Newspaper logo  
 
 
   Fordham University Study of Baltimore Schools Shows Worst-Qualified Teachers More Likely in Poor and Minority Schools

ACORN’S “SAY YES TO CHILDREN!” CAMPAIGN:

Fordham University Study of Baltimore Schools Shows Worst-Qualified Teachers More Likely in Poor and Minority Schools

Special to the Chronicle

On April 23, ACORN members gathered at the Baltimore City Public Schools (BCPS) headquarters to release a study of Baltimore City schools conducted for ACORN by the National Center for Schools and Communities at Fordham University.

The study found that the more poor or minority students a school has, the fewer highly qualified teachers (in terms of certification and experience) the school will have. ACORN, a nonprofit community activist organization, demanded at the press conference that the school administration provide increased professional training and support for uncertified and inexperienced teachers.

The study was conducted as part of ACORN’s “Say Yes to Children Campaign,” which focuses on improving the health and education of Maryland’s poor children.

“We have to make sure that no child in Baltimore City is left behind,” said ACORN member Margaret Spicer. “We need to hold the school system accountable for teacher training.”

Using 2001-2002 school year data from BCPS, this study found that in Baltimore City:

Schools with higher percentages of poor children:
  • Have more uncertified teachers.
  • Have fewer teachers with master’s degrees.
  • Have more teachers with less than five years’ experience.
Schools with higher percentages of non-white students:
  • Have higher enrollments.
  • Have more uncertified teachers.
For example, at Langston Hughes Elementary (the elementary school with the most poor children), half of the teachers have less than five years of experience and 40% are uncertified. In contrast, at Mt. Washington Elementary (the elementary school with the fewest poor children) only 3% of the teachers have less than five years’ experience and only 10% of the teachers are uncertified.

In 2001-2002 in BCPS, there were:

  • 40 schools where more than 50% of the teachers had less than 5 years experience.
  • 49 schools where less than 25% of teachers had a master’s degree or higher.
  • 9 schools where over 50% of the teachers were uncertified.
The No Child Left Behind Act requires that each school have a highly qualified teacher in every classroom. Not only are Baltimore’s public schools failing to reach this goal, ACORN representatives charged, the schools with the poorest and most minority students face the worst neglect.

“No Child Left Behind, if properly implemented, will reduce crime,” asserted Louise Stewart, ACORN member and mother of a child who attends Frederick Douglass High School.

Compared to the 2000-2001 school year, the percentage of uncertified teachers declined by a small amount (while at the same time, the student-teacher ratio increased by a small amount). This improvement was apparent at most of the schools that had the highest percentage of uncertified teachers in 2000-2001. But in some cases, this improvement was slight; Calverton Middle, which had the highest percentage of uncertified teachers in 2000-2001 (62% uncertified teachers), is still one of the worst, with 60% uncertified. The school with the most uncertified teachers, Frankford Intermediate, actually got worse, with the percentage of uncertified teachers rising from 54% to 71%.

ACORN spokespersons called for the institution of a strong professional development program for teachers, focused on the poorest schools. They noted that The Education Commission of the States reports that Maryland “does not appear to be on track” for “having a qualified teacher in every classroom” and “having high quality professional development”—two requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act.


Read the full study. [PDF]

For more information about ACORN’s work on education in Baltimore City, contact Mitch Klein or Stuart Katzenberg at 410-752-2228.

To subscribe to ACORN’s email newsletter, click here.


Copyright © 2003 The Baltimore Chronicle and The Sentinel. All rights reserved. We invite your comments, criticisms and suggestions.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle and Sentinel content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

This story was published on May 13, 2003.
  
MAY 2003
LOCAL NEWS
5.10NEWS BRIEFS
5.7CALENDAR
5.13Maryland’s Economy Could Profit From Renewable Energy
5.13Brooklyn and Curtis Bay Residents Collaborate with City Government to Plan for the Future of Small Towns in the City
5.13Pro-Mass Transit Activists Plan Protests of MTA Rate Increases
5.13Fordham University Study of Baltimore Schools Shows Worst-Qualified Teachers More Likely in Poor and Minority Schools
5.13Volunteers Conduct City’s First Comprehensive Baltimore Homeless Census
5.7A Call for "Affirmative Access" in Library Service
5.7Ask the Plant and Pest Professor
5.8Preakness ’03; Plus, the NFL Drafts a New Round of Millionaires
4.19The City's Neighborhoods Have Become the Poor Stepchildren
4.5The State of Giving in Maryland 2002
4.4 City to Celebrate 175th Anniversary of Railroading
LETTERS
5.13 Letters
ART & ENTERTAINMENT
5.13Quotes: Quotes from Women
5.13Book: Joe DiMaggio Gets Lawyered-Up
5.13Book: Leo Bretholz’s Memoir Tells of Being Liberated Twice
NEWS MEDIA CRITIQUE
5.13SARS: More Panic than Peril?
4.14Who's Paying for those Embedded Journalists?
4.4Fla. Court Rules It’s Legal for Press to Lie
SPEAKING OUT
5.19EDITORIAL: Beware the Governor's Executive Order
5.19EDITORIAL: Governor Does the Right Thing
5.20Mothers' Day Proclamation
5.13What's Wrong with Looting? It's the American Way!
5.13The Magic Onion
5.13CEO's at Defense Contractors Earn 45% More
5.13Licensed to Kill
5.13Leave Bill Bennett Alone
5.13“Candid Camera on Crack,” and Other Social Ills
5.13Vampires Who Suck Liberty: How Banks Keep Americans Indentured to Debt
5.13Whose Oil? Our Oil!
5.13Let’s Explore the Roots of Our Violent Culture
5.7Kelly the Hawk Meets the Old Iraqi Warrior
5.7The Shocking Mess in Iraq
5.8The Night After: An Israeli’s Thoughts about the War
5.8Freud on War: Civilization’s Obscene Ghost
4.10On Getting Inspired (and Snubbed) by Ralph Nader
4.9Q & A with Greg Palast
4.5The War President Is Waging a Multi-Faceted Battle on the Domestic Front
NATION & WORLD
5.13CARDIN WARNS THAT BUSH TAX CUT WILL HURT
5.13Though Nation’s Unemployment Rate Is Increasing, Benefits Are Set To Expire May 31
5.13The Great Progressive Rate Scam
5.10Noted Journalist James Fallows Previews “The War after the War”
5.7Israeli Major Brings Message of Peace to Baltimore
5.7The Right Way To Rebuild Iraq
4.4Survey Declares Two-Thirds of US Pension Plans ‘Underfunded’
4.4After Iraq, What? Can the US Occupy and Police the Whole World?
FROM OTHER SITES
  SCREED brings you news that major media ‘tries to hide’
  Websites We Like!
  Analysis & Perspective

Public Service Ads: