Black Teacher Project


“We just do us”: How Black teachers co-construct Black teacher fugitive space in the face of antiblackness,
Authored by Dr. Jessica Lee Stovall and Dr. Micia Mosely

This article presents findings from an empirical study that sought to understand how Black teachers collectively built a Black affinity space in response to the antiblackness they faced in their school sites. Analyses of interview and participant observation data point to the importance of Black teachers creating spaces reminiscent of a homeplace, where they can speak and act with their full selves through play, humor, and various expressions of Blackness. The article argues that the concept of affinity spaces is insufficient to describe what the teachers in the study collectively built. Instead, we draw on notions of fugitivity from Black Studies to theorize this space as a pro-Black fugitive space. We argue that these Black teacher fugitive spaces are rehumanizing and sustaining for Black teachers, offering implications for Black teacher support and retention.

“We will not be afraid to share who we are”: Black Teachers’ Experiences with Antiblackness during a Global Pandemic authored by Dr. Jessica Lee Stovall

This study shares the stories of Black Bay Area teachers during the 2021–2022 school year–the year of the return to in-person teaching. Drawing primarily on the analysis of semi-structured interviews with 30 teachers from across the Bay Area, Dr. Stovall uses Critical Race Theory and BlackCrit to examine Black teachers’ experiences with antiblackness during the global pandemic. Analysis of the data suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated issues of equitable access for their students and their job salary sustainability. However, teachers named their continued experiences with antiblackness and their disproportionate workloads compared to their non-Black colleagues that they were experiencing before the pandemic as their most pressing concerns regarding teacher retention.

Integrity Despite Moral Nonrecognition: Why Black Teachers Are Called to Teach

Grant us the Sun: What Black Teachers Need
In a time of growing teacher shortages, Black teachers are rapidly and disproportionately leaving the profession. Drawing upon their interviews with 30 Black teachers in the California Bay Area, Jessica Lee Stovall and Tara R. Sullivan provide insight into what it will take to keep Black teachers in the profession. The interviews depict both the anti-Blackness that Black teachers face and their freedom dreams for a better tomorrow for their students. Ultimately, Black teachers want schools to be transformed into healing-centered spaces where they can show up authentically to create a world in which Blackness is centered and affirmed.

Handbook of Research on Teachers of Color and Indigenous Teachers
Edited by Conra D. Gist and Travis J. Bristol
This handbook is a first of its kind, addressing key issues and obstacles to ethnoracial diversity across the life course of teachers’ careers, such as recruitment and retention, professional development, and the role of minority-serving institutions. This resource is designed to help bridge the gap between scholars, practitioners, and policy makers. In doing so, it serves as a launching pad for discussion and change at this critical moment in our country’s history. BTP Founder, Dr. Micia Mosely, and BTP Cohort 1 Fellow, Belinda Bellinger, co-wrote a chapter titled “How Black Teachers Use Professional Development to Resist Oppression and Move Toward Liberation.”

A Space to Be Whole: A Landscape Analysis of Education-Based Racial Affinity Groups in the U.S.
This report is a national landscape analysis of racial affinity groups focused on supporting educators of color. The report is intended to: 1) document national and state organizations; 2) highlight similarities and differences between groups; 3) explore potential collaborations between affinity space approaches; and 4) identify policy and activism implications of racial affinity work. The report explores how and why Black teachers and other teachers of color participate in affinity spaces in order to gain and share a comprehensive awareness regarding educator-based racial affinity groups nationwide; and inform a policy-advocacy platform that promotes racial affinity groups to support educator development and sustainability. Watch our introductory webinar of the report here.

Through Our Eyes: Perspectives and Reflections From Black Teachers
“Through Our Eyes: Perspectives and Reflections From Black Teachers” represents the qualitative data Ed Trust collected from focus group sessions of 150 Black teachers from across the country.

With African Americans making up only 7 percent of the teaching workforce, “Through Our Eyes” adds some of the much-needed substance that has been absent from the teacher diversity conversation. It uncovers the challenges Black teachers face in classrooms and schools, surfacing issues that contribute to low retention rates among teachers of color.

How Racial Affinity Professional Development Sustains Black Teachers
In our pilot year, BTP offered racial affinity-based professional development support for Black teachers in the San Francisco Bay Area and New York City, and sought to understand the impact on the teachers who participated. This article describes the findings from these supports, including a yearlong book study, inquiry groups, and drop-in “Rejuvenation Spaces.” A key finding from this initial pilot study is that racial affinity-based professional development decreases isolation and increases retention for Black teachers.
  • A Class of They Own: Black Teachers in the Segregated South by Adam Fairclough

  • Beyond The Big House: African American Educators On Teacher Education by Gloria Ladson-Billings

  • Black Teachers On Teaching by Michelle Foster

  • Fugitive Pedagogy: Carter G. Woodson and the Art of Black Teaching by Dr. Jarvis Givens

  • In Search of Wholeness: African American Teachers and Their Culturally Specific Pedagogy by Jacqueline Jordan Irvine

  • The Spirit of Our Work by Dr. Cynthia B. Dillard


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