :.f total increase 73 134.7 

Too 185.2 

Research Findings 

There is a paucity of research data available about women's 
p irticipation in the union movement* While many will have their own 
ideas on ^hy women have not chosen to participate or been successful 
in achieving representation proportional to their membership, findings 
of some of the available research provide some indicators of the 
barriers to change. 

In 1977 the Royal Commission on Human Relationships published a 
report which quoted in part a statement from the Women's Electoral 
Lobby which asserted : 

While unions sometimes take up women's causes to ensure 
equality for them, there are instances where women's benefits 
are traded off against the events and where women's 
complaints are not taken seriously. 

The report went on to recommend forms of action by trade unions, 
to increase the participation of women. It was argued that unions 
should recognise women as an indispensable part of the workforce and 
their needs should be considered. It added that trade uwions should 
seek to ensure a better level of participation by women. They should 
actively seek out women to be trained for union office and 8..ould 
encourage them to stand for election. The Final Report of the i.oyal 
Commission on Human Relationships urged the introduction of 
affirmative action progrv'ims in unions *"o induce women to participate 
actively in the making of ducisions that affect their working lives. 

Given that this repcrt was released some eight years ago it is not 
surprising that women should feel some chagrin and frustration because 
the situation has changed only superficially since 1977, 

In 1980 a Monash University team undertook a study of women in 
seventeen blue and white collar unions in \^ictoria. They found that 
the higher in the union hierarchy, the lower the percentage of female 
representation, even in unions whose membership wae predominantly 
female. Of the thirty-three fulltime paid petitions, women did not 
occupy even one position, out the position was reversed among the 
unpaid honorary positions where women occupied (ren of the thirty-five 
honorary positions. 

From a Trade Union Training Authority (T'JTA) survey conducted in 
1980 it was established that thero were approximately 2,376 fulltinie 
positions in Australian unions, including appointed research and 
industrial staff, Based on information collected from union and TUTA 
sourcP3, it was estimated, though not conclusively, that overall womon 
held only ]l,i ^er cent oi dll fulltime union officer positions (see 
Table 3), 


131 - 


(Including appointed research and industrial staff) 

State Sector Total Total % Female 

Public Private Female Male and Female to all 



M Q U 
















































st.aListics indicate an 


lack of 

representation of 

*omen >ri structures of the 

union movement. 

Also in 1980 

a book 


Thi3, Brother 

by Jane 

Stageman, which 

looked at 


worker 3 


union power, 


a study of trade 

union branches 


tue Hull 

area of 


She drew 

the link between 



unions and 


that the : 

....hierarchies of trad«3 unions reflect the hierarchies in 
employment. Women are accustomed to being at ♦-.he bottom of 
the pile, behaving deferentially towards men and expecting 
little or no advancement. This is bound to shape their 
aspirations and expectations in trade union affairs. 

The attitudes of women in the Hull study indicated that obstacles 
to union involvement by women were of a practicd, institutionalised 
and male domination nature. Some of the factors given in encouraging 
participation included having union meetings held in work time, 
simplifying union matters. Increasing the availability of information 
and fewer home responsibilities (see Table 4). 

1 >T ^ 


- 132 - 









Fewer home responsibil- 



Meetings held in more 
convenient places 



Giving UD other 



Meetings held at a 
different time 



Feeling more confident 



Meetings held in work time 



Going to meetings with 
someone else 



Make union matters easier 
to understand 



Mv hnnhAnH affreeinff^ to m6 

being active in the union 



Provide childcare facilit- 
ies so I could come to 



Knowing that women can ^e 
as coDpeteiit as men in 
union affairs 



Mj»*kef more information 
available about how union 



Male union members giving 
me a chance to eir my 
vi evis 



Organise more social 



Having greater intere^'c 
in union affairs 



Running education course 



Nothing would make it 



Creating opportunities so 
women could get together 
and discuss matters of 
interest to them 









Source: Ccote» A. and Kellner, P. (1980) Wear This, Brother^ Women 
Workers and Union Power. 

An interesting and unfortunately common aspect of Stageman's work 
is the difficulties faced by women union activists. 

Because of their rarity, women whose heads emerge above the 
crowd are swiftly burdened with responsibility, and they 
often havG extra commitments (to women's meetings as well as 
to their families), on top of all their regular union duties. 
The higher up the ladder they go, the more isolated they 
become and the tougher it gets to prove they can do the Job. 
It is common for women who hold senior offices to find they 


- 133 - 

have no more time for their equal rights or women's advisory 
committees. Some who get near the top, having 
fought for most of their lives to 'make it' on men's terms, 
get comfy as token women and lose sight of their siste'-s' 
need for a helping hand. Some hold on to their commitments 
but are driven in their isolation to degrees of paranoia and 
over-caution. These problems will only diminish if the 
support network grows stronger; if more women emerge in 
senior positions; and if union hierarchies keep in much 
closer touch with the grass roots. 

In 1981 Kay Hargreave's book Women at Uork again pointed to the 
under-representation of women in unions, showing thirty-two unions 
where women members predominated and showing that they were not 
adequately represented in the power structure. She further contrasted 
the high level of -,nion membership among women with a lack of 
knowledge and lack of positive lesponse regarding unions. She said in 
her book that women activists in unions 

...still encounter ditiiculties with sexism in the form of 
sexist attitudes, structures that discourage wor^en's 
involvement and issues that do not reflect the priorities for 
women in the workforce. 

In 1985 Beryl Ashe in a discussion paper, on Affirmcti^e Action 
in Trade Onions outlined some reasons for the lack of involvement of 
women in unions. The responses to the survey she distributed led her 
to conclude that the following were major barriers to women becoming 
involved in trade unions : 

domestic responsibilities; 
lack of confidence; 
lack of interest; 

negative attitudes of family members. 

These barriers coincide with reasons elucidated in the few 
previous studies. 

Overcoming Barriers 

In overcoming these barriers the union movement must address 
itself not only to the practical barriers of involvement, such as 
times of meetings and the provision of quality child c^.e, but also 
the institutional and attitudinal barriers which have been referred 

In recognising that capable women do not, for a range of reason^ 
choose to become actively involved in their unions it mush also be 
recognised that current union structures do mitigate against women. 
There are valid reasons for saying that unions as we know them in the 
teacher labour movement are hierarchical, structuraUy and 
procedurally formal and dominated by male colleagues. They are 
certainly no place for the faint-hearted. 

The problems associated with gaining power or participation in 
decision-making bodies of unions are noL always because male 
colleagues have planned it that way. The confidence, experience and 

ERJC .i,4-J'^7 

ability of women to fit other responsibilities into the time 
commitments union 

involvement requires have precluded many women from participating 
fully in the past. In 1977 a paper produced by the Working Women's 
centre suggested that lack of confidence was a real barrier in women's 
involvement in trade unions. 

Given these factors, the principles of affirmative action are as 
necesciary and relevant to the trade union movement as they are in the 
workforce and education sectors generally. The difficult task of 
implementing change has to be faced so as to ensure a union movement 
which is truly representative of its membership. 

While some women members of the ATF believe that the wheels of 
progress do not move with enough haste there has been some progress 
during the past decade and the issue of representation of women is one 
which is permanently on the agendas of the ATF and its affiliates. It 
is an issue however which is not always with enthusiasm. 

The ATF has recently formulated policy on affirmative action in 
unions and established a women's action program • The direction of 
efforts to increase the representation of women is throt^gh educative 
programs aimed at encouraging increased participation by women, 
although discussion still includes the merit of constitutional 
requirements which ensure the presence of women in the decision-making 
bodies of unions. 

The 1985 ATF conference rejected proposed constitutional 
amendments which would have ensured equal representation of women at 
ATF conference and ATF delegations. The proposal tendered by the 
South Audtraliar Institute of Teawhers, the only affiliate whose 
constitution and practices embody equal representation, sought to 
extend to ATF the right to insist under its rules that the annual 
conference and delegations would bear a truer correspondence to the 
rank and file membership of ATF. 

Given the legijlative or educative option, ATF's affiliates have 
chosen the educative one. This model for increasing the 
representation of women operates at various levels within affiliates 
but notably in the New South Wales Teachers' Federation (NSWTF). An 
educative or organisational approach seeks to provide the 
opportunities for women ^.o go through a process of consciousness 
raising. The aim is to empower women to act in their own interests 
and mobilise rank and file women members ao that their increased 
awarenessi interest and confidence is translated into greater 
commitment and participation in their union. Women's action groups 
are established in each region and a women's contact person, whose 
duties are outlined within th^ NSWTF constitution, exists at each 
school. A proposal aimed at giving nine women unionists experience in 
their union through assisting a union organiser for one term is to be 
considered shortly. 

All teacher unions have either annual women's conferences, status 
of women committees, elimination of sexism groups or activities aimed 
at increasing women's participation in their vnion and developing 
their abilities to take positions of responsibility. 


- 135 - 

The history of women's involvement in the union movement 
highlights the fact that their struggles have been part of a never- 
ending battle. At times women have emerged the winners, at other 
times others fought the battle to its final success long after the 
first skirmishes developed. The Australian Council of Trade Unions' 
(ACTU) recent commitment to pursue a test case based on 'comparable 
worth' is testimony to the lengthy campaign that has been waged to 
achieve equal pay for women workers. 

Through the operation of the Accord, the ACTU is placed in a 
central role in terms of ongoing negotiation with the Federal Labor 
Government. The ACHJ special unions conference on affirmative action 
in 1984 decided that, in future discussion and negotiations around the 
Accord, specific attention be given to the incorporation of ACTU 
women's policy and the action program for women workers in the A-rcord, 
and in the initiatives arising from the Accord. 


The union movement is a powerful force for social change and women 
need to ensure that their demands are incorporated into the mainstream 
of debates and strategies in regard to this country's future economic 
and social directions. That places an obligation on women to be 
active participants in their unions and in the broader labour 
movement. If women do not pursue their demands through their 
professional and industrial organisations, it is certain that no one 
else will take up the cudgels on their behalf. 


Peter OBrien 


There are two totally different types of 'true fact' in the 
universe. They are both genuine fact: both are important to human 
beings, and they can be, and very commonly are, confused. Type one 
is the Immovable, absolute, ruthless and unarguable facts of the 
universe. These facts are coldly impersonal and they flatly refuse to 
make exceptions, being strictly inhuman and inhumane. The other type, 
type two, is the set of truths-by-consensus. They are subject to 
change, exceptions can be made and humane considerations can induce 
changes in their application. They are human and humane. They are 
subject to argument, appeal and pressure of opinion. With respect to 
these facts individual opinion is a meaningful concept. 

Educational administration both as a field of practice and as a 
field of study has long operr»ted on the truth by consensus that 
educational administration is an activity at which males are better 
than females. This truth by consensus has been elevated to the status 
of a fact of the universe, at least by those who dominated the study 
and practice of the field, but it is increasingly a fact under 
challenge. But as Frasher and Frasher (1980) have noted: 

Research related to the gender factor in educational 
administration has yielded an unusur"* phenomenon. 
Individuals who have searched the literature in this field 
will testify to the confusing, frequently contradictory, 
research findings available. Perhaps as a result of this, 
administrators in general do rjt expect to garner much of 
practical value from the library. 

In an earlier paper Briggs and OBrien concluded, after reviewing 
the achievements and selected characteristics of candidates enrolled 
in the two coursework awards offered by the graduate program in 
educational administration at the Flinders University of South 
Australia that 

the groups of men and women candidates, respectively, who 
have enrolled have not shown any marked disparity with regard 
to age at first enrolment, highest previous qualification, 
retention in the Programme, awards obtained or grade p^int 
average achieved. It is regrettable that more women iiave 
not undertaken the courses of study reviewed here. There is 
every indication that they would be just as successful in 
them as their male colleagues. 

(Briggs and OBrien, 1984) 

Without in any way retracting from that previous conclusion this 
paper re-examines those previous findingr and reinte;prets the 
conclusion in the light of two theme8 drawn from the research 
literature (over-achievement or-under-achievement of graduate students 
and staff-student interaction in graduate programs). 

The Flinders University Progra m In Education Administration 

The educational administration program began at Flinders University in 
1976. It has two full-time staff whose area of specialisation is 
educational administration and it draws upon the services of staff in 
other specialist fields, including part-time staff, to supplement the 
teaching. In terms of full-time specialist staff, year of origin, 
number of students and of graduates the program is neither the 
largest, oldest nor most influential of the educational administration 
degree ^nd diploma programs in Australian and New Zealand colleges and 
universities (see Duignan and leather 198.S). Thus in many ways it may 
be taken as representative of its kind. 

Up to and including 1978, students could enrol either in the 
Master of Educational Administration (M. Ed. Admin. ) or in the Diploma 
in Educational Administration (Dip. Ed, Admin. ) program but since then 
only master's degree candidates have been accepted. Students who have 
special reasons for not being able to complete the full master's 
degree program, such as overseas students who are recalled by their 
government, or employees of the South Australian Education Department 
or South Australian Department of Technical and Further Education who 
are transferred to country service, may apply to change their 
enrolment and to seek the award of the Dip. Ed. Admin, instead. 

The master's degree requires two years of full-time study or its 
part-time equivalent and comprises both coursework and an externally- 
examined research project. The diploma program requires one year of 
full-time study or its part-time equivalent and is completed by 
coursework onlv. Students are admitted to the program on the basis of 
their previous academic record regardless of gender and are required 
to have completed at least two years of work experience. 

The Education Administration Candidates 1976-84 

This paper like the earlier one (Briggs and OBrien, 1984) 
considers only those who were accepted as candidates for either award 
in the years 1976-83 inclusive, while the number of M.Ed. Admin, and 
Dip. Ed. Admin, graduates includes those who graduated up until May 
1984. Though a further six master's and four diploma students 
completed their program in the period May 1984-May 1985, they are not 
considered here as the purpose of this paper is i reinterpretation of 
some of the conclusions of the earlier paper. 

In the period under discussion 100 males and 32 females were 
admitted in the program. Of these students 27 had the South 
Australian education department as their most recent employer at the 
time of their first enrolment while a further 3 were employed by the 
South Australian Catholic education system. Table 1 illustrates the 
variety of backgrounds from which the program has drawn its 

Of the 132 students who enrolled, 50 had obtained an award, either 
tha M.Ed. Admin, or the Dip. Ed. Admin. , by May 1984. Tabie 2 shows the 
highest previous qualification held by those students on admission to 
the educational administration program. The most common previous 
highest qualification was a university bachelor's degree, which waR 

- 138 i"^^ 

held by 29 of the 50 students: qualifications such as the diploma in 
education were not considered here* 

Table 3 presents information concerning completed, continuing and 
withdrawn candidates. Of the 132 students admitted to the program 50 
had obtained an award in the period till May 1984, 54 had left the 
program without obtaining an award in educational administration (in 
some cases students had transferred to another award program, for 
example the master of education or the doctor of philosophy programs) 
and 26 were still enrolled* 

In Table 4 are shown the grade point averages achieved by 
candidates who had obtained either the M*Ed*Admin* or the 
Dlp.Ed* Admin, award* In Interpreting these figures it should be borne 
in mind that the program permits students to take up to one-quarter of 
the required coursework from any other approved master's level degree 
program either within the Flinders University or elsewhere* 

These topics are usually reported in student records as 'status' 
grades and they have been calculated as being equivalent to a Flinders 
University 'non-graded pass' and weighted accordingly* 

The mean age of entering the Flinders University educational 
administration program of those candidates who obtained an awa^d was 
36*1 years: for male graduates the mean age was 36.2 years and for 
females it was 36*0 years* 

I_n t er pr e t a t i on of Achievement and Selected Characteristics of 
Candidates 1976-84 

Briggs and OBrien (1984) interpreted the achievement and selected 
characteristics of candidates in the educational administration 
program from 1976-84 in the light of literature on women as candidates 
for careers in educational administration* That original 
interpretation is recapitulated here* 

The small number of female candidates in the program reflected the 
small number of women in administrative positions in the South 
Australian education system* For example, in 1977, although 58 p r 
cent of teachers (excluding pre-school teachers, hourly paid 
instructors and teachers acting in principal education officer 
positions but including school principals) employed by the South 
Australian education department were female, only 23 per cent of the 
promotion positions (those of principal, deputy principal and 
secondary senior) were held by women* In 1984 57 per cent of the 
teachers were female and 21 per cent of the promotion positions were 
held by women (South Australian education department Women's Advisory 
Unit, 1984)* The total number of males employed as teachers in July 
1982 by the South Australian education department, according to its 
Statistical Information Unit, was 6,ec4 K'hile 9,171 females were 

The literature suggests a range of reasons i^or the low proportion 
of administrative posts in education held by women and similar reasons 
have been suggested for the limited number of women in top 
administrative posts elsewhere* For the purpose of discussion these 



reasons may be grouped as those dependir.s on the attitudes and actions 
of others and those for which women are to some extent responsible. 

An example of the first group is the claim that one of the most 
serious problems fac9d by women in administration is that of 'blocked 
promotion'. Cooper and Davidson (1983) suggest: 'For the vast 
majority of women who are struggling for individual recognition and 
achievement, the road up the executive ladder is not so easy'. Though 
there is some evidence in the literature (Stockard 1979) that 
acquaintance with a female administrator in education tends to 
slightly increase approval of female administrators, if the blocked 
promotion is caused by sheer prejudice there is little that women can 
do about it - other, perhaps, than to adopt the tactics advocated oy 
Saul Alinsky (1971). 

The nature of organisational structures has been suggested by some 
writers as constituting a major barrier to women. Aspects of such 
structures include recruitment and promotion practices which favour 
women displaying passive, compliant characteristics which are then 
cited as justification for the unsuitability of women for 
administration (Acker and van Houten 1974). Schmuck (1977) has 
indicated that 

Men are the managers of public schools ... women face unique 
deterrents to careers in administration, and traditional practices 
govern the formal and informal processes of grooming, recruitment 
and selection that have favoured white males. 

Communication networks may exclude women from access to vital 
information (Lloyd 1984) and socialisation structures may support 
upwardly mobile males to the detriment of females (Marshall 1980). 
Kanter (1977) has pointed out that a lone women in a hierarchy of male 
administrators threatens the homogeneity which gives a sense of 
security to the group member: several other researchers, for example 
Cromie (1981), Jabes (1980) and Mai-Dalton and Sullivan (1981) have 
shown that both male and female administrators tend to favour 
colleagues of their own gender. As those at administrative levels are 
likely to be less subject than others to scrutiny and control of their 
actions, such homogeneity is seen as --educing members' uncertainty 
about others' behaviour: a minority member might act unpredictably and 
thus constitute a threat to the rest. Thus women are likely to be 
placed either in positions where an established routine is to be 
followed or in staff positions rather than in positions offering 
possibilities for independent decision making (Kanter 1977). Attempts 
by women to adapt to this situation by following male norms of 
behaviour are likely to be punished or ignored as being unsuitable for 
the group of which they are seen to represent tokens (Ortiz 1980). 

The remedy for the circumstances described above is hard to 
determine. Adkison (1981) in a review of research on women in school 
administration, put the problem thus: 

If, as Kanter maintains, the homogeneous management group 
constrains woippn in order to minimise uncertainty, women's 
increased participation in training programs and in administrative 
roles should reduce uncertainty about their probable 
behaviours ... I f , as Henley argues, women's participation is 

- 140 

limited to ensure their subordinate status, women's increased 
efforts to expand their roles should produce increased 
organisational efforts to restrict that participation. 

Chapman (1975) after reviewing research on women in economics, 
concluded that well-implemented anti-discrimination policies would 
provide the only effective remedy and that it would be useless for 
women to invest in training or other activities since it had not been 
demonstrated that these would enhance their ear ing capacity. Adkison 
(1981) went on to suggest that 'federal, state and local equal 
employment opportunity legislation and affirmative action policies may 
have had greater impact on women's aspirations than on institutions'. 
It may be that the comparatively small number of women enrolling in 
the graduate program reviewed here reflects women's awareness of this 
situation but, as Wolf and Fligstein (1979) have suggested, although 
steps si ould be taken to alter the behaviour and policies of employers 
it is also important to encourage women to improve their 
quali f ications . 

Women's readiness to make the effort to achieve qualifications 
which might be expected to improve their chances of becoming 
administrators depends on their aspirations in this direction. Rossi 
and Calderwood ( 1973) provided documentation that, systematically or 
otherwise, women have been limited in their effort to achieve in, to 
earn from, and to participate in higher education. But what emerges 
from their book is an impression that women have co-operated in this 
failure to achieve, perhaps because they have been insufficiently 
motivated by the values of a male-oriented society or inadequately 
socialised or, knowing these values, unable to bear the heavy costs of 
commitment that males who run institutions have set or even that they 
were unwilling to risk failure. Nieva and Gutek (1979) after 
surveying the literature on female job aspirations and expectations, 
claimed that no real sex differences existed ?n the importance 
attached to intrinsic job factors but they dii suggest that women had 
lower aspirations than did men: 

What women want from a job tends to be shaped by what they expect 
to receive, and what they expect tends to be shaped by what they 
or others like them are receiving or have received in the past. 
The realities of the present affect aspiration for the future. 

This view was corroborated in studies reviewed by Adkison (1981^, 
which linked low aspirations with sex role socialisation resulting 
from society's expectations of women: 

Sex typing of school administration combined with sex role 
socialisation serves to discourage women from preparing for an 
administrative career. Whilo many women prepare for and enter 
careers in education, they are less likely than men to express a 
desire to be school administrators ... Even women in administration 
admit they were reluctant to seek their positions .. .Among 
principals, women are less likely than men to aspire to positions 
beyond the principalship. 

Edson (1979) found that women are more likely to go into research 
that into public school administration while Hesse-Biber (1985) found 
from a survey of male and female perceptions of future career plans 


1 ^: ^ 

that female respondents selected careers traditionally defined as 
acceptable for women and expressed less confidence than their male 
co-:nterparts that they would be successful in their work* 

Adkison (1981) did report signs that more women were deciding to 
prepare themselves for careers in educational administration. In the 
late 1960s, 8 per cent of students in educational administration 
programs affiliated wit? the University Council for Educational 
Administration (UCEA) were women. By 1971-72 21 per cent of master's 
degree graduates in educational administration were women, and by 
1975-76 this figure had risen to 29 per cent. Stockard and Kempner 
(1981) reviewed the enrolments in educational administration programs 
in several western states in the United States and found that for the 
period 1974-79 the figures for male and f emal e enrolments in 
credentialling programs were fairly stable at 70 per cent Ktale and 30 
per cent female. Interestingly the figures for non-credentialling 
degree programs in th« same period were 56 per cent male and 43 per 
cent female lending support to Edson's contention that women tend to 
go into research rather than school administration. 

The number of female master's graduates in educational 
administration at The Flinders University for the period 1976-84 
constituting 31 per cent of the total, is in accord with the above 
figures. Females comprised 33 per cent of diplomates. Adkison 
(1981) added that in the period 1971-76 women's share of doctorates 
in educational administration rose from 6 per cent to 20 per cent. 
In the period reported in this paper women represented 75 per cent of 
the doctorates awarded in educational administration. 

G/oss and Trask (1976) indicated that women are likely to spend a 
longer time than men as teachers before achieving an administrative 
position in education while Silver (1977) reported that women had 
been teaching slightly longer than men before entering a graduate 
program in educational administration. The mean age at the time of 
entering The Flinders University program of those male and female 
candidates respectively who completed a qualification was calculated 
to see whether the women were on average older than their male 
counterparts. It was found that the mean age of entrants in this 
group was 36.1 years: for men it was 36.2 years and for women it was 
36.0 years. Silver's (1977) typical' female Job candidate was about 
35 years old and was enrolled in a doctoral program which she 
expected to complete at the age of 36 or 37 years old. The mean age 
of female entrants at Flinders University is comparable but the 
candidates her-" reviewed were seeking a master's degree or a diploma 
and not a doctorate. This may be explained by the fact that in 
general Australian educational administrators are not expected to 
hold any qualifications in educational administration and higher 
degrees of any kind are rarely encountered in the teaching force. In 
1983 members of the teaching force (as defined earlier) employed by 
the South Austral ian education department included seven men and 
three women with doctorates. 

The highest previous qualification possessed by all candidates 
who completed either the M.Ed. Admin, or the Dip. Ed. Admin, at Flinders 
University was investigated to see whether or not a different pattern 
emerged for the groups of males and females respectively. As shown 

in Table 2 although there were more men than women, equal numbers 
already had a master's or an honours bachelor's degree. There is 
thut? a slight tendency for womjn as a group to have higher previous 
qualifications than men but the numbers involved are too small for 
this tendency to be regarded as important, A much larger proportion 
of the men had university bachelor's pass degrees which represent the 
median qualification in the ranking in Table 2. 

As the literature discusses the job aspirations of women and 
indicates that they need persistence in order to overcome barriers to 
promotion Table 3 was constructed to show the numbers of men and 
women respectively who had left the program, had obtained either the 
M.Ed. Admin, or the Dip. Ed. Admin, or were continuing candidates. The 
latter group comprised two students who had been granted an 
intermission of candidacy and 26 whose studies were not yet completed 
or who were awaiting the reports of external examiners on their 
research project. As shown in Table 3 some 54 of the 132 students 
who had enrolled in the program had left: the reasons for departure 
included transfer to one of the other programs within the school or 
university, removal from Adelaide, inadequate standards of work and 
personal and/or work-related reasons. It cannot be claimed that the 
figures in Table 3 constitute a clear measure of candidates' 
aspirations or persistence. Whereas in the early years of the 
program, that is, 1976 ~ 1978 inclusive, candidates had the option of 
enrolling either as a master's degree or as a diploma candidate, in 
later years this option has not been available. The decirion to 
withdraw from the program or to opt for the lesser award might 
reflect the pressure of external circumstances or limited academic 
ability or a change of interests rather than low aspirations or low 
persistence. Nevertheless, insofar as conclusions can be drawn from 
the figures shown in Table 3, it is interesting to note that there is 
no appreciable difference between those for men and those for women. 

One reason which might account for the small number of women who 
have achieved administrative positions in education could be that 
they are, ' fact, less intrinsically able than men to perform the 
requisite tasks. Although such a claim was commonly made in past 
years it is rarely encountered in current, serious, literature. 
Indeed, Frasher and Frasher (1979, 1980) cite details of research 
studies which consistently show that in nearly every comparison of 
actual administrative performance there were no gender differences or 
women received higher ratings. Women ir some administrative posts 
may be found to be ineffective because of lack of co-operation from 
male colleagues or from exclusion from their networks (Adkison 1981). 
It is not claimed that success in the educational administration 
program at Flinders University is in itself an indicator or 
administrative ability. It is, however, an indicator of academic 
ability applied to issues related to administration. The grade point 
average scores of male and female graduates and diplomats were 
calculated, therefore, to ascertain whether females had higher or 
lower scores than males (Table 4). A t-tesc analysis produced no 
significant differences between the scores of male and of female 
students. It should be noted that this calculation did not take into 
account the research component of the master's degree which is 
externally assessed on a pass/fail basis. 


Briggs and OBrien concluded that, though fewer women than men 
have enrolled in the educational administration program at Flinders 
University, the groups of ipale and female candidates, respectively, 
who have enrolled have not shown any marked disparity with regard to 
age at first enrolmen: highest previous qualification achieved, 
award obtained, retention in the program or grade point average 

If, as some researchers have claimed, the fact that there are 
comparatively few female educational administrators has adversely 
affected education systems, it is regrettable that more women 
have not undertaken the courses of study reviewed here. There is 
every indication that they would be just as successful in them as 
their male colleagues. 

(Briggs and OBrien 1984) 

The Conclusion Reinterpreted 

Berelson, when he spoke about the 1045 findings about human 
behaviour d rived from the study which he had co-directed with 
Steiner, com^ ^essed the findings into three propositions (Berelson 

1. Some do, some don't. 

2 • The di f f erences aren ' t very great . 

3. It's more complicated than that. 

These three propositions might serve answers to the question: 
^Do females perform as well as males in graduate programs in 
educational administration?' They will serve as a starting point for 
a reinterpretat ion of the Briggs and OBrien paper's conclusion. 

In many ways the conclusion cited above is a le f t-handed 
compliment. It can be claimed that it represented conclusions about 
success and influence drawn t rom androcentric paradigms: Gatikell 
(1983) and Shakeshaft and Nowell (1984) have pointed to the fact that 
mariy of the dominant paradigms of status-attainment, administration 
and organisatinal aspirations of men and women about care -rs in 
administration and the conclusion may represent, therefore, onl/ part 
of the truth. 

Moreover, the data reported in the original paper are group data 
and what holds for the group cannot validly be inferred to hold for 
each member of the group. To infer thus would be to commi t the 
fallacy of division. 

In this section of the paper the conclusion originally drawn by 
Briggs and OBrien is re-examined in the light of two themes drawn from 
the literature. These themes are that o. over- and under-achievement 
and that of staff-student interaction in graduate programs. As 
acl\ievement is related to scaf f-student interaction it will be at 
times difficult to make clear distinctions in this reinterpre' ition. 

A question which arises in considering the achievement of males 
and females in graduate programs is that of why so few women enrol. 
The proportion of males to females reported for this program compares 

- 144 - 


with the proportions cited from overseas literature (for example 
Stockard and Kempner 1981). Aitken (1982), however, had found that 
those women who were well educated and who became voters or entered 
the workforce between 1969 and 1979 are the most highly p ^iticised 
group in the whole community. While not wishing to imply a 
relationship between poli ticisation and enrolment in a graduate 
program in educational administration it is permissible to ask whether 
Aitken 's findings might not suggest thai the enrolment of women ought 
not to be higher, given thet teachers may be seen as among the most 
wtill educated groups in the community. 

Various authors have commented on attrition and retentior. rates at 
colleges and universities. Sheldrake (1^76) in a study of why 
students who had enrolled at Flinders University in the period 1966 - 
1975 left the University without completing their degree course, found 
the part-time students were more likely to withdraw than full-time 
ones, whether this was to avoid failure or for other reasons. He 
found also that men were slightly less likely to withdraw from courses 
than women and that women were more likely to have withdrawn to avoid 
failure or for other personal reasons but that the differences were 
not statistically significant. Other reasons cited for withdrawal 
were ill-health, too-hard work, removal elsewhere or deferral and 
failure to re-enrol. Sheldrake (1976) concluded that his figures 
^provide a slight, but tantalising insight into the reasons that 
studente are prepared to offer for withdrawal; they hardly explain why 
so many ^successful' students decide to leave university'. Though 
Sheldrake's study predated the beginning of the educational 
administration program, anecdotal evidence gathered during the last 
nine years suggests that those studente who withdrew from the program 
shared the same reasons as those in Sheldrake's study, but other 
reasons may apply, particularly in a graduate program. Solomon (1976) 
has suggested that women are less likely to go into debt to finance a 
graduate education that are men while Berg and Ferber (1983) have 
claimed that women are more likely than men to receive moral and other 
support from their parents and their partners. Epstein (1973) claimed 
that women who withdraw are more likely to be met by sympathy, 
understanding and affection than are men and Hoffman (1974) has said 
that they are more likely to hs. e options available to them ». men 
do not. 

Though no appreciable differences were found in the figures 
presented in Table 3 concerning withdrawal and retention, insofar as 
conclusions can l> drawn it would be wrong to infer that the same sets 
■)f pressures operated on the two groups of students. It could be 
argued that factors encouraging persistence in a graduate program 
operate in favour of women, if one accepts the implications of the 
research literature cited above. It is interesting to note, for 
example, that no feniale student has withdrawn from the prograr because 
of marital breakdown whereas tl is reason has been cited by several 
males (the program of one female student was adversely affected by the 
trauma surrounding a divorce but the marital breakdown had preceded 
enrolment in the progran,). 

The question of enrolment, attrition and retention as an indicator 
of o\3r- or under-achievement by males and females enrolled in the 
program is thus problematical. 

- 145 - 


other factors suggest that the picture is not clear cut. It is 
strongly suggested in the literature that the success or failure of 
female students in graduate programs is associatefl with such issues as 
role models and interaction with staff. Astin and Kent (1983) 
reported positive associations between self esteem and knowing at 
least one staff member personally, while Tidball (1976) noted that 
faculty members tend to be supportive of students of their own gender, 
a view supported by others, for example, Jabes (1989) and Stevens and 
DeNisi (1980). Estler (1975), Schmuck (1975) and Weber, Feldman and 
Poling (1980) noted respondents felt that the absence of role models 
dampened women's aspirations, while Denmark (1980), from a study of 
students in psychology doctoral programs, concluded that productivity 
was related to same gender supervisors. 

In the light of such findings it is pertinent to consider Briggs 
and OBrien's original conclusion in the light of certain 
characteristics of the program and its staff. There are two full-time 
staff members, both of whom cr«» similarly qualified in academic terms 
(both possess the doctorc\te). For most of the period under 
discussion, 1976-84, each has occupied highly visible administrative 
positions within th? school of education and the university. The 
female staff member has served as program co-ordinator (1976-77 and 
1980-82) vice-chai rpersun of the school (1977-78) and chairperson 
(1983 to date). She was also a successful school principal for a 
number of years and may thus be d- 3m&d to be a successful role model 
for women graduate students in educational adminlsti ^ition. In the 
gender composition of its full-time staff, the Flinders University 
educational administration program may thus be unique among Australian 
and New Zealand programs, but the effect of this on students' 
achievement is difficult to discern. For example, though there is a 
slight tendency for female studencs in the M.Ed. Admin, to be 
supervised by the female staff mei;iber (five of the nine M.Ed. Admin, 
women graduates have been so supervised) it is impossible to ascribe 
this to same sexhomophily rather than, rja/, to concern for the subject 
specialisation of the staff. 

It is difficult to aetermine whut effect the gender of the full- 
time staff members had on the achievement of the male and female 
stvdents enrolled in the program. 

Feldman (1974) and Hitchman (1976) have shown that in American and 
Canadian graduate programs women tend to receive better grades than 
men. One possible explanation of this (Adler 1976) is that th:.ii could 
be a function of the greater self selection of women into graduate 
studies, which would lead to more qualified women students. It was 
not found that, for the groups of male and female students 
respectively, there were appreciable differences in the grade point 
average scores (see Table 4) but a slight tendency was found for women 
as a group to havo higher previous qualifications than men as a group 
(see Table 2) . 

From the overseas evidence, it could be concluded that womer as a 
group in the Flinders University educational administration program 
might be under achieving. It is interesting to refer to a study by 
Stockard and Wood (1984) in which they examined the achievements of 
high school graduates. They noted that, although the highest 
achieving females often have lower average ability test scores than 


-U6- i^'O 

the highest achieving males, thid results not from the under 
achievement of the brightest females but from the fact that females 
with a wide range of ability levels receive good grades and on}.^ the 
very brightest males high grades* In this context, it is perhaps 
pertinent to note Angrist's and Almquist's (1975) comment on female 
undergraduates : 

The student who knows the material and gives tangible eviderce of 
her brightness to faculty members will reap a harvest. She will 
find professors interested in her ideasi eager to answer 
questions, ready to direct her to further information, and above 
all, willing to get to know her. 

This again raises the issue of staff-student interaction ana its 
effect on achievement. While it is conceded that it may be exceeding 
permissible limits to generalise from undergraduate and high school 
research to a graduate program, the question does arise whether or not 
the reported grade point average scores represent something other than 
mastery of the content matter, for example the operation of a 
^Pygmalion effect' (Rosenvhal and Jacobson 1968). 

In connection with the grade point average score? which reflect 
grades achieved in the coursework component only of the degree and 
diploma program, it is pertinent to comment that the dominant form of 
asbignment on which these grades were based ia the essay. It has been 
demonstraLed that female students show less growth in methematical and 
quantitative skills than do their male colleagues and that females are 
advantaged in essay type questions (Hesse-Biber 1985; Stockard and 
Wood 1984) even in such rreas as Physics where differences in tested 
performance are well known (Clay 1982, 1983; Kelly 1981). If such 
differences hold in graduate programs in educational administration, 
do the grade point average scores prasent a true picture of 
achievement - whatever that is? 

Discussion and Conclusion 

Even a cursory examination of the research literature suggests 
that the original conclusion of Briggs and OBrien that females do as 
well as males in graduate programs in educational administration 
represents only one layer of the overall truth. The original 
conclusion wac based on d::':a about groups of students and was 
sufficient insofar as it went, that is, that there were no marked 
disparities between the two groups on certain selected variables and 
that, based on this finding, females would be just as successful in 
the program as their male colleagues. The conclusion was insufficient 
in that it did not add ^as a group'. 

It would be wrong to infer anything from the data and the 
conclusion about the success of individuals. Neither would it be 
proper to infer from the data and conclusions that women in 
educational administration are 'an underachieving group' (Byrne 1978) 
or an over-achieving group either for that matter. 

It is apparent from the literature on males and females as 
graduate students that achievement is related to a number of factors 
such as the form of assessment used, partner and parental support. 



- 147 - 

willingness to go into debt to finance graduate studies, the degree of 
sympathy and support available and the impression given to faculty 
members by ^bright' students. Without a knowledge of how these 
factors and others operate, to conclude that one group of students 
would do as well as another becomes a non-conclusion. 

Other unknowns f ur ther contaminate the conclusion. Students are 
selected on the basis of previous academic record and gender is not 
considered either for admission purposes or in planning program 
structure. It is possible that this procedure itself discriminates 
against one or another group of students. Freeman (1975) would claim, 
for example, that an academic program which neither encourages nor 
di scour ages students of either gender is irherently discriminatory 
against women because it fails to take into account the 
differentiating external environment? from which male and female 
students come, a viewpoint also held by Astin (1979). But Berg and 
Ferber (1983) have demonstrated the disadvantages from which males 
suffer in educatl'^n, claiming that there exists a parallel between the 
position of female students in the sciences and male students in 
education in terms of lesser achievenient . 

The notion that it was 'regrettable thai more women have not 
undertaken the courses of study reviewed here' (Briggs and OBrien 
1984) represents perhaps both an androcentric view of success and a 
notion of group parity, that is, that a group represented among 
graduate students by some variant of that percentage. This is a quota 
system, but group parity is not individual equality. 

It becomes apparent then that the data considered and the 
conclusion drawn in the original paper represent only one layer of 
truth. There are different layers to the overall truti; cf ths 
situation concerning the achievement of male and female students in 
graduate programs in educational administration and to reject any 
interpretation would be to dismiss important data that could aid in 
understanding the issues involved. The search for a causal mechanism 
which explains achievement is complicated by the fact that the 
viewpoint of the correspondent may dictate the alternate explanation 
accepted. This however, helps to emphasise the complexity of the 
situation and ensures that there is less chance that the phenomenon 
will be oversimplified. 


This paper began by noting that educational administration has 
long operated on a truth-by-consensus that males were better than 
females at the activity of educational administration. This truth is 
now under attack. In the me an ti me, a no ther truth-by-consensus is 
emerging: that with regard to the position of women in educational 
admini strati on ^we know what the position is' . With regard to the 
matters covered in this paper, that is the achievement of women as 
candidates for awards in educational administration, the conclusion 
dissents from this truth. As Frasher and Frasher (1980) have noted, 
the evidence on the gender factor in educational administration is 
both confusing and frequ3nt}y contradictory and there are many things 
not known. For example, it is not known whether colleges and 


- 148 - 

universities should develop special programs for women who wish to 
become educational administrators and provide useful knowledge and 
skills or, instead, segregate them, mark them as deficient and convey 
misinformation. In ouch a situation the gratification of having an 
opinion should be Jelayed. 

It is expected of scholars that they should accept but little and 
then only that little which has withstood the test of critical 
opinion. Handlin (1971) wrote: 'there can be no scholarly discussion 
of any brcader matter until there is agreement - total, unqualified, 
and unconoitional - on the ineluctable and binding quality of the 
data". Until such data become available, built on good, careful, 
reasonably agnostic observation (as opposed to experi mental 
manipulation. Burton 1979), to suggest policy options concerning ways 
of improving the position of women as can di dates for awards i n 
educational administration would be (to use Oliver Wendell Holmes' 
words about the activities of lawyers) to spend time 'shovelling 
smoke'. At the moment the only proper answer which can be given to 
the question whether or not men and women (individually or as groups) 
perform in a comparable manner in graduate programs in educational 
administration is : 

I • Some do , some don ' t . 

2. The differences aren't very great. 

3. It's more complicated than that . 

(Berelson 1979) 

- 149 - 





Male Female 

Diploma tes 
Male Female 

South Australian education 

department 6 

South Australian department of 

technical and further education 3 

South Australian Catholic 

education system 2 

College of advanced education 2 

University 2 

Church organisation 1 

Overseas government service or 

instruirantali ty 1 

Overseas college university 1 










Master's degree 

Honours bachelor ' s degree 

University bachelor's degree 

Non-university bachelor's degree 









- 150 - 






Candidates ever enrolled 100 

Total number who have obtained 

an award 34 

Candidates who completed the 

Master's degree 20 

Candidates who completed the Diploma 14 

Candidates still enrolled or 

awaiting results 20 

Candidates on intermission 2 

Candidates who have left the program 44 







Grade Point Average 

Male Female All 

Candidates who obtained an award 1.9 2.08 1.99 

Candidates who obtained the 

Master's degree 1.86 1.68 1.80 

Candidates who obtained the 

Diploma 2.0'' 2.59 2.56 

An A Grade = 3 
A B Grade = 2 
A C Grade = 1 
A non-graded pass = 1 

A grade obtained in a program other than the 
Flinders University ed. admin. program = 1 


- 151 J^^4 


Acker, J., and van Houten, D.R. ( 1974) Differential recruitment and 
control: the aex structuring of organizations, Administrative 
Science Quarterly, 19(2), 152-64. 

Adkis on, J. A. (1981) Uomen in school administration: a review of the 
research, Review of Educational Research, 51(3), 3il-43. 

Adler , N.E. Women students, in Katz, J., and Hartnett, R.T 

(eds)(1976) Scholars in the waking. Ballinger, Cambridge, Mass. 

Aitken, D. (1982) Stability and change in Australian politics. ANU 
Press, Canberra. 

Alinsky, ?.D. (1971) Rules for radicals. Random House. Vintage 
Books, New York. 

Angrist, D.D. and Almquist, E.M. (1975) Careers and contingenciest 
how college women JuggJe with gender. Dunellen, New York. 

Astin, A.W. ( 1979) Four criticaJ years: effects of college on 
beliefs, attitudes and knowledge. Jossey-Bass, San Francisco. 

Astin, H.S., and Kent, L. (1983) Gender roles in transition, Journal 
of Higher Education, 54(3), 309-24. 

Berelson, B. (1983) Comment, in Current Contents, (42: 12) , October 

Berg, H.M., and Ferber, M.A. (1979) Men and women graduates: who 
succeeds ar.d why? Journal of Higher Education, 54(6), 629-48. 

Briggs, D.K. and OBrien, P.W. (1984) Women as candidates for 
Educational Administration, in Burns, R. , and Sheehan, B. (eds) 
Women and education . Proceedings of the 12th Annual Conference, 
Australian and New Zealand Comparative and International Education 
Society, La Trobe University- 
Burton, N.W, (1979) Assessment as exploratory research: a 
theoretical overview. Educational Technology, 19(12), 5-11. 

Byrne, E. ( 1978) Women and education. Tavistock Publications, 

Chapman, J.R. (1975) Economics, Signs, 1(1), 139-45. 

Clay, R.W. ( 1982) The academic achieve lent of undergraduate women in 
Physics, Physics Education, 232. 

Clay, R.W. ( 1983) The effect of s^.udent gender on performance in 
final-year high school Physics examination. Search, 14(9), 273- 

Cooper, C.L. and Davidson, M.L. (1983) The female manager - the 
pressures and the problems. Long Range Planning, 16(1), 10-14. 


- 152 - 

Cromie, S. (1981) Women as managers in Northern Ireland, Journal of 
Occupational Psychology, 54, 87-91. 

Denmark, F.L. (1980) Psyche: from rocking the cradle to rocking the 
boat, American Psychologist, 35, 1057-65. 

Duignan, P. A. and leather, D.C.B. (1985) Teaching Educational 
Administration e^.ternally at post-graduate level at the University 
of New England, Distance Education, 6:1, 34-55. 

Edson, S.K. (1979) Differential experience of male and female 
aspirants for public school administration: a closer look at 
perceptions in the field. Paper presented at the Annual AERA 
Meeting, San Francisco (1979) and cited by Stockard and Kempner 

Epstein, CP. ( 1973) Wo/nan's pi ace. University of California 
Press, Berkeley. 

Estler, S. (1975) Women as leaders in public education. Signs, 
1(2), 363-86. 

Feldman, S.D. (1974) Escape from the doll's house: women in graduate 
and professional school education. McGraw-Hill, New York. 

Frasher, J.M. and Frasher, R.S. (1979) Educational Administration: a 
feminine profession. Educational Administration Quarterlu , 
15(2), 1-13. 

Frasher, J.M. and Frasher, R.S. (1983) Sex bias in the evaluation of 
administrators. Journal of Educational Administration, 18(2), 

Frcreman, J. ( 1975) How to discriminate against women without really 
trying, in Freeman, J. (ed). Wo/ne/j; a feminist perspective, 
Palo Alto, Mayfield, Ca. 

Gaskell, J. (1983) Education and women's work: some new research 
directions. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 29(3), 224- 

Gross, N., and Trask, A.E. ( 1976) The sex factor and the management 
of schools. John Wiley and Sons, New York. 

Hancllin, 0. (1971) History: a discipline in crisis?. The American 
Scholar, Summer 1971, 463. 

Hesse-Biber, S. (1975) Male and female students' perceptions of their 
academic environment and future career plans: implications for 
higher education. Human Relations, 38(2), 91-105. 

Hitchman, G.S. (1976) The professional socialization of women and men 
in two Canadian graduate schools. Doctoral dissertation, York 
University, Toronto. . 

Hoffman, L.W. ( 1974) Fear of success in males and females: 1965 and 
1972, Journal of Counselling and Clinical Psychology, 42, 355- 

Jabes, J. (i980) Causal attributes and sex-role stereotypes in the 
perceptions of women managers, Canadian Journal of Behavioral 
Science i 12, 52-63. 

Kanter, R,M. (1977) Hen and women of the corporation, Basic Books, 
New York. 

Kelly, A. (1981) The missing half. Manchester, U.P. Manchester. 

Larwood, L. and Lockheed, M. (1979) Women as managers: toward 
second generation research, Sex Roles, 5(5), 659-65. 

Lloyd, A. (1984) Career development: a study of career aspirations 
end expectations, and career facilitation and barriers, of 
selected women in one professional area in Australia. Doctoral 
dissertation, The Flinders University, Adelaide. 

Mai-Dalton, R.R. and Sullivan, J.J, (1981) The effects of manager's 
sex on the assignment to a challenging or a dull task and reasons 
for the choice. Academy of Management Journal, 24, 603-12. 

Marshall, C. (1980) University and career structures that facilitate 
career socialization of women in school administration. Paper 
presented at the Annual AERA Meeting, Boston. 

Nieva, V.F. and Gutek, B.A. (1979) Women's work: what women want, 
expect and get, in Gutek, B.A. (ed.) Enhancing women's career 
development, San Francisco, Jossey-Bass. 

Ortiz, F.I. (1980) The structure of educational administration in 
public school organizations. Paper presented at the Annual AERA 
Meeting, Boston. 

Rosenthal, R, and Jacobson, L. (1968) Pygmalion in the classroom. 
Rinehart and Winston, Holt, New York. 

Rossi, A.S. and Calderwood, A, (eds), ( 1973) Academic women on the 
move, Russell Sage Foundation, New York. 

Schmuck, P,A. (1975) Deterrents to women's careers in school 
management. Sex Roles 1(4), 330-53. 

Schmuck, P. A. (1977) Sex differentiation in educational 
administration in the United Sates: a political and educational 
appraisal. Paper presented at the 4th National Conference, 
Australian Council for Educational Administration, Brisbane. 

Shakeshaft, C. and Nowell, I. (1984) Research on theories, concepts, 
and nodels of organizational behavior: the influence of gender, 
Issues in education 2(3), 186-203. 

Sheldrake, P. (1976) Failure and withdrawal: student dropout at 
Flinders University, in Vestes 19(2), 25-29. 

Silver, P«F. ( 1977) Are women underqual i f i pH for lo^rjership? Phi 
Delta Kappan 59(3), 207. 


- 154 - 

Solomon, L.C. (1976) Hale and female graduate students: the question 
of equal opportunity. Praeger, New York. 

South Australian Education Department Women's Advisory Unit (1984) 
Equals 1(1). 

Stevens, G.E. and DeNisi, A.S. (1980) Women as managers: attitudes 
and attributions of performance by men and women. Academy of 
ttanagement Journal 23, 355-60. 

Stockard, J. (1979) Public prejudice against women school 
administrators: the possibility of change. Educational 
Administration Quarterly 15(3), 83-96. 

Stockard, J. and Kempner, K. (1981) Women's reprecentation in school 
administration: recent trends. Educational Administration 
Quarterly 17(2), 81-91. 

Stockard, J. and Wood, J.W. ( 1 984 ) The myth of female 
underachievement: a re-examination of sex differences in academic 
underachievement , American Educational Research Journal 21(4). 

Tidball, M.E. (1976) Of men and research: the dominant themes in 
American higher educational include neither teaching nor women. 
Journal of Higher Education 47(4), 3:3-38. 

Weber, M.B., Felman, J.R. and Poling, E.G. (1980) A study of factors 
affecting career aspirations of women teachers and educational 
administrators. Paper presented at the Annual AERA Meeting, 
Boston . 

Wolf, W.C. and Fligstein, N-D. (1979) Sex and authority in the work 
place: the causes of sexual inequality, American Sociological 
Leview 44(2), 235-52. 


- 155 - 


Maureen Bickley 


Just over a year ago in July 1984 the Australian Colloge of 
Education sponsored its second Women in Educational Mans^ement 
conference in Armidale. That conference proved a watershed in at 
least two respects. 

For a number of Mgher education institutions, the data collection 
on the position of females within their institutions and the follow-up 
activities afte" the conference constituted a significant catalyst. 
The timing was opportune because the Green Paper on 1984 Affirmc*tive 
Action for Women has just been tabled in Parliament and on 2 July the 
government's affirmative action pilot program commenced with the 
participation of twenty-eight of AustraliaCs major private sector 
employers and three higher education institutions. Over 200,000 
employees were involved ia the pilot program. 

The second watershed was a personal one. Shortly after the 
Armidale Conference I left my academic position at the Western 
Australian Institute of Technology to work as a consultar>t with the 
Office of the Status of WomenCs Affirmative Action Resource Unit. 
This meant moving to Canberra with my fa*;iily and spending the best 
part of a year commuting between Canberra, Adelaide and Brisbane to 
meet with program participants as we 11 as attending mee^.ngs and 
seminars in Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia. 

This paper reviews the pilot program and draws out the lessons 
that have been learned through the twelve months and their 
implications for the education sector. The pilot has just finished 
and the Affirmative Action Resource Unit (AARU) is in the process of 

de s t r uc t i ng ' , that is, staff are returning to their previous 
posit ions. 

The Affirmative Action Pilot Program 

In 1984 the government set up a working party to review the pilot 
and to make recommendations to the government cn the form and content 
of affir-native action legislation. All parties affected by such 
legislation are represented on the working party - employers, trade 
unions, education institutions, women, relevant Ministers and a member 
of the Opposition. During the pilot the government and the 
participants learned a great deal about the difficulties and successes 
of introducing affirmative action. The participants presented a 
considerable amount of information to the working party at a case 
study day in April 1985 and have completed a detailed questionnaire at 
the conclusion of th pilot. The AARU conducted public meetings in 
all capital cities and have been involved in numerous speak i ng 
engagements. Enormous quantities of affirmative action materials have 
been prepared, printed and distributed. In idit^'on to these 
activities, press advertisements invited interested individuals c'^nd 
groups to make submissions on affirmative action legislation 


- 156 - 

proposals. The quality and quantity of submissio j received was 
commendable. The working party has already met four times and will 
meet several more times to prepire its recommendations to the 
government later. 

It might be appropriate in light of some of the papers and 
discussions at this conference to take a little time to clarify the 
term 'affirmative action'. It seems tnat some people regard 
affirmative action as synonymous with positive discrimination or 
quotas. This is not the Commonwealth's position. The policy 
discussion paper on Affirmative Action for Uoinen (Green Paper) 
published in 1984 states: 

The Government defines Affirmative Action as a systematic 
means, determined by the employer in consultation with senior 
management, employees and unions, of achieving equal 
employment opportunity (EEO) for women. Affirmative Action 
is compatible with appointment and promotion c> the basis of 
the principle of merit, skills and qualifications. 

As the Prime Minister said in his tabling speech 'put quite simply, 
EEO is our objective and affirmative action is the way to achieve it.' 

The Government has never supported the introduction of quotas but 
has encouraged the development of strategies, goals and numerical 
targets consistent with appointment by merit. This of course begs the 
question 'What Is merit?' Warren Louden has described how the Western 
Australian education department, as part of its affirmative action 
program, has reviewed merit to incorporate a range of skills, 
abilities and qualifications more often identified by and in women. 

Although the pace of change may be less . apid in the short term 
than jf quotas were introduced the Commonwealth believes its merit- 
based approach is both more achievable, realistic and sustainable. 
There aro some obvious 'traps' attached to quotas which must be 
avoided. For instance the appointment of the second best and not the 
best person for the job has long term community costs. Although it 
may be argued that employment equity is achieved by quotas both the 
efficiency o'' employment and the quality of serv?ce delivery is 
reduced. Government employment is not an enr" in itself but the means 
to an end - the delivery of goods and services to the community. 
Equal employment opportunity is a means to improve that delivery. 

However, the definition of positive discrimination is itself not 
an easy one. It is known that women begin in the system as well or 
better qualified than men but as a result of women s experiences 
within the system (what Shirley Sampson called 'their apprenticeship') 
they fail to gain experiences valued by the system. An affirmative 
action program would involve a range of strategies designed to 
compensate and overcome this deficiency. It may mean that the staff 
training and development budget gets turned on its head for a period 
of time while resources are allocated to meet the systems most 
pressing needs, that of its women staff. But is an 80 per cent staff 
training and development expenditure on women (67 per cent) 
discriminating against men? It is argued that this is simply one 
affirmative action strategy designed to achieve EEO. Where 
differences of opinion exist is in the area of appointment. The 

ER?C J 70 

Commonwealth would argue against the bypassing of the beso person for 
a job and the appointment of the second, third or fourth best person 
who are women; that is, providing both the processes of selection and 
the criteria used in selection are indeed appropriate for the position 
and free from sex bias. 

It should be remembered that if there are special reasons why, in 
the short term, it is appropriate for only a woman to be employed in a 
certain position - a so called sex-tagged position - thin application 
can * e made for an exemption under the Sex Discrimination Act and tiie 
advertisement and recruitment can proceed as such. 

Lessons from the Pilot 

The pilot program has been enormously successful and has provided 
four ^lessons' to explore. 

Introduce comprehensive plan 

Firstly, any process of change must be both systematic and 
comprehensive. Fragmented, one-off changes will certainly be 
marginalised and eventually swamped. It recommends that participants 
proceed through a series of eight steps. The pilot indicated that 
often the skipping of one step cr its undertaking in a token form 
meant that the introduction of atfirmative action was more easily 
slowed, sidetracked or compromised. Since an affirmative action 
program concentrates on the elimination of systemic discrimination, it 
requires a comprehensive, system-wide introduction. Changes in 
selection procedures need to be complemented by changes in job design, 
access to training and opportunities for promotion. Consultation with 
women and unions proved a vital though difficult step for many 
participants. The importance of securing and utilising management 
commitment to EEO has been highlighted as a major factor in ensuring 
that the change program is integrated into all activities and is taken 
seriously by the organisation. The Commonwealth program's eight steps 
are a useful guide for introducing affirmative action and are set out 
in detail in the implementation manual. 

Accelerate rate of social change 

Secondly, the pilot program has shown that it is possible to 
accelerate the rate of social change. The majority of the pilot 
participants had little or no involvement with affirmative action or 
EEO activities prior to July 1984. Within a year almost all had 
introduced significant and lasting changes in the way they advertised 
for and selected applicants, in training and promotional opportunities 
for women and in their collection of data on the position of women 
within their workforce. Many of these changes are reported in the 
prof ^ss report issued by the AARU in May 1985. Once the private 
seccor recognised the benefits of affirmative action they acted 
quickly and decisively to secure them. These participants have called 
upon the education sector to accelerate its response rate in the same 



- 158 - 

Recruit yomen for non-traditional jobs 

Thirdly, many pilot participants reported great difficulty in 
recruiting women and girls to work in non-traditional jobs. The AARU 
produced a paper for employers to assist them when employing female 
apprentices for the first time and offered consultancy support to 
three South Australian companies Santos, Simpsons and Mitsubishi. All 
of these sought females for engineering and apprenticeship positions 
but when only 5 females have graduated with bachelors of Engineering 
in the past two years from South Australia then their difficulties in 
securing a female engineer are not surprising. Only 8 per cent of 
engineer graduates are female yet this is almost twice the figure it 
was five or ten years ago. When participants advertised 
apprenticeships for females and males the/ received few or no female 
applicants. Some went to schools and technical and further education 
colleges to speak to classes in the hope of securing greater numbers 
oi* female applicants, again with litv^le success. Participants nave 
called on schools and tertiary institutions to do more. The all too 
familiar cyclical argument of schools pointing the finger at employers 
who do not provide opportunities for girls; and employers blaming 
schools for not preparing girls adequately in terms of pre-requis i tes 
and attitudes now has an opportunity to be broken. Many employers are 
for the first time actively seeking girls to fill non-traditional 
jobs. The demand is there - affirmative action legislation will only 
serve to strengthen this. Girls completing years 10 and 12 in 1985 
will be the target for employers and institutions seeking females in 
non-traditional jobs and courses. Success in these areas requires 
more than just preparation through pre-requisites ; it requires an 
understanding of women's position in the workforce and a number of 
social skills, including those needed to deal effectively with the 
sexual harrassment prevalent in these araas. '"^irls also need some 
understanding of the values of networking and perhaps a greater sense 
of confidence and determination to succeed. 

Next year's senior classes will have even wider opportunities. 
Economists have shown that in Australia's sex segregated labour 
market, females working in non-traditional areas earn, on average, a 
greater percentage of the male wage than females concentrated in the 
predominantly female occupations. But females often have a hard row 
to hoe in these non-traditional areas. The pilot program and future 
affirmative action legislation will certainly make the trip a little 
less harrowing. Just as changes in an organisation must be 
comprehensive so too must changes in labour market programs be 
integrated with educational programs to ensure one does not frustrate 
the progress of the other. 

Develop education/employment interface 

Some semployers have actively sought female applicants through 
school visits. The development of the education/employment or 
schoo 1 /employer interface is the fourth aspect flowing from the pilot 
experience. Perceptions of students and in particu3ar those of the 
parents, lag behind changes in employment patterns. The demand for 
teaching places after the teacher *boom' had ended was a good example 
of this. Studies show girls in 1985 still expect to be secretaries, 
sales assistants, teachers, nurses and clerks. Neither schools nor 
employers can change these attitudes and perceptions single handedly. 

J 72 

- 159 - 

The more creative, aggressive use of interface activities, such as 
work experience placements for girls in non~tradi tional Jobs, the 
exposure of female students to role models employed in non~traditional 
jobs, the involvement of major EEO employers with careers counsellors, 
and special parents programs could a) 1 be used to accelerate attitude 
change. This role of the employer /school interface is not a new 
discovery but what is new is the new climate among employers created 
by the pilot and perhaps a new energy generated by imminent 
aftirmative legislation. 

It is important that in the next few months a number of 
possibilities for facilitating co-operative arrangements between 
employers and the education sector are explored which will complement 
affirmative action legislation. 


In conclusion the pilot program has shown that it is possible to 
accelerate the process of labour market change but co do so requires 
the commitment of senior management and of corporate resources to 
introduce a comprehensive and systematic program. While the pilot has 
pointed out the deficiencies in the education and training of women 
and girls it has also produced a much improved climate for co- 
operative efforts by employers and the education sector in seeking a 
solution. If the benefits of the co-operative policy development 
between employers and the Office of the Status of Women in the pilot 
is any indication of the unfolding possibilities then the future is 
indeed much brighter than thought possible one year ago at the 1984 
conference on women in higher education management. 


- 160 - 



Hester Eisenstein 

The New South Wales government has since 1980 been impleipsnting a 
program of affirmative action under Part IXA of the Anti-Discrimination 
Act. The Office of the Director of Equal Opportunity in Public 
Employment is charged with this work. As senior adviser in the office 
since 1981 and more recently as assistant director since 1984 I have had 
a fair amount of experience in seeing organisations and individuals 
react to the impact of this legislation. 

This paper outlines a paradigm of common stages that people and 
ir^titutions go through as they draw up an equal employment 
opportunity management plan and then begin to take action to achieve 
the objectives set forth in the plan. In order to understand these 
stages one needs to know that Part IXA provides for institutions to 
develop a statistical analysis of their workforce by means of a 
confidential questionnaire, a critical review of the personnel 
practices within the organisation and a set of strategies for change. 
These are clearly set forth with objectives, specific actions to be 
taken with responsibility for those actions allocated to named 
individual officers, some procedure for evaluation of the strategies 
and a target date for completion. 

Commonly each organisation designates, or preferably appoints 
after external advertisement, an equal e: ployment opportunity (EEO) 
coordinator to carry out this task and designates a very senior 
officer -'n the organisation to supervise the work and to lend support 
to the enterprise on an institutional basis. By now, of course, the 
larger government organisations in New South Wales have not only an 
EEO officer but an EEO unit of up to fifteen officers with specialised 
functions, such as liaison officer on behalf of Aboriginal employees, 
staff development officer on EEO issues and research officer to 
establish and monitor statistical records. Thus the work of 
implementing EEO strategies in the organisation is well and truly an 
operating part of its life, although it would be an exaggeration to 
bay that these developments have occurred without a good dual of 
external prodding from the Office and occasionally some forceful 
representations from the Minister responsible as well. 

In tne process, one has had the occasion to see how individuals 
and groups react to the ac tual isation of the law in the creation of 
jobs to carry out EEO duties, the redirection of r3Sources toward EEO 
implementation and changes to procedures in response to EEO 
ini tiati^ -^s . Obviously there is considerable variation in these 
reactions. The people who are themjelves the members of the 'target 
groups' of the legislation - currently, women, migrants of non- 
English-speaking background, Aborigines, and people with physical 
disabilities - would hive a different set of reactions to people not 
members of these (overlapping) categories. The paradigm outlined here 
generally speaking is descriptive of members of the majority culture - 
that is, men of English-speaking background accustomed to the culture 
of organisations as they were prior to the introduction of EEO policy. 
But with some variations the paradigm may also well apply to target 
group members who feel ambivalent about their inclusion in what ic, an 

- 161 -174 

intervention that brings shock waves of change that are not always 
•?xperienced as welcome. 

The first stage is one of shock, horror and disbelief. This is 
the stage in which individuals query the legitimacy of the enterprise 
at a fundamental level. Why has the government passed such 
legislation? Is it not a complete waste of the taxpayers' dollar? 
What is it these women want anyway? Often people are unaware that in 
New South Wales women are only one of the target groups of the 
legislation. During this stage, individuals (and organisations in a 
corporate sense) are dismayed at having been brought under the 
legislation, resent and fear its impact and are full of misgivings, 
often ^ased on serious misinformation. One government department was 
swept by rumours in the first year of the legislation (from 1980 to 
1981) that the government policy would result in the sacking of half 
of the male professional staff and the hiring of women in their place 
to reach a 50:50 ratio. They learned with relief that the office 
required numerical or percentage targets that were incremental and 
short-term, for example, from zero representation of women in a given 
job classification to two women or 5 per cent in a two-year period, 
via selection on a merit basis^. 

The se^^ond stage is one of critical inquiry. In this stage people 
have got over their shock and have begun to inform themselves cf the 
actual requirements of tho legislation, the office end how the 
legislation will affect them and their interests. The preparation cf 
the EEO management plan often brings people from stage one to stage 
two by virtue of their being included in the work, whether this 
involves filling out thn questionnaire, participation on a working 
party to review personnel practices, or selection to serve on an 
advisory committee that assists the EEO coordinator in preparing the 
data for the final report. Others move to the stage of critical 
inquiry by virtue of hearing an EEO talk that strikas them as 
convincing or as the result of a personal experience - for example, 
the arguments of a daughter at the family dinner table. 

The third stage in the paradigm is the action phase. This occurs 
when an organ is-ition actually begins to move, to take actions as 
directed by the EEO management plan, and to ai f ect thereby the working 
life cf ths organisation. For example, the head of the organisation 
(a secretary a department or the principal of a college of advanced 
education) issues a directive that no one can serve after a specified 
date on a selection committee without having been through a course on 
selection techniques. Alternatively, the organisation spts up an 
internal grievance mechanism and invites applications from staff 
members to be trained as grievance officers on EEO matters. Any 
visible decision that changes previous procedures and makes new 

1. Ziller Alison, 'Defining Merit' a keynote address at a conference 
27 September 1985, available from the Office of tne Director of Equal 
Opportunity in Public Employment, 8-18 Bent Street, Sydney, NSW 2000 


- 162 - 

requirements upon staff members initiates this phase, which is 
characterised by the fact that EEO policy has begun to bite. It moves 
from being an idea or a policy in the abstract to being an entity that 
affects the working life of members of the organisation. 

Needless to say, stage three is immediately followed by stage four 
which is reaction or backlash. This is when the opp .,ents of the EEO 
policy come out of the woodwork and actively oppose the new 
procedures. Alternatively, they can begin to white-ant the new 
policy more surreptitiously, via campaigns of rumours about the EEO 
officer, and (in more blatant instances) via intensification of sexual 
and racial harassment aimed toward those they perceive will be 
benefiting from the new regime of EEO if it is allowed to prevail. 

In discussions of this paradigmn it has been put to me that it is 
difficult t(. distinguish betwf3n stage one and stage four, that is, 
between shock, horror and disbelief, and backlash. But the 
distinction I am making here is between the attitudes and reactions 
prevailing before a program takes effect and those aroused since the 
program's effects have become visible in the workplace. (In an unkind 
but telling throwaway line Dr Peter Wilenski has said that Australia 
is the only country in the Western world where you can have oacklash 
without reform ! ) 

Finally stage five I term ownership and innovation. In th:.s stage 
individuals have gone beyond their reactions of anger and disbelief or 
resentment and have come to see that EEO has the potential for 
improving the organisation overall. The classic instance here is the 
head of organisation who realises that the collection of statistics 
for EEO purposes will represent a major database for other management 
planning. Fiom seeing the EEO policy as an unwarranted intrusion upon 
his or her autonomy as a senior executive, he or she moves to seeing 
it as a tool by which he or she can have a better grasp on the 
workings of the organisation. 

In the ownership and innovation stage, people understand EEO 
issues and policies sufficiently to have digested the implications and 
to have begun thinking for themselves about what kinds of initiatives 
can be brought in as part of an EEO plan This stage can and ideally 
should occur at all levels of an organisation. Trade union members 
and officials be£^'n to see the benefits of removing discriminatory 
award provisions which deny benefits unfairly to some categories of 
workers. An example of an EEO initiative that brings extra benefits 
to workers is the introduction of English language classes on the job. 
The same argument applies to the introduction of cnildcar^ as an 
industrial right. 

In elaborating this paradigm there has been a deliberate move oack 
and forth between characterising individuals and characterising 
organisations. This is considered accurate, in that the process of 
change must be undergone by individuals in an organisation, and also 
by the organisation itself as a kind of organism with a shared culture 
and history. The^j^rocess needs to occur at both levels for EEO 
ultimately to succ'^ed^ 

The paper has focused upon attitudinal change, which is or course 
only one aspect of the total process. It is arguable that behavioural 


- 163 

change must proceed attitudinal change and often in an EEO program 
thi3 is the case: that is, the action phase of an EEO program requires 
chan.^ed behaviours in the workplace. Only later does the behaviour 
become voluntary rather than a form of lip-service. 

In the long run however a healthy EEO program must get to stage 
five to flourish. This may seem a utopian objective in the light of 
the public outcry that has greeted the announcement of federal 
affirmative action legislation. However the New South Wales 
experience with affirmative action gives ground for optimism. That 
some individuals and organisations - however small in number - have 
passed from shock-horror to ownership and innovation is a piece of 
evidence that this process can occur and will over time. 

When this paradigm was discussed in Queensland some months a^o the 
question was put from the floor about what steps could be taken to get 
to the shock-horror stage. Perhaps in Queensland that stage is 
currently about to be reached. New South Wales is further down the 
track. Good advice to people seeking to make use of the paradigm is 
to bear it in mind and to use considerable energy and patience in 
persuading people to mova from shock-horror to critical inquiry. With 
any luck a certain percentage of people affected by an EEO program - 
and of course the members of target groups who will stand to benefit 
directly from the program - will move directly from stage two to stage 
five and act as catalysts within the organisation. Others will 
inevitably move at their own pace through the stages and some will 
remain stuck at backlash forever. The role of EEO officers and those 
sympathetic to their work is to shepherd people skillfully th'^ough the 
stages and to make sure that the EEO program proceeds in an orderly 
and efficient manner. There is no remedy for the drama occasioned by 
rapid social change. But the countervailing force of education is a 
powerful agent in ensuring that the objectives of EEO policy are met 
rather than obstructed. 



- 164 - 


Rosematg Gracanin 


This paper presents comments and reflections on the activities and 
interests of the past three days rather than a conference evaluation. 
South Australian colleagues have contributed to the paper in their 
usual supportive and collaborative way« 

The conference ranged over a smorgasbord of issues from which a 
few have been selected for discussion, beginning by looking at the 
threo aims of the conference. 

The Current Position 

The first aim was that participants should gain a clear picture of 
the current position of women in management in primary and secondary 

It became obvious at the 1983 Australian College of Education 
conference in Melbourne that there was a need to look more closely at 
the various sections of education separately, hence the 1984 
conference at Armidale concentrating on women in higher education 
management in Australia and this 1985 conference concentrating on 
women in management at primary and secondary levels. 

Through the research of Dr Shirley Sampcon and Dr Judith Chapman 
and the papers presented over the last three days from each state* the 
picture has become clearer and many concerns and perceptions of the 
^state of play' have been confirmed by this sharing of information. 
The picture is not rosy - it was not expected to be. With only 23 per 
cent of women in principal positions there is a long way to go. 
Clearly much remains to be done. Changes are happening but women must 
keep using their skills and commitment to find new and creative ways 
of chan'^ing the overall picture. This is beginning to happen and the 
successful strategies discussed at this conference show the debate is 
entering a new phase. 

A National Network 

The second conference aim was to make and renew contacts. 

Women at this conference have indicated they now feel secure as 
part of a national network of very able, capable, successful women. 
There is now a feeling of equality as though women are there to help 
each other. This conference has been characterised by a lack of 
competitiveness and the sort of 'one-upmanship' that women have 
experienced at some male-dominated conferences. 

In addition, it is a mark of this conference that men have 
participated as speakers and full-time members. The confer^^nca has 
shown that men as well as women can function in a co-operafc i ve , 
collaborative manner. Systems have historically seen the inequality 
of women in management positions as a wome 's problem. As one man at 


- 165 - 

this conference has stated this issue must be confronted by both men 
and women* 

Renewed Enthusiasm 

The third aim of the conference was for women and men to be re- 
inspired to direct energy into pursuing the inclusion of women in 
management of schools and systems. 

Through the quality of the speakers, the quality of the 
organisation the quality of the interaction, and the quality of the 
individuals and their contributions, participants at this conference 
have been challenged to make their own personal decision about how 
best to use a direct the energy and renewed enthusiasm acquired 
within their own milieu. 

Emerging Issues 

Many issues have emerged and a few are hignlighted in this paper. 

Selection procedures for senior positions. The processes involved 
in the selection of senior positions require constant vigilance. The 
selection criteria, job descriptions and specifications must be non- 
sexist and must be challenged when they are sexist. Where there is a 
policy of including someone with an equal opportunity role on panels, 
that person must ensure equal treatment, not only in terms of sex, but 
also age and race, eliminate hearsay remarks which are damaging to 
applicants, and challenge the unexamined assumptions about women, 
including their capabilities and personal qualities and leadership 

COmPo ition of Selection Panels. In relation to the composition of 
selection panels the ultimate aim must be for gender balance as an 
affirmation of women's contribution. The criteria and emphasis given 
to particular skills will change where both men and women are involved 
and share the responsibility for decisions. 

Social attitudes towards women in management. Social attitudes 
towards women in management are developed partly by how others view 
women and partlv on hr^ women view themselves. Women have often been 
described as militant feminist confrontationists or alternatively 
whining, complaining, har d-done-by-women , Such views of women 
ndicate extreme stereotyping. In the past the system has adopted a 
'«ficit model of women ir management in its attempts to redress the 
in^-qua 1 i t i es in terms of the number of women in senior positions. 
This has been a naive and unsophisticated point of view in which the 
outcor^ has been the attempt to equip women with those skills which 
have been traditionally associated with men. The conference has 
enco- ragea the sharing of the positive attitudes, strategies, 
knowledge and skills that women have, so that they can .^uild on each 
other's success within their own frameworks and present the new and 
emerging role model for women so different from the "Uticle Tom' model. 
The exercise of women's power is in the way women manage themselves as 
individuals, recognising and capitalising on the uniqueness of their 
skills and their differences. Women need to have faith in themselves 
as managers with strengths. 


- 166 - 

The changing role of the manager. Some of the strengths that the 
emerging women in management bring to the corporate table include: 

the ability to see issues clearly, penetrate the murky confusion, 
get to the heart of the matter and estu*)lish what the real issue 

- the refusal to play ^one-upmanship' games by being supportive of 
people's work and treating them as equals regardless of their sex; 

- the capacity to see the consequences of decisions and place those 
squarely on the table; 

- preparedness to trust *.n intuition which is learned skilled based 
on female experience; 

respect for sensitivity and perception which leads women to 
recognise that people, and more particularly children, are on the 
end of decisions made. 

Personal career planning. There are two common debilitating 
syndromes which women can lock themselves into - even though they want 
promotion. Sampson's research indicated one to be the couldn't 
possibly do that' synd/ome and the other ^I'm not able to take 
promotion because I iiave too many family ties and responsibilities' 
syndrome. These attitudes are at one end of the continuum. At the 
other end is the necessary positive self-fulfilling statement which 
is; *I can make things happen for myself. The necessary process is 
to move from the self-defeating end of the continuum to the sell- 
actualising end and is characterised by the recognition that all 
people make choices. In order to be in the position to make positive 
choices women have to work within the system to provide *-he strategies 
to increase opportunities and provide more viable opportunities for 
women. Given that these opportunities become available, the choice of 
using them is then up to individual women. Some of the strategies 
mentioned over the last three days include: 


undergoing '•raining programs 
awareness raising 

personal c unselling of other women (If each participant helped 
one othe*- woman to raise her awareness and self esteem next week 
there would be another 150 women with vision) 

acting at high duties level 

undertaking further studies if this is necessary 

being talked to by others who have successfully managed 

constantly reinforcing the message. 

Research. Research is essential to provide a considered and clear 
knowledge base. Women must take cognisance of Dale Spender's 

I - 

- 167 - 

arguments for women defining their own areas of research. The 
monitoring of ongoing statistics to follow the path of change 
essential to that sound knowledge base* The collection of case 
studies of successful women in management to establish common factors 
wi IV i lluminate the path for progress. 


The way forward is exciting, challenging and stimulating. Women 
face the choice of being managers who exhibit male, female, 
androgynous or gender-inclusive characteristics. As John Steinle 
stated in his paper: 

There are distinct and positive differences in the way women 
approach and carry out their jobs. They are now in sufficient 
numbers to have an impact on the male definition of the 
^succes3ful' manager in education. As more women are able to 
enter senior management positions, one can anticipate more 
^gender-inclusive' models of management. 

Gender-inclusive models are more attractive to women and indeed to 
men, particularly in the field of education because these models value 
and affirm h^man skills, experiences and visions of equality. Women 
are without doubt making progress. 


- 168 - 


Gail Radford 


This paper was written at short notice immediately after return 
from the United Nations Forum to mark the end of the UN 'Decade for 
Women'. It was prepared for the Conference after-dinner speech and 
presents reflections on the Forum (held in Nairobi in July 1985) 
rather than any insightful analysis of its significance. 

It is a feature of United Nations conferences that they also hold, 
concurrently, a gathering of non-governniental organisations to discuss 
the same topic. In Mexico in 1975 a Tribune was held at the same time 
as the United Nations conference to mark the beginning of the UN 
Decade for Women. The conference to mark the mid-decade which was 
held in Copenhagen, also had a forum. Although non-governmental 
organisations or NGOs are organisations which are officially 
accredited with the United Nations, it is not only members of NGOs who 
attend these gatherings. In the words of the opening program for the 
Nairobi fo*"um ^Everybody is welcome' - and practically everybody came 
to Nair In total 17,000 people attended either the conference or 

the forum, the conference being the smaller with only 2,000 

NGO Foru m 

The lasting memory of the forum is one of tremendous activity and 
exchange of information and the vast hospitality and friendliness of 
the Kenyan women. The media coverage in Australia was pretty dismal 
but there were some 1,400 journalists in Nairobi. The reported 
administrative mishaps were vastly over-emphasised by the media. What 
would have happened at the Australian National University if 5,000 
people had been expected to attend such gatherings and instead 17,000 
arrived. The university halls of residence were turned over to forum 
participants. There was some unpleasantness when women attending the 
forum were asked to move out of first claBS hotels to make room for 
official delegates to the conference. This was probably the fault of 
the high commissions and embassies in Nairobi for not informing the 
women while still in their own countries that they would be required 
to live at the university. This had certainly been done well ahead by 
the Australian High Commission in Nairobi. 

The accommodation at the university was quite adequate, with brand 
new bedding and towels. As is asual in residential living, those who 
got up earliest got the hot showers. The restaurants in Nairobi 
served absolutely delicious food, African, Indian, Chinese and 
European. Although it was not considered safe to walk in Nairobi at 
night there was never a problem getting a taxi to go down town or back 
to the university. 

Waiting in line was a feature of the torum. However, for most 
tbit^ was not a negative experience but an opportunit' to meet women 
from many different parts of the world, exchange addresses and 
establish friendships. It was an unforgettable experience to sit on 


- 169 - 

the grass in the middle of the main square at the university waiting 
to register - among thousands of women in bright coloured costumes; 
Africans in brilliant cotton dresses; Indians in saris and women in 
western dress looking drab by comparison; women from the Sudan, 
wearing pastel coloured veils and Indians from the mountains in Chile, 
wearing elaborate costumes similar to those worn in Nepal in India. 

The opening of the forum was held in the Kenyatta Centre, later to 
be the venue of the official conference. This is an enormous 
conference centre and when filled with all the forum participants, led 
in song by the African women, provided very emotional and 
inspirational moments. 

One of the speakers at the opening was Dame Nita Barrow, a woman 
from Barbados, who was convener of the conference. She said 

Some among you may only be here to go on Safari, but for the 
others there is much to see, much to do. Many have come to 
present workshops and many, I hope, to listen. 

In fact, during the next two weeks, it became obvious that for 
most the primary intention was hard work, although tha Kenyan tourist 
industry did a thriving business arranging safaris to the game parks 
for ir^ny forum and conference participants. 

A daily newspaper called Forum 85 was produced. This was an 
excellent paper and set out the many daily events, reported on the 
workshops and interviewed leading participants. Those who wish to 
know more about the forum activities should try to borrow copies of 
these newspapers. Each day at any time there would be at least 50 
simultaneous workshops in full swing with over 100 held each day. 
Cultural events were staged all day in the French Cultural Centre; 
there was an exhibition of technology and tools on the sports fields; 
a peace tent and numerous little stalls; dancing groups and groups of 
women who had Just come together to sit on the grass and talk. 

Needless to say, it was impossible to attend all activities, but 
with 250 Australian women at the forum many were covered. A group of 
Australian women from Victoria has agreed to prepare a report on the 
forum, which should be available in the next few months. 

FORUM 85 urged women to use every opportunity to build up their 
own networks. When it workshops, having lunch or dinner, or sitting 
together in the evening, so many women from all parts of the world 
would never again have a better chance to create their own special 
interest international networks. This was the most important outcome 
of the Copenhagen forum and will also be one of the most important 
outcomes of the Nairobi fcrum.. 

Initially I chose to attend Equality and Employment workshops but 
soon found myself fascinated by workshops presented by third worla 
women. While moT^v were not directly relevant to my work in Australia, 
they gave me a broador appreciation of the problems of women in many 
countries in the world - many problems confronting women in Australia 
paling by comparison. 

Agriculture in Africa relies on the female labour force, working 
in the traditional manner, with low productivity and lack of access to 

- 170 - 

resources. New technology has had a negative effect on women in 
agriculture in Africa, Mechanisation has tended to replace female 
labour, the new employment created by mechanisation usually going to 
men. Expansion of cash crops utilising mechanised methods frequently 
requires more land, pushing food producers to less fertile and 
marginal land, thus further decreasing their productivity. 

Access to fresh, safe wat r is a major problem, especially in the 
rural areas where many African women have to walk many mil i each day 
to collect water often sleeping overnight at the well before 
returning home with fresh water in the morning. The bulk of 
Africa's energy comes from firewood, which is gathered by the women. 
The difficulties African women face in gathering wood are compounded 
by inefficient use of energy. Most wood used for cooking or heating 
is burned in open fires '.n which as much as 95 per cent of the energy 
generated is lost. This means that a high amount of wood is consumed 
and women must go to fetch wood frequently and return bent over by the 
heavy loads on their backs. As more and more wood is used the women 
have to walk further and further to find trees. There is also a 
danger that if this extravagent use of wood continues for too long 
that parts of wooded Africa will soon be a desert. 

The technology and tools exhibition was of particular importance 
to African women and other third world women facing similar problems. 
Emphasis was placed on products which used technology to lighten 
women's workload and provide opportunities for the generation of 
income. It was divided into six main workshops: 

food processing and storage technology; 
health, including water and sanitation; 
communication technology; 
energy technology; 
agricultural technology; 
income generating technologies. 

Questions addressed here included how to integrate appropriate 
technologies into women's income-producing projects; how to 
communicate information about the appropriate technology to local 
groups in each country; how women can persuade training and 
educational institutions to off*=-r courses relevant to their project 
work with appropriate technology and, most importantly, how women can 
take control of technology and not vice versa. 

On the Saturday of the forum, participants were provided with 
opportunities to meet rural Kenyan women first hand. Thousands of 
women were taken by bus to many country areas where they were greeted 
by dancing and singing rural women, who explained their local 
projects. These projects were all in addition to the work the women 
did looking after their families .^nd their farms. Many women were 
making handicrafts and sought the .help of overseas visitors to find 
markets for these handicrafts. Other projects were an example of non- 
traditional work for women. In one, women were making concrete 
building blocks and in another, they were running a hardware store. 

Equality^ peace and development were themes for WcTten's Decade and 
for many women, there cannot be equality or development in their 
countries without peace and freedom from domination by outside powers. 
Many issues, which are or> the UN's agenda, were discussed in the 

ER?C -1,1 -lfi4 

workshops at the forum - the Israel/Palestinian problem, and appeal by 
women in Iraq for cessation of the war with Iran, the invasion of West 
Papua by Indonesia, El Salvadore and the Nuclear Free Pacific to name 
a few. But unlike the UN meetings this did not stop the business of 
the forum. Women came to learn and listen and establish a dialogue. 

The blue and white peace tent provided a space for discussions to 
continue once workshops concluded. The peace tent was the result of 
six months' work by forty women from fifteen different countries. Its 
purpose was to provide an opportunity to prod :ce feminist alternatives 
to men's conflicts. At one stage there was a suggestion that the 
Kenyan authorities would close the tent as discussions were considered 
too anti-American. Dame Nita Barrow said that if the peace tent was 
closed, she would close the forum. Dame Nita is a very strong woman 
and the tent remained. 

There is not time to mention all the highlights of the forum but 
two issues provide an example of how women have combined across 
national boundaries to take concerted action. One is the geni tal 
mutilation or circumcision of women and the other the sexual 
exploitation of young girls and women of the third world. 

In Copenhagen there was confusion surrounding the topic of genital 
mutilation, over some African resentment of what they saw as an effort 
to handle the issue by western women with a mission to save Africans. 
It was clear from the workshops in Nairobi that a high shift had 
occured in the fight to stop circumcision. Africans now *own' the 
problem and many are taking effective measures to eradicate it. The 
Nairobi workshops were organised by an inter-African committee, which 
came into being at a conference held in Dakar in February 1984. 
Following this confi?rence national commissions were set up in a number 
of countries to implement its recommendations. More than 26 African 
nations came together in Khartoum in October 19b4 for an intensive 
five day workshop, entitled *The African woman speaks out against 
female circumcision'. 

Seminars have been organised for people generally and nurses and 
midwives in particular, teaching aids developed and publicity 
campaigns drawn up. Efforts are being made to stop midwives from 
conducting the operation and perpetuating the practice, both through 
education and by trying to find other sources of income for them. 
Funds for launching some of them in petty trading are being sought. 
Networking between the women in ♦'hese countries concerned is proving 
to be extremely useful. Solutions and proposals for activities were 
exchanged at the forum. 

Women from the Phillipines discussed the progress they have made 
in trying to prevent the sexual exploitation of women in their country 
by tourists. Here Filipino women and Japanese women had combined 
together to present information about sex tcnrs to the Philippines. 
Asian wcnen spoke of the exploitation of their women by foreign 
military pers'^nnel based in their coun tries. The exploi tat ion of 
African wom&n in Europe was also discussed and there was a call for 
Unesco to place the prevention of sexual exploitation of children high 
on their agenda. Much activity can be expected in this area as the 
result of networks formed at the Nairobi forum. 


- 172 - 

Australian women also presente^i workshops on subjects such as 
ant •-discrimination and the comparable worth of work. Aboriginal 
women presented an excellent workshop to a packed room. 

UN Conference 

In the midst of all this activity the UN Conference 
began, but such was the degree of energy at che forum that the 
conference seemed almost an irrelevance. The members of the 
Australian delegation came to the forum each night to meet with forum 
participants. This was considered essential for, as Senator Patricia 
Giles, leader of the Australian delegation said, it wu<; only by the 
efforts of the NGOs that the UN Decade for Women was established and 
any document produced by hhe coi'j^erence would only be implemented in 
all countries by thi' concerted efforts of NGOs. 

The Nairobi conference started under a considerable cloud. 
Earlier preliminary conferences had made little headway. These had 
produced a large document on which there was no agreement except for 
its name. This certainly sounded as if it had been written by a 
committee. The document was known by the incredible titlf^ of 
^ Forward-^look i ng strategies of implementation for the advancement of 
women and concrete measures to overcome obstacles to the advancement 
of the goals and objectives of the United Nation? decade for Women for 
the period 1986 to the year 2000: equality, development and peace.' 
Not surprisingly it was soon k.;own as the ^Forward-looking Strategies' 
or FLS for short. 

The FLS was some 300 - AOO paragraphs long and two committees were 
set up to consider different paragraphs. Huch drafting and redrafting 
went on in these committees, but progress seemed extremely slow to 
foru!. participants who were used to the frenetic pace of the forum. 

Eventually the FLS was presented to the plenary session of the 
conference on the last day. All went well until 4pm in the afternoon 
when the conference caiie to paragraph 95 which included the word 
Zionism in a list of major obstacles to women's advancement, such as 
apartheid and racism. 

This of course was the rock on which the communi que from the 
Copenhagen conference foundered. Australia and other countries 
refused to sign a document containing these words. 

The plenary session broke up while intensive lobbying went on. 
What followed were very tense hours indeed when it seemed that once 
again no agreement could be obtained and the FLS would be lost. The 
leader of ^he Kenyan delegation said later that it was like watching a 
baby die in your lap. But by ll.SOpm the African women had managed to 
obtain agreement to an alternative form of words - ^and all other 
forms of racial discrimination' was to replace Zionism. The FLS was 
saved and the remaining paragraphs passed by the Plenary by 4am. 

So the conference, which had started with agreement only on a 
name, concluded with a blueprint action for women in the areas of 
equality, development and peace to be taken by all countries between 
1985 and the year 2000. !*• was the largest UN conference ever, with 
the largest number of countries which had ever participated in a UN 


- 173 - 

conference and was the first time that such a document had been 
arrived at by consensus. 

There is much work ahead for governments and NGOs alike if its 
ideals are to be achieved by the year 2000. 


- 174 - 



The Conference Planning Committee for the National Conference 
'Women in Management in Primary and Secondary Education : Making 
Progress' presents the following resolutions to the ^ouncil of the 
Australian College of Education. The recommendations arose from 
Conference workshops, were presented to the final plenary session for 
preliminary endorsement and then forwarded to all participants for 
endorsement. The Conference expressed appreciation for the support of 
the Cv xlege in sponsoring three conferences on women in educational 
management . 

It is recommended that the Australian College of Education 
endorse the following general principles: 

the fundamental right of women and men to be equally responsible 
for the management of schools and education systems; 

equitable representation of women and men in policy formulation 
and decision making in schools and education systems; 

improved access to professional development in education 
management, which may entail special provision for women; 

improved information collection and dissemination relating to 
educational management. 

These principles are reflected in the following recommendations to 
the College and to education authorities and organisations in 


It is recommended that the College: 
ask the editors of Unicorn to: 

- include an overview of the conference in an early issue of 
the journal in 1985; 

- consider the publication of other suitable papers presented 
at the conference, subject to normal editorial procesg; 
advertise the availability of the full co'^i-rence 
proceedings which are intended for publication as a separate 

ask each Chapter of the College to hold appropriate follow-up 
activities on women in ecacational management aimed specifically 
at classroom teachers; 

ask its national Research Committee to consider and encourage 
research projects which: 


- 175 - 

provide a profile of girls' educational backgrounds and 
their career destinations so that an assessment can be made 
of their courses to see whether chey have enablec^ girls to 
gain the necessary confidence to enter education management; 

- disseminate information about the Victorian SCOPE program 
throughout Australia to all education authorities and the 
media so that the existing situation is highlighted; 

*- disseminate information about exemplary programs whi ch 
contribute to increasing the participation of women in 
management positions in schools and school systems. 

transmit the conference recommendations to the following groups: 
government and non-government systems authorities; 
Australian Education Council; 

- Commonwealth Schools Commission; 

- Ministers and Shadow Ministers of Education, State and 

- government and non-government teachers' .nd parents' 

- Office of the Status of Women and the National Women's 
Consultative Council; 

- women politicians. State and Commonwealth; 

- wom<in's advisers in each State and Territory; 

- Commonwealth Council for Educational Administration, State 
and national bodies; 

- women's education networks. 


It is recommended that the /.EC initiate an annual ^.ational 
collection and reporting of data bearing on disadvantage to women due 
to current educational practices; this should include information 
concerning the numerical representation of women in all categories of 
educational management. 


It is recommended that the CSC: 

initiate an investigation of alternjtive career structures to 
enable teachers to remain in the classroom and that these be 
trialled in each State; 

fund the development of manvj?erial training programs for women. 
It is recommended chat: 

the initiative of the OSW in establishing a national data base on 
women be endorsed; 

that tne OSW inc?ude 'Women ir Educational Management' as an 
easily identifiable component of that data base. 


- 176 - 


It 5 8 recommended that high priority be given by all research 
funding boaies and research sections of State and Federal departments 
to research irto ways of improving the involvement of women in 
educational management. 


Research and Evalu»^cion 

Lt is recommended that education systems and authorities: 

**stablish and maintain a dcta base from which the following 
gender statistics can be readily extracted: 

- recruitrent and appointment to the teaching service; 
i-pplication for eligibility for promotion; 

- application for adver*ised promotions positions; 

- management pos i t i ons • 

- staff turnover; 

- workers' compensation claims; 

support research into issues impinging on women in education, 
including the educational disadvantage cf girls; 

require schools to evaluate their structures, practices and 
progr-^ms to assist: 

all students to recognise the potential of women; 

- al? students, especially girls, to develop decision-making 
skills and leadership styles; 

girls to develop greater self esteem; 

- female teachers to have experience in positions and on 
committees to develop awa *eness of career structures and 
leadership roles in education. 

Policy and Programs 

It is recommended that education systems and authorities: 

constitute all decision-making panels/committees at all levels of 
operation with a gender balance; 

provide adequate inservicing for members of selection and 
promotion committees co ensure an understanding of Equal 
Employment Opportunity (EiiO) principles; 

give the highest priority and adequate resource allocstic^n to 
affirmcitive action programs a*- school and system levels to redress 
the lack of representation of women in education management, 
including numerical targets where appropriate; 

include representation of women at all levels of management in 
industrial democracy programs; 

appoint EEO coordinators and implement EEO plans; 


work towards accepting gender inclusive management which utilises 
the full range of skills in administration and which values the 
differences of any group working towards its determined 
educational goals. 

It is recommended that education systems and authorities: 
adopt the principle of merit in selection of staff and re -.ef ine 
the merit principle to include performance criteria which 
recognise the experience and values of women» 

specify the active fostering of EEO principles in all duty 
statements of senior administrators; 

adopt structjral changes in the conditions of service to militate 
against discrimination because of broken service due to gender, 
for example maternity and parenting le^ve; 

consider limitit^g tenure in promotional positions with 
reappointment subjej*: to broadly based review. 

Professional Development 

It is recommended that education systems and authorities: 

accept the responsibility for des gning and implementing programs 
for women and men in education to become more conscious of a range 
of managerial styles; 

allocate finance to staff development and training programs for 
the implementation of equal employment opportunity principles and 

provide i nservice/conf erence opportunities for women in education 
to discuss, identify and clarify issues related to career 
awareness and life planning; 

develop a range of audiovisual resources which show successful 
women as managers and which assist in raising the confidence and 
self esteem of w^ T\en and girls in the longer term; 

provide professional development of EEO principles for parent 
bodies involved in school communities; 

grant study leave for teachers to upgrade qualifications and 
encourage women to apply. 


It is recommended that all teacher unions: 

adopt aff rmative action programs for women members, to include 
representation of women at all lev*el£ of union management; 

pursue policies which are of particular concerr to wcmen. 



- 178 - 


It is recommended that all participants: 

establish and maintain support netwo^Vs for the implementation of 
the conference recommendations in their own State or Territory; 

approach women in the media to popularise exemplary models of 
women in education management and promote women who have been 
appointed to manager.ent positions. 

During the conference, several State and system workshops 
discussed specific recofrn\andat5ons relevant to their situations. Two 
examples of these recommendations are those formulated by Catholic 
women for Catholic education authorities and by ACT women for the ACT 
Schools Authority Council, 


It is recommended that: 

Catholic education authorities at national, state, diocesan and 
local levels maintain and develop those initiatives which will 
ensure the inclusion of women at all levels of management; 

the recommendations from the Conference be given urgent 
consideration by systemic and non-systemic authorities within the 
Catholic community of schools; 

Catholic education offices establish units to deal with issues 
related to women in education. The major task of these units will 
be to investigate, compile and publish data on the philosophical, 
administrative and curriculum ramifications of the under- 
utilisation of women in Catholic education and to establish 
appropriate procedures and policies to address the emerging 


The following recommendations were presented to the first 
post-conference meeting of ACT participants who jiet to encourage a 
network of women in management with an active role in promoting the 
professional interests of women in the ACT and to consider possible 
action to enhance the interests and concerns of women. The network 
is meeting regularly. 

It is recommended that the ACTSA Council: 

replace the EEO officer with an EEO unit in 1986, and thc.t: 

the resources to staff the unit be taken from positions 

cur'-ently allocated to eligibility procedures; 

the unit be responsible for the implementation of the 

Authority's EEO Management Plan from 1986 to 1989; 

the need for the unit's continuation be subject to revia^' 

during 1989; 

undertake a statistical analysis of its workforce in 1986 to 
develop a profile on the employment situation of women and other 
designated groups and their progress at all levels of the 
Authority, These statistics should be maintained so that a 


complete profile of women in the system is accessible, for example 
HDA appointments, reasons for resignation, leave, applications for 
promotions and success or failure,* 

make a number of positions available in 1986 within a 
professional development course designed to give women selected by 
the Authority Joint EEO Committee acces3 to tiianagement skills that 
will enable them to obtain senior management positions in the 
Commonwealth Teaching Service (CIS) : 

- selection be based on applications following advertisement,* 

- selection criteria emphasi se demonstrated commi tment and 
ability to implement EEO policy within the workplace,* 

- the positions be open to women at all Band levels; 

- the program be of two weeks duration and provide skills 
training, including assertion and negotiating skills, 
interviewing techniques, staff counselling skills, media 
training skills with technology support, industrial 
relations, resource management i \ a situation of budgetary 
constraint, policy development and co-ordination, personnel 
practires and procedures, information technology and 
comput i ng skil Is , futurology, computer i sat ion techniques for 
student assessment and timetabling,* 

- funding for this course be reallocated from the paid study 
leave allocations,* 

- the workplaces from which the successful applicants are 
chosen satisfy the following conditions: 

have school-workplace EEO committee,* 

have detailed management plan for implementing EEO 
strategies within the school which will utilise the 
knowledge, skills and experience of the successful 

applicant ,* 

require all members of Authority pr omot i on/tr and f er panels to 
undertake a two-day staff training program in all aspects of staff 
selection with emphasis on the requirements of EEO legislation, 
policy and practices,* validity of different leadership styles 
should be recognised by panels,* 

require all committees to include women members and, where 
possible, to be status balanced,* 

commence negotiations with the appropriate bodies, for example 
the ACT Teachers' Federation (ACTTF) and the Commonwealth Public 
Service Board to remove the barriers to mobility between the 
Australian Public Service (APS) and the CTS,* 

negotiate with the ACTTF to reach agreement that the Authority 
seek exemption for the next five years under the Sex 
Discrimination Act to tag two of the four Bands 4 and 3 level 
senior promotions positions in secondary schools and 50 per cent 
of the senior promotions positions in the Office and in primary 
schools ; 

- 180 - 

maintain and extend the master teacher scheme; 

use short-term HDAs for professional development experience for 
women ; 

increase study leave opportunities for women; 

negotiate with the ACTTF to ensure that from 1986 all vacant 
promotion positions at principal level become subject to five 
years tenure; 

convene (in conjunction with the relevant union) a meeting of 
women in CTS and APS positions to discuss mobility and affirmative 
action strategies to achieve EEO; 

convene a meeting with the ACTTF to follow up the implementation 
of the recommendations of the workshop with the Senior Directors, 
Directors and Principal Executive Officers in the Authority 
concerned with staffing and professional development; 

review its personnel policies and practices to identify those 
which discriminate against women and other designated groups; 

evaluate the implementation of its affirmative action program 
against the goals determined; 

evaluate annually the components of the program and set new goals 
and targets in the light of the results. 


In addition to these formal reconunendations, workshops produced 
implementation strategies in several areas of concern. Data 
collection is an essential step in determining action. The conference 
recommended several areas where data collection was crucial. 

1. Recruitment Appointment 

Number of applications for employment: 

Teachers appointed from above: 

. by gender; 
. as above; 

. by permanent/contract/temporary (that is, type of appointment). 

by gender; 

by level - pre-school 

- primary 

- secondary 

- R-12 

- independent. 

(in all these - subject 
area where applicable) 



- 181 - 

Applications for Promotion 

Assessment/Eligibility : 

male/female breakdown of applicants and as a percentage; 
male/female breakdown of withdrawals and as a percentage; 
m e/female breakdown of applicants at all levels, i.e. 
showing Bands 1, 2 and 3 at each of pre-school, pr imary, 
secondary and R-12 levels; 

ejuccessful applicants by gender at var ious levels (wi th 
grading where applicable); 
unsuccessful applicants by gender; 
number of times applied for assessment. 

Promotions positions: 

applicants for advertised positions by gender; 
short listed applicants by gender; 
appointment by gender. 

Data to be collected in the same classifications act set out 
above for assessment/eligibility. 

Profile of Women 

Number of women currently occupying promotions positions (as a 
percentage of the total promotions positions). 

Breakdowns through all sectors as in paragraph 2. 

Figures on the following positions specifically and within the 
sectors : 


deputy - area of responsibility; 

senior ttacher (small schools where a responsibility 

allowance is provided) ; 

other responsibility allowances. 

And numbers of the above who are s 

substantive ; 

higher duties allowance; 

acting (after advertising position); 

limited tenure. 

All of the above to be broken down as : 

percentage of total; 
actual male/female numbers 

Ratio of women in management positions to the total number of 
women in the service. 

- 182 - 


Percentage Staff Turnover Rate 

Percentage male ) together with length of service 
Percentage female) in the system. 

5. Periods of Leave Without Pay 

For accouchement/parenting leave, study, travel, with male/female 
breakdown in years/months for each category separately. 

Applications for leave-without-pay (as above if possible). 

6. Time Out Under Workers' Compensation 

For each gender : 

7. Data which is Not Readily Available 
Reasons for resignations by gender. 

Compositions and membership of departmental/authority committees 
by gender and rank. 

Placement in relation to choice of females in tertiary 
institutions . 

Current position of teachers in relation to position five and ten 
years previouslj'. by gender* 

Subject choice at years 11-12 by gender in courses for 
credential ling, certification, accrediting. 


The workshop on changing the managerial role made recommendacions 
on strategies relating to the definitions of merit, structural change, 
professional development for administrators and school level 

Definition of Merit 

Merit should be redefined in operational terms, as follows : 

Seniority should not be part of oierit. 

Merit should be based on s 

- diversity of experience; 

- performance validated by referees; 

demonstrated ability to interact with females and males in 
the community; 


sector of teaching, for example primary. 


demonstrated awareness of broad current educational issues, 
including equal employment opportunity. Preferably this will 
include upgrading formal qaualif ications and readiness to be 
involved in inservice programs, special interest groups and 
committees for special programs • 

Pastoral/nurturing experience should be given full merit. This 
may include nurturing in the home. 

Structural Change 

Selection and assessment panels should have : 

- equitable representation of males and females; 

- vertical representation of groups in the system; 

- inservicing, especially on EEO which includes awareness 
raising of personal biases; 

- an EEO observer to brief the panel at all stages of 
selection, and have input into inservicing; 

- EEO observers who are committed to the issues should be 
nominated by the union. 

All committees, working parties and task forces within the 
system, including those within each school, should adequately 
represent women and men through equitable representation. 

The process of decision making at system and school levels should 
be based on a participative, democratic model, for example 
rotation of chairperson at meetings, formulation of agenda and 

Higher duties should be rotated among females and males 

Data recording the evidence of equitable representation in 
decisionmaking at all levels should be a significant feature of 
the report of the Director-General in every State. 

The EEO co~ordinator appointed to the system should have status 
at least equivalent to that of principal of a large primary school 
and have the resources and power to implement EEC policy. 

Senior and middle management at system level should be given an 
active role in the inservice presentation of EEO policy to all 
levels of the education community. 

Professional Development for Administrators 

The following strategies should be used to sensitise 
administrators so that they will recognise and promote the 
contributions of women to the management role. To ensure 
implementation of all these strategies a gender-balanced committee 
should be established to monitor their continuing development. 

- 184 - 

Systems and schools 

Increase administrators' awareness of the cnanging social context 
of present life patterns. 

Raise consciousness through holding post-conference reviews in 
each State, involving decision makers. 

Provide constant reinforcement through ^trade' magazines. 

Plan personal targetting by influential women of men in power. 

Ask administrators to inform staff on the criteria and procedures 
used in allocating specific responsibilities^ both paid and 

Develop a series of questions for use by women in schools, on 
committees and in Ihe community which focus on the need for 
gender-inclusive policies. 

Arrange a visit by a committed person to new promotees to raise 
their awareness of their responsibilities for the developmr^nt of 
women as managers. 

Require each system to have a written EEO policy which requires 
each school to have the same, ensuring that the implications of 
the policy are addressed in each curriculum area. 

Identify committed women and ensur? at least one is present on 
every professional organisation. 

Appoint an EEO representative on every committee in the office. 

Develop a network of critical friends for use by the EEO officer 
and schools in developing and implementing policy^ 

Conduct action research on allocation of roles in the school and 
report to staff. 

Arrange a person to speak to each school staff on EEO. 

Survey external and internal administration training courses then 
follow up with personal interpretation of results with those 
running the courses to raise consciousness on gender issues. 

Convene a joint ACE/ACEA conference on management, including 
consciousness raising oit gender issues. 

Arrange pr e-appointment training for new administrators at system 
level or school level, including EEO issues. 

Provide compulsory insp--'ice training which includes EEO issues 
for school executives. 





School Level Initiatives 

School administrators should be asked to implement the following 
strategies and system administrators should actively promote 

Professional Development of Vowen 

Develop a staffing role so that a conscious effort is made to 
discuss career pathways. 

Ensure that men and women undertake equally nurturing and 
administrative role.3 and appropriate pre-traininf. 

Give acting (HDA) positions to women as well as men, on a 
proport i onal basis . 

Act. as a mentor, for example actively seek out and encourage able 
women, involving them in discussion of educational issues on both 
formal and informal bases. 

Put women in prominent positions in front of the student body and 
the wider school community. 

Encourage and enable women to participate in inservice and 
further training. 

Involve women in the formal decision making, for example that 
which has occurred over a beer at the hotel. 

Select women to represent the school and principal at 
out side-school meetings. 

School and Community Development 

Make staff, students and community aware o^ issues through 
assemblies, staff and parent meetings ^nd school publications. 

Actively encourage women in the community to take non-traditional 
roles in the school, for example on the school council. 

Reflect the proposed devolution of duties on how tasks are 
allocated to students. 

Appoint a gender-balanced committee to monitor the continuing 
development of these strategies. 

Initiatives By Wome n 

Women should take responsibility to develop further their 
management beliefs and styles, in : 

communications skills; 
interpersonal relationships; 
goal setting; 

forward planning; 1.^9 


- 186 - 

risk taking; 

accepting the entrepreneurial role; 

delegating authority and co-ordinating; 

initiating actions; 



undertaking specific tasks of budgeting, supervision; 

within the framework of EEO philosophy. 

They should develop an understanding of the hidden agenda in the 
organisation and use it to advantage, such as identification of power 
bases . 


Management education should be in four main areas : 

managerial skills and knowledge acquisition; 
professional skills and knowledge acquisition; 
directional career path planning; and 
personal skills development . 

It should take place in three areas, the school, the system and 
the environment, and proceed in formal, informal and non-formal ways 
from pre-service, through inservice to ^para-service', a lateral 
educational process. 

System administrators should ensure that staff have access to 
inservice education, study leave and conference attendance. 

The network of professional colleagues should be utilised for self 
assessment and development. 

School staffrooms should be equipped with regularly updated course 

Unions should be encouraged to regard professional development as 
a legitimate concern of union members. 

Development areas for management education are detailed in Table 1 
and categories of professional development in Table 2. 


- 187 - 





Ms Ann Clark 

Sr Helen Connolly 

Ms Sue Cramer 

Ms Hester Eisenstein 

Miss Patricia Grant 
Ms Kerry Hyland 

Sr Marilyn Kelleher 

Ms Robin Kelly 
Dr Lesley Lynch 

Ms Helen MacGregor 

Miss Natalie McNamara 

Ms Natasha McNamara 

Dr Jan Milburn 

Ms Marianne Mil Ian 

Ms Janice Nash 

Sr Paula Smith 
Ms Shirley Steel 

Deputy Director of SchoolJ, Catholic 
Education Office, Sydney 

Principal, Brigidine College 

Principal, Wairoa School 

Assistant Director, Office of the Director of 
Equal Opportunity in Public Employment, New 
South Wales 

Education Advisor, National Catholic 
Education Commission 

Acting Equal Employment Opportunity Co- 
ordinator, New South Wales Department of 

Principal, Conference of Major Superiors of 
Women's Religious Institutes, Australia, 
Region of New South Wales 

Principal, Croydon Public School 

Officer-in- Charge Social Policy Unit, New 
South Wales Ministry of Education 

Relieving Organiser, New South Wales 
Teachers ' Federat ion 

Head of Personnel Department, Catholic 
Education Office, Sydney 

Co-Director, Aboriginal Training and Cultural 

Principal, New England Girls'' School 

Representative, New South Wales Teachers' 

English/Hiotory Co-ordinator, St Andrew's 
Cathedral School 

Lecturer in Education, Mitchell College of 
Advanced Education 

Representative, New South Wales Teachers' 



- 188 - 

Ms Vicki Tanzer 

Sr Mary Wright 

Ms Suzanne Barrah 
Sr Cecilia Bridginan 

Dr Judith Chapman 

Ms Jan Dillow 

Ms Joan Eltham 

Ms Di Fleming 

Ms Marilyn Fcrde 

Ms Olga Holt 

Mrs Eve Langdale 

Mrs Barbara Lynch 

Ms Elizabeth McMillan 

Dr Ray Kaddocks 

Ms Margaret Malloch 

Regional Consultant, Catholic Education 
Office, Southern Region 

Principal Loreto Convent, Kirribilli 

Deputy Principal, Ruyton Girls' School 

Member, Victorian Catholic Education 

Senior Lecturer in Education, Monash 

President, Technical Teachers' Union of 

Honorary Secretary, Federation of Victorian 
School Administrators 

Vice-President, Australian Council for 
Educational Administration 

Executive Officer, Victorian Independent 
Teacher r ' Federation 

Representative, Victorian Primary Principals' 

Professional Assistant, Australian College of 

Principal » Wesley College 

Senior Consultant* Equal Employment 
Opportunity Education Department of Victoria 

Executive Consultant, Education Department of 

Senior Education Off icer , Gippsland Regional 
Education Office, Education Department of 

Mrs Fiona Ogilvy-0' Donne 11 

Assistant to the Executive Director, 
Association of Independent Schools of Victoria 

Ms Jenny Oostindel 

Ms Megan Pannu 

Dr Shirley Sampson 

Representative, Victorian Affiliated 
Teachers ' ^ederat ion 

Wesley College, Prahran 

Senior Lecturer in Education, Monash 


- 189 - 

Ms Veronica Schwarz 

Ms Kristin Scully 

Dr Barry Sheehan 

Mrs Suzanne Strangward 

Ms Debra Towns 


Ms Jan Culla 

Ms Brenda Fennell 

Mrs Judith Hancock 

Ms Patricia Hodgson 

Sr Mary McDonald 

Sr Miriam McShane 

Mrs Glenys Mills 
Dr Ann Scott 

Ms Patricia Waldby 

Ms Jillian Dellit 

Ms Rosemary Gracanin 

Ms Madeleine Hedges 
Ms Margaret Kiley 

Policy and Planning Officer, Education 
Department of Victoria 

Representative, Association of Teachers in 
Victorian Catholic Secondary Schools 

Director, Melbourne College of Advanced 

Year Level Co-ordinator , Presbyterian Ladies' 

Co-ord inator , Equal Opportunity Unit, 
Education Department of Victoria 

Senior Mistress, MacGregor State High School 

Teacher~in-Charge, Marsden Special Education 

Representative, Association of Independent 
Schools of Queensland 

Assistant Secretary, Queensland Independent 
Teachers ' Feder at i on 

Director, Catholic Education Office, 
Townsvi lie 

Project Co-ordinator , Queensland Catholic 
Education Office 

Principal, Banana State Primary School 

Education Officer (Special Duties), Policy 
and Information Service Branch, Queens land 
Department of Education 

Representative, Federation of Parents and 
Friends Associations of Queensland 

Affirmative Action Co-ordinator , Education 
Department of South Australia 

Assistant Director of Education, Education 
Department of South Australia 

Principal, Elizabeth Vale Primary School 

Project Officer (Early Child hood) Education 
Department of South Australia; Counc i 1 lor , 
Australian College of Education 


- 190 - 


Hs Helsa Kolbe 

Ms Val Laidlaw 
Ms Pamela McCall 
Ms Peggy Mares 

Ms Denzil O'Brien 

Dr Peter OBrien 

Mr Brian Pocock 

Ms Marilyn Sleath 

Mr John Steinle 

Ms Beverley Tonkin 

Ms Therese Westcot 
Ms Naomi Brown 

Me Sandra Brown 

Mrs Audrey Jackson 
Dr Warren Louden 

Ms Carol Henderson 

Ms Wendy Scanlon 

Mrs Helen Van Noort 

Ms Ngaire Young 

Director of Education (Resources), Education 
Department of South Australia 

Principal, Spence Primary School 

Director of Studies, Pembroke School 

Assistant Director (Personnel), Education 
Department of South Australia 

Acting Equal Opportunities Officer, Education 
Department of South Australia 

Senior Lecturer, Educational Administration, 
Flinders University 

President, Australian Primary Principals' 

Superintendent of Schools, Education 
Department of South Australia 

Direct )r-General, Education L<2partment of 
South Australia 

Women's Adviser, South Australian Institute 
of Teachers 

Co-ordinator , Women's Studies Resource Centre 

Women's Adviser, State School Teachers' Union 
of Western Australia 

Superintendent jf 
Oppor tuni ty) , Education 

Education (Equal 
Department of Western 

Principal, St Mary's Anglican Girls' School 

Deputy Director-General, Education Department 
of Western Australia 

Representative, Catholic Education Office of 
Western Australia 

Acting Principal, Spearwood Alternative 

Member, Independent Schools Secondary 
Of f icers' Association 

Education Officer (Equal Employment 
Opportunity), Education Department of Western 



- 191 - 


Hs Jan Edwards 

Mrs Beverley Hanlon 

Senior Education Officer, Tasmanian 
Department of Education 

Repr"^ tentative, Tasmanian Teachers' 

Mrs Margaret Lonergan Representative, Tasmanian Teachers' 


Ms Beverley Richardson Deputy Director (Student Services), Tasmanian 

DepartmeiiC of Education 

Ms Lyn Powierza 

Superintendent, Northern Territory Depflrtment 
of Education 

Mrs Mavis Shotton Principal, Sadadeen High School 


Dr Don Anderson Chairperson, ACT Schools Authority 

Ms Robyn Bagust 

Ms Jill Bailey 
Ms Diana Banks 
Ms Lexy Bannikoff 
Ms Maureen Bickley 

Ms Julie Biles 

Mr Garth Boomer 

Mrs Maureen Boyle 

Ms Helen Burfitt 

Mrs Anne Cain 

Ms Elizabeth Carven 

Mrs Elizabeth Dawson 
Ms Eileen Duhs 

Organiser, Independent Schools Staff 
Association (ACT) 

Senior Teacher, Melrose High School 

Principal, Hall Primary School 

Senior Teacher, Hawker College 

Consultant, Department of the Prime Minister 
and Cabinet 

Representative, ACT Teachers' Federation 
Chairman, Commonwealth Schools Coiwnission 
Principal, Red Hill Primary School 
Science Consultant, ACT Schools Authority 
Principal , Koomarri School 

English as a Second Language Consultant, ACT 
Schools Authority 

Representative, ACT Teachers' Federation 

Director, Education of Girls Unit, 
Comir.onwealth Schools Commission 

Ms Joan Dunn 

Senior Teacher, Charnwood High School 


- 192 - 

Ms Maureen Dyer, 

Ms Jenny Everett 
Ms Dianne Foggo 

Mr David Francis 

Ms Margaret Frey 

Ms Anna Glover 

Ms Christine Goonrey 

Ms Hazel Gordon 

Ms Jan Grigor 

Dr Greg Hancock 

Ms Lyn Harasymiw 

Ms Narelle Hargreaves 

Mrs Elizabeth Harvey 

Mrs Beattie Hatfield 
Mrs Dianne Hocking 
Ms Arlene Howes 
Ms Jenny Jane 
Ms Joan Kel^ett 
Mrs Ros Kelly 
Ms Helen Knight 
Ms Bronwyn Leonard 

Ms Margaret McElhinny 

Project Officer, Commonwealth Schools 

Senior Teacher, Hawker College 

Industrial Officer, Australian Teachers ' 

Senior Director (Programs), ACT Schools 

Community Relations Officer, ACT Schools 

Director of PuMic Relations, ACT Schools 

Senior Teacher (Humanities), Melba High 

Acting Senior Teacher, Village Creek Primary 

Non-Sexist Educat ion Consultant , ACT Schools 

Chief Education Officer, Australian Capital 
Territory Schools Authority 

Equal Employment Opportunity, ACT Teachers' 

Acting Principal, Miles Frankl in Pr imar y 

Senior Teacher (History/Languages) , Campbell 
High School 

Assistant Principal, Latham Primary School 

Assistant Principal, Duffy Primary School 

School Counsellor, Ginninderra High School 

Teacher, Ginninderra High School 

Member, ACT Schools Authority 

Member for Canberra, House of Representatives 

Policy Adviser, Office of the Status of Women 

Assistant Principal, North Ainslie Primary 

Teacher (English/History) , Ginninderra High 



- 193 - 

Ms Elizabeth HcKenzie 

Principal Executive Officer (Curriculum 
Services), ACT Schools Authority 

Ms Gwen McNeill 
Dr Mick March 

Mr Fulton Muir 
Ms Anne Murray 

Ms Cheryl O'Connor 
Ms Carolyn Page 
Miss Mary Parsons 

Ms Judy Perry 

Mrs Jocelyn Plovits 

Dr Barry Price 

Ms Shirley Randell 

Sr Mary Reardon 

Ms Pam Richards 
Ms Janet Rickwood 
Ms Ca:hy Robertson 
Ms Meg Sekavs 

Mr David Southern 
Ms Margaret Summers 
Mrs Rae Tanzer 

Ms Carolyn Tweedie 

Ms Sue Upton 

Assistant Principal, Narrabundah College 

Representative, ACT Secondary Principals' 
Counci 1 

Member, ACT Schools Authority 

Principal Education Officer (Early Childhood), 
ACT Schools Authority 

Principal, Macquarie Primary School 

Senior Teacher (English), Deakin High School 

Executive Officer (Administration), 
Operations Section, ACT Schools Authority 

Principal, The Co-operative School 

Careers Co-ordinator , Ginninderra High School 

Senior Director (Resources), ACT Schools 

Director (Programs), ACT Schools Authority; 
President-elect Australian College of 

Executive Secretary, National Catholic 
Education Commission 

Representative, ACT Teachers' Federation 

English Consultant, ACT Schools Authority 

Acting EEO Co-ordinator ACT Schools Auth. 

History co-ord5 nator , Course Administrator, 
Dickson College 

Principal. Ginninderra High School 

Teacher, Ginninderra High School 

Assistant Principal (Student Welfare), 
Charnwood High School 

Senior Educat i on Officer, PEP Co-ordinator , 
ACT Schools Authority 

Project Officer, Education of Girls, 
Curriculum Development Centre, Commonwealth 
Schools Commission 



- 194 - 



1. The profile of education personnel by sex/structure of your 
system/school (women in management positions in resources, 
programs, faculties, libraries, centres, other). 

2. The participation of women in major policy and decision-making 
committees in your system/school* 

3. The criteria for promotion in your system/school (seniority, 
continuous service, country service, management t r a i ning , 
efficiency, extra-curricular activities, membership of 
professional associations , personal qualities , merit , other) • 

4. Tertiary qualifications considered useful for promotion (PhD, MA 
or equivalent, BA or equivalent. Diploma, Certificate, other) > 

5. Assistance granted for tertiary studies by your system/school 
(time release, financial assistance, other). 

6. Training in management provided by your system/school (person 
management dimension, task management dimension, computing, 
financial management, other). 

?• Circulation of information about executive/management training 
projjrams in your system/school (management /pr inc ipal , notice 
boards, newsletter, informal networks, other). 

8. Specific arrangements for career guidance or retraining offered 
to women in your system/school. 

9. Experience considered useful for promotion purposes (type of 
professional organisations, type of extra curricular activities, 
other) . 

10. Basis of selection for conference attendance in your 
system/school (man^jtement/principal, position in the hierarchy, 
need ident ""^'ed by management, request by staff members, subject 
group of stai , other). 

11. Alternative criteria for promotion which could be used in your 

12. Changes in staffing policies in your system/school resulting from 
ant i~discrimi nation legislation (documents , procedures , committee 
representation , other ) . 

13. Changes in numbers of women applying for promotion in your 
system/school since legislation and/or anti-discrimination policy 
statements have been in effect. 

14. Issues relating to women which have been raised in your 
system/school within the past three years (job sharing, child 
care, maternity leave, other). 


- 195 208 

15. Women's networks which have arisen in your system/school in the 
past three years (equal employment opportunity co-ordinators, 
women in science* other). 

16. Functions of recently established women's networks in your 
system/school (information sharing, personal support, regional 
task force, other)* 

17. Affirmative action programs and equal opportunity officers 
operating in your system/school. 

18. Major problems associated with gaining promotional positions for 
women in your system/school. 

19. Positive steps being taken by your system/school to increase the 
number of women in educational management positions. 

20. Positive programs being run by your system/school to increase the 
management skills of women. 

21. Strategies for increasing the number of women in positions of 
educational management in your system/school. 


- 196 - 




Ann McHahon 

Managerial Role 

Sensitising the administrators to women's contribution 
Fostering the mentor role of the manager 
Redefining meri t 

Identifying goals to change staff meetings/unions/systems 

Specific actions for individuals in school/systems 

Identifying specific management skills for and in women 

Strategies to ensure senior males are aware of responsibilities for 
developing women on Rtaff 

Consciousness raising for men and women 

Image making/self marketing 

Re-defining the Managerial Role 

Changing managerial values 

Changing managerial stereotypes 

ChaP",^rg the public perception 

Re-defining leadership/developing alternative models of leadership 

Establishing new role models incorporating female and male dimensions 

Breaking the current control of the 'powerbrokers ' to provide 
different sources of support/advice to women 

Management Education 

Fostering women's participation 

Specific administrative experiences needed for promotion 
Designing- programs 

Womens studies courses as pre-requisi tes for teacher education 
Disseminating information about professional development 
Work assignments as preparation for management 
Structural experiences as preparation for management 


- 197 - 

^Hainstreaming' the issue of women in management 
Upgrading and retraining in management skills 
Developing political acumen 
Education System 

Strategies for increasing women's promotion 

Identifying barriers in decision making 

Industrial democracy issues - changes needed 

Creating alternative promotion/career pathways 

Role of unions 

Changing promotion criteria 

Identifying impediments to women's progress 

Achieving equal representation of women on decision making committees 
Career Planning 

Devising career plans identifying sequences of jobs 
Identifying job sequences 

Identifying job mobility (ways of moving in and out of stressful 

Identifying targets 

Combating discrimination in selection committees 
Identifying methods for ensuring quality of experience 
Self Perceptions of Women as Educational Managers 
Pro-~active strategies for altering self perceptions 
Developing self confidence 
Identifying a women's st"le of management 
Developing self esteem 
Developing confidence from others 
Identifying stress factors 

Dealing with self-imposed and community stereotypes 

Dealing with the frustration of expectations versus achievements 


- 198 - 

Affirmative Action 

Developing affirmative action plans 

Micro applications of affirmative action 

Identifying strategies to increase the number of women in promotion 

Countering possible affirmative action backlashes 

Developing strategies to gain commitment from management for 
affirmative action policies 

Is affirmative action crucial? 

Are there alternatives? 

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) 

Getting commitment to EEO at national and state levels 
Reducing hierarchies 
Developing EEO job briefs 

Incorporation of EEO representatives or panels 
Enforcing the EEO policies 

Developing the concept of EEO in administration tasks for women 

Researching the Role of tfomen 

Developing mechanisms for data collection 

Developing guidelines for data collection 

Publicising women's achievements 

Disseminating research findings which show barriers for women within 
the system 

Examining perceptions of gender in school committees 
Identifying community perceptions of fcniale management skills 
Developing Future Managers 

Disseminating information about the skills necessary for management 
The value of single-sex schools 
Development of leadership skills in girls 
Relating the curriculum to management 



- 199 - 



Maureen Bickley, BA(Ecn8), DipEd(UWA), MBu8(Public Admin )( WAIT) . 
Member, Advanced Education Council, Commonwealth Tertiary Education 
Commission; Consultant, Affirmative Action Resource Unit, Office of 
the Status of Women, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet; 
previously Senior Tutor, Economics, Western Australian Institute of 
Technology and Manager, Degas Engineering Pty Ltd ^WA). 

Judith Chapman, BA DipEd(Melb), BEd(LaTrobe) , EdD(NColorado) , FACEA, 
Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, Monash University; previously 
secondary school teacher, Victorian Education Department, Campion 
International School, Athens, Greece; Research Officer, Educat onal 
Planning Service (USA). 

Edward Clarke, BA BEd(Qld), Education Officer, Special Duties, 
Educational History Unit, Policy and Information Service Branch, 
Queensland Department of Education* 

Jan Edwards, BEd, TTC(Tas), MACE, Senior Education Officer, Tasmanian 
Education Department; previously Staff Development Officer, Tasmanian 
Education Department* 

Hester Eisenstein, BA( Radc 1 i f f e ) , PhD(Yale), Assistant Director, 
Office of the Director of Equal Opportunity in Public Employment, New 
South Wales; previously Co-ordinator , Experimental Studies Program, 
Barnard College, Columbia University; Author (1984), Contemporary 
Feminist Thought, Allen and Unwin. 

Di Fleming, BA DipEd(Monash) , MACE; Junior School Co-ordinator , Wesley 
College, Prahran; Vice-President, Australian Council for Educational 

Di Foggo, DipEd(Darwin Community College, DipMultEd(Melb SC) 
DipPhysEd(Melb) , Industrial Officer, Australian Teachers' Federation; 
previously General Secretary, Northern Territory Teachers' Federation 
and Executive Member Northern Territory T^' les and Labour Council. 

Jennie George, BA D i p E d ( S y d n e y ) , President, Australian 
Teachers 'Fede rat ion; Executive member, Australian Council of Trade 
Unions, Member, National Women's Consultative Council; previously 
General Secretary New South Wales Teachers' Federation and 
TeacherQueanbeyan High School. 

Rosemary Gracanin, DipT(Torrens CAE), I n f T C ( A d e 1 a i d e 
TC ) , GradDipSch/Cty Rel (Sturt CAE), FACE, Assistant Director of 
Education Schools, Students and Communi ty Services, education 
Department of South Australia? previously Primary Principal Class A, 
Hendon Primary School. 

Kerry Hyland, BA(Hons) Equal Employment Opportunity Co-ordinator , New 
South Wales Department of Education, previously teacher librarian and 
history teacher. 


- 200 

f.-'-ilvn Jarnieson, BA BEd(La Trobe), TPTC, Senior Education Officer, 
Victorian Education Department; previously primary school principal. 

Ros Kelly, MP, BA DipEfi( Sydnoy) , Member for Canberra, House of 
Representatives; Membc^r, Caucu;) Committee on the Status of Women; 
previously Chairperson, ACV Schools Authority, member ACT Legislative 

Warren Louden, BA MBA (WA), PhD(Alta) FACE Deputy Director-General, 
Education Department of Western A^'stralia; Chairperson, Policy 
Adivsory Committee on Equal Opportunity for Primary, Secondary and 
Technical and Further Education Divisions of the Education Department 
of Western Australia; previously Director, Guidance and Special 

Ann McMahon, BA(Hons) Tas), MA(ANU), MAPSS, Senior Lecturer in 
Administration, Canberra College of Au anced Education. 

Janice Nash, BA(NSW), DipEd(Syd), MEdAdmin(UNE) . MACE, History and 
English Co-ordinator , St Andrews Cathedral School; previously second 
deputy, St Leo's College, Wahrocnga. 

Margaret Lonergan, TasTC, MACE, Vice Principal, Lauderdale Primary 
School; Convener, Tasmanian Teachers' Federrt^.on Research Committee 
(Mobility Study). 

Peter OBrien, BA(So'ton), Di pEd ( Shef f ) , MEdCCalg), DEd(SA}, Senior 
Lecturer in Educational Administration and Associate Dean of the 
School of Education, Flinders University of South Australia. 

Lynette Powierza, MBE, NZDipEd, FACE, Superintendent, Equal 
Opportunities, Northern Territory Department of Education; previously 
Superintendent, Multicultural, Northern Territory Department of 

Parry Price, BA(Hons), DipEd(Syd), ilEdv'Canberra CAE), PhD(Lond), 
Senior Director (Resources), ACT Schcols Authority; previously 
Director (Curriculum), ACT Schools Authority. 

Gail Radford, BSc(Syd), MSc(Ottowa), Director, Equal Employment 
Opportunity Bureau, Commonwealth Public Service Board, Canberra; 
previously veterinary surgeon, research Licientist and aid worker. 

Shirley Randell, BEd(PNG), MEdC Canberra CAE) AIE(Lond) DipDiv, 
DipREd(MCD) FACE, AFAIM, President elect, Australian College of 
Education, Diractor (Programs), ACT ScN '^Is Au..hority; previously 
Senior Adviser, Community Services, Dep . tment of Prime Minister and 
Cabinet . 

Beverley Richardson, BA DipEd(Tas), FACE, MAPSS, Deputy-^Director , 
Student Services, Tasmanian Education Department. 

Shirley Sampson, 3A DipEd(UWA), BEd PhD(Monash) FACE, Senior Lecturer, 
Social, Comparative, and Administrative Studies, Faculty of Education, 
Mcnash University; previously lecturer, Rusden College of Advanced 
Educatic^ and school teacher. 


Er|c - 201 - 

Veronica Schwarz, Qld TC, BA(Mona8h), MEd(Melb), Policy and Planning 
Officer, Education Department of Victoria, Member of Education 
Department's Equal Employment Opportunity Consultative Committee; 
previously Planning Officer, Planning Services. 

Ann Scott, BEd (Canberra CAE), PhD(Qld), Policy Analyst , Queensland 
Department of Education? previously lecturer, School of Business, 
Brisbane College of Advanced Education. 

Barry Sheehan, BComm, BEd(Melb), MA, PhD(Lond), Director, Melbourne 
College of Advanced Education, previously Chairperson of the Centre 
for Comparative and International Studies in Education at La Trobe 

John Steinle, BA DipEd(Adel) MA(Lond) FACE, FAIM, FACEA, D^rertor- 
General, South Australian Education Department; Member, Commonwealth 
Schools Commission, Curriculum Development Centre, Australian Council 
for Educational Research, UNESCO Executive Committee. 


- 202 - 





1986 FOR 1987 

The Working Party ic planning procedures to allow for the 
extension of the use of formal evaluation in determining promotion in 
1986 for 1987 to the following categories: 

(i) principal, primary schools, Class II 

(ii) principal, district high -schools. Class II 

(ill) deputy principal, high and senior high schools. 

Fifty percent of vacancies in the above categories will be filled 
by promotion based on formal evaluation. 

Principali Primary Schools, Class II 

Eligible Groups 

Eligibility to apply in 1986 for promotion by merit in 1987 to the 
positions of principal, primary schools. Class II will be open to 
those whose names will appear on the promotion list for this category 
in 1986, i.e. 

(i) deputy principals, primary schools. Class lA 

(ii) principals, primary schools. Class III 

(iii) deputy principals (primary), district high schools. 

Also eligible to apply will be deputy principals (f em ale) of 
primary schools. Class I and lA who have had at least 8 years' total 
service and hold a Teachers' Higher Certificate and any female Class 
III principal or female deputy principal (primary) of a district high 
school not yet eligible to be on the Class II list provided she has at 
least 8 years in a promotional position and 12 years' total service. 

The rationale for this decision is that it allows the appointment 
to be made of males and females with broadly equivalent backgrounds. 

Inputs to Formal Evaluation 

Inputs to formal evaluation will be provided by the following: 

(i) applicant 

( i i ) superintendent 


- 203 - 

(Hi) principal of the school , but where this is not practicable, a 

second superintendent may be nominated. Alternatively a 
principal holding a higher status than the applicant, with whom 
the applicant has had recent (2 or 3 years) close professional 
contact may be nominated 

(iv) a colleague who has worked as a subordinate with the applicant 
in the last 3 years (applicant nominates 3). 

Principal. District High School. Class II 

Eligible Groups 

Teachers on the Class II district high school promotion list as 
specified in Regulation 185(l)(f) are eligible to apply. 

Inputs to Formal Evaluation 

(a) Inputs to formal evaluation for applicants who hold the position 
of principal, primary school, Class III will be provided by: 

( i ) applicant 

( ii ) superintendent 

(iii) a second superintendent may be nominated. Alternatively a 
principal holding a higher status than the applicant with 
whom the applicant has had recent (2 or 3 years) close 
professional contact may be nominated 

(iv) a colleague who has worked as a subordinate with the 
applicant in the last 3 years (applicant nominates 3). 

(b) Inputs to formal evaluation for applicants who hold a position 
other than principal, primary school. Class III will be provided by: 

(i) applicant 

( i i ) superintendent 

(iii) principal of the school, but where this is not practicable a 
second aupintendent may be nominated 

(iv) a colleague who has worked as a subordinate with the 
applicant in the last 3 years (applicant nominates 3). 

Deputy Principal. High and Senior High Schools 

Eligible Groups 

Teachers in the following categories who have an approved degree and a 
Teacher's Higher Certificate are eligible to apply for promotion by 
merit based on formal evaluation for deputy principal, high and senior 
high schools in 1986 for 1987. 

(i) master/mistress, with a minimum of 10 years' teacliin^ 


Er|c - - 

(ii) senior master/senior mistress 

(iii) deputy principal (secondary) district high school 

(iv) principal, district high school, Class II (secondary 
background) • 

Inputs to Formal Evaluation 

Inputs to formal evaluation will be provided by: 

(i) applicant 

(ii) superintendent (secondary) 

(iii) principal, or in the case of applicants who are principals of 
district high schools. Class II, a second superintendent 

(iv) two colleagues: one a teacher in a non-promotional position; the 
other a peer (applicant noi^inates two of each). 

Additional Points for Consideration 

The forms used for formal evaluation for the categories listed 
above will contain a teaching component in addition to categories on 
the existing forms used ir 1985. 

All superordinate formal evaluations will be open and applicants 
will have the opportunity to provide further comment. Applicants will 
receive copies of superordinate evaluations. Peer and i^ubordin.ite 
reports will be confidential to the Board. 

The working party also socks the views of teachers on the 
desirability of removing the requirement for state-wide applications 
for ^^ex linked positions (deputy principals) in Phase B of the 
promotion by merit system which will be introduced in 1986 for 1987. 


Promotion by merit to the positon of Deputy Principal High/Senior 
HiRh, Principal district High Class II. Primary Class II 

The Statement should serve as a guide to referees when deciding on 
ratings (in section E of the assessment form - see Page 4). Each 
attribute listed in Section E is briefly described below. It is not 
intended that the description should be regarded as exhaustive. The 
purpose is to provide a common basis for evaluating the important 
qualities required of persons seeking promotion by merit to Principal. 

Quality of the teacher's relationship with students. Factors to be 
considered include : 

empathy and rapport with students 




- 205 - 

ability to develop in students a constructive approach to 

response to student needs 

respect for and development of students; self-worth 
Planning and preparation. Factors to be considered include: 
evidence of thoughtful planning and preparation 

maintenance of appropriate student records provision for 
diagnostic, remedial and enrichment activities 

use of appropriate resources 

Teaching skills. Factors to be considered include: 

maintaining the interest and attention of students 

clarity of explanations and directions 

use of sound questioning techniques 

provision for student participation in lessons 

provision in teaching strategies for different levels of student 

use of content and .^^xamples meaningful in local context 
use of language appropriate to student level of development. 
Classroom Management. Teacher achieves: 
routines for effective teaching 
orderly transition from one activity to another 

effective supervision of all pupils whilst working with 
individuals or groups 

positive, fair and consistent discipline 

flexibility in dealing with different situations and pupil 

rofessional qualities. The teacher demonstrates: 

commitment to and enthusiasm for teaching 

awareness of new developments and issues in education 

involvement in the corporate life of the school 

commitment to the development of a caring school environment 
intellectual awareness and growth 


- 206 - 


appropriate use of language* 

Professional Leadership 

Effective leaders are good decision-makers. Aspect to be considered 

Encouraging participation 

establishes procedures that allow members of the school community 
with interest and expertise to participate in collective decision- 

promotes a sense of togetherness (team building). 

Achieving workable decisions 

takes into account the views of staff, parents, students, 
employers and the wider community 

seeks ideas from other as well as proposing new ideas. 
Achieving effective implementation 

Sets goals that are realistic in that they take account of the context 
in which they must be achieved and recognise the level and nature of 
the resources available. 

Delegating authority effectively 

Ensures that t^ose members of the school community expected to 
implement de>'. isions know what is expected and have the 
resources/ability to carry them through. 

School leadership and management skills 

Communication with staff and parents 

ensures that channels exist for effective communication in both 
directions (newsletters, parent nijhts, staff meetings, 
circulation of minutes from meetings) 

ensures that the school community is Kept informed of school 
activities and educational issues 

encourages and welcomes informal discussions 

demonstrates concern for the intellectual, physical , social and 
emotional well-being of staff and students. 

Setting and achieving educational goals 

awareness of the 'Structures needed to develop democratic 
decision-making in schools 


- 207 - 

ensures that goals are democratically determined within the 
context of the Education Act and Regulations 

utilizes the different skills and abilities of the school 
community to achieve goals 

provides leadership in at least some aspects of school curriculum 

contributes where necessary to the development of the skills 
needed to be an active participant in school decision-making. 

Staff utilisation and supervision 

ensures that staff are kept abreast of educational change through 
inservice provision and generally are involved in professional 

demonstrates an awareness of the extra talents and knowledge of 
staff and ensures the full range of talents and resources 
available to the school is used 

exhibits a style of supervision that encourages a posi tive 
commitment from staff to the educational goals of the school 

ensures the most efficient use of strengths of the various 
members of the school community. 

Effective contribution to the management of school finances and 

demonstrates well developed management, and administrative skills 
in the use of internal and external financial and other resources 
available to the school 

ensures that school resources are well used. 


- 208 - 



Policy & Program Documents 

Policy from the Director-General's Office, Equality in Education 
with Particular Reference to Women and GirJs,No, 23 (May 1980), 

Conference Reports 

Women in Education , (1981) Report of the Women in Education 

Women in Education: Uomen in Transition. (1982) Report of the Women 
in Education Conference. 

Women in Education : Uomen as role Models for Girls' Education* 

(1983) Report of the Women in Education Conference. 

liomen in Education: Women and Girls in a Technological Society. 

(1984) Report of the Women in Education Conference. 

Informal Issue and Discussion Paper s 

Commentary on the Beazley Report as it Applies to the Equal 
Opportunity Branch. (March 1984) Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Issues' Arising from the ncGaw Report. (March 1984) Equal 
Opportunity Branch. 

Issues Arising from the Participation of Women in PEP: A Submission 
to the liestern Australian State PEP Advisory Council. (August 1984) 
Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Iwpl ications for the School Systems of Anti-Discrimination 
Legi slation. (January 1985) Background paper for the Australian 
Education Council Meeting. 

Implications for the Education Department of WA of Sex Discrimination 
Legislation. (October 1984) A circular to schools, Equal Opportunity 

United Nations Convention on the El imination of all Forms of 
Discrimination Against Women. (October 1984) Report of the Education 
Department of WA, Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Summary of the Australian Youth Employment Review as it Relates to 
Girls' Employment. (March 1985) Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Boys nuscle in on Computers. (March 1985) Equal Opportunity Branch. 

o 222 

ERIC - 209 - 

Research Papers 

Brown, S.K. & Fitzpatrick, J. Gxrls, Boys and Subject Choice. (June 
1981) Discussion Paper No. 11, Research Branch, Education Department 
of UA. 

Brown, S.K. The Sex Factor in the Selection of Intellectually 
Talented Youth. (1983) SSPP Evaluation, Report No. 2, Research 
Branch, Education Department of WA. 

Brown S.K. & Fitzpatrick, J. Breaking the Sex Stereotype Circle. 
(1983) SET, (1). 

Resources for Schools 

New Options for West Australian . (1985) Resource Booklet for 
students of men's and women's non-traditional occupations. Equal 
Opportunity Branch. 

This Ccvld be Your Daughter. (1983) A pamphlet for parents about 
career op^jons for girls. Equal Opportunity Branch. 

School, Wor/c, Fa.nily: The Facts. (1985) A data resource for schools 
on tii3 role of worsen in society. Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Girls' Education: \9oinen*s Lives. A Year 8 social studies unit on 
equal opportunities for everyone. Wanneroo Senior High School. 

Women and the Changing yiorkforce . Resource for Secondary School 
teachers. Governor Stirling Senior High School. 

Curriculum Resource for Teachers to Mark the End of United Nations 
Decade for Women. A pamphlet with across-the-curriculum ideas for 
primary and secondary teachers. 

Regular Publications 

"Shai". Newsletter of the Equal Opportunity Branch, WA Education 
Department (3 publications per year). 

Audio-Visual Resources 

New Options for West Australians . A video tape to accompany the 
booklet of the same name, 1984. 

It's a Girls' World Too. (1983) A video tape produced by the Audio- 
Visual Branch of the WA Education Department in conjunction with the 
Equal Opportunity Branch. 

Life Cycle of a Woma/;. (1981) A video tape produced by the Audio- 
Visual Lranch of the WA Education Department in conjunction with TAFE 
Counselling Service. 

West Ed Report; Equai Opportunity. (July 1985) A video produced by 
the Audio-Visual Branch for public TV examining contensious issues in 
equal opportunity policy. 


- 210 - 

Publications/Resources in Preparation 

New Directions in Educatiom »omen*3 role and Influence. (1985) 
Report of the Women in Education Conference. 

Person to Person: The Gender Code and Interpersonal Dynamics at the 
Primary School Level. A Commonwealth Schools Commission Project of 
National Significance to stimulate and support school-based teacher 
development. Completion Date: April 1986. 

A set of four posters for schools advertising Gender Equity Issues. 
Completion Date: July 1985. 

A set of four stickers (for students and staffs cJvertisfng Gender 
Equity Issues. Completion Date: August 1985. 

The Single Sex Option. An issue paper exploring the idea of single 
sex classes within a co-education setting. Completion Date: August 

Educating Your Daughter. A booklet for parents. A joint project of 
the Women's Advisory Council and the Equal Opportunity Branch, WA 
Education Department. Completion Date: December, 1985. 



211 - 

^\r^^^^^^^^ Community Education Centre, Warragul