U.S. Department of Education to Host Google Hangout With African American Educators During Teacher Appreciation Week

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The U.S. Department of Education’s (ED) Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement, Jim Shelton and the Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans, David J. Johns, will host a Google Hangout, entitled, Celebrating African American Teachers in our Classrooms with African American educators on Monday, May 6 at Howard University.

With NBC News’ Tamron Hall serving as moderator, Shelton and Johns will join educators from across the country to discuss a variety of topics including, class size, teaching in urban communities and college readiness. .

This event is one of several hosted by ED celebrating Teacher Appreciation week, May 6 – May 10, 2013. During the week, parents, students, administrators and public officials from across the country honor and acknowledge the work of America’s more than 5 million teachers. .

Nationwide, more than 35 percent of public school students are African American or Hispanic, but less than 15 percent of teachers are Black or Latino, and less than 2 percent of our nation’s teachers are African American males. The Obama Administration is committed to narrowing the achievement gap by ensuring that minority and low-income students are able to learn from a highly effective teacher. As part of the Race to the Top challenge, 17 states changed their laws to better support and prepare effective teachers. These new standards institute new methods of evaluation and compensation in an effort to improve teacher training and preparation. .