Educational attainment of women in Trinidad and Tobago, 1946-1980

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Institute of Social and Economic Research, UWI


This paper analyses the educational achievements of women in the post-World War II era. It supports the view that ideologies influence the provision of education for women, but recognizes that education cannot be meaningfully analysed as a separate and autonomous social institution since it articulates with other structures of the society. Female school attendance (78.4 percent) is shown to have outstripped male (77.7 percent) most markedly in the 15-19 age group by 1970, after the introduction of free secondary education at last began to reflect the larger ratio of women to men in the population. Girls were found to perform better than boys on the Cambridge GCE O'Level examination and to be in the majority up to this level. The trend was, however, reversed for tertiary and higher education, where more males than females were enrolled. It was also found that at vocational and technical levels in 1976-77, the majority of women were enrolled in traditional courses. A positive correlation is shown between women's education and their labour force


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