“Research is formalised curiosity.
It is poking and prying with a purpose.”

Zora Neale Hurston

The selection of research below gives an idea of the current situation around sexism in schools. It doesn’t make for pretty reading but it is vital to understand the context in which we come to this work. We will continue to add to this resource base and we hope – eventually – that the reports emerging will show a change in culture.

Attitudes towards women and girls in educational settings

Published by the Women and Equalities Committee in 2023.

Sexual harassment and sexual violence in schools report

This report published by Ofsted in 2021 explores specific aspects of the continuing problem of sexual abuse in schools, including: existing safeguarding frameworks for inspectors, the current RSHE curriculum, multi-agency safeguarding arrangements and victims voice and reporting.

It's just everywhere - UK Feminista report

Published by UK Feminista in 2017, this report explores the pervasiveness of sexism in schools including instances of sexual harassment, sexist language, behaviour and stereotypes. It also looks at how sexism is reported and handled in schools and lays out proposed actions and recommendations to tackle this serious issue.

Improving Gender Balance report

Published by the Institute of Physics in 2017, this report examines the gendered uptake of physics at tertiary education and above, the IOP’s work to address this imbalance and recommendations for future action.

Sexual harassment and sexual violence in schools report

Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence in Schools

This report published by the Women and Equalities Committee in 2016 highlights the scale and impact of sexual harassment and sexual violence in schools, as well as existing and proposed strategies for addressing the problem.