This article was published in Teaching and Teacher Education, Vol 26, Issue 5, Author(s): Penni Cushman, “Male Primary School Teachers: Helping or Hindering a Move to Gender Equity?“, Pages 1211-1218, Copyright Elsevier (July 2010).
Despite research linking dominant masculinities to the disengagement of some boys from schooling, men teachers appear to be either unaware of the related literature, or reluctant to engage in behaviours that have increased their vulnerability to accusations of sexual abuse or homosexuality.
A small study of men teachers in England, Sweden and New Zealand explored the extent to which the men believed their teacher education had prepared them to teach in the gendered environment of the primary school.
Teachers were also questioned about their views on gender differences in students and in the teaching practices of male and female teachers.
Although the size of the study restricts the validity of data, the differences between the teachers in England and New Zealand, and those interviewed in Sweden, suggest that further research is warranted.
A societal emphasis on gender equity in Sweden was reflected in the commentaries of Swedish men teachers on their pedagogical attitudes and actions relative to gender-based issues in schools. This emphasis was not evident to the same extent in England and New Zealand.