By Jan Peeters (University of Ghent, Belgium)
Published in the NZRECE Journal, Vol. 10, 2007, pp. 15 - 24. (All NZRECE articles are available from the journal page on the ChildForum website)
The European Commission Network on Childcare introduced gender as an issue in early childhood services in Europe. In 1996 the Network set a target of 20% male workers in childcare that had to be reached by 2006. Several campaigns and interesting initiatives were set up and were successful in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, the UK and Belgium, but no European country has reached the target. This has led us to investigate the reasons why early childcare and education is so gendered. Childcare is seen as women’s work, something that women naturally do and are intrinsically better at. In addition, as gendered work assumes a female workforce, it is constantly reproducing its own patterns in recruitment and training. Several authors advocate on the one hand a gender-neutral culture that does not exclude men, and on the other hand they plead forgender pedagogy, a reflection on the differences between boys and girls, men and women. This paper examines the crucial question of what can be done to increase the employment of men. It discusses possible policy measures, men-only training courses, male mentorship of trainees, recruitment procedures that give equal opportunities to men, ways of remodelling the sector and of creating a men-friendly climate to make men visible in services.
To keep reading and view the full article login with your member's username and password
Here’s how our membership plans work:
- Individual Membership plans can view both Individual member-only articles and our library of Research Journals (but not the ECE Service management article area). In addition, individual members can discuss and ask questions of fellow members any time through the online childcare and early childhood education practice, policy, and research discussion forum.
- Early Childhood Service plans can view ALL member articles: Individual, Research Journals and Early Childhood Service articles. Also on this membership plan members can access the online discussion forum for individual members AND the online ECE service management / business forum.
- Research Journal subscription plans can view our library of Research Journals and related research articles only
Should you not hold a current membership – you are welcome to apply now.