Until recently, people laughed at male kindergarten teachers and nurses. One daycare owner isn't bothered by jokes.
BILLINGS, Mont., Aug. 2, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- In 2003, the idea of a man running a daycare was absurd. Men were a tiny minority of childcare workers. That was the whole premise behind Eddie Murphy's comedy-of-errors movie, Daddy Day Care.
Twenty years later, men are still less than eight percent of the childcare workforce. Michael Devaney, the owner, and director of new daycare in Billings, MT is an outlier in an industry dominated by women. How does it feel?
"I know that having a man in charge at a daycare is an oddity. Daddy Day Care jokes are real. But I don't think about them much. My focus is the business. I'm trying to deliver a premium service to parents and students alike, consistently. Part of that service does include doing more guy stuff, like helping the kids dig for worms instead of crafting. There's not a lot I can do about that because it's who I am. The kids at the daycare, though, seem to love it. They're like the kids set free from Mrs. Harridan's school."
Daddy Day Care followed other successful movies (Kindergarten Cop, Meet the Parents) in using men working in female-dominated occupations as punchlines. What has changed is that today, a male elementary school teacher or nurse is normal.
Could men in daycare be on the same trajectory? Maybe, maybe not, for a variety of reasons. Regardless of demographics, Mr. Devaney is committed to building a sustainable business.
"I figure that quality, as in service, trumps novelty. If I provide excellent childcare, my business will grow. Parents will enroll their kids and tell their friends. Daddy Day Care jokes? Have at it, they don't bother me."
Michael Devaney, First Things Child Care, 1 4065343442, [email protected]
SOURCE First Things Child Care