Monday, June 7, 2010

Boys and girls: Callings

A few years ago, the church set up policies to protect children from sexual predators. (A good goal, certainly.) Among these, rules were set up for teaching primary classes that required that a primary class be taught by one woman, two men, or a married couple (i.e., a man and a woman). This makes it rather less efficient to have a man called to teach a primary class, since if a man is called to teach a primary class two people have to be called to teach it, not just one.* This means that, in most wards, women are more likely to be called to teach primary than men are.***

I tend to think that the heavy preponderance of women teaching primary classes simply serves to give support to the stereotype that women are the ones who should be involved with children, and that men should feel free to be the aloof father of Bambi type—in my own opinion, not very healthy.

* The policy puzzles me, incidentally. I mean, yeah, the popular stereotype of a sexual predator is certainly male, but there are a lot of female sexual predators out there. So why are women allowed to teach primary alone?**

** And yes, i know that the policy does provide some situations in which a man can teach a primary class alone. That’s certainly not the default, though.

*** This was probably already the case, but the current policy, i think, makes it even more so.


Heather the Mama Duk said...

Jamie teaches primary alone. He is in a classroom with a window. As long as there is a window a man can teach alone. Cameron's teacher is often teaching alone and is a man. He and his wife are the teachers, but she has a job where she must work on Sundays very often (something in nursing). There's a door on his classroom's window, too. Ani's class hasn't actually had a teacher for over 6 months and they've had men sub alone. Again, though, the doors in our ward have all been replaced with the window kind so we don't have to worry about the "two men or married couple" thing.

It does puzzle me, though, that we assume that it will only be men who would molest children. Hasn't anyone been watching the new for the last several years? A heck of a lot of women have gone to jail for "relationships" with boys. It's not a male-only thing. It would make more sense to just replace all the classroom doors with the windowed kind and then the primary calling policy wouldn't apply.

Heather the Mama Duk said...

Can I get a "Woohoo?" After "only" 7 months of promising he'll be released from teaching, Jamie is finally getting a replacement. They told him when he accepted the calling/assignment as the Wolf leader he wouldn't have to teach on Sundays anymore. That was in December.