The Blueprint

Diversity in MCPS

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Diversity in MCPS

by Alia Kassim, Staff Writer

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photo by Montgomery County Public School News

Everyday school systems are becoming more and more diverse. But are school systems becoming more equitable? MCPS has long had a goal of racial equality in their schools and of challenging their employees to fight racial problems. Now their goal is becoming closer and closer to becoming achieved. It has been noteworthy that in this fiscal year many more of the newly hired teachers are teachers of color. This year, out of the 903 teachers newly hired, 38.8 percent were teachers of color in contrast to the 27.3 percent of 907 teachers in 2015.

Many people believe that hiring more teachers of color could increase students’ academic performance, and this has been proven to be true, due to the many students doing better in school, especially boys. In addition, due to a decrease in students applying for teacher preparation programs. Moreover, Superintendent Jack R. Smith believes that same thing. He states that “this progress represents an important strategy toward improving outcomes for students of color.” Furthermore, he believes in the future, as diversity in the country increases, MCPS must be more alert in appointing teachers of color.

However, data illustrates that reaching equity still has a long way to go. Overall, from the 13,968 MCPS teachers, 72.26 percent are white and only 12.35 are Black/African American, 7.08 percent are Hispanic, 6.02 percent are Asian and fewer than 2 percent are American Indian or mixed. This highlights that in spite of the recent increase in teachers of color, the majority of teachers are Caucasian.

Nevertheless, it appears like MCPS is now progressing towards equity in education and giving everyone, specifically those who have struggled before, an opportunity to learn and be successful.

Students in Springbrook have some opinions about this matter. One sophomore told the Blueprint that “there should be diversity in MCPS staff because some students might feel more comfortable consulting with someone of the same race because maybe they’ve had similar experiences. Also having diversity shows the students that they can all qualify for the same jobs no matter their race.” In addition, a Springbrook junior believes that “there should definitely be diversity in MCPS staff since students’ horizons can be broadened when they interact with staff from diverse backgrounds or places. As in how they [the teachers] act will reflect on their students’ daily interactions. Also,learning from adults is a natural behavior for adolescents. So diversity in MCPS staff can definitely cast a positive influence on students in terms of broadening one’s horizons.”

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Diversity in MCPS