MenTeach E-News - November 2013

MenTeach E-News
November 2013

1) Men Teaching in Montessori Programs
2) Male Teachers in North Carolina
3) Tips for Workshops about Men Teachers
4) Vermont Conference Gathering A Success
5) Do you have a Men in Early Education Group in the United States?
6) Men in Early Childhood Education in Singapore
7) Book: Gender, Race, and the Politics of Role Modelling The Influence of Male Teachers
8) Misconduct allegations complicate work for male teachers, coaches
9) Jury finds girls, parents liable for calling teacher 'perv' and awards $362,653
10) Men and women meeting at NAEYC Conference in Washington DC

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1) Men Teaching in Montessori Programs
A little background: I live in a small city (35,000) in North Central Washington called Wenatchee. At present, Wenatchee has two Montessori programs, each program offers a 3-6 yrs. of age program of up to 30 students. One program doesn't accept interns, while the other program does. I interned at the later program, but it wasn't a strong program.

Although my community is nearly 50% Hispanic, neither program has any children from this demographic enrolled. I spent 12 years teaching as a bilingual teacher (Spanish/English) at a local public school in grades 1-3, and most of my students were Hispanic. I left public teaching last year to pursue a Montessori certificate and open a bilingual Montessori program. This decision was made for two reasons: first, I was increasingly disillusioned with the test giving mentality of public schools and didn't agree with how students were being treated in this increasingly forced environment of test frenzy; second, my daughter's experience in the Montessori school was positive, which led me to read and learn about the kid-friendly motives of Montessori education, something I could identify with and admire. Read his entire letter: http://www.menteach.org/node/2300

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2) Male Teachers in North Carolina
Chuck Gore retired from the Navy as a commander after 24 years, but he took his nautical love into his second-grade classroom at Carolina Beach Elementary School when he entered his next career as a teacher.

Students are gunner's mates, signalmen and quartermasters sailing on the U.S.S. Excel.

"Welcome aboard" is the standard greeting for visitors.

But Gore is unique not just because of his classroom style but because of his gender. Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/2302

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3) Tips for Workshops about Men Teachers
Here is a little update on the presentation I did at the TAEYC Conference. I had about 20 participants, a 60/40 mix of females and males.

Overall, there were less than I expected but it was a great group. I did note that of those that attended, most of the people were high level administration or high level trainers in the ECE field. Everyone participated fully and they almost seemed desperate to talk and get their thoughts out. My time went by very quickly and in the end, the action planning time was brief. When time was up more than half the participants stayed after to speak to me personally and were most likely late to see Dr. Bruce Perry the keynote. I got three informal invites to present the Men in ECE topic at other engagements including the SECA (Southern Early Childhood Association) conference. I did gather contact info from the participants and have already made follow up contact. I think it was a successful start! Read the rest of the report and tips on presenting: http://www.menteach.org/node/2305

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4) Vermont Conference Gathering A Success
Thanks for the great opportunity to spread the word at the VAEYC conference that men teach (and do it well) and that MenTeach exists for support and education. VAEYC is certainly a champion for men in education. We had six people at our interest forum meeting and all stayed for a full hour of discussion. Ten people joined us for lunch and there were just shy of 20 in Craig's workshop. Then, what, 350 people walked by our display. We certainly accomplished our goal of maintaining visibility so that people, men or women, can find us if they need us. The link: http://www.menteach.org/node/2307

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5) Do you have a Men in Early Education Group in the United States?
We are preparing for a presentation at the NAEYC conference and want to know more about other groups in the United States that recruit and retain men in early education. Check out the survey: http://www.menteach.org/node/2308

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6) Men in Early Childhood Education in Singapore
Over the last several years, there has been a growing number of male teachers working in early childhood development programs in Singapore. But being new in this profession, with few role models or mentors to guide them, they lack the psychological and social support needed to make them genuinely comfortable in this profession. This project has created a greater awareness of the benefits of and challenges for men working in ECCD programs and of the support they need to make their work most effective. Visit their website: http://www.menteach.org/node/2310

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7) Book: Gender, Race, and the Politics of Role Modelling The Influence of Male Teachers
This book provides an illuminating account of teachers’ own reflections on their experiences of teaching in urban schools. It was conceived as a direct response to policy-related and media-generated concerns about male teacher shortage and offers a critique of the call for more male role models in elementary schools to address important issues regarding gender, race and the politics of representation. By including the perspectives of minority teachers and students, and by drawing on feminist, queer and anti-racist frameworks, this book rejects the familiar tendency to resort to role modelling as a basis for explaining or addressing boys’ disaffection with schooling. Read the complete abstract: http://www.menteach.org/node/2312

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8) Misconduct allegations complicate work for male teachers, coaches
Allegations of sexual misconduct by coaches and teachers mess things up for guys like me.

Such a case recently arose against a Temecula softball coach, who prosecutors charged with molesting four young girls. The coach, Alex Flores, has pleaded not guilty and is being held on bail of $1 million.

Flores led a travel softball team of 13-year-old girls. In an affidavit asking a judge to set a high bail amount for Flores, Detective Rachael Frost called him "a well-liked and charismatic coach."

Five years ago I coached a co-ed soccer team of 13-year-olds. I've been a teacher of second- and third-graders for 14 years. I like to think of myself as "well-liked and charismatic."

Yet I have to be oh-so-careful. Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/2313

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9) Jury finds girls, parents liable for calling teacher 'perv' and awards $362,653
Two years after San Jose schoolgirls branded a teacher as a "perv" and "creeper" who inappropriately touched kids and peeked into their restroom, a civil jury Friday found the children and their parents financially liable for defamation in a case that pitted the rights of the accused against the aim of reporting perceived abuse.

The jury awarded $362,653 in compensatory damages to former Catholic school physical education teacher John Fischler after finding the families spread false statements about him that damaged his reputation. The 49-year-old broke into a huge smile Friday when he heard the favorable verdict, which his lawyer characterized as "complete vindication." Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/2316

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10) Men and women meeting at NAEYC Conference in Washington DC
Men in Education (M.E.N.) Network Interest Forum invites men and women to its annual meeting. Take the time to learn and share information on a variety of activities for men, fathers, and others who have an impact on the lives of young children. Learn about what’s happening in the USA, and internationally (particularly Germany and Norway). Find out how to recruit more men to your program, and how to support and retain men you already have. Help set the future agenda for the interest forum, have fun, and make new friends!

Two awards will be given out at the conference.

Champion for Men and Children Award goes to a man or woman that has made significant contribution to furthering our efforts to increase the number of men working with children. The recipient does not work directly with children.

Leader of Men and Children Award goes to a man that works directly with children and has made significant contribution to furthering the efforts to increase the number of men working with children. See more information: http://www.menteach.org/node/2317

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