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Rethink What You “Know” About High-Achieving Women

December 16, 2014 Comments off

Rethink What You “Know” About High-Achieving Women
Source: Harvard Business Review

As researchers who have spent more than 20 years studying professional women, we have watched with interest the recent surge in attention paid to women’s careers, work-family conflict, and the gender gap in leadership. Among the most visible contributions to this public conversation have been Anne-Marie Slaughter’s 2012 Atlantic article “Why Women Still Can’t Have it All” and Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In, both of which ignited fierce public debate.

A lot of ink has been spilled on these topics, and both individuals and organizations have focused on gender gaps in business and other sectors. Can anything more be said? The 50th anniversary of the admission of women to Harvard Business School’s MBA program inspired us to find out—specifically, to learn what HBS graduates had to say about work and family and how their experiences, attitudes, and decisions might shed light on prevailing controversies.

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Education Department Clarifies Requirements for Offering Single-Sex Classes

December 11, 2014 Comments off

Education Department Clarifies Requirements for Offering Single-Sex Classes
Source: U.S. Department of Education

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released guidance today for K-12 schools that offer or want to offer single-sex classes.

In response to numerous inquiries about the legality of single-sex classes, OCR issued guidance that charts a path for schools on how they can provide boys-only or girls-only instruction while remaining in compliance with civil rights laws.

“As we receive increasing inquiries about single-sex offerings we want to be clear what federal law allows: Protect civil rights and promote achievement,” said Catherine E. Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights. “It is our hope that this guidance will give schools, students and parents the tools they need to ensure compliance with the Title IX regulations on single-sex classes.”

To offer single-sex classes or extracurricular activities, schools must:

  • Identify an important objective that they seek to achieve by offering a single-sex class (such as improving academic achievement);
  • Demonstrate that the single-sex nature of the class is substantially related to achieving that objective;
  • Ensure that enrollment in the single-sex class is completely voluntary (through an opt-in, rather than an opt-out, process);
  • Offer a substantially equal coed class in the same subject;
  • Offer single-sex classes evenhandedly to male and female students;
  • Conduct periodic evaluations at least every two years to ensure that the classes continue to comply with Title IX;
  • Avoid relying on gender stereotypes;
  • Provide equitable access to single-sex classes to students with disabilities and English language learners and,
  • Avoid discriminating against faculty members based on gender when assigning educators to single-sex classrooms.

The guidance document is presented in a convenient question-and-answer format, offering common scenarios aimed at assisting schools and educators in designing single-sex programs that comply with Title IX.

Sources of Economic Hope: Women’s Entrepreneurship

December 10, 2014 Comments off

Sources of Economic Hope: Women’s Entrepreneurship
Source: Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation

In 1948, the gap in labor force participation between American men and women was 54 percentage points—only one-third of American women were officially counted as in the labor force. Nearly seven decades later, the gap has narrowed considerably as women have entered the labor force en masse, and as men have experienced steady declines. As of August 2014, about 57 percent of women were counted as labor force participants, and the gap between men and women had narrowed to only 13 percentage points.

Men as caregivers of the elderly: support for the contributions of sons

December 10, 2014 Comments off

Men as caregivers of the elderly: support for the contributions of sons
Source: Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare

Emerging practice research on filial sources of health care support has indicated that there is a growing trend for sons to assume some responsibility for the health care needs of their aging parents. The purpose of this work is to propose that outcomes observed through a secondary analysis of data from a previous mixed methods research project, conducted with a sample of 60 elderly women residing in independent living centers, supports this concept in elder care. The present study is a retrospective interpretation utilizing the original database to examine the new question, “What specific roles do sons play in caregiving of their elderly mothers?” While daughters presently continue to emerge in existing health care studies as the primary care provider, there is a significant pattern in these data for older patients to depend upon sons for a variety of instrumental activities of daily living. As the baby-boomers age, there is more of cohort trend for their families to be smaller, adult daughters to be employed, and for adult children to be more geographically mobile. These factors may combine to make health care support networks more limited for the current aging population, challenging the elderly and their health care providers to revisit the cultural gender norms that are used to identify caregivers.

2015 Hunger Report: When Women Flourish…We Can End Hunger

December 9, 2014 Comments off

2015 Hunger Report: When Women Flourish…We Can End Hunger
Source: Bread for the World Institute
From press release:

The 2015 Hunger Report, When Women Flourish…We Can End Hunger, released today by Bread for the World Institute, identifies the empowerment of women and girls as essential in ending hunger, extreme poverty, and malnutrition around the world and in the United States.

The 2015 Hunger Report comes at a time when the 114th Congress, which starts in January, will have 100 women legislators – the most ever in U.S. history. Despite the fact that fully 22 percent of the world’s legislators are female, women face barriers that limit their ability to engage fully in economic activity. Women are also more likely to earn less or work in low-wage jobs.

The report also shows that women’s willingness to share men’s breadwinning responsibilities has not been matched by men’s willingness to share unpaid household work or caregiving responsibilities. Though domestic work is a public good in the same way that education, clean water, clean air, and the food supply are, it is not recognized as such. Women constitute half the global population.

2013 Demographics: Profile of the Military Community

December 8, 2014 Comments off

2013 Demographics: Profile of the Military Community (PDF)
Source: U.S. Department of Defense

Overview of Military Personnel

The total number of military personnel is over 3.6 million strong, including DoD Active Duty military personnel (1,370,329); DHS’s Active Duty Coast Guard members (40,420); DoD Ready Reserve and DHS Coast Guard Reserve members (1,102,419); members of the Retired Reserve (214,938) and Standby Reserve (14,408); and DoD appropriated and non-appropriated fund civilian personnel (874,054). DoD’s Active Duty and DHS’s Coast Guard Active Duty members comprise the largest portion of the military force (39.0%), followed by Ready Reserve members (30.5%) and DoD civilian personnel (24.2%).

The Global Gender Gap Report 2014

December 8, 2014 Comments off

The Global Gender Gap Report 2014
Source: World Economic Forum

The Global Gender Gap Report 2014 emphasizes persisting gender gap divides across and within regions. Based on the nine years of data available for the 111 countries that have been part of the report since its inception, the world has seen only a small improvement in equality for women in the workplace. According to the Global Gender Gap Report 2014, launched today, the gender gap for economic participation and opportunity now stands at 60% worldwide, having closed by 4% from 56% in 2006.

The gender gap is narrowest in terms of health and survival with a gap standing at 96% globally, with 35 countries having closed the gap entirely. Despite all this, it is the only subindex which declined over the course of the past nine year. The educational attainment gap is the next narrowest, standing at 94% globally. Here, 25 countries have closed the gap entirely. While the gender gap for economic participation and opportunity lags stubbornly behind, the gap for political empowerment, the fourth pillar measured, remains wider still, standing at 21%, although this area has seen the most improvement since 2006.

This year’s findings show that Iceland continues to be at the top of the overall rankings in The Global Gender Gap Index for the sixth consecutive year. Finland ranks in second position, and Norway holds the third place in the overall ranking. Sweden remains in fourth position and Denmark gains three places and ranks this year at the fifth position. Northern European countries dominate the top 10 with Ireland in the eighth position and Belgium (10) Nicaragua (6), Rwanda (7) and Philippines (9) complete the top 10.

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