Within this picture you will see seven young female students who were a part of my Junior Coach Program. This program taught the students on how to be leaders in their environment. The reason why I selected more females than males to be a part of this program is because when I started working at Bret Harte Elementary, the popular opinion was that boys do more and are better than the girls. Of course kids will be kids but as an influential leader at the school I decided to try and change that perspective to make it more equal so that the boys respect the girls as leaders and the girls have enough courage to step up and be a leader.
Majority of these girls have cultural backgrounds where the men are more dominant. One of the girls is African, two are Samoans, one is Mexican, and two are African American. As I cultivated relationships with their parents as the program went on I soon learned that men were more dominant in Africa, Mexico, and Hawaii. At this school, majority of the staff and faculty were males. The school use to have pictures up of leaders of the world and local community leaders around the school but all of them were men. It seemed as if there was nothing set up at this elementary school to empower the female youth.
My solution to that was always letting these girl students lead activities at recess and in class. I always asked them what they wanted to be in life and when they told me I would give them an example of a female leader within the industry or a famous female who is known for doing what they dream to be. At the end of the day, they all felt better about themselves and graduated with confidence in middle school.
I know this is a major issue in other countries if the lack of women studies and lack of exposing women’s academic and world leadership happening right here in the United States. I believe it takes nonprofits and leaders to come into the school system and after school programs to help inspire the young women to want to learn more about women in history and women’s education as a whole.