COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., June 16, 2022 — The Sachs Foundation, an organization that has supported Black Coloradans since 1931, and Teach For America (TFA) Colorado, the state branch of a national organization that expands educational opportunity for children by recruiting and training educators, are partnering to offer Black college graduates in Colorado an opportunity to make an impact as an educator. The organizations intend to build a community of Black educators through cohort groups and supplement salaries to address the shortage of Black teachers in Colorado.
The number of Black educators in the U.S. has been in decline since schools were desegregated, but data confirms that representation matters to students. Johns Hopkins research shows that the presence of just one Black teacher in grades 3-5 increases low-income Black boys’ interest in college by 29% and lowers the high school drop-out rate by 39%. However, 150 of Colorado’s 178 school districts have no Black teachers at all. The Sachs Foundation launched its Teacher Development Program in 2020 to improve educator diversity in Colorado schools, a mission that matches TFA’s goal of increasing diversity in the teaching ranks to better reflect student populations.
Working together, the organizations are intentionally building a community of Black educators in Colorado. TFA Colorado is taking the lead on identifying, recruiting and training teachers since that is the organization’s area of expertise, and Sachs is providing financial support for Black teachers working in Colorado who are part of the program, drawing on its experience of providing scholarships for Black Coloradans. Both organizations emphasize the importance of a cohort (peer group) in program success. TFA Colorado says the partnership has already increased the number of Black educators who are able to teach through TFA by 150%.…Read More