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Is there still a demand for male primary school teachers?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Vanillaman, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. Vanillaman

    Vanillaman New commenter

    I'm 47 and graduated from university in 2003 witha BA (Hons) Film & Media 2.1 I have been unable to find work ever since. I adore children, but unfortunately don't have any of my own. I was thinking of going into teaching primary. I'm tired of doing courses that don't lead anywhere, so I don't want to risk going on to do a masters and end up in another dead end. So, I need to be cautious about my next move. Is it worth going into teaching?
  2. You will always find the opinion that males are 'needed' in the primary classroom (male role models missing from home). Great teachers regardless of gender are so valuable more so in my opinion.
    Is it worth going into teaching? Just a glance at some of the threads on here will show you a very varied response!
    Would it be possible for you to get some experience in local schools to help you decide/get a better understanding of the role?

  3. paulie86

    paulie86 New commenter

    You have to really want to do it. I also think some research is needed to get on a PGCE with your subject. We have had ace male support staff, with degrees innational curriculum subjects, who have struggled to get on to do the PGCE. Think it also depends on which area of the country you live in, some areas have much more balanced ratios.
  4. It's really not the kind of job you can just hop into, its not just 'any old job' - it's incredibly demanding, time consuming, and not particularly easy to find a job at the end of the training. I'd definitely get some experience in local schools and talk to a few teachers about their role before you consider teaching.
  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Why teaching? You don't just think of "Oooh, I've got a degree, I'm male, I'll become a teacher". There's a bit more to becoming a teacher than that.
  6. It is very hard work.
    If your are lucky to get on to a course you may not be lucky enough to get a job. There are too many trained teachers and not enough positions.
    Depending on the school you end up in it can be very demoralising, completely time consuming, soul destroying at times and always being stuck in a constant cycle of work that is never finished or never good enough.
    In many areas education is becoming very 'corporate' and it is more and more about numbers and data and less and less about the children themselves.
  7. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Like button pressed.
  8. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    You'll need to check with someone else, but I have a vague feeling that you need most or all of your degree to be in a national curriculum subject to get on a PGCE course.
    You haven't a hope of getting ont he course if your reason is 'I adore children'.

    You are in no way certain of getting a post even if you were to train. There is a massive surplus of primary teachers of both genders.
  9. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Unfortunately I too am advising caution.
    Yes we do need male role models,but at 47 by the time you're qualified they might not consider you 'role-model material'- young and male much more likely to get the post. (Yes I know that's ageism, but it does exist).
    There's also a positive glut of qualified Primary teachers at present.
    I would say if you're just thinking about it as a possibility- possibly not. If it's the be and end all of your life and you really can't imagine ever being happy doing anything else, then you have to set your face to the wall and go for it! Just don't expect it to be easy.
  10. I agree with DevonSent. What the education system needs is excellent teachers, regardless of gender, race, disability, etc. You may well find schools /ITT colleges that see being male as an advantage (the role model argument mentioned above comes into play here). As a male teacher, in a largely female world I have never,and would never ascribe my gender as being an important attribute. I am a very good teacher, because I have worked hard to understand how children learn best and how best to teach them. If I was female, black, gay, disabled, etc. that would not change. There is a glut of surplus teachers and some of them may get a job because they fill a perceived "gap in the market" and having seen a lot of male student teachers and actual teachers my view is that many of them have been given unfair advantages because they are male, regardless of how poor they were at teaching. So-called positive discrimination is discrimination and logically will discriminate against good teachers
  11. lardylegs

    lardylegs Occasional commenter

    Yes, we need someone to :
    Do Football Club
    Do Cricket Club
    Lift heavy boxes
    Catch spiders
    Jump start our cars in winter
    Clear sinks blocked with vomit
  12. Come on!!!! Surely cleaning sinks is a woman's job! Hehe!
  13. Thanks Lardy, I'm pleased that we have some useful purposes in the primary environment!
    It's an interesting subject ... having completed a 4-year BA in Primary Education, I conducted some research into the
    experiences of male primary teachers. I've no doubt you would all be far too busy to read it, but I'll provide a link anyway

    http://www.ljmu.ac.uk/ECL/ECL_docs/CETL_Journal_Vol_3.pdf (p.16)

    The truth is that the academic argument has moved way past the 'role model' debate. Besides, what does it mean? There is some suggestion that both boys and girls benefit from a representative demographic of teachers, but ultimately, the concept of 'masculinity' is hardly the sole domain of men - i know some very 'feminine' men and some equally 'masculine' women! Besides, children are far more influenced by their peers, family and people outside of the classroom. I think robin Alexander's recent review best summed it up by saying children want teachers who are even-tempered and even-handed.

    Finally, I think I'd be rather annoyed of I was a hard-working female teacher having to listen to lots of tosh about male role-models!
  14. <h5>Your degree needs to be 50% cirriculum subject weighted. I did a BA hons in cultural media studies and that was classified as 50% english. I'm now a year 3 teacher.</h5>
  15. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    Do men do other peoples bodily waste ?
  16. BoldAsBrass

    BoldAsBrass Occasional commenter

    I have to stare at green stringy mucus dripping from 50% of my classes noses every day - does that count?

    Or what about the day one child peed over the floor getting changed after PE, during which I cleaned it up just as the child next to me was sick and another dropped a turd from up their trouser leg (I kid you not!)
    No women to be seen that day :)

  17. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    not if they haven't wiped it on your tie or shoulder [​IMG]
  18. I'm 48 and female and managed to get on a primary PGCE course despite having a degree in a non-curriculum subject. I have two children of my own and had worked in a different career with children for a number of years previously. Finding a teaching job was incredibly difficult (quite likely to do with my age!) and now that I have one (many, many applications and interviews later), I find it very challenging. It's a job where you never have the satisfaction of having completed anything and never feel like what you have done so far is good enough. Working with a large number of children in a classroom is a totally different game from engaging with a few children at a time (either as a parent, friend or in a professional capacity). The main task is crowd control - the teaching comes after (if) you have controlled the crowd. Also what with all the planning and getting resources ready and marking and after school clubs and parent's evenings and school discos and Saturday school fetes, and.. and.. and.. you are looking at an enormous number of working hours with an income that doesn't feel like anywhere near enough. I don't want to put you off - some people absolutely adore the job. Whether you are in a better position to get a job or not because of your gender is beside the point. Find out first: do you really want to do this? Have you got the nerves and stamina? You really must get some work experience in a classroom before you decide whether it is for you - perhaps you could volunteer for a bit?
  19. It's quite interesting to hear your view point. I'm a male and training at Edge Hill. We've been told that although Male Primary teachers are desirable, and individual schools have different needs. One school may be told by the L.A that a male is a priority when recruiting and so if a male applies and is excellent, he is most likely to get the job. However, sometimes they will want a female who is more mature (example!) so if one applies, they are at an advantage. Schools are quite individual, which I've learnt.
  20. Why is a male "desirable"? Focus on the task in hand. If I want a wall built on my property I hire someone who can build a good wall. If i am in the public sector should I lose sight of my quality wall and focus on the needs of the builder?

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