Minn. schools struggle with widening racial gap between students and teachers

December 3, 2018

Since the 2006-07 school year, the number of K12 students of color has exploded, while that of teachers of color has barely budged, an analysis of state education data reveals. The disparity is even more pronounced in some rural and suburban school districts.

Across Minnesota, as the student population becomes more racially diverse, the number of teachers of color is not keeping pace.

Since the 2006-07 school year — when this year’s high school graduating class was in first grade — the number of K-12 students of color has exploded, while that of teachers of color has barely budged, a Star Tribune analysis of state education data reveals. The disparity is even more pronounced in some rural and suburban school districts.

Education researchers predict Minnesota’s student-teacher racial mismatch likely won’t change for several decades — meaning today’s first-graders will face the same struggle for their entire school careers, too.