Helping forge a gender equal world

At CBC Fremantle, tomorrow’s gentlemen are called to be change-makers in the world, who are, among many other fine attributes, champions for women’s rights and stand proud as examples of positive masculinity in our community.

As the College today reflects on the significance of International Women’s Day, Principal Mr Domenic Burgio shared the College’s role in advocating for a gender equal world.

“It is deeply disappointing that in 2020 we continue to see the damaging effects of hate in our society. On this day we reflect on the particular hatred inflicted on our sisters in the form of misogyny, sexism and stereotyping of women,” he said.

“Australia has many, many good men who see in the feminine a partner or an equal. That should be the norm, not the ideal. As educators, we have a duty to teach our students to be advocates for women’s rights in everything they do.”

That message is deeply embedded in the CBC journey, which guides the formation of tomorrow’s gentlemen.

Key to that development is the emphasis all College staff place on the transition from children to mature young men. In every interaction with a student there is always an opportunity to remind our boys that successful adults are respectful of all those around them and that the world is never truly the place God intended when any part of our society is disenfranchised.

In  Year 9 Rite Journey classes, teachers facilitate discussion on issues boys might not be given the opportunity to reflect on otherwise. Domestic violence, forming positive relationships and unfair pay gaps are all addressed in a way that helps tomorrow’s gentlemen not only understand the issue from different perspectives, but also the part they have to play as positive role models in our communities. Boys are urged to challenge gender stereotypes and bias and take inspiration from women's achievements, while calling for greater equality.

College Captain, William Burfoot, is not alone in considering those lessons, which are based on Gospel Values, have been an essential part of his development and personal growth.

“It’s all about treating everyone with the same respect that we would want to be treated with,” he said.

Those lessons are made more profound with the consistent example shown by the College’s female staff, who are constant role models for students of all ages.

“We’re very fortunate at CBC to have wonderful role models in our women, and I think the boys get a lot from that,” Director of Staff Ms Georgina Bowler said.

“The work of everyone in the CBC community prepares boys to be good partners, dads, sons, brothers, employers, employees and colleagues, and to maintain healthy relationships with the women in their lives.”

Mr Burgio said these aspirations of the College would be meaningless without strong support from the community.

“As teachers, we can only embellish the work of boys’ primary educators: their parents and families,” he said.

“Our entire CBC community should be proud of the part they are playing in making the world a better place for all.”

He said the message of International Women’s Day is simple.

“The issues faced by women are not simply women’s issues. We all have a part to play in creating a world where gender is never a disadvantage,” he said.

“I implore men of all ages to ask themselves if there is more they could be doing to create a more equal world.”