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Author Topic: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession  (Read 1710 times)

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Offline KipTopic starter

Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« on: March 14, 2010, 12:16:42 AM »
In this morning's paper for my city there was an article about how in the universities in this city, there are 1000 odd students doing early childhood education degrees (not primary, middle or secondary schooling but pre-school education).  2 of those 1000 are male.

In it there were quotes from an interview with the Chief Executive of Childcare group C&K Bernie Elvish -

He said that the best advice for would-be male teachers would be to "get married" and be "quite blatantly heterosexual".  He did say that parents had asked them to remove existing male teachers from their facilities (and that such requests had been refused) and that parents were scared that male teachers would be pedophiles or gay.

The article isn't online unfortunately however I can't help but think that the state of society is sad that men who want to teach young kids are immediately labelled as either pedophile or gay.  I think it's even worse that the two are linked in such a way, that a gay teacher is something to be feared on the level of a pedophile teacher.

*sigh*
« Last Edit: March 14, 2010, 12:19:19 AM by Kip »

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2010, 12:21:02 AM »
I am right with you there, bro. ~hugs~

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2010, 01:12:13 AM »
Blantantly heterosexual....so people feel more comfortable if their seven year old's math teacher is belching in class, propping his feet up with a beer in hand and talking about how hot the Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders are?  Seriously...

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2010, 03:17:29 AM »
Wow, that is really depressing. And it is really odd that they conflate homosexuality and paedophilia. I mean that is an oddly specific group to target if you are a panicky parent.

Offline Izu

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2010, 04:46:56 AM »
Well, I think that the parents are to be blamed. But seriously... just how stupid one must be to mix those two words - homosexual and pedophile? I was like 5 when I knew that homosexual means loving someone of the same gender, and pedophile meant adults molesting children.  ._.' And I mean... come on! I was 5 in 92, 2-3 years after Bulgaria got out of the socialistic block and was a new 'democratic' country - those terms weren't popular back then and I must have heard them once or twice.

Offline Jude

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2010, 08:31:11 AM »
It's an instance of gender discrimination too, and every bit as bad as the sexual orientation discrimination.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2010, 10:57:16 AM »
It's a shame, because there are so few men in the teaching profession in the lower grades.  And for those people worrying, I'd ask them if their female teachers should also get married and be blatantly heterosexual.

Because that worked so well for Mary Kay LeTourneau.

Offline Zeitgeist

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2010, 12:26:16 PM »
Its an interesting dynamic really. Is society foisting upon men and women predefined, expected roles, or is it a more benign natural occurrence of men and women falling into roles they are more comfortable in? Is it realistic to throw out any and all presumptions of gender roles in the name of diversity? Men and women are different, and I'm hesitant to find any fault with that.

Still, I can see the positive advantages of men in early education.

Offline Serephino

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2010, 09:23:25 PM »
People have become paranoid freaks.  It's all these movies and news reports about pedophiles.  It's not a new thing, we're just more aware.  Through the magic of the internet I've talked to several people who were molested as kids way back in the 70's before nobody ever worried about it; so it still happened. 

And men are stereotyped to be the opposite of nurturing, which is what you're supposed to be to teach young kids.  That, and we're supposed be sex animals and constantly think about it and want it.  I've heard it said that men think about sex every 7 seconds.  That may be kinda true in my case... but most of us have more substance than that.  Even I have other interests. 

One of my friends has a brother who actually is qualified to teach elementary school, but he ended up getting hired as a high school Spanish teacher.  The district badly needs elementary teachers, but they didn't want him.  I've met him, and he's a nice enough guy, married with 2 kids, so I guess being married doesn't always help. 

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2010, 08:03:48 PM »
Ummmm, don't male homosexuals and female homosexuals normally go after people of the same gender of adult age? What makes people think they are pedophiles that is insulting to gays who are vastly and overwhelming decent law-abiding people that are good citizens?

I remember one of my best teachers when I was in 2nd grade was a man and well extraordinary he really cared, and turned out to be gay I found out as a teen when he was forced to quit the profession. 

I hate ignorance in such matters.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2010, 09:06:05 PM »
Ummmm, don't male homosexuals and female homosexuals normally go after people of the same gender of adult age? What makes people think they are pedophiles that is insulting to gays who are vastly and overwhelming decent law-abiding people that are good citizens?

Precisely my point.  Pedophila is not restricted by gender, and if you put the same restrictions on  female teachers as they want to put on male teachers, there would be an outcry.

Homosexuality shouldn't be an issue at all.  I fail to see how a teacher's orientation affects how well they teach the multiplication tables.  Although I will say that the only teacher that could get me up for an 8:30 class outside of my major happened to live just off campus with his boyfriend.

Offline Gosco

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2010, 01:48:34 AM »
I agree that it is sad that this is seriously an issue that people are talking about.

I think that the older generations that are in charge as of now are just being ridiculous. I was talking to an older gentleman today and in the room came a not blatantly, but obviously homosexual man that walked past us. The old man reared back as if the gay man was going to jump and rape him or something. I asked him about it and he seriously thinks that all gay men are going to rape him.

Our generation now is talking about these issues which is good, because it will mean when we are older, this kind of shit, pardon my French, won't be an issue at all.

Offline dorthyinwonder

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2010, 04:41:12 AM »
People have become paranoid freaks.  It's all these movies and news reports about pedophiles.  It's not a new thing, we're just more aware.  Through the magic of the internet I've talked to several people who were molested as kids way back in the 70's before nobody ever worried about it; so it still happened. 

And men are stereotyped to be the opposite of nurturing, which is what you're supposed to be to teach young kids. That, and we're supposed be sex animals and constantly think about it and want it.  I've heard it said that men think about sex every 7 seconds.  That may be kinda true in my case... but most of us have more substance than that.  Even I have other interests. 

One of my friends has a brother who actually is qualified to teach elementary school, but he ended up getting hired as a high school Spanish teacher.  The district badly needs elementary teachers, but they didn't want him.  I've met him, and he's a nice enough guy, married with 2 kids, so I guess being married doesn't always help. 


Actually, my best friend and I were talking about this last week and came up with this same thing. I had invited him along to spend lunch with my nephew for Public School Week, and he had made a few jokes about everyone staring at him as we walked into the cafeteria. We'd gone to the library with my nephew and I let the two of them browse through the book fair while I helped my mom (a librarian aide). When we had gotten back to the car (after I'd returned my nephew to his class) we started talking about how my friend felt that everyone was staring at him in the cafeteria and how its just the general perception that men shouldn't be in primary schools. I'm not sure where the break is where its socially acceptable to have men in the classrooms, but this was the exact discussion we had.

Honestly, I think if a male were established in the community, or already known in the district and the school supported him, then there wouldn't be *that* much of an issue. Yes, for the first two or three years the parents would be upset or nervous about it, but if the school stuck by him, then the parents would have no other choice but to give him a chance or withdraw their student. Eventually the opinion would change.

Also, why does this sexist attitude not apply to P.E. coaches or principals in elementary schools? I know when I was in elementary school, my PE coach was a man. Is it simply because its a more physical "class"?

Do I think its right this sexism exists? Not at all. Do I think its right that people don't want homosexuals teaching our kids? No. Its actually counter-productive, however many people do consider men to be much less nurturing than women and that's the issue. If a man is nurturing enough to be teaching elementary school, then he must either want something more or must have that "excess of estrogen" that people associate with homosexuality.

At least that's how I see it. Unfortunately, I think if enough parents complained to the school about a male teacher in elementary school, the school wouldn't support him. Furthermore, its likely there will be false accusations charged against the teacher, which most schools wouldn't want to deal with.

Offline Tachi

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2010, 08:02:30 PM »
I swear, I hate humanity sometimes.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2010, 11:28:42 AM »
Its an interesting dynamic really. Is society foisting upon men and women predefined, expected roles, or is it a more benign natural occurrence of men and women falling into roles they are more comfortable in? Is it realistic to throw out any and all presumptions of gender roles in the name of diversity? Men and women are different, and I'm hesitant to find any fault with that.

Still, I can see the positive advantages of men in early education.

Erm. Yes, men and women are different, and that's why more men need to be in early education. Plenty of little girls have early-ed role models outside the home, but who do boys have? The balding vice principal who follows everyone around barking at them not to run in the halls? Mmkay.

Offline NekoBoy89

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2010, 11:57:57 AM »
This remins me of something when I was at a daycare, I was told that one of the daycares where I live have a rule that no guys can change diapers on the smaller children. Because it would be seen as pedos. I mean come on...what is that?! I love to work with children and doing it have been the best thing in my life, you all know how much I talk about the kids around here. They are amazing, I can change diapers without any problem. People are just stuck with the fact that they think all guys working with children are pedo. In truth many times there are female teacher doing such things with the kids...but they never talk about that do they?

Offline grdell

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2010, 12:15:32 PM »
The thing that really makes my more-than-normally-logical mind just want to shut down completely is this one:

I have witnessed parents of girls - yes, girls! - be afraid to let their daughters near a man they suspect of being a homosexual pedophile.

Wait, what?

It is preciesly this kind of knee-jerk illogic that really burns me. If people would just take a second - just one freaking second! - to think, so many of these problems would go away.

Offline Torch

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2010, 12:23:15 PM »
Erm. Yes, men and women are different, and that's why more men need to be in early education. Plenty of little girls have early-ed role models outside the home, but who do boys have? The balding vice principal who follows everyone around barking at them not to run in the halls? Mmkay.

The problem is particularly acute in the African American community, with a dearth of solid male role models to begin with. I know of several non-profit organizations who are specifically recruiting black male teachers to work in elementary schools, which is where they will have the greatest impact on young boys.




Offline Oniya

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #18 on: April 08, 2010, 12:33:19 PM »
The thing that really makes my more-than-normally-logical mind just want to shut down completely is this one:

I have witnessed parents of girls - yes, girls! - be afraid to let their daughters near a man they suspect of being a homosexual pedophile.

Wait, what?

It is preciesly this kind of knee-jerk illogic that really burns me. If people would just take a second - just one freaking second! - to think, so many of these problems would go away.

When I was living with my parents, I had two homosexual friends who were not in a relationship with each other.  One day, we had made plans to go out hiking in a semi-local park.  My mother said she 'didn't feel comfortable with me being out in the middle of nowhere with two gay men.'  I shot back: 'Would you rather have me in the middle of nowhere with two straight men?'

It was a very nice hike.

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #19 on: April 08, 2010, 12:44:20 PM »
When I was living with my parents, I had two homosexual friends who were not in a relationship with each other.  One day, we had made plans to go out hiking in a semi-local park.  My mother said she 'didn't feel comfortable with me being out in the middle of nowhere with two gay men.'  I shot back: 'Would you rather have me in the middle of nowhere with two straight men?'

It was a very nice hike.

^_^ Made me laugh.

It also just goes to show how irrational this fear is.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #20 on: April 08, 2010, 01:01:01 PM »
^_^ Made me laugh.

It also just goes to show how irrational this fear is.

It was intended to do both. Admittedly, my mother could still have said that she didn't want me out in a mixed-gender group, but I'm pretty sure she realized how archaic that would sound.

Offline Remiel

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #21 on: April 08, 2010, 01:15:53 PM »
When I was living with my parents, I had two homosexual friends who were not in a relationship with each other.  One day, we had made plans to go out hiking in a semi-local park.  My mother said she 'didn't feel comfortable with me being out in the middle of nowhere with two gay men.'  I shot back: 'Would you rather have me in the middle of nowhere with two straight men?'

It was a very nice hike.

Nice one, Oniya.  :)

Unfortunately, I think the minds of many, especially those raised in Christian or socially conservative households, homosexuality is still considered to be sexually deviant behaviour.  As pedophilia is obviously sexually deviant behaviour as well, I think that people fall victim to the logical fallacy
All As are B
All Cs are B
Thus, all As must be Cs.

This is a tragic and ignorant association, and hopefully one that will disappear as social awareness and understanding spreads.

Offline Abaddon

Re: Sexual Orientation in the Teaching Profession
« Reply #22 on: April 08, 2010, 04:00:55 PM »
Erm. Yes, men and women are different, and that's why more men need to be in early education. Plenty of little girls have early-ed role models outside the home, but who do boys have? The balding vice principal who follows everyone around barking at them not to run in the halls? Mmkay.

Bravo. It is all about positive role modelling I think. I am a teacher in Primary and there are also very few men in this sector, never mind nursery. I believe a lot of behavioural incidents around the school must arise from a lack of positive male modelling in and around the education sector. Boys want to be cool and are not sure what that looks like in a school environment.  I work in an area which is socio-economically deprived (ex mining town) and a lot of the children come from broken homes, so that positive model isn't necessarily represented at home either.

I am a P1 teacher and one of two gents on the staff. I would happily work in nursery should a place arise, and I have to say that I don't believe there would be any stigma attached to it in my neck of the woods. This report is not entirely representative of the entire profession? It is a disgusting thing to hear though, I must admit, knowing how much hard work and graft goes into the community by both male and female educators.