ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary Education

ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary EducationLead advisor on early childhood care and education 
National membership 
organisation

Publisher of the New Zealand-International Research in Early Childhood Journal

 

Arguments and Tips for Getting More Men into Early Years Work

campaign protestBy Tim Kahn

I am interested to know whether issues around men working in the early years sector in the UK are similar in NZ or whether what I am writing is different from how things are in your country. I look forward to reading your comments.

In the UK men make up only 2% of the early years childcare workforce; in other words the workforce is overwhelmingly female. From what I understand, the proportions are similar (if not worse, meaning even fewer men) in New Zealand. And this situation is repeated in many other countries. Caring for young children is still seen as women’s work or, as it has been called, ‘substitute mothering’. So, in the UK at least, although more fathers choose to get involved in a hands-on way in bringing up their own children, the proportion of men who are employed to care for other people’s children has remained static for at least 20 years.

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