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Out in the bush, you’ll have to go into the pouch of a mama echidna to pet her baby puggle. Our Puggle is easier to find, showing up every month to share what we’re learning about emerging issues in girls’ education. Other posts provide our analysis of recent research and events and feature stories from our grantees. Explore more below, including a link to our resource library.

The Puggle: June 2019 edition

Dana Schmidt | July 9, 2019

In honor of Father’s Day, this June edition of the Puggle features the latest news and research about the importance of fathers in girls’ education.

In early June Promundo launched its third State of the World’s Fathers report. The report shows that care work—like changing diapers, giving baths, feeding children—is viewed as women’s work. As a result, women spend up to ten times more time on unpaid care activities than men do. The report argues that if men engaged equally with women in unpaid care work at home, everyone would benefit. Women would be more empowered to participate in the workplace. Older sisters wouldn’t have to drop out of school (as documented in this recent article in Time). Children would benefit developmentally and boys would be more likely to believe in gender equality and share in unpaid work themselves. Men themselves also benefit: “Fathers who are involved in the home and with their children say it’s one of their most important sources of well-being and happiness.”

What can help to shift the balance so fathers play an increasing role in unpaid care work? A combination of new policies and new norms. 

On the policy front, UNICEF’s call to action for family-friendly policies makes four concrete asks, including paid parental leave for both parents, breastfeeding support at work, high quality childcare services, and child grants.

On the norms front, we can seize the moment when men become fathers. Because this is a big life transition, men are often open to hearing new ideas and taking on new behaviors. In the 2019 issue of Early Childhood Matters, also released in June, an article on Loving fathers, thriving children documents programs that engage new fathers in ways that improve child outcomes, increase father’s involvement in household work, and reduce domestic violence.

These are not the types of policies and programs that are typically associated with girls’ education. But shifting the dynamics around caring for young children can alleviate time constraints on older girls who might otherwise drop out of school. It can provide a stronger developmental foundation for very young girls and improve their schooling trajectory. And it can begin to promote more gender equitable outcomes for this generation and the next. The latest Facts About The Gender Gap in Education clearly show that “eliminating gender gaps in education does not produce equal life outcomes for women.” We might be able to intensify the impact of education on gender equality if we work more explicitly to change norms and put in place policies supportive of those changes.

Want to listen to one of the world’s notable fathers? Hear Ziauddin Yousafzai, made famous by virtue of being the father of Malala Yousafzai, reflect on “the power of parents in accelerating global education progress” in this podcast from Brookings.

Although fathers play a crucial role when it comes to girls’ education, focusing too much on fathers (and men and boys more generally), risks taking attention and resources away from marginalized women and girls. This tension is part of the reason that Pauline Rose and Louise Yorkeere from the REAL Centre at Cambridge have written a response to Evans and Yuan’s paper on What We Learn about Girls’ Education from Interventions that Don’t Focus on Girls. They draw out some of the nuances that get hidden in provocative headlines of the Evans and Yuan piece, most notably the conclusion that “there is an urgent need for more evidence on what type of interventions work to improve education for girls, where, how, and for which girls. This evidence needs to include evaluations of interventions that tackle the structural barriers to girls’ education.”

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  • The Puggle: June 2019 edition

    Dana Schmidt | July 9, 2019

    In honor of Father’s Day, this June edition of the Puggle features the latest news and research about the importance of fathers in girls’ education.

    In early June Promundo launched its third State of the World’s Fathers report. The report shows that care work—like changing diapers, giving baths, feeding children—is viewed as women’s work. As a result, women spend up to ten times more time on unpaid care activities than men do. The report argues that if men engaged equally with women in unpaid care work at home, everyone would benefit. Women would be more empowered to participate in the workplace. Older sisters wouldn’t have to drop out of school (as documented in this recent article in Time). Children would benefit developmentally and boys would be more likely to believe in gender equality and share in unpaid work themselves. Men themselves also benefit: “Fathers who are involved in the home and with their children say it’s one of their most important sources of well-being and happiness.”

    What can help to shift the balance so fathers play an increasing role in unpaid care work? A combination of new policies and new norms. 

    On the policy front, UNICEF’s call to action for family-friendly policies makes four concrete asks, including paid parental leave for both parents, breastfeeding support at work, high quality childcare services, and child grants.

    On the norms front, we can seize the moment when men become fathers. Because this is a big life transition, men are often open to hearing new ideas and taking on new behaviors. In the 2019 issue of Early Childhood Matters, also released in June, an article on Loving fathers, thriving children documents programs that engage new fathers in ways that improve child outcomes, increase father’s involvement in household work, and reduce domestic violence.

    These are not the types of policies and programs that are typically associated with girls’ education. But shifting the dynamics around caring for young children can alleviate time constraints on older girls who might otherwise drop out of school. It can provide a stronger developmental foundation for very young girls and improve their schooling trajectory. And it can begin to promote more gender equitable outcomes for this generation and the next. The latest Facts About The Gender Gap in Education clearly show that “eliminating gender gaps in education does not produce equal life outcomes for women.” We might be able to intensify the impact of education on gender equality if we work more explicitly to change norms and put in place policies supportive of those changes.

    Want to listen to one of the world’s notable fathers? Hear Ziauddin Yousafzai, made famous by virtue of being the father of Malala Yousafzai, reflect on “the power of parents in accelerating global education progress” in this podcast from Brookings.

    Although fathers play a crucial role when it comes to girls’ education, focusing too much on fathers (and men and boys more generally), risks taking attention and resources away from marginalized women and girls. This tension is part of the reason that Pauline Rose and Louise Yorkeere from the REAL Centre at Cambridge have written a response to Evans and Yuan’s paper on What We Learn about Girls’ Education from Interventions that Don’t Focus on Girls. They draw out some of the nuances that get hidden in provocative headlines of the Evans and Yuan piece, most notably the conclusion that “there is an urgent need for more evidence on what type of interventions work to improve education for girls, where, how, and for which girls. This evidence needs to include evaluations of interventions that tackle the structural barriers to girls’ education.”

  • Recent posts

    • JUNE

      In honor of Father’s Day, this June edition of the

    • MAY

    • APRIL

    Load Older Posts

    Older posts

    • MARCH

    • FEBRUARY

    • JANUARY

      Ed quality in 3 charts, a new teacher observation tool,

    • DECEMBER

      In 2019, our team will spend considerable time and effort

    • DECEMBER

      2018 Is A (W)rap

    • NOVEMBER

      What's social and emotional learning got to do with it?

    • OCTOBER

      Obama's Global Girls Alliance, The Human Campital Index, and India's

    • SEPTEMBER

      Three themes on girls' education from UNGA

    • AUGUST

      Before we get to our usual Puggle updates, we have

    • JULY

      We’re at the peak of vacation season in the Northern

    • JUNE

      The G7 summit in Canada in early June catalyzed a $3

    • MAY

      This month we’re diving deep on a topic related to

    • APRIL

      April marked the first full month of a new season

    • MARCH

      In this update from March, we celebrate the march of progress

    • FEBRUARY

      This month brought encouraging news on aid to education.

    • JANUARY

      This month, champions spoke up for girls: Oprah made a rousing

    • DECEMBER

      This month we are keeping it short and sweet. In

    • NOVEMBER

      This month we are excited to share a piece we published

    • DECEMBER

      The latest World Development Report focuses exclusively on education for the first

    • OCTOBER

      Echidna Giving team highlights emerging issues and findings related to

    • SEPTEMBER

      This month the World Bank released the World Development Report (WDR). For

    • AUGUST

      August offered plenty of great material, including a collection of essays from

    • JULY

      There is a notion that things slow down during the

    • JUNE

    • MAY

      In May, the Center For Universal Education (CUE) and the

    • APRIL

      In April, the World Bank and IMF Spring Meetings served

    • MARCH

      March 8th marked International Women’s Day. This month we were

    • FEBRUARY

      Even if every single girl completed at least 6 grades

    • JANUARY

      News in January seemed to be dominated by the new

    • DECEMBER

      In 2016, the Echidna Giving team reviewed literature related to

    • DECEMBER

      Welcome to the end-of-year installment of The Puggle. In this

    • NOVEMBER

      In September, the Echidna Giving team joined the masses of

    • OCTOBER

      In case you missed it, on October 11 the world celebrated

    • SEPTEMBER

      It turns out September was a busy month for

    • AUGUST

      This August we couldn’t help but be inspired by the Olympics!

    • JULY

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  • We believe in exchanging ideas and sharing knowledge. Here’s some of what we’ve been reading to inform our thinking on girls’ education. Feel free to suggest additional resources for us to read and feature!