One in four primary schools in England are without a male teacher, figures have revealed.
But one Birmingham school is bucking the trend, with a trio of male teachers working in the classroom.
There were just 26,208 men working as teachers in primary schools as of March 31 this year, compared with 185,023 women, statistics from the General Teaching Council (GTC) show.
And despite growing numbers of men applying to join the profession, 4,000 schools are without single male teacher at all.
St Peter’s C of E primary school in Harborne boasts three male teachers in David Burton, Daniel Martin and Peter Jarrett.
Head teacher Evelyn Murphy said she felt “incredibly lucky” to count David, Daniel and Peter among her members of staff.
She said: “This is the first primary school that I have worked in where I have been so fortunate to have male teachers as part of my staff. At other schools, it has always been that we would relish the opportunity to have a male member of staff. However, whenever appointments were being advertised it was very rare that we would have male candidates, which is a very different story at secondary schools.”
A quarter of teachers qualifying in England this year were men, up 2.4 per cent since 2008, according to the GTC.
Only one in eight teachers working in primary schools are male, compared to state secondary schools in England, where just six are without a male teacher.
Education Secretary Michael Gove earlier this month called for more male authority figures in primary schools who could display “both strength and sensitivity”.
Daniel, who has taught at St Peter’s for two years, said: “There does seem to be a misconception that all you do in primary schools is babysit. I think it’s always good to have that extra discipline in the classroom. I’m not saying that a female teacher can’t do that, but perhaps for the male pupils, having that male presence is something that they need.”
Year 6 teacher David said he still found his job rewarding after 22 years at the school.
He said: “From my point of view the primary curriculum and environment has allowed me to develop my interests in things like ICT, even though I came from an arts background.
“I love the creativity of it. We can sit down with a year group, and as long as we are covering skills and knowledge that we need to cover, we have fantastic freedom to be creative in what we do.”