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Interview Practices May Be Inhibiting Teacher Diversity

photo of a female shaking hands with a male across a desk

According to a recent Pew Research study, the increase in teacher diversity has not kept pace with that of the student population over the last several decades.

Between 1987 and 2018, the share of white elementary and secondary school students decreased from 71 percent to 47 percent. While this represents a significant increase in the diversity of student population, the same is not true for teachers. Teachers who identified as non-Hispanic white made up 79 percent of teachers in 2018, compared to 87 percent in 1987 — a drop of just 8 percent.

Further research from hiring software company Greenhouse suggests that one of the main reasons for the lack of improvement in workplace diversity comes down to poor interview practices. For example, nearly 40 percent of respondents who identify as Black have reported being asked discriminatory questions during an interview, a figure almost 10 percent higher than their white counterparts.

Suggestions to make the hiring process more equitable for all people include:

  • Training the recruitment team in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Diversifying hiring committees
  • Focusing on nontraditional candidates
  • Conducting culture and engagement surveys

For more information on the topic, including links to HR Services resources, check out the HRX article Recruiting for Diversity.

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Troy Richardson
Troy Richardson
HR Data Analyst

Troy Richardson joined HR Services in 2022. Before joining TASB, Richardson worked as a financial analyst in the telecom industry.

Richardson received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in economics from the University of Alabama.

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TASB HR Services supports HR leadership in Texas schools through membership offerings in specialized training, consulting, and other services.
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