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To-day at the Y an elementary primary school teacher for the Thames Valley School Board vented his concern for the boys in the system. Grant is one of just three male teachers out of 37 teachers on the staff. He is the only male who teaches in the primary grades and he is proud that he is a positive role model to his kids many of whom who do not have a father figure in the home. Divorce has played havoc with the family with absentee fathers many of whom have lost custody to their wives and the boys do not have a man- in- the house to relate to.

I have teen aged male students who I have counseled that have told me that the only male in their elementary school was the custodian who had little or no interaction with the students.

Check out the administration at the Thames Valley School board and for the most part the Director, Superintendents/ Area Superintendents/Principals. Vice Principals are for the most part are females.

If you take the time to check out our Dorchester schools you will discover that Northdale Public School from grade 4- 6 has 13 female vs 4 male teachers on the staff. River Heights JK to 3 has a very brave male principal, Kerby Waud who has 20 females on his staff along with a male music teacher and a male custodian.

Lord Dorchester Secondary School has both a female principal and vice principal with the staff split pretty even for both men and women teachers.

Females may be great teachers but it is hard for them to understand that boys and girls are different in their attitude to learning. For the most part boys are wired to move and be active while the girls are happy to sit quietly in class for hours and read and emulate their female teachers.

Recently one of our mothers in Dorchester called me to ask for my opinion re her sonís bad behaviour. She had a call from her sonís first grade teacher who complaigned that her son had stolen a couple of cookies from the top of her desk. Solution recomended was to have junior referred to the family doctor to inquire re the suitability of medication (Ritalin) to solve the problems of her son being too busy and hungry in class

If you check out the stats on medicating students with prescription drugs such as Ritalin the boys in my experience too often young boys end up being medicated

The stats at Elborne and Althouse College of Education are not promising: females for the most par make up the teachers of the future with very few males applying or making the cut to attend the two year teacherís college education programs.

The majority of students at Western are female with many of our males reaching out to Fanshawe for a practical/hands on education experiences. Medicine/Dentistry and Law. Business are no longer the sole domain of males: the females are doing very well. Nursing is still the preferred route for females with a minority of males opting to enrol.

For the most part the majority of teachers in the past the elementary panel have been females with the exception being grade seven and eight where males were preferred to teach the older students. High school teachers in the past where males who taught Math and Sciences, Guidance, History not Herstory Shops while females taught English, Moderns, Family Studies but that has all changed now. Males no longer are in the majority in many of our high schools.

The pendulum has swung too far in favour of our girls who for the most part do very well in school while boys are looking in vain for their place in the school system.

The school board have to recognize that they have duty to recruit more males into recognizing that they are important/needed in the teaching profession.

The present stats are not in the best interest of our young men/society and we needs a proactive approach to actively recruit them into teaching. A long time ago we were all worried about our girls being discriminated against in the hiring process. But, now our boys need positive role male model teachers for them to emulate.

Len Lesser is a education-career counselor in Dorchester Ont

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com