Taking Action in focus: Fitzroy High School Feminist Collective

#VicSRCvoices is a rolling series driven by the stories and experiences of student representatives. As we to celebrate 10 years of VicSRC, we’re celebrating you. It’s about who we are; what we value; what drives us to act; and what fuels our passions to advocate for what we believe in. First up for our Taking Action Series: the Fitzroy High School Feminist Collective*.

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*Winners of the Group Action Award at the 2014 VicSRC Recognition Awards

Fitzroy High School Feminist Collective

We’re the Fitzroy High School Feminist Collective.  We started last year as a lunch-time club after we had an in-class discussion about sexism, and discovered that we all had an interest in feminism. Our teacher, Briony, who helped start it up, then started running it as an elective class, twice a week. This year, our Principal takes one class per week.

"Last year, we worked together to come up with concepts for two poster campaigns: one addressed objectification, and the other, sexist language.  We contacted, and worked with, designers to develop high quality posters to be distributed nation-wide." 

Once we finished our posters, we realised they wouldn’t be enough on their own. So we came up with the idea of creating a teaching resource to support our posters, which will enable teachers to deliver curriculum about gender inequality, to educate and get other teenagers thinking about these issues, and therefore have positive impact on the lives of young women. Because, who better to design a feminist teaching resource for teenagers, than feminist students?

We have spoken at a number of events, inside and outside school hours, to spread the word about our feminist collective and encourage schools to consider our teaching resource and gender inequality in general.

We’re also currently in the process of making a video for other schools, to give them advice on how to start and successfully run a feminist collective. Once our resource is launched, we plan to visit other schools to support them with the resource, and meet other feminist collectives.

"Just by existing, we have started up conversations and got young people talking about feminism."

We believe that the founding of our collective, the way we have worked with our teachers as equals, and the opportunities we have taken to speak about gender inequalities, make what we’re doing a great example of best practice for student voice, student-led action and student participation, aiming at making the world a better place for young people.

- Fitzroy High School Feminist Collective



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