Forget the low pay and long hours. Nineties women are queuing up to catch a male teacher, viewing them as potential husbands and great fathers, according to a leading dating agency.
Of 15,000 selections made by women on the books of Drawing Down the Moon, male teachers were rated as among the top 10 most popular choices - along with architects, surgeons and designers.
"It's their rarity value," said Alison Johnson, the agency's spokeswoman. "Male teachers, particularly in primary schools, are seen as great husband material. By doing the job, they've already proved they are good with kids and would make great dads. What's more, they're around during the school holidays - a massive bonus for working women."
The agency says male teachers are seen as well-balanced professionals.
Drama and English teachers rate higher than their science and maths counterpoints. And - fickle creatures that women are - personality alone is not enough. Men who regularly visit the gym, or at least manage to look like they do, always come out tops.
Alison Johnson said: "Maybe it's a perfect fantasy thing. There's a single male teacher at my little boy's school. He's the only man there, is a musician and is just gorgeous. You should see all the mums, from 20 to 40-year-olds, flocking round him. We're like bees round a honeypot."
But the profession doesn't have the same appeal for men. Last year, The TES revealed that female teachers were flocking to dating agencies. While primary teachers emerged as a good catch, their secondary colleagues were unpopular because many men saw them as stern Miss Jean Brodies. They preferred journalists or actressy types.