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4 Comments Already

Beckee Said,
February 24th, 2011 @9:10 am  

Well, the significance of having another body in special education–regardless of gender–cannot be overlooked. It’s an understaffed field, and the Highly Qualified requirements of No Child Left Behind locks that demand into place.

These days, many special educators team teach with general educators in the classroom. I team taught with a male ESL teacher, and it was a fabulous opportunity for the students to see two people of opposite gender–who would never be romantically involved–be friends and treat each other with respect.

Having taught in some high need schools, I can tell you that a lot of kids are seriously craving attention from a male parental figure. If you gave them all the attention they wanted, they’d never get any work done. But they seem much more willing to please a male teacher. The female teachers, they tune out after awhile, the same as they do their moms back home!

A much higher proportion of special education students are involved in foster care or otherwise have unstable home lives. Having a stable male influence at school who recognizes their accomplishments is huge in the lives of some of these students. Also a much higher proportion of special education students is male–to the extent that you have to wonder about gender discrimination in evaluation and eligibility.

Mr J Said,
February 24th, 2011 @9:59 am  

Depends on the conditions. For more severe students, a man could be more helpful in moving ambulatory students and also be more stronger for aggressive students (don’t mean to sound sexist but it’s true).

Also, in my time in public schools, I have notice kids in general kinda like having a male around as it sort of balances things out a little with so many female teachers around. Plus a lot more kids are coming from single parent households so a male influence can be a newer experience to them

PuttPutt Said,
February 24th, 2011 @10:51 am  

You need both male and female teachers in special education. As a female special ed teacher, I can see the difference in teaching styles between my male and female cohorts. For many of my students, their special ed teachers provide the parental guidance they are not getting, for one reason or another, at home. Many do not have a father figure in the home and the male special ed teacher often takes the role of surrogate father. By modeling how an adult male should act, the male special ed teacher provides a valuable lesson in how to deal with others.

By the way, Mr. J, I work with those hard-to-handle students and I don’t think what sex you are has anything to do with it, it is how you handle yourself and a situation that counts.

TraceeS Said,
February 24th, 2011 @11:17 am  

I have recently worked in a class where there are 24 boys and 4 girls.

The impact of having a male member of staff has been phenomenal. The boys are generally striving to impress other males. The work load has increased. The results are improving and the atmosphere in the class is very calm.

Of course both male and female members of staff can have good effects but I have found in general boys respond very well to a male in the class.

I think in an SEN environment a male role model is fabulous. Quite often I have found children with SEN difficulties also have alongside with this some behaviour difficulties. I think the male role model can be helpful in some situations. Males often respond to a low male voice. Some children look at the male as a role model and father figure.

I think because males and females typically have different ways of thinking and behaving this has an inpact on our children. A man can often think of a different strategy or style of teaching to use and can particuarly be a valuable member of a SEN team.

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