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Abstract—Several studies have highlighted how the teaching profession has been dominated by women and how few men are entering the field. The lack of male educators, especially at the elementary school level, exacerbates this problem. This lack of male teachers for young children is a worldwide issue. The gender gap is equally glaring in South Africa, including in the rural areas, where women comprise much more of the teachers than men in early childhood education (ECE). It aims to explore the experiences  of male early childhood teachers in primary schools and strategies  to increase  their  recruitment—five primary schools in Thabo-Mofutsanyane District, Free State, South Africa. A qualitative  approach  using  interpretivism  with  semi-structured interviews and narratives was used to collect data. Five male teachers in ECE participated in the study. Thematic analysis was used. There are few ECE male teachers in rural schools, so this statement calls for strategies to increase recruitment. Through teacher education programmes, male teachers in ECE can conduct public awareness to actively recruit males or men for professions working with  young  children. Recruiting  significant numbers of men, especially in large teacher education programmes, can contribute  to the  greater  acceptability of men as male teachers in ECE. Teacher education institutions  can  become proactive by instituting a programme to recruit and retain male learners. This paper contributes to the importance of promoting gender diversity and gender balance in the early childhood education field.

Keywords: Male early childhood teachers, Narrative approaches, Primary schools, Rural schools 

Mofokeng, M. (2024). Experiences of male early childhood teachers in primary schools and strategies to increase their recruitment. International Journal of Studies in Psychology, 4(1 ), 29-35. https://doi.org/10.38140/ijspsy.v4i1.1064