My feed

to access all these features


To get weary of the stance re male teachers

109 replies

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:07

AIBU to get a little fed up with the attitude expressed by some that a teacher is superior in the classroom (particularly but not always) the primary classroom?

I have actually had people say to my face 'that class needs a MAN!' or in the case of male candidates for interview 'oh fantastic; that's just what we need!'

It seems acceptable to be casually sexist in a way that the equivalent prejudice in say racism wouldn't be expressed.

Have others experienced this?

OP posts:
GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:48

Very true Captain.

That is very true May and a salient point but I still can't think it's a reason for overt sexism (I know you didn't say that it was!)

OP posts:
lilacblossomtime · 11/07/2015 21:49

I agree captain we do need more male teachers but we need to be seeing great female teachers progressing to management.Although funnily enough my dd yr 6 has a male teacher and female head.

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:50

Working in an environment that asks itself 'how can we attract more men/women/BME' is good.

Working in an environment that says 'that man/woman/BME person must be better because of their sex/race' is not good: it's prejudice.

OP posts:
WorraLiberty · 11/07/2015 21:51

As PPs have said, there is a distinct shortage of male teachers in Primary schools.

I live in a poverty stricken London borough with a very high teenage pregnancy rate, and a very high amount of single mothers.

That ^^ is not a problem in itself necessarily, but time and again many mothers here say that their children lack positive male role models in their lives.

I am a governor in a very large Primary school. There is a suggestion box in the school and many parents have used it to suggest we hire more male teaching staff.

GinAndSonic · 11/07/2015 21:51

X-post GetSome

Obviously they shouldbt be employed over more competant women. And i agree re the imbalance when it comes to management posts.
With my feminist hat on, its probably to do with primary teaching being seen, like nursing etc, as "womens work". I dont know how to fix that, but id like to see more men going into teaching in primary. If the pool of candidates was more evenly balanced then the novelty of male primary teachers and the rediculous idea of them being better at discipline etc would wear off i suppose, meaning jobs would be awarded on merit. And probably be more balanced anyway.
Im not advocating for passing over women to give the jobs to men. Im just explaining why i think men in primary schools is good for children.

Muddymits · 11/07/2015 21:52

I want more primary teachers and more female heads. I want the secondary bullshit about classes needing a male teacher Squashed with a reminder that the teacher with the best order is always some 4.10 middle aged lady with sensible shoes and glasses.

Teabagbeforemilk · 11/07/2015 21:52

I was pleased that dds school has a fairly high proportion of male teachers. Why? Not because o think they are better at teaching or have their shot together. I like to see things change.

When I was at primary all teachers were women. At secondary most were women but not all. Primary teaching was seen as a women's profession. I would like to see an end to that. The best way to do it, is for kids to see both men and women doing it.

I would like to see more male being TA's and in the early years part of the school. I also like it when men attend the PTA and friends of the school meeting. Not because us women do a poor job, but because these men are parents too.

Muddymits · 11/07/2015 21:53

oh well I missed out most words that would have made that make sense...

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:54


Intended with the greatest of respect but parents cannot be the ones who decide who the best person to teach their child is.

As I indicated earlier, being from a single parent household does not disadvantage a child.

Being from a household that experiences poverty does.

This is more likely to be experienced by single parents but not exclusively - and being single isn't the cause.

It is misleading to claim that up and down the country mothers are beside themselves whilst firm kind male teachers step into the gap.

Poverty, not parents - and in fact even poverty won't affect a child's outcome at school if the mother has a degree.

OP posts:
echt · 11/07/2015 21:56

Just been googling the representation of men in primary schools and came across this joke: Q. What do you call a man who works in a primary school? A. The head teacher.

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:56

That is the problem.

It's "women's work"

Just as when a man is a single parent he is a hero, a male primary teacher has a similar stance in society's view.

Some of this is the rarety factor but its hardly a dog dancing Swan Lake. Grin

OP posts:
GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:57

Echt Grin

OP posts:
PtolemysNeedle · 11/07/2015 21:57

the fact that a man is automatically deemed better than a woman because he is a man.

What makes you assume that is fact? Maybe people are commenting more on the difference rather whether or not they believe it to be better.

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 21:58

I am assuming it based on the comments in my OP - hence why I included them.


OP posts:
LilyMayViolet · 11/07/2015 21:58

Well I've been teaching for nearly 20 years and I've heard this sort of attitude loads of times, especially from parents.

iwasyoungonce · 11/07/2015 22:00

YANBU. I hear this too. At our infant school there is 1 male teacher and 11 female. The ones that get the male teacher each year act as if they have won the jackpot.

He is no better or worse than the many fantastic female teachers, but the parents say things like "oh Billy will really benefit from having a male teacher"... er why? It is definitely sexist.

WorraLiberty · 11/07/2015 22:05

As I indicated earlier, being from a single parent household does not disadvantage a child. - I indicated the same thing in my post.

Being from a household that experiences poverty does - I agree it certainly can, although it's not necessarily a 'given'.

This is more likely to be experienced by single parents but not exclusively - and being single isn't the cause. - Again I agree.

It is misleading to claim that up and down the country mothers are beside themselves whilst firm kind male teachers step into the gap. - Who claimed this?

The fact remains that many mothers in my borough have stated their children don't have any/many positive male role models in their lives and they have suggested the school hires more male teaching staff.

Getthewonderwebout · 11/07/2015 22:05

Not sexist.

It's beneficial to have a mix.

Boys in particular can benefit from a male teacher, particularly if dad is away a lot or parents are separated and the child lives with mum.

Both sexes benefit from a slightly different style of teaching which is often the case.

Loafliner · 11/07/2015 22:06

I think ideally the teachers should represent the demographic they teach - clearly this would be far too complicated to enforce but i do believe we need more men in primary education to provide a role model for the boys they teach...even for the girls they teach, they should come into contact with male authority figures before secondary.

Getthewonderwebout · 11/07/2015 22:06

Sorry, I was a bit late, I see it's already been mentioned.

Golfhotelromeofoxtrot · 11/07/2015 22:17

I completely agree, YANBU.

My brother is just about to go into primary school teaching. He might turn out to be amazing, but he had teacher training programmes falling over themselves to offer him a position. Very average GCSE and A level results, but (and they said this openly) he has an edge being male.

It seems that it's ok to say "a man would be brilliant" when you would never say the same about a female.

Starlightbright1 · 11/07/2015 22:17

I had one male teacher through my primary years and hated him. I still as a LP like to see Male teachers not because they are superior but because I think he could benefit from the male role model.. It is not the schools job to provide them though and would rather he had a great female teacher than a awful male teacher. I do my best to provide male role models but I am not in a relationship, he doesn't see his dad and I have very little family.

Mehitabel6 · 11/07/2015 22:17

We definitely need more male teachers in the primary school and we particularly need them in KS1. Some children have no male role models at home. Ideally we should have an equal balance. They are not better, but they are different which is particularly noticeable in reception classes.

southeastastra · 11/07/2015 22:22

i work in childcare and know how important it is for kids to have male role models.

primary education definitely needs to attract more

GetSomeCatsOut · 11/07/2015 22:24

Very unusual for a male teacher, having been employed, to be placed in KS1.

It's a misleading view but a prevalent one that the older the year group the more responsible the teacher is.

Male teachers are overwhelmingly given KS2 - usually year 5 or 6.

I wonder why that is.

OP posts:
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.