Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Fewer Black teachers in CPS?

There are a lot of changes going on at CPS. To start there will be a new CEO in Forrest Claypool and a new school board chairman in Frank Clark. Now another issue has arisen:
Just 15 years go, 40 percent teachers in CPS schools were black. Today, it’s 23 percent. Many black students are segregated into majority black schools—like National Teachers Academy in the South Loop, where [Taree Porter] teaches.
The face of Chicago Public Schools teachers is changing: the teaching workforce is whiter and less experienced. Meanwhile, most of the students in Chicago’s public schools are Hispanic and African American. Black enrollment has gone down, but black students still make up 39 percent of the district.
[Chicago Teachers Union researcher Pavlyn Jankov] said the number and percentage of schools where there are virtually no staff or no students who are African American has increased a lot too. In just the last decade the number of schools with fewer than a 10 percent black teaching staff jumped from 69 to 223. Schools with no black teachers soared from 10 to 50.

Of course, school policies aren’t the only thing going on. There also may be fewer black teachers because other professions have opened up to African Americans.
While Black enrollment is going down in CPS schools there are still schools with a significant population of Black students.

So why is the Latino caucus seemingly more interested in this subject?
Members of the Chicago City Council’s Latino Caucus are calling on the school district to hire more Latinos as teachers, principals, and administrators.

The push comes after WBEZ reported on the gap between the percentages of Latino teachers and Latino students. Data shows the percentage of Hispanic teachers is crawling upward, but not enough to keep pace with the rapidly growing Hispanic student population. Latino students now make up the largest ethnic group in Chicago Public Schools, at 46 percent.
Congrats to the opening up of new professions, but if the lack of Blacks in a classroom is problematic what can be done to encourage other Blacks to consider teaching?

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