Azara Blog: There are allegedly too few male primary school teachers

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Date published: 2005/10/13

The BBC says:

A drive to recruit more male primary teachers in England is being launched by the Training and Development Agency for Schools.

The TDA is trying to redress the gender imbalance in the profession at primary school level.

It has carried out research which suggests 83% of parents would like to see more men in primary teaching.

Currently just 15.7% of all primary school teachers in England are men.

The TDA is to form an advisory panel of current male primary teachers to consider how to attract more men to teach at primary level.

The TDA survey, which questioned 1000 parents of primary age children, suggests one in four parents are concerned that their children do not have enough interaction with male teachers.

And almost two thirds - 61% - said they believed male teachers had a crucial role to play in helping children feel more confident with men.

More than a quarter of parents - 26% - worry that their children will lack a male perspective on life, according to the survey's findings, and 22% say they are concerned their children do not have enough contact with positive male figures of authority.

Almost half of pupils aged between 5 and 11 (47%) do not have any contact with male teachers, the survey suggests.

Graham Holley, TDA executive director, said: "Teaching is now a popular career choice for graduates, which is excellent news for schools.

"But it is vital that teachers are representative of the communities they teach."

"We need more men to become primary school teachers to redress the current gender imbalance and our aim is that the new advisory panel will help up achieve this goal."

Another pointless quango creating problems where none really exist. Of course you can get any result you want from a survey, and people are always willing to say there is a "problem" if they are given no context and no cost estimates for the "solution". In particular, did they ask the parents whether a lot of money should be spent addressing the "problem" with some slick advertising campaign, or would the money perhaps better be spent on buying books for students? And if the gender imbalance had been the other way around you can guarantee we would now be hearing loud and clear that primary schools were "institutionally sexist".

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