By Kevin Palmer
Georgia K-12 public school leaders, including those in Richmond and Columbia County, need to account for why there is no proportional racial representation between teachers and students. White teachers are overrepresented while Black teachers are underrepresented.
According to the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement (GOSA) data, the Georgia K-12 Black student population is 37 percent, while Black teachers are only 25 percent. White students are 40 percent, yet White teachers are 70 percent. In Richmond County, the Black student population is 74 percent, while Blacks teachers are only 57 percent. White students are 17 percent, yet White teachers are 40 percent. In Columbia County, the Black student population is 20 percent, while Black teachers are only 8 percent. White students are 59 percent, yet White teachers are 87 percent.
According to GOSA data, the average annual salary for a Georgia K-12 teacher is $56,341. This could be one reason why Georgia K-12 public school leaders are showing preferential treatment by hiring too many White teachers at the expense of not hiring enough Blacks teachers. One effect is the school system is denying many colleges educated Blacks an opportunity to earn a respectable middle-class income.
Georgia school leaders must end this unfair practice.