Gender Equality through the eyes of Nexus Community

Mar 13, 2020

The reverberating message of International Women’s Day 2020 echoes, “An equal world is an enabled world.”

Gender equality means having equal access to opportunities, regardless of gender, in all aspects of life including in education, in businesses, in boardrooms, in sports, in the media and more.  

In conjunction with International Women's Day 2020, we got in touch with some of our teachers, parents and learners, to hear their thoughts on gender equality. 

Anusha Thavarajah
Allianz Asia Regional CEO
Nexus Parent

“#EachforEqual, strikes the right chord. I believe in inclusive meritocracy. It brings out a very powerful purpose where each one of us has to have the right conversations, to behave in the right way, to act in the right way, so that we actually promote gender neutrality. 

Don’t let gender hold you back. That should never be something that you think about. Another thing which is also important is that we never stop learning, no matter what our age. Irrespective of your age, open your mind to learn and listen. There is always nuggets of things people say around you, that will benefit you.

Ultimately, I always tell people, be in-flow with what you do, because when you’re in-flow, you’ll enjoy everything, and then the whole thing comes together, and it’s a nice experience.”

Aaliyah Yoong
National Waterski Athlete
Nexus Learner, Year 12

“Gender Equality to me is very important, especially as a female athlete, because I believe that everybody should be treated the same way. They should also be given the same opportunities regardless of their gender. 

One of the ways that Nexus has promoted gender equality is by making participation in all sporting activities available to anyone.

Being a woman in my sport which is the waterski gives me a sense of power.”

David Griffiths
Nexus International School Principal

“I actually think that equality is important, full stop. On our guiding statements here at Nexus, we say that we are supporting the social, the physical, and the academic progression of every child regardless of what nationality they are, what gender they are and what religion they practice.

So, equality is very important especially for an inclusive school. 

Right from Early Years, here at Nexus, we promote equality amongst all the children. For example, in our Early Years, they do a topic called “Superheroes”. And all the children are able to access experiences that are related to the jobs that people do around our society.

Now, it doesn’t matter if you’re a girl or a boy. The place may be set up for mechanics and we realise that lots of our girls and our boys like to spend time in that place. 

So, right from the very beginning, children are encouraged to leave stereotypes behind.

And in IB, we start looking in more detail, at particular gender stereotypes, and analysing them and how they come about, all the time trying to promote what we stand for - “celebrating diversity and challenging minds.”

Dato Norman Abdul Halim
KRU Entertainment President
Nexus Parent

“I think gender equality is the only way to go. The theme, #EachforEqual fits perfectly in terms of the direction the country is heading. 

If organisations, government agencies, schools and training centres do not adopt this theme and embed it in the culture, I think, we will be at the losing end. At the same time, I also believe it should be merit based rather than quota based.

Everyone has got their own unique special skill, and the ability to contribute to the team. The advice for girls out there is just know yourself, what you’re good at, what you like to do, and be the best in whatever you do. 

Nexus provides equal opportunities for both genders. That’s the most important thing, it’s embedded in the culture of the organisation.” 

Safoora Hasan
Nexus Parent

“Gender equality for me means, men and women having the same opportunities in any field. 

If you teach children from a very young age that all jobs and all fields are open for all human beings, basically girls or boys, it’s great. I mean, you have more well balanced individuals coming into the world than having boys raised as thinking that they are privileged. 

Frankly speaking, it will be a shock to the system if later on, boys come across strong women and they wouldn’t know how to handle strong women because they have never been taught how to be equal to strong women. 

A lot of time, parents start to discriminate from a very young age as to what boys can play with and what girls can play with, or, boys shouldn’t cry and only girls can cry, or stopping them from expressing themselves.

So, I think, from a very young age, we have to start instilling in children to express themselves, and teach them that if they see injustice happening to anyone, be it a girl or a boy, they need to speak up.”

Ainslie Dann
Nexus Curriculum Enhancement Director

“We have reached a point in some places where the more explicit forms of inequality are easier to identify. We can count the number of people in a room and identify when it’s unequal. 

I think what's harder is identifying the more implicit underlying assumptions and behaviours that influence our own decisions, and knowing where they come from. There's this idea that men and women are different. 

Looking back and understanding, we realise that from birth we are treated differently. So, actually, if from birth we were treated the same, maybe our brains would develop the same way. Maybe, we would be equally good at spatial awareness as well as empathy and caring.” 

The Nexus Way focuses on inclusion and relationships, which puts equality at the heart of what we want to achieve as a school; fostering an environment and ethos where everyone, regardless of gender feels motivated and confident in participating in all areas of community, and supporting others to do the same. 
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