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Sydney CEO seeking discrimination law exemption

Sydney's Catholic Education Office is seeking an exemption from sex discrimination laws so it can launch a males-only teacher recruitment campaign.

The Catholic Education Office wants to offer scholarships for male high school leavers to study primary teaching.

Less than 18% of primary teachers in the Catholic system are men, prompting fears that young boys are missing out on having vital role models.

To avoid breaking the law, the CEO has asked the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission for a five-year exemption from key sections of the Act.

The Commission says it rarely grants exemptions and only does so in "exceptional" circumstances and where there is "clear justification". It has called for public submissions on the Catholic Education exemption bid.

The scholarships would offer male HSC school leavers financial support and incentives to enrol in primary teacher training in return for a commitment to working in Catholic primary schools for several years.

Daily Telegraph (payment required)

Catholic Education Office (Sydney)
Queensland Catholic schools need more male teachers (2/7/02)
Wanted: more teachers (Catholic Weekly 26/8/01)

21 Nov 2002