CONTACT: ATNRE ALLEYNE, (302) 497-3226
Wilmington, Del. – A council of high school students will call on elected officials tomorrow to enact five policies—both statewide and local—to improve teacher diversity in Delaware classrooms.
The policy recommendations are featured in the council’s latest report, REPRESENTED, which pulls from research, hundreds of community interviews and 10 months of civics training to highlight a representation crisis among public school educators and put forth a solution.
Click here to read the report!
“In a state where more than half the students are considered students of color, our teaching workforce must represent the diversity in our classrooms,” said the Youth Advocacy Council, a nonprofit forum that prepares high school students to influence education policy decisions. “REPRESENTED is our path forward.”
Among the key data points featured in the report:
- One in five Delaware public school students are Hispanic, compared with 2 percent of public school teachers.
- 30 percent of Delaware public school students are black, compared with 11 percent of public school teachers.
- Students of color perform better in school and are less likely to drop out when taught by educators of color.
“Students deserve an authentic seat at the table, and when they get one, they shed light on issues in a unique way that commands attention,” said Gabrielle Thomas, the founder and director of the YAC.
Another Wilmington nonprofit, DelawareCAN: The Delaware Campaign for Achievement Now, partners actively with Thomas to support YAC, and celebrates the opportunity to amplify the voices of students in the name of a significant cause.
“Diversity and representation make all the difference in education, because our kids learn more than concept in the classroom—it’s where they learn about themselves and the world, including the rich array of cultures, perspectives and stories that our diverse teachers harness,” said DelawareCAN Executive Director Atnre Alleyne.
About DelawareCAN: Launched in 2017, DelawareCAN: The Delaware Campaign for Achievement Now is a nonprofit organization that empowers, mobilizes and collaborates with everyday Delawareans to advocate for a high-quality education system.
About the Youth Advocacy Council: Founded and led by Gabrielle Thomas, the Youth Advocacy Council is a statewide forum for high school students to learn about education policy and lead their own campaigns to improve Delaware schools. The group measures success based on increased knowledge of civics and government, the state of education in Delaware and how to successfully lead an advocacy movement, from strong public speaking to policy drafting and research. The Youth Advocacy Council operates in partnership with DelawareCAN: The Delaware State Campaign for Achievement Now.