Where are the men in Jamaica’s early childhood classrooms? The experiences of those who choose to teach young children

Full reference
Kinkead-Clark, Z. (2018). Where are the men in Jamaica’s early childhood classrooms? The experiences of those who choose to teach young children. NZ International Research in Early Childhood Education Journal, 21(1), 35 - 46. 

NZ Int Research ECE journal

Original Research Paper

Where are the men in Jamaica’s early childhood classrooms? The experiences of those who choose to teach young children

Zoyah Kinkead-Clark
University of the West Indies, Jamaica

 

Abstract

With less than three percent of Jamaican teachers at the early childhood level being male, this study sought to understand some of the issues affecting men in the sector and to elicit the factors they believe prevent/ deter other men from joining them in the profession. Twenty-three males in the early childhood field participated in a focus group discussion. Using Denzin’s (2001) Interpretive Interactionist Framework to analyse the data for this qualitative study, three themes emerged from the findings: stigma, macho culture/ culture shift, and financial matters. These findings have implications for how men believe they are perceived in early childhood education. Men in the early childhood sector encounter significant challenges and they should be supported as they struggle to situate themselves and fight for acceptance and to be part of the sector.

Key words: Male teachers, men in childcare, gender, stereotype, Jamaica.

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