Why are there so few women in ed tech? #28daysofwriting

I am elementary school teacher. One the things you quickly notice as you wander around an elementary school is that the vast majority of the teaching staff are women.

I am also an edu tech geek. One of the things you quickly notice when you go to educational technology events is that the majority of speakers and a huge chunk of the attendees are men.

The same goes for twitter and blogs.  The vast majority of the teaching workforce is women. Yet when it comes to being connected, there is a disconnect between the gender of the gender of the practitioners and the online network that supports it.

But it’s not just an online problem.

So many of the books about education are authored by men that we need lists like this to remind us of the women leaders in our field. My experience of the Apple Distinguished Educator and Google Certified Teacher communities is that they tend to have large numbers of men in comparison to the teaching workforce. And I am sure I am not the only ed tech person who can go to tech conference after tech conference and not see a single woman keynote.

For many people this is no big deal.

After all, the men  hired are highly competent. They speak up at conferences, share their ideas online and put themselves out there for opportunities. It’s logical that this situation spills over into our schools where so often the digital/tech positions are often held by men.

Then I read this update.

It’s sad that when it comes to technology, the schools of today are sending our kids signals about the nature of work. And when it comes to technology I’m not sure it is a message we actually want to be sending out.

You can’t be what you can’t see.

Am I wrong here? To be sure I know many awesome women in ed tech including the wonderful @msemilymaclean. But I know so many more men. Where are all the women tech teachers? Why is ed tech so male dominated?

I wish I had the answers.

But instead I get my teaspoon out.

I share when there’s an opportunity to do so. I quietly encourage awesome women educators I know to put themselves forward for opportunities like Apple Distinguished Educator and give what help I can during the process.

Perhaps if everyone – conference organisers, teachers, principals, ed tech directors – got out their teaspoon, things might just go zoop in the other direction.

5 thoughts on “Why are there so few women in ed tech? #28daysofwriting

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  1. I had not heard the teaspoon analogy before and I thank you for introducing me to it! As to the question of the lack of women in IT roles I am unsure, but I agree there is a disparity in gender.
    I guess that I am lucky. Working in Central Otago my local ICT inspirations bar one were, and still are, all female with the awesomeness of Karla, Claire and Anne (@K4Sanders @MsBeenz and @annekenn). It is these three ladies who began me on the connected journey that I am still on.


    1. New Zealand it is less pronounced due to the fact that tech is usually the responsibility of a current teacher. Looking around at full time tech coaches things get a bit different.


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