Do you remember that very creative Volkswagon campaign “Driver’s Wanted.” Sometimes I wonder if journalism needs to do a “Boys Wanted” campaign.
At my school, especially in the Yearbook class, boys just don’t sign up. I have nearly 40 kids signed up for yearbook next year, but only about 4 are boys. That is distressing. If you go to a newspaper office, the ratio is probably 2 to 1 males to female. But in high school journalism it is 1 to 10 or worse.
My video classes are more balanced, with nearly equal male to female student ratios.
Why don’t guys sign up for Yearbook? Is it because they have to write? Is it because yearbook is considered too much a girl’s thing?
As a male journalism teacher, I’m often outnumbered more than 10 to 1 at workshops and conventions. This is great when it is time to go to the bathroom, but not when we discuss gender roles in our publications and how to recruit more boys.
This was not the case when I went to a recent round table discussion for video teachers. The guys were in the lead about 3 to 2.
So, what makes guys sign up for a video journalism class, but not for a writing journalism class or even a photography class?
I’m very interested in boys demographics and how girls are kicking boys butts in academics, especially at the college level. Check out the Boys Project and Guysread.com – and please leave a comment if you have any ideas on why boys don’t sign up for yearbook or how to make it more appealing to them.