- Teach For America, which has been working to become more diverse, announced on Monday that half of its 5,300 new recruits are non-white, with 22% identifying as African-American.
- The organization adjusted its recruitment tactics to boost its diversity and now reports 47% of new recruits received Pell Grants in college, while another 33% recently completed graduate school or have professional experience.
- Last year, 39% of recruits were people of color, 39% had received Pell Grants, and 23% came from professional or graduate study backgrounds.
Increases at or around 10% for all categories mentioned isn't a bad boost for a concentrated effort to improve diversity. A shortage of minority teachers has long been cited as an issue impacting students in the low-income, urban schools that Teach For America serves, as it has been argued that the minority students attending those schools need adult role models from similar backgrounds to look up to and identify with. While the problems faced by those schools are multifaceted and not solely the result of this shortage, any effort TFA (and teacher training programs in general) can make to keep these sort of boosts coming is progress worth noting.