A recurring theme on this blog has been the lack of minority teachers in classrooms, a particular concern given the research showing that having a teacher of the same race as students can help improve school performance.
According to this piece from KPBS in San Diego, alternative certification programs might be the key to boosting the numbers of minority teachers. These programs let aspiring teachers work in the classroom while earning certification and often draw people coming from other professional careers.
During the 2010-2011 school year, KPBS notes, about one-quarter of students in alternative certification programs were Latino and 9 percent were African American, compared to 17 percent and 4 percent in traditional programs.
The California Teacher Corps, an association of alternative certification programs, says its members make an active effort to recruit through different communities, which helps increase the number of Latino and African-Americans seeking teaching credentials. It also helps bring in teachers from the same communities as their students.
Are alternative certification programs in your area having the same success recruiting Latino and African-American teachers? It’s worth taking a look.