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Group of women educators sitting together at a table. One is writing on a large notepad.

Branch Alliance: Boosting Educator Diversity in Public Schools

Project Overview

More than half of U.S. public school students are people of color. However, only one in five teachers are people of color, which means students often do not have access to the experiences and knowledge teachers with diverse backgrounds bring to their classrooms. Having diverse educators in classrooms benefits all students – providing important knowledge and skills that will help them succeed in and out of the classroom.

To boost diversity in the teacher workforce and enhance public education for all students, the Branch Alliance for Educator Diversity (BranchED) enhances the quality of teacher preparation programs at 251 Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) so they can graduate outstanding teacher candidates.

Across the U.S., BranchED pairs faculty, deans, and partner school districts with coaching, resources, and technical support to help strengthen their programs. By providing support to MSI teacher preparation programs in these ways, BranchED ensures teachers of color are ready to enter the workforce.

I see BranchED as instrumental in highlighting the work that MSIs are doing, and developing a culturally sustaining and responsive teaching force that’s diverse.

BranchED beneficiary

How it Helps

MSIs prepare 46% of the teachers of color in the country, playing a central role in diversifying the teacher workforce, but they lack the funding they need to ensure they reach as many teacher candidates as possible.

BranchED tailors its support to each institution. It helps programs build on what’s working well and strengthen areas that need improvement so that the programs are sustainable for the long term. Its model of coaching, data-driven feedback, peer learning, and shared resources and best practices enable institutions to continuously learn and improve.

To prepare teacher candidates for meeting diverse students’ needs, BranchED emphasizes hands-on classroom experiences and professional collaboration among learners. BranchED tailors its programs to offer inclusive teaching approaches that meet students’ holistic and varied needs. It supports candidates’ mastery of their subject matter, teaching and assessment skills, and family and community engagement. It promotes the use of data to support candidates’ effectiveness and build a culture of inquiry. And it helps programs support their candidates’ learning throughout their experience and prepare them for the classroom.

Through these efforts, BranchED is helping to enhance the power and potential of MSI teacher preparation programs to increase high-quality diverse teachers in our public school classrooms. By ensuring that teachers of color are ready, we can propel more K-12 students to long-term success.

Foundation Project Lead