What are educator perspectives on FGM/C?
We created this educator toolkit after interviewing teachers and counsellors to learn more about their experience with and knowledge of FGM/C. While most were familiar with FGM/C as a practice, almost all were surprised to learn that girls in the U.S. are at risk of FGM/C. They also agreed that there is a need to learn more about who is at risk of FGM/C and what needs to be done to implement preventative measures in school.
Some important points brought up by our interviewees that we think you should know:
- Students won't be able to ask for help if they don't know they can go to you for support, specifically for FGM/C.
- Female students may not feel comfortable going to male teachers or counselors with FGM/C related issues, which include the risk of undergoing it and health issues associated with it.
- Communicate with parents in a way where they don't feel attacked or outnumbered.
- Consider adding FGM/C into your health curriculum in some capacity.
Other ways educators can help
- Check if FGM/C is listed in your county/school standards of learning and if it is being taught in any curriculum. If not - consider suggesting adding FGM/C standards of learning to your local department of education.
- Make community connections. Look for trusted, local organizations that can be a resource for FGM/C survivors, if needed. Check out this resource by the Council of Great City Schools for additional tips on community support and more: FGM/C Prevention: A Resource for U.S. Schools