The Victorian government will educate teachers not to use phrases such as “boys will be boys” as part of a $3m plan to eradicate sexism in pre-schoolers.

According to The Australian, 4000 early years state educators will receive training about gender stereotypes in the classroom.

A government tender released last week says children as young as three or four are aware of “gender expectations” and try to “fit within these gendered norms” as they start school.

The ‘gender-equality’ program has been developed as part the Labor government’s $21.8m Respectful Relationships plan to tackle family violence. It’s been widely criticised by community groups for promoting domestic violence as a male on female issue.

Minister for Families and Children Jenny Mikakos told the paper that this training was important.

“The early years are an important time to start helping children develop a secure sense of self and healthy, respectful ­relationships — this will help prevent family violence in the long-term”, she said.

The new program will cost taxpayers $3.4m. Existing materials aimed at the foundation level cautions teachers against phrases such as “boys will be boys’’and reinforcing stereotypical labelling “boys are strong, girls are gentle”.

Do you support this change in education?

Share your comments below.

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  • let the kids be kids! they should be free to express themselves and the parents should be decent to raise decent kids. focus on the parents! they raise the kids and the next generation. fix this from the top down


  • This is such unnecessary spending – children should be allowed to play in the ways they want and not be bothered with this – what they see and learn from their parents example will have a more lasting good effect than which could do exactly the opposite to those who are still trying to find themselves. Gender should be worried about at an older age if it has to be.


  • Unfortunately, schools can only do so much. It’s what the kids see when they go home that counts most


  • Think this a bit too much to be spending. Yes there are people who thing boys are one thing and girls are something else. I think it depends upon would the children are brought up like. I have 4 year old twins, boy and a girl. They do not fit the stereo type of what their sexes say. My son loves cooking, homemaking and is learning to sew on a children’s sewing machine plus hand sewing. While his sister is happiest outside with dirt, mud grease with her dad or older brothers. It is handy clothing wise as both wear the same type of clothing shorts and T-shirts.


  • Boys will be boys is often used about the boisterous stunts boys get up to that girls probably would think about. e.g. I think boys are more likely to climb on a house or shed roof than a girl would even think about it. Two young mates can get up to a lot of mischief their parents may never find out about.
    Yes, boys shouldn’t be singled out, but is it political correctness gone too far?


  • It’s a great idea but why should it cost the taxpayers so much money? Have they just grabbed a figure out of the air?


  • Ooh, I imagine that $3million could be better spend elsewhere. This is an education process at home as well. A change from attitudes that has developed over many, many years. I know we have to start somewhere, but I’m not sure why $3 million is needed.


  • A positive developement, but why it has to cost so much is for me the question.


  • that’s a lot of money!


  • Love that they are trying something. If it’s backed by research I’m happy.


  • really BAD idea and a complete waste of taxpayer’s money.
    Sexism doesn’t start at school and no child has ever suffered because they were told they were a boy or a girl.
    Don’t destroy the innocence of children.


  • How is it costing that much?!?


  • I do believe it is a step in the right direction.


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