Epic! Check Out How One Mum Combatted Sexist Homework
- Parents Only
By: Phoebe Ackland, ellaslist
"Lisa was not happy. Her mother was back at work."
And so begins the sexist homework that Hazel, 6, was sent home with recently from a New York primary school. It was a 'fill in the blanks'-type homework activity, where Hazel had to complete sentences about little Lisa's life, such as: "But when Lisa arrived home, there was her mother. "I leave the office early so we can be together after school," she said. Lisa feels fine now."
Lynne Polvino, mother of Hazel and (ironically) children's book editor at a Manhattan-based publishing house, needless to say, was pretty unimpressed. She decided to to a little rewrite of poor little Lisa's plight, and shared the epic takedown of this sexist piece of homework on Facebook:
Source: Lynne Polvino Facebook
Less Than Impressed
The post went viral on social media, and Polvino has been praised by working mums and parents of all kinds for her empowering rewrite. Polvino told TODAY that she "almost lost it" when she read over Hazel's work.
"It just pushed so many buttons for me, and with each sentence it managed to get worse! My shock and dismay quickly turned to outrage. I mean, what decade are we in, anyway? In this day and age, we're going to tell kids that mothers working outside the home makes their children and families unhappy? That fathers don't normally do things like cook and wash the dishes?"
She continued: "What message was this sending to them? What message was it sending to little girls who dream of having careers and families? And what about all the other working mums — did they feel, as I did, like they’d been punched in the gut when they read this?"
Polvino then shared that despite having a supportive boss, she has felt in the past like she wasn't fully present in her career and parenting jobs, because of the lack of support (affordable childcare, leave policies) that exist in society that make it tough on working families. She said that if she, in 2017, can be made to feel guilty for juggling a family and a career, then boy did the career women and mothers of decades gone by have a tough go of things. "I have so much respect for all the working mums of past generations who had to deal with this type of crap on a regular basis! I'm so grateful to them for paving the way," she told TODAY.
We hear you, Lynne!