Boston Public Schools, our nation’s first public school system, is uniquely positioned to lead once again by creating a district-wide system to increase and support the number of highly qualified teachers of color. This post is the second in a series focusing on a recent hearing hosted by Boston City Councilor Tito Jackson on how Boston Public Schools can recruit, train and retain more teachers of color.

During the week of November 20, over 150 parents, student, teacher and community groups from more than 15 cities nationwide participated in the National Week of Action for the Public Schools All Our Children Deserve. Staging school walk-ins, holding rallies and packing school board meetings, organizers across the country pushed for sustainable community schools in their cities.

Tito Jackson, Boston City Councilor

In this interconnected world all children, and particularly those who stand at the margins, need a diverse teaching force if they are going to be able to be competitive globally. I’m glad to report that a seemingly contentious hearing yielded a true partnership between Boston Public Schools, local community members, researchers, and myself and colleague City Councilor Ayanna Pressley to create and implement an accountability structure that ensures we recruit, support, and, most importantly, retain highly qualified teachers of color.

This week, the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools—a broad coalition of, parents, students, teachers, community and faith-based groups, and labor unions—will be taking action in 15 cities across the country as part of a nationwide week of action to call for sustainable community schools.

Thanks to the hard work of the Urban Youth Collaborative, Make the Road NY and other allies, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law new requirements for the city's department of education to report data on students' access to school counselors.

After years of hard work by local organizers fighting for better school resources, NYC Mayor Bill de Balsio announced the city will dedicate $150 million to equip 94 struggling schools with a broad spectrum of wraparound supports to help them improve. 

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