I was reading some of the blogged reaction to the program the other night and was surprised to see the overwhelming audience criticism of the female presenters.
The difficulty with framing messages around this topic is that most of the evidence that it’s important is anecdotal. Until we have quantifiable data that somehow shows that the presence of male teachers makes a positive difference in the lives of students we are simply participating in an opinion-driven debate.
Teaching is a female-dominated profession. Whatever we say, we have to be careful not to slag women. They are qualified, caring professionals and they do a great job for kids.
Men are no different.
I don’t think there’s any dispute that in the court of public opinion, people “believe” that it’s important to have male teachers in schools. I think that the question of teaching styles needs to be further explored as a possible answer as to why it’s important.
Without a concrete study, our arguments are perceived as weak.
Male PhD candidates need to take this on as a thesis.
I’m happy to engage in any dialogue you can generate around this topic and wholeheartedly support your efforts.
MenTeach: The author requested his name be kept anonymous because of the nature of his job.