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Female Teachers Dominate

The ABS has just released its annual study of Australian School demographics. Of the 238,639 teaching staff (adjusted to full-time equivalent) 68% are female. This is up from 60% in 1986. Whilst statistics further back are hard to come by, in the 1950’s and 1960’s females were generally required to resign on marriage or childbirth in professions like teaching so any female teachers were mainly provided by the convent nuns and spinsters.

Political point scoring on education trends is a common pastime. There are many chickens and eggs – wages have fallen too low so quality has dropped, teaching unions have discourage conscientious teachers, government funding for private schools has sapped public schools resources, social trends mean teachers are social workers and child carers rather than educators –maybe all of this is true but more a symptom of the modern paranoia for choice and freedom than a devious socialist plot. Maybe for the moment with high female participation in employment, the bias to female teachers is a bit of a mothering replacement to the time poor stressed out working mother families.

Posted Tuesday, 27 February 2007


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