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Degrees of Change: UConn Increases Diversity in Teaching Programs

This article originally appeared in UConn Today and is reposted with permission. The University of Connecticut is 1 of 10 institutions participating in AACTE’s Black and Hispanic/Latino Male Teacher Initiative Networked Improvement Community (NIC). To learn more about how UConn developed the programs noted in the article through its participation in the NIC, visit this AACTE webinar and Ed Prep Matters blog post featured in 2016.

A lack of diversity among classroom teachers in elementary and secondary schools has long been a national issue. In the state of Connecticut alone, less than 8 percent of teachers are of color, while students of color represent 40 percent of the population.

SHEEO Initiative Focuses on Practice at HBCUs to Increase Teacher Diversity

image of teacher in a school hallway

As the nation’s classrooms become more diverse, research has demonstrated that developing a more diverse teaching workforce is imperative to meeting the needs of all students. Efforts are under way across the nation to identify successful strategies for increasing the recruitment and retention of teachers of color, especially men of color, into the education workforce. Organizations including AACTE and the State Higher Education Executive Officers (SHEEO) are among those leading such efforts.

At AACTE, this work includes the Black, Hispanic, and Latino Male Teacher Initiative Networked Improvement Community (NIC), the AACTE Holmes Program, and the Diversified Teaching Workforce: Recruitment and Retention Topical Action Group. Each of these initiatives is focused on increasing educator diversity by identifying and implementing practice that supports degree attainment and teacher certification. The NIC is currently developing a conceptual framework paper to highlight some of these strategies and plans to release the paper at the 2018 AACTE Annual Meeting.

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