Everyone who is even remotely interested in public education, and especially those who are passionate about the inequities and continuing effects of racism in education, should read this thought-provoking piece by Jose Vilson, “Where Have All the Teachers of Color Gone? (With Answers)”
Not only does he get the historical context and trajectory correct, but Jose also makes a compelling argument for what is really behind the decrease in teachers of color at a time when students of color have become the majority across the nation. Here’s a slice:
….teachers of color are either dismissed or leave. They’re dismissed largely because their schools are more likely to get shut down due to the major reasons we see out there: standardized test scores, restructuring plans, and lack of parental voice and real choice. They leave due to the lack of autonomy in teaching in ways that would more readily impact students of color.
I encourage you to read the blog in its entirety and think hard about the questions (and answers) Jose poses, along with these:
- What does the teaching force look like where you work, especially in relation to your student or community demographics?
- Have a disproportionate number of teachers of color disappeared from your district?
- Could students in your school or district go through all or most of their PK12 education without being taught by a diversity of teachers? Is that okay?