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Jacksonville Teacher Residency program focuses on preparing Black male educators

Black male teacher engaging with students in a classroomThe UNF College of Education and Human Services (COEHS)’s Jacksonville Teacher Residency (JTR) program is working on two new initiatives to prepare Black as well as diverse male educators for the workforce.

Black Educators Initiative

As part of the National Center for Teacher Residencies’ (NCTR) Black Educators Initiative (BEI), UNF’s COEHS is kicking off a project focused on improving the recruitment, development, and retention of diverse educators within JTR.

“The financial support from NCTR will be instrumental in addressing the need for more teachers of color in Duval County,” said Dr. Wanda Lastrapes, COEHS faculty administrator. “This is aligned with JTR’s mission to prepare teachers for high need urban classrooms where the turnover rates nationally are 50% higher as compared to other classrooms.”

As part of the BEI project, new meet-and-greet recruitment events are being planned to bring prospective Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) graduates to Jacksonville for a tour of UNF’s COEHS and to shadow JTR teams in action in Duval County Public Schools’ classrooms to facilitate community building.

Jacksonville Public Education Fund Partnership

UNF’s College of Education and Human Services is also launching into a new partnership with the Jacksonville Public Education Fund to better recruit and retain diverse male teachers in Duval County. JPEF is committed to help recruit and retain 1,000 diverse male educators by 2025 to help close the acute teacher diversity gap. COEHS programs like JTR and the Urban Education Scholarship Program will be instrumental in achieving this community-wide goal.

“The idea of diversifying the teacher education pipeline requires all hands on deck,” said Dr. Rudy Jamison, UNF COEHS faculty administrator. “I don’t think there has been a comprehensive strategy, so this collective approach is extremely important.”