Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Lack of Black Male Teachers Not Just a Problem in America

A recent study showcased that there are just 30 black male lead teachers in England's 21,600 state schools. Such statistics are prompting accusations that the country's education system is "institutionally racist".

The Department for Education (DfE) revealed that there are 20 black Caribbean or black African male heads in state nurseries and primaries. There are 10 in secondary schools and none in specialized schools.

The figures from November last year – which do not include academies and which are the latest available – show there are 127 black female headteachers, meaning that 1 in every 125 heads is a black man or woman.

Lead teachers are predominantly white – some 94.7% are white British. Just 0.7% are black Caribbean or black African, despite these ethnic groups making up 2% of England's population.
Black people are also under-represented among those that have not attained school leadership positions in schools – 89.3% of teachers in England's maintained schools are white British, while 1.5% are black Caribbean or black African, the statistics reveal.

Nicole Haynes, a black deputy lead teacher at a secondary school in London, said: "For the middle-class and educated young black person, the private sector offers more opportunities, financial incentives and fewer obstacles. Education is still a very traditional institution. How many middle managers are black? Once you enter the teaching profession, there is a lack of promotional opportunities or the roles are quite stereotypical, which will not necessarily lead to senior leadership."

Earlier this month Arne Duncan, the US education secretary, told a civil rights organisation that fewer than 2% of his country's schoolteachers were black men. "And we wonder why our boys are struggling. We need to show these kids that they can also educate people just like them when they grow up."

Please join the Your Black World Coalition at www.yourblackworld.com.

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