MenTeach E-News
March 2013

1) Male Teachers wanted to hire to teach
2) More men needed to work in childcare industry for balance
3) New Zealand: Primary School is a time to change a child’s life
4) Organizing Men in Early Childhood Education in Illinois
5) Why There Is A Shortage Of Male Teachers In Elementary Schools?
6) Scholarship Scheme to Invite Men into Early Childhood Education – A First for NZ
7) The Perils of Being a Male Teacher at an All-Girls School
8) Male teacher says career choice should not be determined by gender
9) I want to teach!
10) I want to do something!

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1) Male Teachers wanted to hire to teach
George Jackson Academy (GJA) is the only school of its kind in New York City: an independent, nonsectarian upper elementary and middle school for academically capable boys from lower-income and underserved families. The school was created to engage boys from 4th to 8th grade, a time when young men are particularly vulnerable to disengaging from school. Currently, GJA serves more than 120 young men of color to succeed academically, socially, and emotionally. Read the entire advertisement: /node/2137

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2) More men needed to work in childcare industry for balance
More men are being encouraged to work in the childcare industry to help the balance in the largely female dominated workforce. Latest figures show only 5.6 per cent of the national early childhood education and care workforce is male. Childcare SA president Kerry Mahony believes the number of men in childcare would rise under federal reforms, but thinks men must change preconceived ideas on careers. “I would have thought they would be an emerging species rather than a vanishing one,” he said. Read the full story: /node/2138

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3) New Zealand: Primary School is a time to change a child’s life
Children are missing out on positive male role models because of a shortage of men wanting to become teachers. Bay schools have spoken out about their struggle to attract male teachers as local training centres record low numbers registering for courses. The Bay of Plenty Times has learned of at least one primary school with no men on the teaching staff this year. Papamoa’s Golden Sands has had male teachers before but all 15 this year are women, said principal Mel Taylor. “I don’t really know why. I guess it’s potentially an area that some people just aren’t interested in.” Read the article and see the survey: /node/2141

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4) Organizing Men in Early Childhood Education in Illinois
Things have been somewhat slow recruiting men in ECE for me the past two years. My energies have been required to be focused in other directions because of the roll out and now IL Dept. of Children and Family Services mandate of the Gateways Registry (all DCFS licensed providers must now be Registry members) and Illinois receipt of phase II of the Early Childhood Challenge/Race to The Top federal grant. Both of these initiatives have required significant outreach efforts which is my main work at INCCRRA.

However, I have not totally forsaken recruitment efforts. With each presentation I do, I always bring awareness to the need for men in the field of ECE. When I have male providers in the group I always make mention of their significant positive impact on the children they serve. If there are no men, I still always find a way to bring increased awareness to the positive impact male child care providers can have on any program. And, I encourage program directors to seek out male teachers and other staff. Read the letter: /node/2142

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5) Why There Is A Shortage Of Male Teachers In Elementary Schools?
When Philip Wiederspan began teaching first-grade at age 25, he was the only male, except for the gym teacher. His former New Jersey college friends would look at him in shock when they learned his profession: “How can you do that? You must have a lot of patience.”

“It requires a lot of patience,” he said. “They are babies when they come in, just out of kindergarten, and by the end of the year, they are independent and can work on something by themselves for 10 minutes. Then they come back in September and, my God, they’re babies, again.”

Today, at 51, Wiederspan has devoted more than half his life to the youngest students at Upper Freehold Regional Elementary School in Allentown, N.J. Read the entire article and see a video: /node/2144

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6) Scholarship Scheme to Invite Men into Early Childhood Education – A First for NZ
It will not be rare to see men in early childhood teaching and childcare roles if a new initiative by NZ’s national early childhood network, ChildForum, sparks men’s interest.

The proportion of men to women working in early childhood education was higher 20 years ago than it is today.  Only 2% of early childhood educators are men, compared with a high of 2.3% in 1993 and a low of just 1% in recent years.

While there are many equal employment initiatives aimed at getting women into traditionally male dominated jobs, the same emphasis does not appear to have been placed on getting men into jobs like early childhood education traditionally seen as being for women.

ChildForum’s chief researcher Dr Sarah Farquhar said it is time to try something different to bring men into early childcare and teaching and address this very serious issue for children’s care and early education. Read about the new scholarship program: /node/2146

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7) The Perils of Being a Male Teacher at an All-Girls School
Let’s all pause for a silent moment of compassion for young male teachers in all-girls high schools. Theirs is a difficult job.

Riiiiiight, some of you young men may be thinking. I’ll sign up for that work.

But that sense of the young male teacher’s plight is one clear impression I’ve gained from a decidedly unscientific survey I recently completed of fifty of my former students, girls I taught when they were juniors or seniors at a private, all-girls high school outside Boston, from which I recently retired. I contacted these young women, all of them now college students or recent college graduates, to get a sense of how they perceived their male and female teachers in high school. Read the entire story: /node/2150

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8) Male teacher says career choice should not be determined by gender
Walk into any grade school and look around. It’s hard to find a male teacher. Less than 20 percent of teachers in elementary and middle school are men.

Experts say young boys, who often lag behind girls in academics and maturity levels, could benefit from having a male teacher.

One local teacher who says he wants students to learn early that career choice should not be determined by gender.

In Perry Phillip’s fourth grade class at Greenwood Elementary, students are learning about two women in history who broke barriers and crushed stereotypes. It’s a lesson that hits close to home with Phillips. He is the only academic male teacher at Greenwood.

“It was during the time that I was a substitute teacher that I realized that I wanted to be a teacher. That I had the inner gifts, the inner strengths,” he said. Read the entire report: /node/2151

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9) I want to teach!
MenTeach: We get numerous e-mails from men who want to teach.

For example: “I am a male interested in becoming an elementary school special education teacher. The main thing holding me back is a fear that I will not be able to find a job due to gender discrimination.

In your experience, do men usually have trouble securing jobs for this reason?”

What is your advice to this man?

I tell them that it really depends on so many things – read the editorial: /node/2152

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10) I want to do something!
MenTeach gets e-mails from many men and women who want to contribute to the work the we do.

For example: I’m a 3rd grade teacher at the University of X, a K-12 public institution connected to the university and more specifically its College of Education. I’ve read through the MenTeach site and some of the published material from Bryan Nelson this evening. I am incredibly intrigued, as I have been wondering and hoping to have some involvement to also effect some change on this subject–or at the least do some work/study into these issues.

I suppose right now I am wondering how to ‘get involved’ with the MenTeach organization and its goals/mission…?”

Here’s our reply: /node/2153

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