VIEWS: 29 PAGES: 5 CATEGORY: Social Sciences POSTED ON: 7/14/2010
[...] in 2005, of the 939,000 two-credit occupational concentrators (high school graduates who earned two or more credits in areas such as agriculture and natural resources, business, health sciences, and computer/ information sciences), slightly less than 30 percent were black, Hispanic, Asian/Pacific Islander, and American Indian; more than 70 percent of the concentrators were white. [...] a large number of students in the United States lack the high-level math and science skills needed to prepare them for higher education and various CTE and STEM careers.
TEACHER RECRUITMENT AND RETENTIoN Increasing the Minorit CTE Teacher Pipe BY CYNTHIA SIMS A great deal of attention has er shadowing initiatives in South Carolina been given to the need for and grow-our-own programs in Minne- more minority teachers. sota. Although numerous other programs This issue deserves serious have been started to increase the minority consideration as the K-12 minority student teaching pool, few have focused specifi- population increases and the number cally on recruiting and retaining career of minority teachers does not. Minority and technical education (CTE) teachers. students are usually more successful in Several factors impact the likelihood classrooms when their teachers reflect that racial and ethnic minorities will enter their racial or ethnic groups, but minor- teaching careers in CTE. First, in 2005, ity teachers are beneficial to all students of the 939,000 two-credit occupational as their presence can help create an concentrators (high school graduates who awareness of and appreciation for diverse earned two or more credits in areas such populations. as agriculture and natural resources, The U.S. Department of Education has business, health sciences, and computer/ of this population to enter into CTE provided several reports on the shortage information sciences), slightly less than 30 teaching positions. of minority teachers. Recommendations percent were black, Hispanic, Asian/Pa- Second, because of recruitment efforts for increasing the minority teacher pool cific Islander, and American Indian; more to attract minorities into business and have included various pre-service and in- than 70 percent of the concentrators were industry, few are willing to enter teaching service programs and funding for teacher white.1 This is also true for the 514,000 positions. High school and college CTE education programs designed to recruit three-credit occupational concentrators. graduates are enticed by recruiters who and retain more minorities. Various states If a small percentage of minority students promise competitive salaries and benefits have implemented programs designed to are pursuing CTE courses in high school, as well as future promotions. Lower- recruit minority teachers, including teach- it is very unlikely that there will be enough paying teaching positions, particularly 26 T e ch n iqu es JANUARY 2010 www.acteonline.org those in urban areas, are not as attractive and improves faculty and curriculum de- as corporate positions. velopment. Funding of this magnitude has Third, a large number of students in great potential for meaningful outcomes; ty the United States lack the high-level math however, much more is still needed. and science skills needed to prepare them for higher education and various CTE and Why Not Teach? STEM careers. Recent initiatives have What do minority CTE professionals say been created to address this problem. U.S. keeps them from entering the teaching Secretary of Education Arne Duncan profession? Ernest Brooks III, an Afri- recently awarded 16 colleges and universi- can American fraud systems analyst in ties approximately $2.8 million in grant Chicago, Illinois, was encouraged by funding. The funding was issued to sup- his mother, a Chicago Public School port higher level instruction in
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