Category Archives: Diversity Resources

Teachers of Color Lacking In Most Connecticut Schools

Although students of color account for almost half of the enrollment in Connecticut’s public schools, only about nine percent of educators are persons of color.

Most of the teachers of color are concentrated in the major cities of Hartford New Haven, New Britain and Bridgeport. Some smaller cities and towns, such as New London Bloomfield, also have sizable numbers of teachers of color.

Overall, 46 percent of students in the state’s public schools are persons of color while only about nine percent of educators — including administrators and teachers — are persons of color.

Following are the percentages of educators who are persons of color and students of color in selected cities and towns.

School District              % of Minority                        % of Minority
Students                               Educators

Avon                                     33                                           3
Berlin                                   19                                            1
Bloomfield                          90                                          25
Bridgeport                          87                                          26
Danbury                              66                                          12
East Granby                        23                                            4
East Hartford                      85                                          12
East Windsor                      40                                           12
Enfield                                  29                                           3
Farmington                         38                                           5
Glastonbury                       28                                            4
Granby                                14                                            4
Greenwich                          38                                           10
Hartford                             90                                            25
Manchester                       64                                            10
Meriden                             70                                              8
Middletown                       52                                              9
New Britain                       80                                            18
New Haven                       87                                             26
New London                     81                                             19
Newington                        40                                               4
Redding                             16                                               3
Rock Hill                             44                                              3
Simsbury                           24                                              2
South Windsor                 39                                              5
Stamford                          70                                             16
Vernon                              42                                               5
Waterbury                        82                                             13
West Hartford                 43                                               8
Westport                          18                                               5
Windsor                           74                                             17
Windsor Locks               39                                                6

Connecticut Takes Steps To Increase Teacher Diversity

Connecticut’s state board of education has taken a number of steps to increase the number of teachers of color in the state’s public schools.

According to reporting by Jacqueline Rabe Thomas of the Connecticut Mirror, the board adopted a number of initiatives in recent years.

One program OK’d by the board will allow college graduates without a teaching degree to gain teaching certification. Teach for America will run this program, which is expected to enroll about 20 bilingual individuals each year. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree and with at least a 3.0 grade point average.

In another initiative, the board late in 2018 voted to allow Relay, an alternative program, to continue to operate following completion of a pilot program. Some 91 people completed the pilot program last year, of which 8 percent were white. Relay enables paraprofessionals and others without a teaching degree to pursue a program leading to teaching certification.

 

Latino Students Increasing Faster Than Minority Teachers

Increasing numbers of teachers of color have not kept pace with the influx of Latino students entering Connecticut’s public schools.

This is the conclusion of an investigation by Jacqueline Rabe Thomas of the Connecticut Mirror, an online newsletter that can be found at ctmirror.org

While increases in Latino teachers haven’t kept pace with the number of Latino students, the number of black educators has remained steady although the number of black students has declined.

There are only two minority teachers for every 100 students of color in the public schools of Connecticut. The picture for whit teachers and students is quite different. Last year there were about 17 white teachers for every 100 white students. This is up from a ratio of 12 white teachers for every 100 white students in 2005-06.

Overall, students of color comprise almost half of the students in public schools in Connecticut.

Last year 23 school districts didn’t have a single minority educator on staff, state data show. Among traditional school districts, Bloomfield, Bridgeport, Hartford, and New Haven have the highest rates of minority teachers, with about one-in-four educators being a minority. Some charter schools have higher ratios.

“Many students of color in Connecticut will spend 13 years in school only learning from white teachers” Camara Stokes Hudson, an associate policy fellow at the left-leaning think tank Connecticut Voices for Children, told the state legislature’s education committee earlier this year. “These students will miss out on the academic and social benefits from learning from a teacher who shares their cultures, family contexts, and whom can serve as unique role models.”

She testified that, “Minority teachers have the benefit of raising aspirations for students who look like them.”

Many school districts have been trying to increase the diversity of their educational staffs. But doing so has proved difficult.

One factor is the lack of diversity in the teacher-preparation programs at the state’s colleges and universities.

Of the nearly 2,500 students enrolled in teacher-preparation programs in Connecticut during the 2016-17 school year, 82 percent were white, 4 percent were black, and 8 percent were Hispanic, according to data from the state education department.