Follow us:

Education Lab Blog

Education Lab is a yearlong project to spark meaningful conversations about education solutions in the Pacific Northwest.

May 6, 2014 at 9:45 AM

Is teacher diversity a problem in Washington?

New studies from the Center for American Progress and the National Education Association give credence to what many education officials already know anecdotally: American teachers are nowhere as diverse as their students.

Across the U.S., half of public-school students are nonwhite, but fewer than 1 in 5 teachers are people of color. In Washington state, 63 percent of students are white, compared with 87 percent of teachers.

Our state’s so-called “diversity gap” was the subject of a 2012 Seattle Times story that explored the link between teacher diversity and minority-student achievement:

Research is increasingly indicating a link between teacher diversity and minority-student achievement.

Yet despite that growing body of evidence around a long-known problem, local public-school districts still can’t seem to recruit and retain teachers of color in any significant way. …

Officials say they’re limited by state budget cuts, laws against affirmative action and, most of all, a lack of candidates.

Advocates acknowledge there are few easy or cheap solutions, but argue that districts are not taking the problem seriously enough.

What do you think? Is teacher diversity a problem in Washington? If so, what’s the best way to address it? Share your thoughts in the comments.

[do action=”custom_iframe” url=”//e.infogr.am/infographic-17474″ width=”600″ height=”650″ scrolling=””/]

Comments | More in News, Your voices | Topics: diversity, teaching

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►