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In search of educators of color: if we make school a more positive experience for students of color, they'll be more likely to continue with their education,

Author: Leadership

One of the most common misunderstandings about the composition of the teaching profession, and hence, educational administration, is that it is merely a professional choice: someone chooses to be a teacher rather than a business person, a lawyer, a food service worker, a nurse, a truck driver.

In reality, many decisions are made for young people long before they become aware that they even have a choice. The research completed for the book, "The Color of Teaching" (Gordon, 2000a), requires into the impediments students encounter along the way that might dissuade them from becoming a teacher.

In discussions with more than 200 teachers of color in urban school districts across America, I came to understand, from their perspective, how and why we are facing a serious crisis in the diversification of our teaching force and some possible ways to address the problem.

Interviews were conducted with teachers who self identified as Latino, Native American, African American and Asian American. Access to the districts was facilitated by administrators of color in each city who had knowledge of my prior research and who felt the interviews would enable teachers to reflect on issues critical to improving their practice and that of future teachers.

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