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Out of Sight But Not Out of Mind: The Harmful Absence of Men

by Bruce Cunningham and Bernie Dorsey
March/April 2004
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/out-of-site-but-not-out-of-mind-the-harmful-absence-of-men/5015642/

Over the years we have spoken on the topic of male involvement at many conferences, workshops, and staff meetings. We are often asked a variety of questions on how to involve fathers and other men in the lives of children. Recently, we were asked a particularly intriguing question by the director of a child care center.

In this situation, a single father enrolled his child in the director's child care center. When the father was asked about the child's mother he replied that the mother was "not in the picture." This alone is not so unusual because approximately 20% of single parents are fathers according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics. What was unusual was the staffing at the child care center. The classroom into which the child entered had a man as the teacher and another man as the teacher assistant.

The director describing this situation felt the quality of care in the classroom was very good and did not doubt that the child would be well cared for. Yet the questions asked of us were, "Doesn't this child need to be around women? Won't the child be deprived if raised only around men? Won't the child only ...

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