Womens Football Forum

Off Topic and other Sports => Off Topic => Topic started by: fairfootball on December 13, 2013, 09:05:22 PM

Title: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on December 13, 2013, 09:05:22 PM
From its title I realise that this site is dedicated to the perpetuation of gender segregation in sport, but hopefully schoolgirl footballers are more open-minded and liberal, so would be interested in the question (posted below) that I posed at the Women Play Sport Conference at the beginning of November.  Unsuccessful attempts were made to stop me asking the question.  As a consequence I was told to leave and have now been banned.  As I said in my recent posting Complaint to the BBC about women's football 2 it makes you wonder about the dark Machiavellian forces at work!


Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference

I have had cause to read, and reread, the Equality Act 2010, many times.  Section 195 of the Act makes it crystal clear that the opt-out, allowing sport to discriminate by gender, does not extend to children.  Paragraph 4 specifically excludes them.  Furthermore, Part 6 of the Act, which covers all education, makes no reference to, or concessions for, sport whatsoever.
In short this means that schools up and down the country, that are, on a daily basis, either, segregating the sexes for physical education, offering different sports for boys and girls, or, using gender-affected activities, in any form, without good reason, are doing so illegally.  Children, of either sex, or their parents, would be well within their rights to seek legal redress.
Over the past few years I have informed numerous organisations of this - ranging from all secondary schools, women’s interest groups, many government agencies, to every single woman MP.    I have been universally met with either evasive silence or blatant stonewalling.
I suspect that the few who had bothered to read the Act, did not understand it.  Of those who did understand however, I can only conclude, to put it crudely, that they did not have the balls to do anything about it.  Suffragettes must be rolling in their graves!
So my question is - does the Women’s Sport and Fitness Foundation have any balls?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: Sylvain on December 13, 2013, 09:11:35 PM
welcome to donkeybusiness.com
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on December 13, 2013, 10:42:54 PM
Personally I think this poor misunderstood chap has a very good point. Football is not only sexist but ageist, homophobic and awfully discriminatory on the basis of disability too. So I suggest we extend the nuttyfooty idea so that all 22 players have their own section of the pitch to play in and nobody can be really nasty and take the ball off them if they don't want to pass it. No quick wingers getting to the byeline around slow old gits like me. Of course, no one is allowed to tackle as that would give unfair advantage to those players with legs. And no one is allowed to head the ball as that might cause concussion.

All 22 players must have a different combination of gender, sexuality, age band and ethnic origin. At least half the players must have some sort of disability and all goalkeepers must be registered blind. Then I'm sure we'd all be admitted with open arms to every right-thinking football conference in the country...
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on December 13, 2013, 10:53:58 PM
sadly, i wish he were my mp.
no stone unturned.
equality is the chance to be given equal chances to compete.
it is not a chance to handicap men, so women can equal them.
women are not as fast as men
not as strong as men.
please let women compete against women fairly, (funding)
let men compete against men.
do not handicap men to enable women to pass  them on points.
would you be happy that a female boxer could only beat a man if both of his hands were tied behind his back, probably not.
handicapping is fair only if the competition,has an advantage other than sex.
fund women fairly, that's it, its easy ,stop handicapping males to the point where women can beat them.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: Mackem Steve on December 14, 2013, 01:11:01 AM
A magician was working on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. The audience was different each week so he did same tricks over and over.

The problem was, the captain's parrot saw all the shows and began to understand how the magician did every trick.

He started shouting in the middle of the show: 'Look, it's not the same hat. Look, he's hiding the flowers under the table. Hey, why are all the cards the ace of spades?' The magician was furious but, as it was the captain's parrot, he could do nothing. Then one day the ship sank and the magician found himself floating on a piece of wood with the parrot.

They glared at each other but said nothing. Finally, after a week, the parrot said: 'OK, I give up. Where's the boat?'
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: raefil on December 14, 2013, 05:02:22 AM
cuckoo
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on December 14, 2013, 05:35:41 PM
A magician was working on a cruise ship in the Caribbean. The audience was different each week so he did same tricks over and over.

The problem was, the captain's parrot saw all the shows and began to understand how the magician did every trick.

He started shouting in the middle of the show: 'Look, it's not the same hat. Look, he's hiding the flowers under the table. Hey, why are all the cards the ace of spades?' The magician was furious but, as it was the captain's parrot, he could do nothing. Then one day the ship sank and the magician found himself floating on a piece of wood with the parrot.

They glared at each other but said nothing. Finally, after a week, the parrot said: 'OK, I give up. Where's the boat?'

there should be two parrots, 1 male ,1 female, each allotted half of the stage, seriously shouldnt the male and female together thread be in another section and not in womens football?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: David on December 15, 2013, 07:38:12 PM
Agree with bilbo so moved to Off topic
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BrianE on December 16, 2013, 07:56:09 PM
I'm just surprised they let him in the conference in the first place.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on December 17, 2013, 04:59:33 PM
I'm just surprised they let him in the conference in the first place.

You know what a tough job security have at these events:
(https://www.womensfootball.eu/forum/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fyour2pence.files.wordpress.com%2F2011%2F02%2Fkid-in-disguise.jpg&hash=688ccb1af97d7b1268c0bf614c6c03b1)
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: Alan on December 29, 2013, 01:08:46 PM
The original question was about balls.  Or was it just that the question was balls?  I'm confused.  Anyway a rambling statement with an unanswerable question tagged on at the end is not a question :).
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: raefil on December 30, 2013, 07:44:24 PM
Plain and simply, every forum needs its lovable little oddbod :)  Fairfootball is ours!
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on January 27, 2014, 08:24:38 PM
Apologies for not replying sooner but I had assumed that my posting had been removed… I was not aware that it had been relegated to the ‘Off Topic’ footnotes.

I see from the replies that it is the same resident bunch, who, devoid of any cogent arguments, are once again resorting to name-calling and obfuscation.   All I did was to explain the current law, and highlight that it had not been upheld by those who should know better – scandalously many who are women, and in positions of authority in politics and sport!  And, to counter the accusation of being ‘Off Topic’, it was the Football Association that, by raising the age limit for mixed football, had totally undermined any legal defence for the continuation of segregation in schools.

After reading this, I’m sure that any schoolgirl football player will be able to judge who is defending her rights.  If I was a pupil, or parent, then at the very least I would be submitting a written objection to the school – if only just to establish a time marker for any future claim for compensation.   
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on January 27, 2014, 10:19:37 PM
eh
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on January 28, 2014, 10:09:40 AM
All I did was to explain the current law, and highlight that it had not been upheld by those who should know better

I would be interested to know if you've ever found a practising lawyer or other Equality professional who has any sympathy with your own personal interpretation of the 2010 Act?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on January 28, 2014, 03:35:14 PM

I would be interested to know if you've ever found a practising lawyer or other Equality professional who has any sympathy with your own personal interpretation of the 2010 Act?
[/quote]

An irrelevant  question.  Also sympathy has no legal credence.   Case law (the only one that really matters) has yet to be established in court.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on January 28, 2014, 04:05:35 PM
An irrelevant  question.  Also sympathy has no legal credence. Case law (the only one that really matters) has yet to be established in court.

By "sympathy" I meant "any slight recognition of merit". Because to go to court you (or a suitable legal guinea pig) have got to find a lawyer who is willing to prosecute a case based on your interpretation. To do so they must agree there is some potential merit in your interpretation - have you ever met such a person?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on January 28, 2014, 07:39:36 PM
"The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" is a short story written by James Thurber way back in 1939, about a henpecked man who escapes into a fantasy world of danger and heroics to compensate for the depressingly dull life he led in reality.

Screenwriter Steve Conrad adapts the title and the name and over-active imagination of the main character and tells his own original story. An uncharacteristically mature and contemplative Ben Stiller directs and stars in this "labor of love" of a movie project. There is nary a trace of the Ben Stiller in "There's Something About Mary." "Zoolander" or "Dodgeball" in this special film.

Walter Mitty is a timid guy who tends to "space out" and enter into a world of his own where he is able to do wondrously heroic exploits. He is so much of an introvert such that he would rather join an online dating service to meet this girl he fancies, Cheryl, who is also working in his same office.

One day, he misplaces the precious negative of the photograph meant to be the cover of the last issue of Life Magazine. As his job is on the line, Walter needs to look for Sean, the elusive globe-trotting photographer who took that missing photo.

Upon deducing that Sean was in Greenland, Mitty suddenly decides to throw all caution to the wind and just go on a difficult quest to track Sean down. This will be the biggest adventure of his lifetime, a life-changing one at that.

Visually, this film is perfect with its breathtaking cinematography and unobtrusive special effects. Many scenes, particularly those showing Walter skateboarding along highways in Iceland, or climbing the snowy peaks of the Himalayas, were very memorably shot with unique camera range and angles, extolling the beauty of the world around us.

The script does fall into melodrama and sentimentality, but I did not mind this at all. Stiller was very good as Walter, capturing his shyness and cluelessness so sensitively. I liked Walter's moments with his mother, played by Shirley McLaine with pleasant restraint. I also liked Walter's awkward romance with Cheryl played by Kristen Wiig. She was also very relaxed and natural here in a straight role, very much contrasting from her quirky breakout role in "Bridesmaids."

Once we reach the second half of the film, Walter actually stops having fantasies and does things for real already. I realize, of course, that this was the point of the film, that dreams are there to be fulfilled in real life. I just felt it somehow lost the spirit of the source short story at that point.

Despite comparisons with "Forrest Gump," "Walter Mitty" admittedly does not exactly reach those lofty heights. However, upon watching this film, you will wonder how something so beautiful-looking could have been totally shut-out from Oscar or any other award consideration. The spectacular photography of the vibrant and exotic settings demand that you see this film on the big screen.

This was an entertaining wholesome and feel-good film that will bring us to places we rarely see on screen, visually and emotionally. We will all identify since there is a Walter Mitty in all of us who desires to get that chance to live out our wildest dreams. 8/10

This review was originally published in the author's blog, "Fred Said."
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on January 31, 2014, 09:33:24 PM
An irrelevant  question.  Also sympathy has no legal credence. Case law (the only one that really matters) has yet to be established in court.

By "sympathy" I meant "any slight recognition of merit". Because to go to court you (or a suitable legal guinea pig) have got to find a lawyer who is willing to prosecute a case based on your interpretation. To do so they must agree there is some potential merit in your interpretation - have you ever met such a person?

You are describing an entirely hypothetical situation.   Whilst the Act protects me against victimisation from becoming involved, only the child or parent can initiate a complaint.  However, as the law is so unambiguous, there would probably be no need for formal legal involvement.   Any school would be advised to acquiesce to such a complaint from a pupil at an early stage in the procedure – and that procedure is very simple.  The possibility of court proceedings would be remote, so, as with many laws, will most likely remain unsupported by case law.     Thank you for the question.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on January 31, 2014, 10:01:08 PM
"The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" is a short story written by James Thurber way back in 1939, about a henpecked man who escapes into a fantasy world of danger and heroics to compensate for the depressingly dull life he led in reality.

Screenwriter Steve Conrad adapts the title and the name and over-active imagination of the main character and tells his own original story. An uncharacteristically mature and contemplative Ben Stiller directs and stars in this "labor of love" of a movie project. There is nary a trace of the Ben Stiller in "There's Something About Mary." "Zoolander" or "Dodgeball" in this special film.

Walter Mitty is a timid guy who tends to "space out" and enter into a world of his own where he is able to do wondrously heroic exploits. He is so much of an introvert such that he would rather join an online dating service to meet this girl he fancies, Cheryl, who is also working in his same office.

One day, he misplaces the precious negative of the photograph meant to be the cover of the last issue of Life Magazine. As his job is on the line, Walter needs to look for Sean, the elusive globe-trotting photographer who took that missing photo.

Upon deducing that Sean was in Greenland, Mitty suddenly decides to throw all caution to the wind and just go on a difficult quest to track Sean down. This will be the biggest adventure of his lifetime, a life-changing one at that.

Visually, this film is perfect with its breathtaking cinematography and unobtrusive special effects. Many scenes, particularly those showing Walter skateboarding along highways in Iceland, or climbing the snowy peaks of the Himalayas, were very memorably shot with unique camera range and angles, extolling the beauty of the world around us.

The script does fall into melodrama and sentimentality, but I did not mind this at all. Stiller was very good as Walter, capturing his shyness and cluelessness so sensitively. I liked Walter's moments with his mother, played by Shirley McLaine with pleasant restraint. I also liked Walter's awkward romance with Cheryl played by Kristen Wiig. She was also very relaxed and natural here in a straight role, very much contrasting from her quirky breakout role in "Bridesmaids."

Once we reach the second half of the film, Walter actually stops having fantasies and does things for real already. I realize, of course, that this was the point of the film, that dreams are there to be fulfilled in real life. I just felt it somehow lost the spirit of the source short story at that point.

Despite comparisons with "Forrest Gump," "Walter Mitty" admittedly does not exactly reach those lofty heights. However, upon watching this film, you will wonder how something so beautiful-looking could have been totally shut-out from Oscar or any other award consideration. The spectacular photography of the vibrant and exotic settings demand that you see this film on the big screen.

This was an entertaining wholesome and feel-good film that will bring us to places we rarely see on screen, visually and emotionally. We will all identify since there is a Walter Mitty in all of us who desires to get that chance to live out our wildest dreams. 8/10

This review was originally published in the author's blog, "Fred Said."

An absurd amount of trouble to go to, if it was just to call me names.
You give the impression that you are totally obsessed with denying schoolgirl footballers any knowledge of their rights – good God (wo)man, if they actually tried to enforce them, would you explode with fury!!!
I know of an organisation that is really, really, really determined to stop girls going to school, let alone having any educational rights.  I’m sure it would love to have your support.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: raefil on January 31, 2014, 10:12:58 PM
 ;D ;D ;D
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on January 31, 2014, 11:04:08 PM
Most of our daughters are at uni/ college, we are not Taliban or any other restrictive society.
Men vs women do not ( thanks to our work) need handicapping.  Men vs women football is a nonsense.  Its different and it's foolish to suggest otherwise. I hope that your old school had ad many women doing woodwork, technical drawing etc, all Areas  where women can excell.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: davey on February 02, 2014, 02:40:34 PM
Playing men v women (football) has its uses, but is pointless at a pure competitive level due to massive discrepancies of speed and strength. I have seen a good girls team destroy a boys team at U14 level, but a high % of the boys were still lagging behind the girls in maturity, which is the norm at this age. Girls in mixed teams at junior school age fit in well and can compete equally with the boys. It all becomes pointless as they progress into mid/late teens. However, well organised friendlies against mens teams, purely for training purposes are very, very useful for women, giving insight into how quick the game can be, improving match fitness and technical skills. And thats only a good mens local league team. Now funding and wages for women-that's another thing, but you have to put it into perspective:- in my profession, I am equal in all aspects to my male colleagues and that's because I have the same qualifications and work just as hard as the guys and we share out the bad stuff equally. If I wasn't as competent or qualified (equating to strong and fast) as my colleagues, then I would expect to be paid less. In my profession, this applies to all sexes, religions, ethnicities. The problem is that womens football is way,way behind men in funding,wages etc and that is where we should be focussing our energy, not in making a noise about level playing fields in competitions. There is a petition going around at the moment to get the FA to increase funding for womens football at grass roots level. It's a start.
Title: Legal query
Post by: Alan on February 02, 2014, 04:46:04 PM
. .  as the law is so unambiguous, there would probably be no need for formal legal involvement.   Any school would be advised to acquiesce to such a complaint from a pupil at an early stage in the procedure – and that procedure is very simple.  The possibility of court proceedings would be remote, so, as with many laws, will most likely remain unsupported by case law.
Thanks for the legal opinions, much appreciated.  Do you know anything about football as well? :) . . women's football is fine in the hands of the people that create the sport - those who put their time and effort into playing it, and the dedicated people who put their time and effort into training them . . :).  People who take part in sports know that lawyers have little to contribute (outside top-level ocean yacht racing, that is :)).   
Title: Re: Legal query
Post by: David on February 02, 2014, 10:29:39 PM
. .  as the law is so unambiguous, there would probably be no need for formal legal involvement.   Any school would be advised to acquiesce to such a complaint from a pupil at an early stage in the procedure – and that procedure is very simple.  The possibility of court proceedings would be remote, so, as with many laws, will most likely remain unsupported by case law.



Do you know anything about football as well? :)


I'm afraid the answer to that will be no Alan :-)

Many members want me to ban him but the hysterical laughter he provides has made me not do that yet….

Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BillyBoy on February 03, 2014, 04:20:19 PM
I do find some of the responses attracted here discomforting, and a little bit like 'wolf pack' behaviour to be honest.

New ideas and approaches are often ridiculed, but as I believe Wernher Von Braun is sometimes quoted as having said 'You're just a crackpot until you hit the jackpot', and so maybe it's human nature to laugh and poke fun.

Anyway, fairfootball, having read your basic point that you are making, which is below:

I have had cause to read, and reread, the Equality Act 2010, many times.  Section 195 of the Act makes it crystal clear that the opt-out, allowing sport to discriminate by gender, does not extend to children.  Paragraph 4 specifically excludes them.  Furthermore, Part 6 of the Act, which covers all education, makes no reference to, or concessions for, sport whatsoever.
In short this means that schools up and down the country, that are, on a daily basis, either, segregating the sexes for physical education, offering different sports for boys and girls, or, using gender-affected activities, in any form, without good reason, are doing so illegally.  Children, of either sex, or their parents, would be well within their rights to seek legal redress.

I can understand the point that you are making, but when I read Section 195 of the Act I got the impression that sport could be an exception. I'm no legal expert of any kind and legislation is never the most riveting read, but that's what I concluded.

I then thought that what you had raised probably wasn't entirely new, and had probably already been covered somewhere. So searching the internet there appears to be guidance for schools in England on the Equality Act 2010, which is here:

http://www.educationengland.org.uk/documents/pdfs/2012-guidance-2010-equality-act.pdf

More specifically Section 3.20 (Single Sex Sport) states:

3.20 Although the Equality Act forbids discrimination in access to benefits, facilities and services; the Act does contain an exception which permits single sex sports. It applies to participation in any sport or game, or other activity of a competitive nature, where the physical strength, stamina or physique of the average woman (or girl) would put her at a disadvantage in competition with the average man (or boy). But while this exception might permit a mixed school to have a boys only football team, the school would still have to allow girls equal opportunities to participate in comparable sporting activities. The judgment on whether girls would be at a physical disadvantage needs to take into account the particular group in question, so it is much less likely to justify segregated sports for younger children. Where separate teams exist, it would be unlawful discrimination for a school to treat one group less favourably – for example by providing the boys’ hockey or cricket team with much better resources than the girls’.

I admit that this is only a superficial search for information, but it doesn't seem to me that the assertion that you are originally making is totally sound or crystal clear. That's just my thoughts. (Everybody will hopefully now sleep much better tonight.  :D)

Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: David on February 03, 2014, 06:55:53 PM
Thanks for the sensible reply BB :-)
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 03, 2014, 08:33:40 PM
Playing men v women (football) has its uses, but is pointless at a pure competitive level due to massive discrepancies of speed and strength. I have seen a good girls team destroy a boys team at U14 level, but a high % of the boys were still lagging behind the girls in maturity, which is the norm at this age. Girls in mixed teams at junior school age fit in well and can compete equally with the boys. It all becomes pointless as they progress into mid/late teens. However, well organised friendlies against mens teams, purely for training purposes are very, very useful for women, giving insight into how quick the game can be, improving match fitness and technical skills. And thats only a good mens local league team. Now funding and wages for women-that's another thing, but you have to put it into perspective:- in my profession, I am equal in all aspects to my male colleagues and that's because I have the same qualifications and work just as hard as the guys and we share out the bad stuff equally. If I wasn't as competent or qualified (equating to strong and fast) as my colleagues, then I would expect to be paid less. In my profession, this applies to all sexes, religions, ethnicities. The problem is that womens football is way,way behind men in funding,wages etc and that is where we should be focussing our energy, not in making a noise about level playing fields in competitions. There is a petition going around at the moment to get the FA to increase funding for womens football at grass roots level. It's a start.

I completely agree with you.  You have however, understandably, misunderstood my views, because you have been misled by contributors to this site.    If you are interested please go to fairfootball.co.uk .   Thank you for your polite and reasoned reply – a breath of fresh air. 
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 03, 2014, 08:38:50 PM
Most of our daughters are at uni/ college, we are not Taliban or any other restrictive society.
Men vs women do not ( thanks to our work) need handicapping.  Men vs women football is a nonsense.  Its different and it's foolish to suggest otherwise. I hope that your old school had ad many women doing woodwork, technical drawing etc, all Areas  where women can excell.
You continue to misrepresent my views in order to divert attention away from my posting.   To make it clear to all the readers, the Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful* for any school to segregate the genders for football.   There are lots of people (and apparently even some regular contributors to this site) who do not want you to know that.

*there are very limited and exceptional circumstances where the defence of ‘positive action’ could be used.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 03, 2014, 08:53:30 PM
I do find some of the responses attracted here discomforting, and a little bit like 'wolf pack' behaviour to be honest.

New ideas and approaches are often ridiculed, but as I believe Wernher Von Braun is sometimes quoted as having said 'You're just a crackpot until you hit the jackpot', and so maybe it's human nature to laugh and poke fun.

Anyway, fairfootball, having read your basic point that you are making, which is below:

I have had cause to read, and reread, the Equality Act 2010, many times.  Section 195 of the Act makes it crystal clear that the opt-out, allowing sport to discriminate by gender, does not extend to children.  Paragraph 4 specifically excludes them.  Furthermore, Part 6 of the Act, which covers all education, makes no reference to, or concessions for, sport whatsoever.
In short this means that schools up and down the country, that are, on a daily basis, either, segregating the sexes for physical education, offering different sports for boys and girls, or, using gender-affected activities, in any form, without good reason, are doing so illegally.  Children, of either sex, or their parents, would be well within their rights to seek legal redress.

I can understand the point that you are making, but when I read Section 195 of the Act I got the impression that sport could be an exception. I'm no legal expert of any kind and legislation is never the most riveting read, but that's what I concluded.

I then thought that what you had raised probably wasn't entirely new, and had probably already been covered somewhere. So searching the internet there appears to be guidance for schools in England on the Equality Act 2010, which is here:

http://www.educationengland.org.uk/documents/pdfs/2012-guidance-2010-equality-act.pdf

More specifically Section 3.20 (Single Sex Sport) states:

3.20 Although the Equality Act forbids discrimination in access to benefits, facilities and services; the Act does contain an exception which permits single sex sports. It applies to participation in any sport or game, or other activity of a competitive nature, where the physical strength, stamina or physique of the average woman (or girl) would put her at a disadvantage in competition with the average man (or boy). But while this exception might permit a mixed school to have a boys only football team, the school would still have to allow girls equal opportunities to participate in comparable sporting activities. The judgment on whether girls would be at a physical disadvantage needs to take into account the particular group in question, so it is much less likely to justify segregated sports for younger children. Where separate teams exist, it would be unlawful discrimination for a school to treat one group less favourably – for example by providing the boys’ hockey or cricket team with much better resources than the girls’.

I admit that this is only a superficial search for information, but it doesn't seem to me that the assertion that you are originally making is totally sound or crystal clear. That's just my thoughts. (Everybody will hopefully now sleep much better tonight.  :D)


At last a more considered response.  To keep it brief:

Firstly what Para195 really says is that the opt-out for sport does not apply to children.   The FA has already raised the age for mixed football to U15 children (effectively Year 10).  I cannot see any possible defence that a school will have for segregating football when its governing body has made such a decision.  Could be one of the most important decisions the FA has ever made in relation to women’s equality.  And as football is one of the most physical games played in most schools it would also apply to all the other sports. Please don’t mention rugby – that already has serious issues of safety and duty of care troubling it.

Secondly Section 3.20 is for guidance only and has not been ratified by Parliament.  It is not supported by the Act, has not been thought through, and would be ripped to shreds by any half decent lawyer.  As with other advice from the EHRC there are too many mays, mights and phrases that seem to have been plucked from the air, to be of much use.

Thirdly the Act makes no exemptions (apart from specific minor technical ones) for education.   The opt-out quite specifically applies to sport only – that is unless you call education a sport!  As far as I can make out any educational establishment in receipt of public money would have to follow a non-segregation policy.

The law is a mess and has presented women with a golden opportunity for a huge step toward true equality!!!!

  I’m very grateful for the effort that you have made and your open-mindedness.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BillyBoy on February 03, 2014, 10:14:06 PM
OK thanks for giving that extra detail. The guidance is from the department of education and the .gov.uk site. I doubt that we'll be able to 'bottom this out' on here, but I can appreciate what you are saying.

I would add though, in my eyes at least, that the law is there to serve the people, and the responses on here indicate to me that a radical change to football at school wouldn't be welcomed or regarded as necessary. So, even if there is an inequality within the current law there is no desire to pursue it. And presumably the law can also be amended to reflect the will of the people.

I take your point about it also applying to other sports too.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: bilbobaggins on February 03, 2014, 10:22:44 PM
it takes  a small flame to cause the fire that is fairfootball, even his name is an oxymoron.
again, if young girls are forced to play against young men, then they will give up the sport!
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: law10 on February 03, 2014, 10:55:28 PM
In a supremely ironic fashion, when you try to have an intelligent conversation with someone and they fail to listen or acknowledge your viewpoint, after a while it gets on your nerves.  And if anyone's hard done by, it's people who fail to have their clear and universally-accepted opinions appreciated, considered, or weighed.

This topic isn't a wolfpack, it's a meme for attempting to talk solve the madness of mankind.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 04, 2014, 11:00:16 AM
OK thanks for giving that extra detail. The guidance is from the department of education and the .gov.uk site. I doubt that we'll be able to 'bottom this out' on here, but I can appreciate what you are saying.

I would add though, in my eyes at least, that the law is there to serve the people, and the responses on here indicate to me that a radical change to football at school wouldn't be welcomed or regarded as necessary. So, even if there is an inequality within the current law there is no desire to pursue it. And presumably the law can also be amended to reflect the will of the people.

I take your point about it also applying to other sports too.

When I was teaching I was aware of many girls who wanted to play football with boys.   It is my opinion that especially where children are concerned, we all have a civic duty to ensure their rights are upheld, no matter what our own personal views are.  Looking the other way is not an option for me.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 04, 2014, 11:04:38 AM
it takes  a small flame to cause the fire that is fairfootball, even his name is an oxymoron.
again, if young girls are forced to play against young men, then they will give up the sport!

You are still trying to peddle misinformation about FairFootball .  It promotes the idea of boys and girls playing cooperatively rather than against each other.   Have you ever read my proposal let alone understood it?  Also it is my understanding from the figures that, despite all the hype, participation figures for girls are on the way down – so present system is hardly a raging success.

Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 04, 2014, 11:07:35 AM
In a supremely ironic fashion, when you try to have an intelligent conversation with someone and they fail to listen or acknowledge your viewpoint, after a while it gets on your nerves.  And if anyone's hard done by, it's people who fail to have their clear and universally-accepted opinions appreciated, considered, or weighed.

This topic isn't a wolfpack, it's a meme for attempting to talk solve the madness of mankind.


I’m sorry but I don’t understand the point you are making.  If you are saying that universally accepted options are right, and therefore should not be challenged, then this forum would have no purpose.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on February 06, 2014, 12:50:08 AM
You are still trying to peddle misinformation about FairFootball .  It promotes the idea of boys and girls playing cooperatively rather than against each other.

Fortunately most schools are moving away from the bad old days of "cooperative" PE where everyone got a medal just for "trying hard" & are returning to the true ethos of competitive sport where you have to have determination & courage to win. In that situation you don't change the rules of the sport to allow everyone to participate but separate the competition by group. There's no more reason for teenage girls to play boys than the blind to play against the amputees or the under 10s play the under 14s.

BTW has anyone ever tried to play your game? If so, what was their feedback?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 06, 2014, 10:11:59 AM
Your question has nothing to do with the original posting.  As for FairFootball, it is a proposal that allows a team of boys and girls to play cooperatively together against another team of boys and girls – it not a non-competitive game.  I would like to know if you have actually read my proposal (it can be seen at www.fairfootball.co.uk ). Even as the author I readily admit it took me several weeks to fully appreciate the implications.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: 49yardtapin on February 06, 2014, 11:10:56 AM
Looking again at the setup. Tactically the game would be a disaster. That's not dispariging the idea but for example the positioning of a back four when narrow wouldnt work neither, would overlapping fullbacks and having rotation of position with in the chosen formation. It wuold be horrible to watch freekicks all over the place for transgressing into designated areas.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: law10 on February 06, 2014, 02:07:21 PM
I've coached girls for 35 years.  We used to put talented girls with boys like the Germans up to 16 or later, but it never works out socially as well for the girls past the age of 9 or 10.  We put them with older girls and women now.  The women's game allows this because the amount of danger and intent is a small fraction of the men's.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 06, 2014, 06:46:26 PM
Looking again at the setup. Tactically the game would be a disaster. That's not dispariging the idea but for example the positioning of a back four when narrow wouldnt work neither, would overlapping fullbacks and having rotation of position with in the chosen formation. It wuold be horrible to watch freekicks all over the place for transgressing into designated areas.

Although diverting from the subject I’ll try to answer your concerns as you have obviously taken the trouble to read my proposal.
It is very probable that tactics would have to adjust, but I do not see any reason why that would be a disaster, in fact, on balance there is a good chance that it would add to the game.  After all football tactics are evolving over time anyway.
I can see your point about the narrow area to the left of the goal as it was also one of my initial concerns, but upon reflection there would be the same number of players running around the same size field – it’s just a matter once again of a small rethinking of tactics.
As for the increased number of free kicks it is no different than touch-line throw-ins. There are remarkably few of those, as it is generally in neither team’s interests to break up the flow of play.  I’ve also tried to pen the rule to make it simple to referee without unnecessarily restricting the players.
Whilst I do not think it would be a problem I have some doubts about deliberate transgressions from the penalty area into the aforementioned narrow area, so would welcome comments and possible remedies.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 06, 2014, 06:54:05 PM
I've coached girls for 35 years.  We used to put talented girls with boys like the Germans up to 16 or later, but it never works out socially as well for the girls past the age of 9 or 10.  We put them with older girls and women now.  The women's game allows this because the amount of danger and intent is a small fraction of the men's.

I entirely agree with you that early/mid teen years are socially very difficult for both boys and, especially, girls.  However that is not only just applicable to school sports’ fields, but also to all subject areas.  I would argue that it is the very time that there should be even greater contact, as, during puberty, boys and girls need to experience and learn mutual respect for their developing physical as well as emotional and intellectual differences.   
But that’s not the point of this posting as it started being about equality and the law in schools.   Additionally sport has a powerful effect upon stereotyping which, as far as girls are concerned, is almost entirely negative, with consequences well outside the narrow confines and self-interest of sport. 
Whilst your comment was made from the viewpoint of a specialised football coach, nevertheless your argument is sound.  It is why I have proposed FairFootball, which would meet anxieties over direct physical contact between the sexes.  Though my personal view is that those anxieties are exaggerated, FairFootball would allow for more desirable, and arguably more natural, childhood development, than that of segregation.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on February 07, 2014, 08:53:20 AM
Has anyone ever tried to play your game? If so, what was their feedback?

I assume the fact that you didn't answer my question means you've never found anyone to try this? Surely if anyone agreed this is a good idea they might at least help you prove it would work?
Title: Girls playing in boys' teams
Post by: Alan on February 08, 2014, 09:22:11 AM
In Norway there are girls playing in boys' teams up to about 17 years old and with that experience behind them they are in demand at the elite women's clubs.  Last month a 17-year-old girl keeper who has played in a boy's club 'all her life' made her debut in the women's senior international team  (the team that reached the Final of the European Cup in the summer) in a 1-1 draw against England.
Match report: http://www.womensfootball.eu/forum/index.php/topic,7806.msg77120.html#msg77120
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 08, 2014, 10:33:05 AM
In Norway there are girls playing in boys' teams up to about 17 years old and with that experience behind them they are in demand at the elite women's clubs.  Last month a 17-year-old girl keeper who has played in a boy's club 'all her life' made her debut in the women's senior international team  (the team that reached the Final of the European Cup in the summer) in a 1-1 draw against England.
Match report: http://www.womensfootball.eu/forum/index.php/topic,7806.msg77120.html#msg77120


Thank you for that comment.   It gives all the naysayers and Jeremiahs food for thought.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: raefil on February 08, 2014, 12:45:36 PM
What do you mean naysayers?  No-one is objecting to girls playing footy with boys, its your pathetic attempt, i assume as a wind up, to alter the Laws of the game we love. Its downright stupid.  People like you are a stain on society. You come on to to places to cause trouble. for what reason? Your own stupidly inflated ego.

Youve got a group of people, here, who are the most likely to think youve got a decent plan, except for one thing, its absurd beyond belief. 

If you gfeel so passionately about it start your own game. Call it fair football if you like, but stop trying to alter the game that were all happy with. Good luck with your future, if you do start a new game I wish you well.

Crikey, why am i even giving you the time of day?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BillyBoy on February 08, 2014, 01:32:35 PM
In Norway there are girls playing in boys' teams up to about 17 years old and with that experience behind them they are in demand at the elite women's clubs.  Last month a 17-year-old girl keeper who has played in a boy's club 'all her life' made her debut in the women's senior international team  (the team that reached the Final of the European Cup in the summer) in a 1-1 draw against England.
Match report: http://www.womensfootball.eu/forum/index.php/topic,7806.msg77120.html#msg77120

That's a heart warming story from across the North Sea, but it doesn't add much really.

What I'd find more interesting, and pertinent to this thread is whether segregated sports at school in Norway, the other Scandinavian countries or Finland are considered illegal, because it is an inequality, which is the starting point of Fairfootball's approach.

If they are illegal have they subsequently addressed this situation by recoding all the games. i.e. fairfootball, fairhandball etc. Discussing the merits, or not as the case maybe of these games is another matter in their own right.

These Nordic countries are often regarded, on some measures, as being the most equal in the world. Although by no means definitive for our situation, I would find their approach as food for thought.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: law10 on February 08, 2014, 01:57:41 PM
There have been teenage girls playing on boys teams in Canada for decades.  It's not unusual.  But unless remote geography is a factor it's completely unnecessary and gratuitous.  In the teenage years, older girls or elite women are a better solution for the development of the individual.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: 49yardtapin on February 08, 2014, 02:05:28 PM
Well now it's even seen in this country with some of the full timers at City training with the under 18's...
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: Alan on February 08, 2014, 04:42:12 PM
What I'd find more interesting, and pertinent to this thread is whether segregated sports at school in Norway, the other Scandinavian countries or Finland are considered illegal,
Obviously they are not; in Scandinavia and other places many sports are segregated - by age, sex and ability - and it works well.  We have a contributor with a bee in his bonnet about one of those: he isn't going to change anything and there's no evidence he is even interested in sport other than winding people up . . :).
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 10, 2014, 09:41:57 AM
What do you mean naysayers?  No-one is objecting to girls playing footy with boys, its your pathetic attempt, i assume as a wind up, to alter the Laws of the game we love. Its downright stupid.  People like you are a stain on society. You come on to to places to cause trouble. for what reason? Your own stupidly inflated ego.

Youve got a group of people, here, who are the most likely to think youve got a decent plan, except for one thing, its absurd beyond belief. 

If you gfeel so passionately about it start your own game. Call it fair football if you like, but stop trying to alter the game that were all happy with. Good luck with your future, if you do start a new game I wish you well.

Crikey, why am i even giving you the time of day?


If it’s ‘absurd beyond belief’ there should be no difficulty in demolishing the proposal using polite debate, with no need for the personal invective as a smokescreen to obscure the message.
 
As the purpose of the proposal is to increase participation, I’m at a loss as to why anyone, especially women, could feel so threatened.  After all it is only a minor modification to a set of game rules that were cobbled together 150 years ago by a bunch of semi-inebriated visionary toffs…….. in the back room of a London pub – not on the top of a mountain in the Sinai Desert (apologies to all Jews and Christians).
 
Just think, if it wasn’t for the likes of me, you’d all still be hacking the legs off one another, or now, heavens forbid, playing American Football.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on February 10, 2014, 11:02:02 AM
As the purpose of the proposal is to increase participation, I’m at a loss as to why anyone, especially women, could feel so threatened.  After all it is only a minor modification to a set of game rules that were cobbled together 150 years ago by a bunch of semi-inebriated visionary toffs…….. in the back room of a London pub – not on the top of a mountain in the Sinai Desert (apologies to all Jews and Christians).

The difference was that those visionaries had tried out their rules in practice and modified their initial ideas until they worked. As a result they had the support of quite a number of influential players and "clubs" (although they weren't what we recognise as clubs today). And so their brilliant game is fundamentally still the same 150 years later and played by countless millions of people (not just men) worldwide.

By comparison, you have never tried out your rules in practice, have never attempted to see if any adjustments would be needed to make them practical, don't have the support of a single player, influential or otherwise, and have no support from any football group of any sort. But I suppose a game is perfect for equality if absolutely all genders, disabilities, ages, faiths, etc. all ignore it equally!  ;D ::)
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: davey on February 11, 2014, 11:14:13 AM
Thought a forum was a platform for debate, not an opportunity to be be offensive. It's all food for thought though, don't you think? Football in this country is basically run by the FA  who have only just begun to think vaguely laterally and minimally outside the box. Their priority is clearly mens' football with token gestures towards the womens' game, and that includes the recent reorganisation of WSL with its concomitant funding changes at certain clubs. People may love the game as it stands but you surely cannot disagree that there have been some very dodgy happenings across the board. I don't mean that the game format should be drastically changed to accomodate women, but just to open minds a bit. Football in this country is run mainly by men for men. To introduce a game for mixed teams probably would spoil both the mens' and womens' game as we know it. Better I think to integrate girls and women at suitable times in their career for strengthening/training purposes which seems to be what other countries do successfully.
PS. My comments are not directed at previous posts, just generally at the thread of this topic
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 12, 2014, 09:42:53 AM
As the purpose of the proposal is to increase participation, I’m at a loss as to why anyone, especially women, could feel so threatened.  After all it is only a minor modification to a set of game rules that were cobbled together 150 years ago by a bunch of semi-inebriated visionary toffs…….. in the back room of a London pub – not on the top of a mountain in the Sinai Desert (apologies to all Jews and Christians).

The difference was that those visionaries had tried out their rules in practice and modified their initial ideas until they worked. As a result they had the support of quite a number of influential players and "clubs" (although they weren't what we recognise as clubs today). And so their brilliant game is fundamentally still the same 150 years later and played by countless millions of people (not just men) worldwide.

By comparison, you have never tried out your rules in practice, have never attempted to see if any adjustments would be needed to make them practical, don't have the support of a single player, influential or otherwise, and have no support from any football group of any sort. But I suppose a game is perfect for equality if absolutely all genders, disabilities, ages, faiths, etc. all ignore it equally!  ;D ::)

If you mean by brilliant as being simple, effective and functional, I would agree with you.  Unfortunately, according to the somewhat dubious figures from the FA, only about thirty million of your ‘countless millions’ are women.  That I suggest, by most standards, signifies a pretty major design flaw which was not apparent, and would only have been laughed at, 150 years ago.
 
FairFootball seeks to rectify that with a simple, effective and functional, but more importantly cheap, modification for schools to use, which would have the potential to transform the health and social status of schoolgirls everywhere.   I note that you are not one of the prophetic five star ‘Hero’ members, but nevertheless what do you have to offer – do you have any remedies?  Or, perhaps, as the dinosaurs, you believe everything is perfect!

Hasn’t it struck you as odd that all the respondents to this posting, bar one, chooses to hide their gender on their member’s profile?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 12, 2014, 09:50:30 AM
Thought a forum was a platform for debate, not an opportunity to be be offensive. It's all food for thought though, don't you think? Football in this country is basically run by the FA  who have only just begun to think vaguely laterally and minimally outside the box. Their priority is clearly mens' football with token gestures towards the womens' game, and that includes the recent reorganisation of WSL with its concomitant funding changes at certain clubs. People may love the game as it stands but you surely cannot disagree that there have been some very dodgy happenings across the board. I don't mean that the game format should be drastically changed to accomodate women, but just to open minds a bit. Football in this country is run mainly by men for men. To introduce a game for mixed teams probably would spoil both the mens' and womens' game as we know it. Better I think to integrate girls and women at suitable times in their career for strengthening/training purposes which seems to be what other countries do successfully.
PS. My comments are not directed at previous posts, just generally at the thread of this topic

Bless you for that reply.  It is heartening to know that some can express themselves politely.  May I remind you however that this posting started off being about children and the Equalty Act, but has somehow been transmogrified into a discussion about FairFootball.

You will not be surprised to hear that I do not fully agree with you.  I believe that if only they were given the opportunity, men and women would love to play the game together as long as the rules were modified to accommodate, what most would agree, are the obvious physical imbalances.  Also I would welcome any constructive criticisms of my FairFootball proposal you may have, as, despite the number of replies I have received, the only substantive one, is that there would be too many free kicks.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on February 12, 2014, 10:34:38 PM
If you mean by brilliant as being simple, effective and functional, I would agree with you.  Unfortunately, according to the somewhat dubious figures from the FA, only about thirty million of your ‘countless millions’ are women.  That I suggest, by most standards, signifies a pretty major design flaw which was not apparent, and would only have been laughed at, 150 years ago.
 
FairFootball seeks to rectify that with a simple, effective and functional, but more importantly cheap, modification for schools to use, which would have the potential to transform the health and social status of schoolgirls everywhere.   I note that you are not one of the prophetic five star ‘Hero’ members, but nevertheless what do you have to offer – do you have any remedies?  Or, perhaps, as the dinosaurs, you believe everything is perfect!

OK, I'm going to try just once more to get you to answer my question. If you aren't prepared to do that then I can only assume your devotion to FairFootball is purely dogmatic and unworthy of further debate. The question is: what practical proof do you have that FairFootball is "effective and functional"? Give us even one example of your "game" having actually been played to find out whether it works or not with real kids.

What you don't seem to grasp is that the problem of less girls doing any form of exercise is nothing to do with football or even organised school games and everything to do with society, especially the lack of value it places on female sport. The problems run far deeper than merely the rules of football and will not be changed by inventing a new game which neither girls nor boys want to play. We all want more kids (especially girls) doing exercise, not less, whether that's on the same pitch or on a different one is completely irrelevant.

I'm not a 'Hero member' as I actually spend real time in my community coaching kids and getting as many of them as possible (boys and girls) to enjoy a number of different sports. So my apologies if I don't get involved in pointless pseudo-legal debate about "equality" and instead concentrate on the practical value (or otherwise) of what you or anyone else suggests. My solution is to get personally involved at whatever level I can, whether that is supporting female role models or introducing nursery school kids to the joys of sport, rather than preaching from a distant pulpit.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 13, 2014, 11:04:46 AM
 To Andydinger

Despite doubts I will give you the courtesy of believing that you have read my FairFootball proposal, and did so with an open, constructively critical, mind.  You will therefore be aware that FairFootball is a minor modification and would look and feel, to both spectators and players, exactly like a normal game of football.  Its only practical effect would be to allow disparate groups (boys/girls, men/women, mums/daughters, able/disabled, etc.) to play fairly together, so turn football into a truly inclusive sport.  I agree with you that it should be fully assessed, but no useful conclusions can be drawn just from an ad-hoc bunch of boys and girls running around a field.  It would require proper controlled trials conducted by a qualified research establishment, such as a university.

Football is by far the most popular team sport, not just in participation, but also in both the numbers of spectators and media attention.  I think I would be safe in saying that it is highly biased towards men, with women made to feel unwelcome and at best second rate.  I'm consequently surprised by your assertion that it has a benign effect on the participation of girls in sport.

As in all sectors of education, there is a need for adults, such as you, to give of their time, as long as it’s done for good altruistic reasons.  However saying that you don’t want to get involved in a debate, when you obviously are, is palpable nonsense.   As for equality being a pseudo-legal…….. try telling that to non-white people!
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BrianE on February 13, 2014, 07:54:43 PM
I think the answer is "no proof at all".

Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: andydinger on February 14, 2014, 11:23:32 AM
So to summarise:
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: allibee on February 15, 2014, 10:20:50 PM
Just a quick couple of questions to the topic starter (apologies for skim reading the whole thing):

Am I right in understanding that you want equality legislation in place to force boys to play football with girls if the girls want to and the boys don't?

I say this as a mother, aunt and carer of all boys, except for one girl, who would have rather never played football again if someone tried to force them against their will to play something that they found emotionally disturbing and physically retarding

So are you saying you want rights for one sex at the expense of another, ergo: discrimination?
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 17, 2014, 11:05:02 AM
So to summarise:
  • You have no proof that any spectator or player would regard the "look and feel" as similar to football. You believe it should. Everyone else (as far as I can tell) who has taken the time to read it, thinks it won't. So we'll agree to disagree until any practical assessment, however informal, is done. Good luck finding someone to do that and I look forward to hearing the results.
  • Football is the most popular participation sport (team or otherwise) both in this country and worldwide for women & girls. The only thing we do appear to agree about is that we would both like to see this participation increase still further. So we'll agree to disagree that changing the rules is the most effective way of achieving this. However, if the feedback from the practical assessment above is positive then I would be delighted to be proved wrong.

From the tone of your reply you appear to be ‘signing-off’ from this posting.

  I am sorry that you felt that you were unable to give a rational evaluation of the working practicalities of FairFootball, as I would have welcomed  constructive comments from someone with such a rich experience of girls’ football.  Also I realise how difficult it is to accept new, challengingly radical ideas, from an outsider - so thank you for affording me the opportunity to explain to other readers what a fantastic concept FairFootball represents; giving women and schoolgirl footballers the information to make impartial, reasoned assessments for themselves, free from vested, narrow-minded preconceptions.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 17, 2014, 11:24:13 AM
Just a quick couple of questions to the topic starter (apologies for skim reading the whole thing):

Am I right in understanding that you want equality legislation in place to force boys to play football with girls if the girls want to and the boys don't?

I say this as a mother, aunt and carer of all boys, except for one girl, who would have rather never played football again if someone tried to force them against their will to play something that they found emotionally disturbing and physically retarding

So are you saying you want rights for one sex at the expense of another, ergo: discrimination?

Whilst I understand the point you are making, I cannot (and I believe the vast majority would not) agree with you.  To follow your logic then children would be segregated in all subject areas.  As the father of both genders I would have preferred that my children learned about, appreciated, and respected the emotional and physical differences of the opposite sex during supervised sports rather than the hidden confines behind the proverbial bike sheds.
 
However you have a perfectly valid argument.  There can be vast physical and emotional developmental differences during puberty, not only between the genders, but also between individuals of the same gender.  That is the reason why I developed the idea of FairFootball ( www.fairfootball.co.uk ) which would allow teachers to go some way in  accommodating ability concerns between the genders - or amongst each gender, depending on the circumstances.

I’m sorry, but I think that selective equality is a nonsense, but I hope that I have gone some way in reconciling our differences by proposing a compromise solution that, not only addresses your points, but also opens-up the prospect of an improved game of football for everyone.
Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: BillyBoy on February 19, 2014, 07:50:07 PM
I don't know if you've ever seen this Telegraph article, and it is different from your 'vision' Fairfootball, but I thought you might find it interesting. There is also another article from Dr Lawson on the website. You may be able to use these academics as a potential channel for your ideas.

Splitting school PE lessons by gender 'damages girls'

An academic calls for gender-neutral PE lessons, insisting the traditional vision of football for boys and netball for girls is fuelling gender stereotypes in later life.

Teachers should stop segregating boys and girls in PE lessons because school sport is fuelling gender “prejudice” in later life, an academic has warned.

Pupils should be given equal access to all sports and take part in mixed competitions to stop girls being pigeonholed as weak, it was claimed.

Sian Lawson, senior lecturer in sports coaching at Northumbria University, suggested that segregated PE lessons were an “historic hangover from Victorian values” that see boys and girls as having different needs.

She insisted there was no physical reason to view “female bones as more breakable or girls more fragile when given the same level of exercise”.

Many teachers justify pushing girls into netball and boys towards football to avoid sexual harassment or discrimination.

But Dr Lawson said the “controlled environment” of the school playing field was the “best opportunity these potential adults have to learn to respect each other”.

The comments come amid a continuing debate over standards of childhood exercise and physical activity, particularly among girls.

Research published earlier this month by the University of Pennsylvania found that the brains of men and women were wired up differently which could explain some stereotypical male and female behaviour.

But Dr Lawson said many differences were down to cultural reasons, with school sport acting as one of the key barriers to equality.

“If everyone trains and competes on equal terms, the biologically slower can up their game, and if the fast naturally rise to the top no one should object,” she said. “If we aspire to believe in individual variation over stereotyping, and equality of opportunity, then why not let our children start with that?”

Research from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in the summer found a quarter of girls aged five to 10 had not taken part in any sport over in the previous month – a rise of almost 50 per cent in five years.

Separate research by the Women's Sport and Fitness Foundation revealed that just over half of girls – 51 per cent – are put off physical activity by their experiences of school sport and PE lessons.

But Dr Lawson insisted that the subject could be used to actually break down barriers between the sexes.

Writing for Telegraph.co.uk, Dr Lawson quoted a Northumbria University study that found no physical distinction in the coaching required for elite male and female athletes.

She said: “There’s no physiological reason why boys should play football and girls rounders, indeed in the USA soccer is a ‘girls sport’ and baseball is ‘for boys’.

“Even within the traditionally male sports women are now showing that they can compete on equal terms, despite typically receiving less training.”

Dr Lawson added: “As an anatomist I haven't yet found a reason to see young female bones as more breakable or girls more fragile when given the same level of exercise.

“In schools we’ve already created a fairly even group by dividing children into age-based classes. More to the point we don’t segregate the class on the basis of height or strength, we segregate for gender.

“The idea of women as unambiguously weaker is so deeply ingrained that sometimes we don’t notice that we’ve made that assumption. Here we are teaching that idea to children, without questioning it ourselves.”

But the comments were branded “absurd” by traditionalists who insisted parents would be “horrified” by the idea of joint lessons.

Chris McGovern, a former independent school headmaster and chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said: “It’s just political correctness. There are clear physiological differences between boys and girls.

“It’s possible to mix them in the early primary years but it’s just commonsense to split them when they get older and you’ve having full blown tackles in rugby and football because boys are stronger. It’s an absurd idea and it will horrify parents.”

Source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/10528867/Splitting-school-PE-lessons-by-gender-damages-girls.html

Title: Re: Censored Question to Women Play Sport 2013 Conference
Post by: fairfootball on February 20, 2014, 11:19:55 AM
As you probably gather I’m more of a pragmatist than a purist, so I do not fully agree with Sian Lawson’s views, but rest assured I shall certainly be getting in touch with her.  Thank you for the link - I  much appreciate your help and  impartiality.