Research Shows White Teachers Have Low Expectations for Black Students

In a longitudinal study done by John Hopkins an American University, researchers have found that when black and white teachers are asked about the same students, white teachers had more negative predictions and exceptions for their students of color. The study was published in the journal of Economics of Education Review.

The results of this study come from a longitudinal study that started in 2002, the study followed 8,000 10th graders. In the study reading and math teachers were given a survey that asked about the long-term capabilities of each students, the survey classified students and teachers by race and gender. The results of the survey shows that when white and non-black educators were asked about the likelihood that their students would graduate high school, 12 % were more likely than black educators to say that their black students would not graduate. Black teachers also had similar results of both their white and black students.

The results from this study were particularly low for black boys, non-black teachers thought their black male students were 5% more likely not to graduate high school than black females. According to co-author of the study and John Hopkins University economist, Nicholas Papageorge, “the study is the first step in a larger research project to determine how teacher expectations impact student outcomes…what I would like to do is make teachers more aware of biases…” Papageorge believes teachers should undergo cultural competency training, he went on to say “Racism is alive and well. I’m sure when people look at a black young man they have certain views, and they might not realize they have these views, and that’s really dangerous.”

Although this study does not show causation it is a bit shocking to see the biases that exist within teachers. In a time when white women make up more of the nations teaching force this study raises important questions about how biases might be interfering with the education of black students nation wide.


(VIA Huffington Post)

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