A recent survey shows that nearly 98% of parents whose children go to day nurseries are now in favour of men working with young children. There appears to have been a big shift in attitudes to men working in child care, but latest figures show that only around 3% of workers in early years education are male.
Today’s BBC Woman’s Hour programme visits a nursery to talk to men about what they enjoy about working there. And presenter Jane Garvey talks to Neil Leitch, Chief Executive of the Pre-School Learning Alliance and Thom Crabbe from the Children’s Workforce Development Council about what can be done to encourage more men to work in this area.
In Brighton & Hove, The Men’s Network is supporting the development of the ‘A Few Good Men’ Project as part of our Community Leaders Program. Internationally there is now a Men In Childcare Global Network and in Men in Childcare in Ireland facebook group.
In Australia campaigners have been fighting to set up a men only childcare centre – see story here.
In Scotland the charity Making The Gender Equality Duty Real For Children, Young People and Their Fathers (catchy title!!!!!) is making a concerted effort to help more men follow a career in childcare.
As well as tackling the barriers than men face to pursuing careers in female dominated professions – and helping to overcome negative stereotypes about men working with children – getting more men in childcare will give more children access to male role models.