Minority Teachers Quitting: Big Government Death Grip to Blame
By Nick SanchezSeptember 18, 2015
Minority teachers are quitting in droves across nine major cities, and education experts are asking why.
In a new report, "The State of Teacher Diversity in American Education," the Albert Shanker Institute found that in Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Cleveland, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., the number of black teachers fell significantly from 2002 to 2012.
"There is this huge heralded success in the growth of recruitment rates for minority teachers but they've been undermined by these high quit rates," Richard Ingersoll, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and contributor to the report, told NBC News. "My own conclusion is that we will not really close that gap until we go beyond recruitment and look at retention."
The distribution of black and Hispanic teachers across low- and high-income schools is one of the chief factors contributing to the attrition rate.
"Minority teachers are disproportionately employed in predominantly urban, predominantly poor, and predominantly high minority schools," Ingersoll said. "But such schools are not as attractive workplaces . . . and because minority teachers are the ones teaching at these schools, they have higher quit rates."
In Washington D.C., the number of white teachers more than doubled from 16 to 39 percent, and the number of black teachers decreased from 77 to 49 percent.
Ingersoll suggested that big, top-down government "turnaround" programs often imposed on failing schools often disempowers teachers, which in turn drives up their quit rates.
"With accountability, often you have a standardized curriculum that's scripted and sometimes micromanaged," he said, The Washington Post reported. "There are certainly some positives, but the downside is it drives teachers nuts..... What I always suggest is that we hold people accountable for results but then get out of their way. It's not the way we treat teachers in these large urban districts."
Click Here to Read the Full Report on The State of Teacher Diversity in Education by the Albert Shanker Institute
When children in California walked into their classrooms at the start of the school year, odds are they saw a white person at the head of the room. And odds are, when they looked around at their classmates, they saw a lot of Latino, Asian and Black students.
Despite efforts to increase the diversity of the state's teaching ranks, minority teachers remain almost as underrepresented in public schools as they were 10 years ago, according to an assessment of California Department of Education data.
And a growing body of research suggests this can negatively impact minority students' success in a significant way.
While 54 percent of students in California public schools are Latino, only 19 percent of teachers are. The numbers are better for other minority students in the state, though they, too, remain underrepresented by teachers.
And though Los Angeles County has a much larger percentage of Latino, Asian and Black teachers than the state, the large population of minority students means they are still underrepresented.
Particular school districts in Los Angeles County, many of which have faced rapid shifts in demographics, have even stronger disparities. In Arcadia Unified, for example, only 15 percent of students are white, but 73 percent of teachers and 88 percent of administrators are.
"This isn't just a few percentage points' difference. These are huge gaps," said Ulrich Boser, author of a report by the Center for American Progress aimed at increasing the number of teachers of color in classrooms across the country.
Research shows that when minority students have a teacher of the same background, it fosters increased engagement, confidence, trust and comfort in the classroom. And they are also provided a valuable role model. The effects aren't just subjective.
Other well-cited research has produced similar results, including one study that showed when students were matched with teachers of their own race, academic achievement increased by 3-4 percentage points, according to the Center for American Progress report.
'Disrupting' Tech's Diversity Problem With A Code Camp For Girls Of Color
August 17, 2015
Silicon Valley is great at disrupting business norms - except when it comes to its own racial and gender diversity problem. In an open letter last week, the Rev. Jesse Jackson sounded the alarm yet again. He urged tech giants and startups to speed up the hiring of more African-Americans and Latinos - "to change the face of technology so that its leadership, workforce and business partnerships mirror the world in which we live."
One nonprofit group, Black Girls CODE, isn't waiting around for more diversity reports. The group is taking action with regular weekend coding seminars for girls of color. And this summer, it's held boot camps where young girls learn the basics of tech design and development.
"I wanna make games, stuff like that," says Natalia Cox, one of the girls at Black Girls CODE's camp. "Tech is gonna take over the world. I wanna be a part of that!" The 13-year-old from San Jose, Calif., says she hopes to work in the tech field one day.
"Organizations like this help bring more people into the pipeline just as much as a diversity board at a large corporation," says Keisha Michelle Richardson, who volunteered to mentor young girls at a camp session in San Francisco. Richardson is entrepreneur and senior software engineer at Westfield Labs.
In addition to brainstorming and prototyping app ideas, the campers take field trips to leading tech companies. "I like to point out to the girls, 'Look around, do you see people who look like you here?' " says Lake Raymond, the summer camp and after-school coordinator for Black Girls CODE.
Outside of management, software developers and hardware engineers are often among the highest-paid jobs in the industry. Estimates are that fewer than 13 percent of computer engineers in the Valley are female. Far fewer are African-American women, it's estimated, but few companies have released hard data breaking down the numbers by race and gender.
Looking for 3 Excellent Tutors for Chicago's Western Suburbs
The Black Star Project is looking for 3 excellent tutors for the Kimberly Lightford Saturday University (KLSU) Tutoring Program in Westchester, Illinois (near Maywood, Bellwood and Broadview). Saturday University focuses on reading, writing, and math for students in 5th through 8th grades. We also need one tutor to manage our technology lab. Ideal candidates will work every Saturday for 9 straight weeks beginning September 26, 2015. Candidates must have a four-year college degree or be currently at least a junior in college. Please call Gloria at 773.285.9600 to set up an interview or for additional information. Please bring resumes, ID's and social security cards. Tutors will work for three hours and 15 minutes per Saturday, between 9:45 am and 1:00 pm. Preference will be given to tutors with previous experience and who have a vehicle or live in the Western suburbs.
Racial disparities in college major selection exacerbate earnings gap
By Danielle Douglas-Gabrielle
September 16, 2015
African American and Hispanic students disproportionately earn more bachelors degrees in low-paying majors, putting them at higher risk for financial instability after graduation, according to a new study from Young Invincibles, an advocacy group.
The study identified the highest-paying and lowest-paying majors using data from the Education Department and PayScale. The highest-paying majors through mid-career were primarily in science, technology, engineering and math-related fields, while the lowest were in law enforcement, education and professional studies.
Researchers found African Americans are overrepresented in four of the six lowest-paying fields; the same is true for Hispanic students in three of the six majors at the bottom of the income ladder. Starting salaries in low-paid majors are approximately $35,000 a year and barely grow to $55,000 within 10 or 15 years into a career. By contrast, students with STEM degrees start out making at least $50,000 and can reasonably expect to make more than $75,000 by the middle of their careers.
On the bright side, African Americans are gaining ground in engineering, mathematics and science technologies majors. Still, they only obtain 5 percent of the degrees awarded in each of those lucrative fields. Hispanic students, meanwhile, are registering similar results, which experts say is a clear indication that policymakers and educators need to pay extra attention to both minority groups to close racial income gaps.
For at least the last decade, there has been a national focus on steering more students, especially minorities, into STEM majors that play a critical role in the global economy. The nation's 105 historically black schools have had remarkable success in producing graduates in engineering, science and mathematics, despite limited endowments and institutional resources.
Many of these students may be coming from high schools without Advanced Placement programs or quality math and science courses, environments that may not encourage them to pursue STEM degrees," Norfles said.
Although the true worth of a college degree is greater than its economic value, securing a well-paid job has become critical in the age of five-figure student debt. Nearly 80 percent of African Americans borrow to pay for college and take on debt loads that are 15 percent higher than the average student. That kind of financial burden could be difficult to overcome with a low salary.
Million Fathers Club to Continue A Year of Father and Male Engagement in the Lives of Children
Events and Programs for 2015 - 2016
August - September 2015 - Million Father March (Back-To-School Events)
October 2015 - The Million Fathers Club and Men Help Prepare Students for the World of Work, Co-operative Economics, Entrepreneurship and Business Development with the Student Motivation and Career Development Mentor Program (Organizing Guide Available)
October 2015 - Fathers and Men Join and Attend PTA, School Council and School Board Meetings regularly
November 2015 - Fathers and Men Volunteer at Schools as Janitors, Painters, Field Trip Chaperones, Hall Monitors, Sports Coaches or Mentors for at Least 10 Hours this Year
November 2015 - Fathers Pick Up Child's Grade Reports and Meet with Teachers
December 2015 - The Million Fathers Club Teaches Students the History and Culture of Their Ethnic Group either at Home, at School or at the Library
January 2015 - The Million Fathers Club and Men Lead Mentoring Activities in Schools for MLK Mentor Day for Boys and Young Men. Women Should Also be Invited to Mentor Girls and Young Women. (Organizing Guide Available)
February 2015 - The Million Fathers Clubs and Mothers Organize Daddy Daughter Dances for Valentine's Day (Organizing Guide Available)
February 2015 - Fathers Pick Up Child's Grade Reports and Meet with Teachers
March 2015 - The Million Fathers Club and Your School Organize Real Men Read Days for Fathers and their Younger Children in Schools (Organizing Guide Available)
April 2015 - The Million Fathers Club Invites Fathers and Men to help Prepare Older Students for College, with College Fairs, College Visits and College Workshop Sessions. (Organizing Guide Available)
May 2015 - The Million Fathers Club Supports Mothers for Mother Son Dances, near Mother's Day (Organizing Guide Available)
May - June 2016 - Fathers Take a Day Off of Work to Go to School on the Last Day to Personally and Individually Thank the Principal, Teachers, Lunchroom Staff, Janitorial Staff, and Security Staff for Helping their Children Learn this Year
June 2016 - The Million Fathers Club Plans an Event at a Church, Mosque or Synagogue with
Take A Child to Worship Day on Father's Day Event (Organizing Guide Available)
July 2016 - Fathers Plan A Million Fathers Club Event at a Baseball Game or the Zoo or a Museum. (Organizing Guide Available)
Click Here to Sign Up for the Million Fathers Club