The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to providing the best possible education to all students. Research has established that students of color experience benefits to social and emotional development and learning outcomes when taught by educators of color. Diverse educators and administrators are particularly important for schools with many students of color. Accordingly, schools across the country should prioritize hiring highly-effective teachers of color. This policy proposal identifies opportunities to recruit—and retain—highly effective K-12 educators of color.
As a first step, the Biden-Harris Administration should create an Under Secretary of Diversity at the Department of Education (ED), charged with organizing a White House Summit to establish the value of a diverse teacher workforce and convene leaders to identify best practices and a strategy for Federal Government support of state, local, and private programs. Following the summit, ED, led by the Under Secretary of Diversity, should revisit current programs that identify high need areas, such as math, science and special education to include the pressing need for diverse educators. Simultaneously, the administration must work with Congress to reauthorize the Higher Education Act, incorporating the previously introduced College Transparency Act to ensure robust data reporting and evaluate the effectiveness of financial incentives.