Celebrating Males in Early Childhood Education
Each day across our agency, our dedicated educators work to create a sense of belonging, well-being, and engagement for the children in our programs. The majority of this work is carried out by females, but in this edition of FOCUS we highlight a small but growing change in child care: males working in the sector.
When I was a child, most of the caregiving was provided by women. However, in our sector today we do see more males choosing early childhood education as their career path.
And we are seeing changes in society at large. The Vanier Institute of the Family reports that men are increasingly becoming involved in the caregiving of their children. Vanier’s research shows that more fathers are taking time off or flexing their work schedules to care for their children, and are embracing more traditional household management responsibilities.
When men work in the ECE field, young children have an opportunity to see caring and dedicated male role models taking on a variety of duties in the classroom. They see them taking on nurturing work and they observe collaborative teaching teams that demonstrate positive male and female interactions. Children raised in families where a father figure is not represented can gain additional benefits from male caregivers in their programs.
As an agency with a strong commitment to social inclusion, we encourage conversations about gender roles, and challenge myths and negative stereotypes. And we celebrate the males who have chosen ECE as their career path. We are happy they have chosen Family Day as a place to work and welcome their contributions to promoting high-quality child care.