Scots College Head accused of sexism

The prestigious boys’ school, Scots College in Wellington is going co-ed next year, after being a single-sex school for 103 years. The school recently held an open day for students looking at attending the college next year, and well … it didn’t go well. quote.

The headmaster of a prestigious Wellington all-boys school has been accused of making “sexist” comments after he said female students won’t be allowed to “sit at the back of class painting their nails” when the school goes co-ed. end quote.

Chill out, guys… it is just an expression. He could also have said that boys will not be allowed to sit at the back of the class scratching their…heads… quote.

However, questions have been raised over the school’s readiness to accept young women by three prospective students who say Scots headmaster Graeme Yule included “multiple sexist remarks” in his speech to parents and potential future students at a recent open day. end quote.

Are we not allowed to say anything any more? He wanted to make it clear that the young ladies that joined Scots College would be expected to pull their weight… do the hard yards… put in a good day’s work… go the extra mile, and keep their pretty noses to the grindstone…

You know what I mean. quote.

Yule says his comments were taken out of context and he felt “gobsmacked” by the reaction as the school worked toward ensuring female students were “valued and accepted” at Scots. end quote.

We can be sure he meant no harm by his comments. He was actually trying to be especially inclusive, saying that he expected the first female pupils of Scots College should ‘hit the ground running’… but that is not what was heard. A few young women instead decided to take offence at a commonly used phrase.

Yawn. quote.

Current Wellington High School Year 10 students Jean Cleaver-Paris, Bree Gerritsen and Mara Williscroft said they attended the school’s open day in late-March out of “pure curiosity”. At least 50 people ? including girls of mostly high-school age ? and their parents were there.

He also comment [sic] on the importance women gave to the size of mirrors, while talking about construction of the new girls’ bathrooms. end quote.

Sorry guys, but I have been a business manager in a firm where the mirrors in the ladies bathrooms were inadequate. Trust me, this IS a big deal for women, as our landlord quickly found out. quote.

“As females, we do not want to be seen as these outdated stereotypes. Not all girls are obsessed with appearance and these remarks were patronising and definitely not welcoming to prospective female students.” end quote.

No, the comments were not welcoming to girls who want to sit back and paint their nails… oops, sorry… who do not want to make a big effort and take part in school activities. It is a strong message to young ladies that they are expected to ‘pull out all the stops’… quote.

They chose to speak-up out of concern for the welfare of future female students, who they believed could be subjected to “unacceptable values and beliefs” at Scots. end quote.

What rubbish. Young women with a good attitude will do very well at Scots. Remember, it is a private school. The young women who are complaining do not come from a private school, and most likely do not have any chance of ever attending the school… let us be honest about this. quote.

Jean said an apology would be welcomed. “I don’t think he can blow it off as not being a big deal.” end quote.

Not a big deal? Just a flash in the pan? Don’t sweat the small stuff? Will this matter 100 years from now? quote.

The students did not directly raise their concerns with the school.

end quote.

Nope. They just went straight to the media. quote.

Yule said his comments about girls not being allowed to paint their nails were made to emphasise the school’s active-student participation culture. Neither he, nor anyone at the school, held outdated beliefs and values, he said.

“The point I was trying to make to them was you can’t sit back, sit in a corner and not be involved. I find it really hard, given what I said, how anyone could take anything else other than that from what I’ve said.”

Stuff. end quote.

I understand that Sir, and so do most people, but you really do need to understand the world that you now live in. You cannot say anything even remotely disparaging about any female, ever. They will call sexism at the drop of a hat. You would have been wise to keep the school as it was… an excellent private school for young men to achieve in life.

Believe me, it gets so much harder from here. Don’t forget though.There is no success without hardship.