To Teach or not to Teach: A Qualitative Study of Pre-Collegiate Grow Your Own Teacher Programs and the Perceptions of Alumni, Current Staff, and Former Staff
Date of Award
Executive Ed.D. in Education Leadership Management and Policy
Education Leadership, Management and Policy
Daniel Gutmore, PhD
David B. Reid, PhD
Lennox H. Small, EdD
grow your own, teacher recruitment, pre-collegiate programs
The teaching profession is in peril. Teacher recruitment and teacher retention are issues that have compounded the teacher shortage crisis, particularly in Black and Latinx communities. Research has demonstrated that there are a plethora of academic and socio-emotional benefits when Black and Latinx teachers are educating Black and Latinx students. The lack of Black and Latinx people choosing to pursue the profession is especially glaring. American public schools are becoming more racially diverse; however, the teaching force does not mirror the racial diversity of the students. While this issue of a lack of teacher racial diversity must be addressed with a focus on recruitment and retention, this study focused on a vehicle by which to recruit people into the profession while in middle and/or high school. The vehicle that I am referencing is known as pre-collegiate grow your own education programs.
There are quite a number of pre-collegiate grow your own programs throughout the country. Some programs are selective, while others are non-selective. Some programs focus on recruiting racially diverse students, while others do not ascribe to this mission. Given the push for a more racially diverse teaching force, this qualitative multiple case study explored the phenomena of pre-collegiate grow your own programs through the perspectives of Black and/or Latinx alumni, program staff, and former staff. The study investigated whether the program influenced Black and/or Latinx alumni to pursue a career in teaching. The study looked succinctly at the components of two programs in conjunction with the experiences of the alumni. While representation of Black and Latinx teachers is essential, the study also explored ways in which Black and Latinx people can be prepared to amplify the cultural assets of Black and Latinx students. Results revealed that pre-collegiate grow your own programs must first create experiences that amplify the cultural assets and cultural competence of its participants, which could enhance their participants’ abilities to empower themselves and the children they serve.
Pitt, Natasha T., "To Teach or not to Teach: A Qualitative Study of Pre-Collegiate Grow Your Own Teacher Programs and the Perceptions of Alumni, Current Staff, and Former Staff" (2023). Seton Hall University Dissertations and Theses (ETDs). 3064.
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