Ashton Powell
for CHCCS BOE

Fostering a Diverse Workforce

 

I believe that fostering a workforce that truly represents our community is essential for our success.  Students need to see teachers, leaders, and mentors who look like themselves throughout the school.  Here a a few ways in which we can better better diversify our workforce.

1.     The first step in having a diverse workforce is to ensure that our community shows respect to all employees regardless of position or background.  Recent focus groups have shown that there are significant strains between employee groups regarding these topics.  Building communication and strong models of shared governance between our employees helps build a respectful and empathetic working environment that will enable us to recruit and retain employees more effectively.

2.     A diverse faculty requires diverse applicants.  We must do a better job stimulating applications from licensure programs around North Carolina, specifically targeting HBCUs.  We should look to form relationships and apprenticeships between these programs and our schools, enabling potential teachers to know our communities will be recruiting them once they finish their degree.  Additionally, we could put resources towards scholarships for students at the schools of education to stimulate these students becoming our future teachers.

3.     While this will take much longer, it should not be forgotten that the best teachers can often come from our own students.  We should not overlook the potential of our students to be future employees.  I believe that as we address inequities in our district, more students representing our diversity will return to join our schools as faculty, staff, and administrators.  We must grow our next generation of employees from within.