MenTeach E-News - May 2017

MenTeach E-News
May 2016

1) New Zealand Men hope to encourage more males into early childhood roles
2) Seeking to reverse lack of black male teachers in Detroit
3) This Letter A Fifth Grader Wrote To His Teacher Proves How Important It Is To Have Black Men In Classrooms
4) Will More Minority Teachers Close Connecticut's Achievement Gap?
5) Oregon growing its own teachers
6) Japan: Three times as many male teachers
7) Life as the lone male teacher at Rail Ranch Elementary in Murrieta
8) How this man found his calling as an early elementary teacher
9) Editorial: School's Out for Summer
10) Editorial: The Ripple Effect - The Importance of Connections  

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1) New Zealand Men hope to encourage more males into early childhood roles
Two South Canterbury men who are studying to become early childhood education (ECE) teachers could double the number of males teaching in the region once qualified.

As of June 2014, there were just two licensed male ECE teachers employed in South Canterbury, of a total of 251 teachers in the region, according to data released by the Ministry of Education.

But former forestry worker Ben Harris, 42, and former insulation worker Michael Tough, 30, are hoping to buck the trend and encourage other men to consider obtaining qualifications in ECE.

"A lot of males are just scared to get into the industry," Michael Tough said.

Having known for a long time he wanted to get into ECE, Tough said he felt he had to wait for there to be less of a stigma around males in the industry before he made the move.

Tough said there were a lot of children who didn't have a father figure in their lives and he hoped as an educator he might be able to help fill that void.

Ben Harris first got involved with the Geraldine Kindergarten when his son was enrolled at the centre about five years ago. Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/3095

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2) Seeking to reverse lack of black male teachers in Detroit
Former Detroit Police Chief and Deputy Mayor Isaiah McKinnon keeps in touch with three of his Detroit teachers, now retired and in their early 90s.

They were his only black male teachers growing up, he said.

"I saw these strong men," McKinnon said. "It had a true impact on my life."

McKinnon hopes to attract more minority men to the teaching profession through a "We Need Great Teachers" partnership launched Thursday between the Detroit Public Schools Community District and the University of Detroit Mercy, where he is an associate professor of education. Organizers said they will work on attracting talent of any gender and race, with a special focus on African-American males.

"When I retired as deputy mayor and came back here, (university President) Dr. (Antoine) Garibaldi gave me several assignments and this is one of them," McKinnon said at a meeting on campus between university education department personnel and dozens of Detroit school principals. "We have to go out and see what we can do in terms of getting men of color into this field of education." Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/3096

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3) This Letter A Fifth Grader Wrote To His Teacher Proves How Important It Is To Have Black Men In Classrooms
At a time when Black men make-up of just two percent of our nation's teachers, this Atlanta educator is determined to make a difference.

Fifth grade teacher Jermaine Stubbs, recently shared a beautiful letter online about just how much he's appreciated by one of his students. The letter, which has since gone viral, said, "… I look at you like my dad. I never met my real dad but it [is] okay because you treat me like I'm your son."

Since posting the letter, Stubbs' story has been shared on various platforms including Steve Harvey's Facebook page and The Shade Room. Read the letter: http://menteach.org/node/3101

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4) Will More Minority Teachers Close Connecticut's Achievement Gap?
According to a study from the Institute of Labor Economics, students of color are less likely to drop out of high school and more likely to pursue college if they have at least one minority teacher.

The problem is, there's a severe shortage of teachers of color in this country. And that gap between minority students and teachers is especially wide in Connecticut.

Some new programs in the state have been designed to close that gap.

Tai Olasanoye interned at an elementary school when he was in college. Before that, he never imagined being a teacher.

"Growing up, I didn't see an African-American male teacher. So it wasn't considered an option for me."

Olasanoye now teaches at ACES Whitney High School North in Hamden. Read and listen to the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/3104

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5) Oregon growing its own teachers
The class, in its third year, is part of Eastern Oregon University's OTP curriculum. The program is intended to entice high school and college students into considering a career in education.

The goal is two-pronged: add ethnic and linguistic diversity to the teacher workforce, and restock rural district staff rosters with homegrown teachers.  

The program in the high schools is designed to introduce 11th- and 12th-graders in rural districts to the idea of teaching for a living, said Tawnya Lubbes, OTU coordinator at the La Grande university. High school juniors and seniors can get a head start on a teaching degree by taking one year of the program before they get to college, said Tawnya Lubbes, OTU coordinator at the La Grande university. Read the article: http://www.menteach.org/node/3106

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6) Japan: Three times as many male teachers
The shortage of childcare workers is a pressing social problem in big cities in Japan. There are about two and half million children who go to daycare centers, but at least 23,000 children across the nation cannot go. Because of the hard working conditions and low wages, there aren't enough people who are willing to work as caregivers.

Now, local governments are counting on more men to come on board. The number of men who are choosing to become childcare providers is increasing.

In fact, there are now three times as many men registered than there were a decade ago.

However, that has sparked debate among some parents.

In January, the city of Chiba announced a new childcare policy. It said both female and male workers would begin providing the same services, including changing girls' clothes.

The news set off an online debate. Some of the comments about male caregivers were harsh.

The opinions of parents with small children ranged from outright rejection to full support.

"I'm totally fine with the idea of men being childcare workers," said one mother online. Read the article & watch the video: http://menteach.org/node/3108

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7) Life as the lone male teacher at Rail Ranch Elementary in Murrieta
I walked with my class across campus recently when some passing kid I've never met said, "Hi Mr. Love."

One of my own students asked, "Why does everybody know you?"

My theory: I am the only male teacher left at my school.

Of about 25 teachers at Rail Ranch Elementary in Murrieta, I'm the lone representative of my gender. In the 19 years I've been there, we always had multiple male teachers. Greg Lumsden, Matt Owens, Jack Mitchell, Tom Patane, Brian Youens, Kevin Nickoloff, Steve Savage, Gary Zajec and Neal Hall all taught there. Lumsden, a fellow fifth-grade teacher, left last year, leaving me the last man standing.

Invariably when I walk outside now, some kid or kids I don't know will say hi to me by name, dramatically more than before. Often I'll stop to ask their name and say hi back, figuring it's the least I can do.

There are ramifications to this. If male role models are so important in this age, there's not much to choose from at my school. Also, it can lead to stereotyping, as my classroom is now hands-down the messiest on campus (not even close). And lastly, who do I have a bro-mance with? Read the article: http://menteach.org/node/3110

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8) How this man found his calling as an early elementary teacher
JUDY WOODRUFF: A question that has been raised here: Why aren't more men going into fields dominated by women?

Stigma is a big part of the answer, our economics correspondent, Paul Solman, reported last week.

Tonight, he focuses on one man many might want to emulate.

It's part of our weekly series Making Sense.

HAROLD JOHNSON, Second-Grade Teacher, Lake Carolina Elementary: We already got a man outside, and I need you to be outside, especially at will linebacker.

PAUL SOLMAN: Harold Johnson coaches linebackers for the Ridge View Blazers in Columbia, South Carolina, where high school football is a rite of masculine passage.

AMOS MYLES, Football Coach, Ridge View High School: You start getting tired, then you start getting lazy in your mind-set. Now, hey, you can't think. You have to be focused. You have to get control of your breathing.

PAUL SOLMAN: Amos Myles is the bad cop. But Harold Johnson isn't exactly the good one.

HAROLD JOHNSON: Downhill first. We don't ever attack lateral. We're playing linebacker. Downhill first.

PAUL SOLMAN: Pretty much every high school football coach is a guy, of course. And men are no rarity in secondary school classrooms either.

ANGELA BAUM, National Association of Early Childhood Teacher Educators: It's about 40 percent of male teachers at high school level. Read the transcript and watch the video interview: http://menteach.org/node/3111

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9) Editorial: School's Out for Summer
So, it appears that the end of a year is just about as hectic as the beginning with loose ends to tie up before vacation officially begins. As I go through the ritual of preparing for the end of another school year, I continually think about the past year. I assure myself that this reflection is the obligation of a reflective practitioner, however, I question whether dwelling on the things that could have been done better is productive. And certainly, I recognize that the saying "we are our toughest critic" is true!   Read the editorial: http://www.menteach.org/node/3107

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10) Editorial: The Ripple Effect - The Importance of Connections  
Every day, teachers connect with students, their families, administration, and the community at large. We know all too well that a lack of connection will impact the building of relationships and the learning that occurs. The reality of college teaching is that connections with students vacillate and dissipate as students earn their degree and move into the teaching profession. Knowing this, it seems I work even harder to build connections with college students and treasure the associations with them during the four-year time frame. Some of my most joyful and rewarding moments is when I can reconnect with former students. Read the editorial: http://www.menteach.org/node/3103

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