Connections: Black Men in Education (2011) | ETV Classics

This episode of Connections highlights the shortage of Black men in the field of Education, and what can be done about it.  Host P.A. Bennett explores the reasons that Black men choose other professions, including higher pay, benefits, and professional growth.

Fewer than 3% of all teachers in South Carolina are Black men, but 15% of Palmetto State students are African American with many never seeing a Black male teacher throughout the entirety of their school years.

Black men make up only 1.3 percent of American school teachers, according to a widely cited federal survey of the 2021-2022 school year.

Dr. Roy Jones, Executive Director of Call Me Mister, speaks about the need for diversity in classrooms and Clemson University's commitment to making progress in this area. Students who are attending the program discuss its importance to them and the reason each participant is involved. 

Julius Scott, principal at Dutch Fork Elementary School, and William Lenard, assistant principal at Airport High School, discuss this and speak of the impact this has on schools and students. They speak of differences in the language that is spoken at home and in schools, differences in clothing, and more. They stress that administrators must influence teachers to help black males to reach high expectations. The same is true for Hispanics, who are also at risk. 

A visit to Carver Elementary School provides an opportunity to learn from Amadu Masally about traveling to Sierra Leone. He describes becoming more whole by visiting Sierra Leone to see where their families originated. 

Joshua Stroman, Professor at Benedict College, provides a glimpse into his experiences that eventually led to Harvard and a career in education.