Exploring the promotional advancements for practitioners in British primary school education : ‘Gendered micro-promotions’

Cousins, Thomas and Warin, Jo (2020) Exploring the promotional advancements for practitioners in British primary school education : ‘Gendered micro-promotions’. PhD thesis, Lancaster University.

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Men in gender-atypical professions reside in a minority in a field dominated by female practitioners. Within primary school education, one consistent element is the phenomenon that men appear to be on the receiving end of preferential treatment and a fast-tracked career into managerial positions. There are suggestions that rapid career movement is accessible to all males, resulting in positive outcomes for the individual. This thesis makes an original contribution by re-considering the realities of the subtle mechanisms which promote male primary school teachers. It examines the notion that all males are on the receiving end of advantages in gender-atypical professions (Williams, 1992 and 1995), specifically primary school education. Through qualitative individual interviews and mini focus groups, practitioners shared their experiences of positive discrimination and promotion in teaching. Findings reveal that practitioners are caught in a conflict between internal based pedagogical beliefs around collegiality and perceptions of sociocultural expectations around the importance of gender. This thesis argues that gender is still considered and used for the promotion of primary school teachers, albeit in a subtle implicit way through the use of small-scale jobs termed ‘gendered micro-promotions’. Furthermore, this thesis re-evaluates the fast-tracked metaphor of the ‘glass escalator’, in favour of a steadier progression in the form of a new metaphor, the ‘glass travelator’.

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30 Sep 2020 17:05
Last Modified:
22 Apr 2024 23:29