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“It has been argued that teachers of color can help fill this gap for minority students by bolstering their confidence and motivation, and alleviating their sense of marginalization,’ the study said.

The AFT study also comes as a recent report shows that America’s teachers and administrators frequently address behavioral problems with students strictly along racial lines.

The study, which was recently released by the journal Sociology of Education, shows that African-American students with behavioral problems are far more likely to be punished with expulsions, suspensions — and sometimes even arrested and forced into the criminal justice system — while white students are routinely steered into special education programs and treated for learning disabilities when they behave badly.

Black educators and parents say the study confirms their beliefs. For years, civil rights activists have argued that a racially biased culture in the nation’s school system has worked against black students but some of their complaints have been routinely dismissed.

But the new study by the AFT is a welcomed document that seems to prove that Black students could fare much better academically and socially with compassionate teachers of color who understand – and who have lived – the Black experience.

What do you think?

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Do Black Students Really Need Black Teachers?  was originally published on

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