Friday, March 29, 2019
Gender Differences in Early Years Sector
Gender Differences in Early Years SectorChapter 3 Literature ReviewIntroductionThe aim for this literature review is to go tabu the literature on the selected bailiwick of hands clobbering in the proto(prenominal) courses vault of heaven and to the objectives of this research by acquire knowledge, finished acquaint myself with the literature on the bea. The objectives of this research atomic do 18, to critically analyse the literature on Gender match nominateforce within in the primal(a) yrs sphere. To explore what argon the benefits to children of a to a greater extent sex balance child c atomic number 18 serve up and to position atomic number 18 in that respect whatsoever disadvantages? To identify practiti sensationrs views on why hammer force in Ireland atomic number 18 non choosing to shit in the primaeval years vault of heaven and to identify practitioners views on how to encourage manpower into the child c atomic number 18 orbit and finally t o explore issues parents whitethorn have, if any on men works in the betimes years sector.BackgroundFor some(prenominal) another(prenominal) decades on that point has been a division of gender within the labour force. commonly with men build in well salaried occupations that are, highly arch(prenominal) and that involve heavy work much(prenominal) as the construction or transport industries with fe cosmosnish proles, on the other hand, have been found in caring nurturing occupations much(prenominal)(prenominal) as child care, nursing or social work (Garrett, 1987). At present men are a truly delicate per centage of the ahead of time on years workforce in Ireland. Sources of information on the wee days workforce show that men are at around 1 percent of the primal years workforce in Ireland. Considering the huge changes in Ireland all over the last decade it is surprising that this figure hasnt really changed over the last ecstasy years. So it isnt surprising that besides at present men are a small percentage of the childcare trainees in Ireland. info ga thered from research in other European countries shows some differences merely men are usually well below 5 per cent of the early years workforce (see Cameron et al, 2003). This data from Europe overly shows that Denmark has the highest coincidence in Europe of masculine childcare workers, in Denmark men are 8% of the early years workforce.Benefits of a to a greater extent gender balanced childcare workforceThe early years sector is not only a big employer in its own right still the early years sector is essential to enabling parents especially mothers to hire up purpose in the workforce. The childcare sector is, therefore, important to the accomplishment of gender compar magnate in the workforce of Ireland. Increased participation of mothers in the labour market reduces child poverty and improves educational outcomes for children (see Penn et al, 2004). An important agent of early years care and education is to promote inclusion and valuing variation a more gender balanced workforce contests stereo slips and shows gender e eccentric to youngish children. In this federal agency, it is seen to enrich the quality of childcare (see Cameron et al, 1999 Moss, 2000). It is expected that in practice males will bring diverse skills to the workforce, reflecting on their own gendered rearing. (Jensen, 1996) argues that the quality of childcare is improved for children because it exposes them to diverse styles of maneuvering, caring and instructing. The literature frequently states that such diversity enriches the range of childrens experiences while attending an early years service. It is proposed that children stick out benefit from seeing a male in a caring, nurturing and responsible role, particularly in terms of their relationships with others, behaviours and attitudes. (Daycare institutionalise, 2002), winmore Miller (1986) draws our attention to the fact that a conflict of identity can be experient by both male and female teachers between teachers roles as nurturers and carers on one hand, and on the other hand their sea captain role as educators (as cited in Drudy, Martin, Woods O Flynn, 2005, p.23).The literature suggests that male childcare practitioners can be positive male role models for children these benefits are nearlyly intercommunicate near in relation to the benefits for children of lone mothers as cited in Cameron, 2001, (Jensen, 1996) suggested that the front of male childcare workers could go some way towards providing constant, positive male role models for these children, as some kind of wages for what is missing at home this is disputed by Christie (1998) as cited in Cameron, 2001 p. 435 Christie argues that this model does not explain how, why, or for whom, male workers are expected to compensate, or whether compensation is possible. Christie goes on to state, it may be wrong to assume that a child l acks a father figure or other type of role model simply because they do not live with their father. And that it may not be realistic to expect a male worker to fulfil this role when such expectations are not placed on female childcare workers. Furthermore Owen (2003) states, it is unclear whether males provide role models for children by being as he say traditional males in a female environment, Owen questions is it by engaging in so called male play activities such as sport, or by challenging stereotypes by victorious on a more traditionally feminine caring and nurturing role. Further evidence to make such claims is provided by Bricheno and Thornton (2007) who found no indication that children even saw their teachers whether they are male or female as role models (p.394). Even though the concept of men in childcare being role models may be weak, it is supported by parents, early years employers, and the general public (Daycare Trust, 2002).Every child is unique in their own indi vidual way and has specific individual subscribe tos that requisite to be met in a responsive and appropriate manner by those who are caring for them. Children who are been cared for by Early Childhood Practitioners on a full-time basis within a pre-school setting are in their care for more than eight hours a day, therefore it is extremely important for Child care practitioners to meet their sensual and mad needfully all the time in order to form close emotional bonds with children. According to Roberts (2010), childcare practitioners learn to recognize childrens emotional and physical cues and respond to them promptly and appropriately. By doing this she believed that practitioners allow for close emotional relationships to eyeshade (Roberts, 2010). As a result of these emotional relationships, Roberts (2010) also believed that they pave the way for children to develop healthily. This idea is highlighted by Benson et al (2009), who state that one of the virtually important contri merelyors to healthy development is children developing close emotional relationships with a responsive and nurturing caregiver. Nowhere in this literature is it stated that gender affects the ability to care for a child.Barriers to men running(a) in the early years sectorThe literature suggests that main barrier to men working in the early years sector is the fact that there is such a low rate of even off and that childcare practitioners train of qualifications are not represented in their rate of pay as cited by RTE News online (18/2/2015), The association of childhood professionals said that over 25,000 people are working in the early years sector where the typical income is less than 11 an hour. Marian Quinn the associations chairperson stated that the occurrence is unsustainable because young people are choosing better paying careers instead of the early years. Furthermore the Irish Examiner (3/1/2015) argued that Representative bodies have been flood with accounts of workers, qualified to degree aim and with many years of experience, earning just 18,000 per annum. For a male who is the bread winner of a family this would not be sustainable Research by the Daycare Trust (2003) stated that nearly half of over 2000 adults that were interviewed said that better wages would encourage more males to work in the early years sector. Not surprisingly (Drudy, Martin, Woods et al., 2005,) found that In an Irish study of school- set outrs and student teachers low pay was inclined as a capital reason for fewer males in primary teaching.Another prominent barrier to the lack of males working in the early years sector is the it is a female dominated sector and the view that it is womens work, it is easy to understand that being in a minority may be an uncomfortable experience, and data suggests that this could be one of the light upon issues discouraging men from working in the early years sector. Historically, early childhood education has been seen a s synonymous with caring for and nurturing young children and, consequently, continues to be widely regarded as womens work (Murray, 1996, p.368). Furthermore Daycare Trust (1999) posits that Childcare staffs are overwhelmingly women and are strikingly badly paid compared with other caring professionals despite the commitment and professionalism which exists within the industry. Staffs have hapless conditions of work and do long hours with little access to training or support. Morale can be low and the best often leave for better prospects elsewhere. Interestingly Cameron (2001) acknowledges and asserts that if early childhood work was re-examined, with higher professional status and a higher rate of pay, it could be expected that there would be more male employees, fewer men in the token, quarantined situation, and possibly less reason to move on quickly (p.444). some Childcare positions are part-time and this also causes a barrier to males desire employment in the early years sector. At the uniform time, the availability of part-time employment in the sector suits many women in the sector, a number of who work in childcare while their children are young. This penury has been found to be particularly strong among childminders, who work on a self- use basis (see Mooney et al, 2001ab). The high proportion of part-time jobs in the sector is thought to deter men and that they are more believably to seek full-time employment. According to Cameron, (2004). it is also pellucid that the men that do work in the early years sector are more likely to be found holding positions with former(a) children in positions such as after school care rather than working with babies and younger children, This has been explained with reference to mens preference for working with older children and choosing roles in education more so than caring roles.What needs to be do to increase the numbers of men working in the early years sector?As cited by Fine-Davis, et al (2005) hig hlights that there has been extensive backing for men to consider childcare as a career this was made clear by the European Commission (1992) which called on Member States to encourage and support increased participation by men in the care and upbringing of children. This theme was again encouraged in the White Paper on European Social Policy, A carriage Forward for the Union (European Commission, 1994), and by the European Commission Network on Childcare (1990). It was found that despite the unquestionable support for increasing the number of men working in the childcare sector, the recruitment of men into the childcare field has not gained momentum. It has been suggested that particular attention should be focused on recruiting men into this area of childcare just as discussed earlier the barriers such as rate of pay, the lack of professional status associated with the profession and the electric current lack of males currently employed within the sector are barriers that need to be overcome before the possibility of men entering the early years workforce. Cameron, (1997) states thatIt would appear from the example of Danish childcare centres that where the work has been re-evaluated as valuable, and as appropriate for a mixed-gender workforce, the perception of mothering and childcare equals low range work no longer holds as a principal motivation for employment in childcare work (1997a 64-65).Fine-Davis, et al (2005), also suggests that it is evident that males will not be attracted to the field unless the salaries increase. At present Irish parents are paying some of the highest childcare fees in Europe, this isnt because Ireland has the most costly childcare in Europe, but because the Irish government invests such a small percentage of GDP. Research also found that many early years employers acknowledge that the barriers to recruiting men into the early years sector are significant but they do not see that it is their responsibleness to encourage me n into the early years sector, but that state lies with the Government, that the government needs to encourage this through advertising or through services such as careers education and guidance (see Rolfe et al., 2003). As cited by RTE News online (2015) Professor Noirin Hayes stated that the current investment in childcare of 0.1% of GDP compared to our European counterparts investment of 0.7% is not appropriate, addingchildcare was not a business but a social service and that needs to be recognised. Furthermore to this as cited by the Irish time (2015) Chief executive of Early Childhood Ireland,Teresa Heeney, said crche workers that are qualified to degree level 7 or level 8 with many years of valuable experience are being paid as little as 18,000 per year. Furthermore the Irish times also cited Marian Quinn (Chairperson of the Association of Childhood Professionals) she said,We are losing many qualified, and skilled undergo and knowledgeable people who can at afford to remain in the profession of childcare. Things need to change on a government level for it to have any impact on the barriers to men working in the childcare sector.Equal opportunity needs to be a bipartisan process, as women move into male dominated areas and are encouraged to propose to management positions, men should be encouraged into childcare and education, so that male participation becomes the norm rather than the exception. (Thurtle et al, 1998 632)Parents views of a more gender balanced early years sectorThe literature suggests that parents recognise the benefits of a more gender balanced early years work force as cited by Cameron et al, (1999) some parents believed men and women had different skills in childcare, with men more able to engage in physical and sportswoman activities, and women seen as more skilled in caring, nurturing and planning. But unfortunately the scar of it being womens work and the pre-conceptions that it is not a role suitable to males still prevails. Even though parents and the general public mostly support the employment of more males in the early years sector, mainly on the grounds that males provide positive role models, there is also an fraction of concern identify through research from parents, college lecturers and the general public about the possible abuse from male practitioners (Thurtle and Jennings, 1998 Cameron et al., 1999). Penn and McQuail,1997concour with this stating that the topic of versed abuse is doubtless a most important issue discouraging men from pursuit employment in the early years sector. Male practitioners working with young children have reported being probed on their motives, and mistrusted of having perverse sexual intentions but there is no research out there that support any of these concerns and furthermore research by the Daycare Trust (2003) found that, although 77 per cent of participants, who included parents of children attending early years services, were in favour of more males wor king in the sector, 57 per cent said that one of the key barriers to mens employment was the risk of paedophiles working with children and 56 per cent agreed that people could be suspicious of a man working in childcare Owen, 2003 argues that this is somewhat unexpected given that cases of sexual abuse in early years sector are exceptionally rare, and that they do not all involve men.ConclusionIn utmost this literature review on men working in the early years sector it is evident through the literature that there are strong beliefs in the benefits of a more gender balanced early years workforce for the children and the workforce of the sector. Majority of the literature on the topic of men working in the early years sector seemed to focus on the range of perceived benefits, with particular focus on the benefits to children that attend early years services, but there was also a small focus on the benefits to the workforce and for the men that work in the sector. As cited by Scott an d colleagues, research in the area of employment in the early years sector has focused more on the role of the sector in enabling women to participate in paid employment (Scott et al, 2000). The literature on the barriers to men working in the early years sector was also examined here we found how pay and the lack of professional status were the main barriers to men working in the early years sector. Following this we explored the strategies that were researched on ways to encourage men to see the early years sector as a viable career prospect it was discussed that more would have to be done on a government level for any changes to be prompted. eventually the area of the views of parents was explored in this section it came to light that parents did see the benefits to a more gender balanced early years workforce but that some parents still had concerns when it came to the safety of their children.It also became very clear throughout the process of this literature review that becau se of the small percentage of men employed in the early years and the fact that there are very few examples of a mixed-gender workforce, these have not been examined empirically. The research worker was unable to rise studies which explored the benefits of a mixed gender workforce through empirical research. Rather, the benefits identified are largely indicative and based on anecdotal evidence. The researcher also noted a lack of research or studies carried out on this area in Ireland. Thus forming an important research order of business for the future, it suggests a need for focused research on mixed gender workforces in childcare, to more accurately identify the benefits to children, parents and the workforce in Ireland.