black male teachers
Learning specialist Lucas Lyons works with students at KIPP Infinity Charter School in New York City (KIPP)
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North Carolina Central University (NCCU) is attempting to tackle one of the bigger issues that has plagued our nation’s education system for some time: teacher diversity.

Less than two percent of the nation’s public school teachers are Black men, despite Black students making up about 37 percent of all students.

NCCU started The Marathon Teaching Institute, a program designed to recruit, train, and prepare students for NCCU’s Teacher Education Program. The Marathon Teaching Institute wants to increase the number of Black male school teachers and higher administrators in North Carolina schools.

The Marathon Training Institute will recruit, retain, and mentor African American males to become teachers, professors, and administrators in higher education, as well as principals and superintendents. 

Black students perform better with Black teachers

Randal Seriguchi Jr. is the executive director of Urban Ed Academy, a non-profit organization building equity in education by increasing Black male teacher representation in San Francisco.

“I didn’t have a black male teacher myself until college,” Seriguchi said. “The absence of that really fueled my own personal passion for wanting to make this mission work — placing one Black male teacher in every elementary school in San Francisco now, but certainly in any urban metro that needs it.”

Studies have shown that when a student has a teacher that looks like them, they are more likely to perform better. Black students are 29% more likely to go to college and 39% less likely to drop out of high school if they have a Black male teacher during their elementary years, according to Urban Ed Academy.

Bradley Hinton is a 4th grade math and science teacher in Mansfield, Texas. He has said his experience as a Black male educator has been one of the best experiences of his life.

“One of the reasons is because I feel I am a representation that can possibly leave a lifelong imprint on my students of what a Black man can be. Too often, our image is construed or manipulated. We are force-fed to believe we can only succeed in sports or entertainment. Having my students see someone like me at a young age can plant the seed of seeing Black men in a different light and not succumbing to the stereotypes.”

Mike Creef is a fighter for equality and justice for all. Growing up bi-racial (Jamaican-American) on the east coast allowed him to experience many different cultures and beliefs that helped give him a...