Gender Workshop Highlights 12-13 December 2011

The High level Gender Mainstreaming Capacity Development Workshop organized by MoE on 12 and 13 December was entitled:
Accelerating the Momentum toward Gender Mainstreaming and Promoting the MDGs
Opening remarks
H.E. Dr Kaba Urgessa, State Minister for Higher Education, welcomed the participants. Gender mainstreaming is mandatory. He told the participants he expects new attitudes and change to come from this workshop – it should be a springboard for support and monitoring of gender mainstreaming in institutions.

W/ro Mekdes Eyoel, Director of the MoE Gender Directorate welcomed the participants, emphasizing that education plays a major role in sustainable development and poverty reduction and is linked to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). CEDAW was signed and education and training policies are gender sensitive. Gender is cross cutting in all ESDPs.

“Without the budget we cannot talk about gender mainstreaming and that is why the 2% in ESDP IV” W/ro Mekdes
Building Blocks and Frameworks for Gender Analysis
Facilitator Dr Changu introduced key terms and emphasized that equity and access are necessary to achieve gender equality. Equity can be measured and it is the pathway to equality. Gender analysis concepts and frameworks examine differences between males/females that leads to gender inequities that include injustice, exclusion and a lack of fairness.

Gender lenses that have been used in various decades, including Women in Development (WID), Gender and Development (GAD), Post-Structuralism and Rights Based gender analysis frameworks were explained.

These four approaches are not mutually exclusive, they can be used depending on the issue being addressed – one needs to flexible to shift from one gender lens to another.

“Affirmative action is a right, not a privilege” Dr Changu

Gender Mainstreaming in the Education Sector
Introductory Activity: An introductory activity had participants reflect on gender mainstreaming concepts

In Ethiopia a mainstreaming strategy requires change in the education sector and at the country level to improve the situation of females and males. Gender equality is integral to development.

“The best solution can come from the problem” Dr Alemayehu
Mapping the Education Sector Landscape
A mapping exercise was undertaken and reporters summarized gaps and good practices in regions.
Refining the gender issue from a policy and planning perspective
Gender sensitive policies exist but the challenge is to adapt, plan, implement and monitor using participatory approaches with girls and women Regarding gender budgeting, it was seen as critical for leadership in HLIs to show commitment to spend the money as stipulated in ESDP IV
Engendering Advocacy and Communication for gender mainstreaming
Education leaders were encouraged to develop evidence-based key messages for advocacy on why invest in gender equity interventions

Examples were provided to illustrate how communication can be made more gender sensitive by bringing girls’ and women’s issues into the mainstream
Monitoring and Evaluation: Keeping a Gender Sensitive Eye on Things
Monitoring and evaluation includes both qualitative and quantitative information. The views and voices of the females must be included as part of gender sensitive monitoring.

H.E. Ato Fouad Ibrahim, State Minister of General Education made the closing remarks. Key messages: We have had achievements in terms of access, equity and relevance He called upon UNICEF and other donors to strengthen their partnerships. Gender equality is the backbone for development of our country. Finally he thanked UNICEF for support for the workshop.