More teaching jobs
in the early years sector should be taken up by men, it has been stated.
There is currently a shortage of males in childcare work, with recent figures indicating that parents would like to see more of them caring for their young children.
A survey conducted by the Children's Workforce Development Council in January showed that 55 per cent of parents want a male childcare worker for their nursery-aged children.
And speaking at a special dinner at the University of Worcester to celebrate the training of 82 early years professionals at the West Midlands, James Cross echoed this sentiment.
Mr Cross, who has just qualified as an early years professional, noted that despite never being advertised to men, this career "should be" made to appeal to them.
"It is a very rewarding career. Many people think it's just for young girls who don't know what they want to do, but they don't realise the qualifications you need and the career potential," he stated.
Early childhood researcher Dr Tim Waller, who helped to establish Wales' Men in Childcare Network, was a guest speaker at the event.