WomenEd Blogs

Being 10% Braver: #IAmWriting.

by Vivienne Porritt @ViviennePorritt

We started WomenEd because women's voices on twitter were often silenced, harrassed or our views were not valued. It's one of the reasons we included a mic in our logo. So we encouraged women to tweet and to write blogs to tell our stories and share our lived experience. 

One of the reasons we wrote 10%braver: Inspiring Women to Lead Education was to ensure the voices of our community reached women who are not on twitter. And over 30 voices are included in Being 10% Braver which, joyously, is published this December - you can pre-order and it's a great Christmas present! And we are delighted to share more opportunities for our community to write and to be heard.

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Turning on the lightbulb: Chapter 1

by Portia Taylor @PortiaTaylor  A series on finding your voice and giving it a professional megaphone

This series of blog posts is a journey, one potentially fraught with emotion, chocked with challenge and packed with punchy strategies to help you trust your voice and make it heard professionally. Come with me as we travel back in time to a darker place where negative internal monologues reign free…

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Whose Permission Are You Waiting For? Chapter 2

by Portia Taylor @MrsPTaylor

Chapter 2: Progress and Perceived Barriers

 We’re lit up. We’re radiating hope, energy and a desire to change. We know we can (ok, so we think we might be able to but we are on our way to self-assurance if we are not quite there yet…) Now what?

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Surviving a demotion: believing in myself and rebuilding confidence

by Lucy Flower @MrsLFlower  #PledgeForChange20

The awkward, quick smiles. The questioning glances. The open, naked curiosity. The conversations that stop when you enter a room. Recently, I was demoted from my leadership role.

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Forming an opinion

by Lucy Flower @MrsLFlower

'What do you think Lucy?'

A table full of expectant faces crowd my vision. I feel the familiar and tell-tale flush of heat crawl up my neck as I consider what to say. In truth, I have no idea what to think. Usually I make do with a thoughtful nod to someone else’s point of view, increasing in vigour the more eloquently they articulate themselves. Panicking, I echo someone else’s words, and slump in relief when attention shifts away from me.

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Fear: a barrier that became my tool

by Kaley Riley @MrsRileyEng #BirthdayCelebration

Four years ago, I was asked by my then Head of Department/Assistant Teacher (and, one of my loveliest friends), if I would present on some of my marking ideas at The Priory Witham TeachMeet. I hesitated, and I was nervous, but I said yes. At this point, I was not very far into my teaching career, and public speaking to peers had always been something that I struggled with and wished to overcome.

Nobody really believed it when I told them how I hated public speaking.

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Leadership: enabling others to share their opinion

by Lucy Flower @MrsLFlower


After my post on ‘Forming an Opinion’ I had some incredible responses, particularly from the #WomenEd community. Most shocking was the article I read from BYU, ‘When Women Don’t Speak’.

It transpires that simply having a seat at the table does not mean having a voice.

The study conducted by Professor Jennifer Preece, Professor Olga Stoddard and Professor Christopher Kravitz on mixed gender groups of women and men, found that when asked to make a majority decision, the perspectives of influence meant that women were routinely interrupted, had unequal talking time, and as a result were seen as less influential in shaping the direction of the decision making in the group.

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Adventures in Quilting

by Vikki Pendry @VictoriaPendry1

This was my first WomenEd conference and my first unconference, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect! I was drawn to the range of topics, especially those with an international texture which I felt would add some useful perspectives to improving ‘ways of working’ and community building. Values of collaboration and connection to inspire change and build confidence oozed out of every session! This was particularly helpful to experience as a newcomer.

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Can COVID-19 break the rigid opposition to teachers working flexibly?

Dr Katy Marsh-Davies @KatyAcademic

It feels strange to talk about a global pandemic having upsides but as we hope we are approaching the end of many restrictions in the UK, it seems apt to reflect on what lessons we might learn from the life-changing experience we’ve all been through.  As a Business School academic, with a passion for exploring professional lives, I spent last year researching teachers’ experiences of working remotely.

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How we talk about part-time work matters

by Katy Marsh-Davies @KatyAcademic

I received the following email response from a colleague in professional services today: ‘Sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner, I only work part-time’. I’ve had this response from colleagues before, but this time it rankled. I already knew she worked part-time because I received her automatic email reply. I also knew because a senior colleague had told me, in hushed tones, that members of her team mainly work part-time, ‘so you might not always get the support you need in a timely manner’.

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