There have always been fathers involved in school PTAs, in fund raising and education governance and politics. But as Kyle Spencer reported in The New York Times last week, these days there are not just more Dads involved in city school PTAs. The Dads are also putting their own stamp on the schools.
A 2009 study by the National Congress of Parents and Teachers and the National Center for Fathering, a nonprofit educational organization, found that 590 of 1,000 fathers surveyed nationwide said they attended school parent meetings. That is up from 470 out of 1,000 a decade earlier.
And in many of the top-rated public schools across New York City, where parent groups have become ever-more-efficient fund-raising machines in the face of mounting budget cuts, fathers with financial expertise and a zest for leadership are not just going to those meetings, but running them.
The shift reflects a number of underlying social trends: more women with demanding jobs, more men underemployed in a lingering recession, more shared parenting responsibilities over all and the professionalization of the PTA itself.
The article looks at fathers' involvement at Public School 11 William T. Harris in Chelsea; P.S. 110 Florence Nightingale on the Lower East Side; P.S. 75 Emily Dickinson on West End Avenue; P.S. 3 Charrette School in the West Village; P.S. 295 in Sunset Park, Brooklyn; P.S. 261 Philip Livingston in Boerum Hill, Brooklyn; and in the Staten Island schools.
Read more here.