Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2007

Journal Title

Teacher Education Quarterly





First Page


Last Page



Lack of diversity in the teaching force is proving to be a grievous problem for our country. Across the nation the percentage of teachers of color in our schools remains stagnant as the percentage of students of color increases (Gay, Dingus & Jackson, 2003; Gordon, 2000; Gursky, 1999). Councils have been convened and conferences held to confront the issue (National Collaborative on Diversity in the Teaching Force, 2004). This disparity between the supply and demand for a diverse teaching force not only violates our standards of equity, it also appears to have a deleterious effect on achievement of students, particularly those of color (Gay, Dingus & Jackson, 2003; Hurtado, 1996). Growing awareness of this problem is strengthening the resolve of many educators to find ways to recruit persons of color to the teaching force in their region or community. The problem proves to be more complex than meets the eye, however. The causes are deeply rooted, requiring careful analysis of the cultural character of each specific community (Gordon, 2000). An additional complication stems from the fact that the majority of the United States teachers and administrators are of European descent, and may have little insight into the reasons young people of color don't select teaching as a career. Without that understanding, it is difficult for them to create successful programs to recruit people of color.


Published in Teacher Education Quarterly, 34(4), 121-136, 2007. Copyright © 2007, Teacher Education Quarterly.

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