It’s no secret that the racial make up of Chicago Public Schools reflect the highly segregated city neighborhoods from which they draw students.

But a fascinating report by WBEZ has revealed a less well understood phenomenon: how educational “reform” has in recent years driven a big change in the racial make up of CPS’s teaching workforce.

Since the turn of the millennium, CPS’s workforce has got whiter, and less experienced, reporter Natalie Moore says:

Just 15 years go, 40 percent teachers in CPS schools were black. Today, it’s 23 percent.


Chicago Teachers Union researcher Pavlyn Jankov says more and more schools are like [National Teachers Academy teacher Taree] Porter’s — mostly black students, mostly white teachers.

There has been a huge increase in the number of schools with no black teachers whatsoever.

Moore spoke to teachers and experts who suggested several possible reasons for the decline in the number of black teachers in Chicago, including a push to bring in more young non-black teachers from outside the state, particularly at charter schools, and an increase in career options for college-educated African-Americans.

Listen to the whole report: