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Black Men Join Forces to Encourage Other Black Men to Become Teachers

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The Black Men Teaching Initiative is launched to encourage more Black men to become school teachers.


Reported by April V. Taylor

Professors and administrators from several universities, including Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Point Park University, and Community College of Allegheny County, have collaborated on a new initiative to encourage more black men to become teachers.  According to the Atlanta BlackStar, it is called the Black Men Teaching Initiative.  The program’s goal is to encourage more black men to attend college and then choose to major in education.  The initiative hopes to accomplish this through workshops, mentoring programs, and other resources.

The Pittsburg Post-Gazette reports that not even a full two percent of teachers in the United States are black men.  Robert Millward, who founded the Black Men Teaching Initiative and who is also an education professor at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, believes that changing this statistic will require a dismantling of the current perceptions about teaching.  Millward states, “They say that teachers don’t make much. They see teaching as a woman’s profession.  They say, ‘I didn’t have a good experience in school, so why would I want to spend life teaching?'”

Millward does not believe the reasons are just financial or gender role related.  He believes the negative perceptions of teaching are also part of the historical legacy of racism and segregation in America.  Part of this legacy is the fact that the 1954 Brown v. Board of Education ruling had a negative impact on many black teachers.  Millward states, “Many black principals and teachers lost their jobs.  The [number of] African-American teachers was almost cut by half, going from 80,000 nationwide in 1954 to 42,000 in 1965.”

Rich Milner, who specializes in teaching urban education at the University of Pittsburgh, reports that young men having a better understanding of the positive impact they can have on students may also help reduce negative perceptions.  Milner also states that simply increasing the number of black male teachers is not enough to help black students; community members must also support schools to ensure that these students have a more successful experience.



  1. Tyren

    July 9, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    So for someone like me who is interested in going back to school for eeducation but has no money. What can be done?

    • Sha Dee

      July 9, 2014 at 1:32 pm

      Google ‘Call me Mister’…it is a similar initiative through HBCU’s. Black men csn earn a degree
      for free if they major in Education.
      Cheyney University is STILL accepting applications through Sept 2, 2014.

  2. Sha Dee

    July 9, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    Oops, *can

  3. williamderekjackson

    July 9, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    There are other programs like Call Me Mister that provide financial support to men interested in education as a career.
    I have been teaching over 25 years and still love it because of the impact I have on the world around me.
    This is a profession of passion and if you manage your money right it can be financially viable too.
    My Quest To Teach

  4. Brett Johnson

    July 9, 2014 at 11:38 pm

    I’m interested.

  5. Tamara Turner

    July 10, 2014 at 7:55 am

    Looking for a teaching career? Email me your resume. We are hiring several teachers pk-12 up until August 1, 2014.

  6. Tamara Turner

    July 10, 2014 at 7:56 am

  7. Michael Rogers

    July 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    I have been educating ,guiding ,and redirecting the minority youth of the 21st century for 15 years after graduating from Prairie View A&M University in 1999. I live in Houston , Texas and chose to educate in the historic 5 th Ward community. I can’ t really say it’s work or a career because I love what I do. The years have went by so fast and many milestones have been reached. Not just me, the community, co- workers, families, and businesses. I agree with the initiative to bring more black males in the education field. I have personally convinced a few in the past to embark on this rewarding career. I like to get energy to educate the young black youths of America with a quote from Tupac Shakur…. “in case you don’t know, ghetto born black seeds still grow, we coming back ,for everything you owe.”

  8. T

    July 16, 2014 at 10:25 pm

    Anyone looking to become a teacher needs to reconsider. Teaching is going to become obsolete if the government continues to get its way. It’s no longer a career that you can have for 30 years. There is no longer freedom in the classroom or excitement for new learning material because the government is force feeding us a load of horseshit to teach our children.

    • Solomon Lincoln II

      July 17, 2014 at 11:13 pm

      These were my sentiments exactly regarding teaching within the confines of state regulation. I love teaching and desire to teach as a career, although the restrictions regarding the curriculum and course content keep me at bay. I am encouraged by the various initiatives throughout the country and I know that being in the classroom does makes a outstanding difference in the lives of our youth today. What a quagmire… S L II

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