Ethnic Diversity: 67.6% White, 11.3% Black, 7.1% Hispanic, 8.1% Asian, 5.9% Other
a. Teacher Gender: 80.9% Female, 19.1% Male b. Teacher Diversity: 93.9% White, 2.5% Black, 1.7% Hispanic
Demographics: a. Area: Urban b. Feeder Schools: Parkside and Kingsley (50% of Jr. High populations), Most of Chiddix Jr. High and Evans Jr. High c. School Type: Traditional
What expectations did you have for this component before you made your observations? What was confirmed for you and what was different?
I expected the majority of students to be White, which a good number of Black students, and other ethnicities would be underrepresented. Additionally, I expected the average teacher to be a White female. My expectations of diversity were both proved to be correct by my observations and the Illinois State Report Card. All three teachers that I observed at Normal Community met my average description for a teacher. The data also proved me correct; however, I was shocked to see that male teachers only made up 19.1%.
How did these observations change your perceptions of this component? How do you imagine you will address this issue in your own future classroom? Explain.
To be honest my conceptions of ethnicity were not really shaken. However, I was taken back at the lack of male teachers. In my mind, I was thinking that there would be a 60-40 split between male and female teachers. As a future educator, there is no way to really filter the ethnicities that come into the school because its all based on where they live. Eventually, I aspire to become a school administrator. As an administrator, I would like to see a representation of teachers that was similar to the diversity of students.
What did you observe that surprised you? Why?
I was surprised at the lack of male teachers at Normal Community. In my nine hours of observation, I can't say I remember passing a single male teacher. All three teachers that I observed were women. In terms other teacher diversity, it was heavily Caucasian. I saw very few teachers of color, surprisingly I was able to be in a classroom with one of the few Hispanic teachers at the high school.
How was this component treated in each of the observation sites you visited? What was different and what was the same? Why do you think these issues were treated differently in the different sites? Which approach, in your opinion, is best? Why?
Both Normal West and Normal Community had a similar distribution of ethnicities amongst students. While observing at Normal West, I remember seeing many more male teachers than at Normal Community. I would even go out on a limb to say that there were more male teachers than female teachers. The best approach to teacher diversity is to have a good mix of genders and ethnicities that are representative of the student population.
What is the one thing you will take away from your observations in terms of this specific component? Why did this make an impression on you? How will this make you a good educator?
Beating a dead horse, having a teacher population that is diverse and representative of students is the most important take away from my observations. Teacher diversity is frankly lacking. It is important to have teachers that students can identify with and have someone that they can look up towards. Being a role model is not explicitly in the job description of a teacher but is one of their most important roles. I cannot change the diversity amongst teachers in my school, but I can serve as an effective role model for my students.