Fear of Gender-Bending Men in Early Childhood Education Persists: A 360-Degree Look on BAM Radio

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Three-part series takes a look at the distrust of males who teach young children.

Today, BAM Radio Network, the education station online, began airing a special program titled “Fear of Men in Early Childhood Education.” The three-part series tackles the perennial distrust of males who teach young children and the inherent contradictions among educators, administrators and parents pushing for greater male involvement.

Part one brings together Lylah M. Alphonse, a mother, parenting issues writer, and an editor at the Boston Globe; Bryan G. Nelson, veteran male educator and founding director of MenTeach.org; and Ron McGuckin, a prominent child care lawyer. Hosted by Rae Pica, the panel looks at the stereotypes, suspicions, fictions and realities of males in early childhood education.

Some panelists see parallels to racial fear. “There were a lot of white families who didn’t want their children in classrooms where there were black teachers, and it reminds me very much of that issue when I’m dealing with it,” said Ron McGuckin.

Part two, hosted by Holly Elissa Bruno, engages four men who work with young children in a heart to heart conversation about the unspoken issues they face. Bruno seeks to understand what it takes to work effectively under a constant cloud of suspicion. Involved in the discussion are Mark Ginsberg, executive director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children; Vernon Mason, an early childhood center director for 19 years and owner of four centers; Bruce Boyden, an administrator and professor of education at the Early Childhood Leadership Institute; and Bryan G. Nelson, who has worked with young children since the 1980s.

“For many men in the field the response they get from families and from parents of young children is not necessarily positive; it’s more something like, what are you doing here and why are you here?” said Mark Ginsberg.

The third segment focuses on solutions, presumes that getting more men involved in early childhood education is good and offers five ways to attract and keep men in the field. This final segment is hosted by Mark Ginsberg of the National Association for the Education of Young Children and Rae Pica, co-founder of the Education Station. They speak exclusively with Bryan G. Nelson of MenTeach.org.

“Children need strong caring men in their daily lives and they need a picture of men as positive because the media offers such negative images of males,” said Bryan Nelson.

The special report can be heard on BAM Radio at: http://www.bamradionetwork.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=60&Itemid=111.

About BAM Radio Network

The BAM Radio Network (http://www.bamradionetwork.com) is the largest online, education radio network for parents, teachers, administrators, advocates, journalists, legislators and all people interested in education-related topics. The network offers 21 channels of education programming available on demand and hosted by the nation's leading educators and advocates. The network is a joint venture between privately held New Hampshire-based Moving & Learning and Los Angeles-based Jackstreet Media Ventures LLC. The programming is produced by Emmy-winning broadcaster Errol Smith and distributed through the Affiliate Nanocasting Network.

The Best Educational Reporting Team

BAM Radio Network has assembled the heads of the education community's leading associations to bring you the most insightful, accurate, relevant and up-to-date information on the education issues people really care about. The on-air hosts include:

  • Dr.Mark Ginsberg, executive director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children
  • Dr. Gerald Tirozzi, executive director of the National Association of Secondary School Principals.
  • Dr. William B. Harvey, executive director of the International Reading Association
  • Gail Connelly, executive director of the National Association of Elementary School Principals
  • Dan Domenech, executive director of the American Association of School Administrators
  • Yasmina Vinci, executive director of the National Head Start Association
  • Paul Young, president and CEO of the National Afterschool Association
  • John Musso, executive director of the Association of School Business Officials
  • Brian Crowe, executive director/CEO of the National Association of Child Care Professionals
  • Amy Garcia, executive director of the National Association of School Nurses
  • Jodi Grant, executive director of the Afterschool Alliance
  • Linda Geigle, executive director of the National Association for Family Child Care
  • Dr. Eric Karolak, executive director of Early Childhood Education Consortium
  • Barbara S. Belmont, executive director for the School Nutrition Association
  • Sherry Waugh, president of the National Coalition for Campus Children's Centers
  • Diane Whitehead, executive director of the Association for Childhood Education International

These education advocates are at the center of their respective communities and have their fingers on the pulse of what is going on moment by moment. Their programs are an invaluable resource for reporters, advocates, activists, legislators, analysts, parents, educators, administrators and anyone interested in transforming education.

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Jeannette Bernsten

Rae Pica
Moving & Learning
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