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NASUWT says 68,000 BME teachers needed.

Discussion in 'Education news' started by Mr_Ed, Jul 13, 2017.

  1. MonMothma

    MonMothma Lead commenter

    Have you noticed the recent "this girl can" campaign?

    Have you asked yourself why this is happening?
  2. MonMothma

    MonMothma Lead commenter

    This is from a paper on white privilege and power in the classroom. It's American but gives some ideas of the concept.


    When I visit their schools, my children know that school staff members will reserve judgment about my economic class, my level of education, and my reason for being in the school until I make them known.

    Whatever topic my children choose to study, they are confident that they will find materials that link people of their race to the accomplishments in those areas.

    • When my children talk about celebrations, holidays or family observances in show-and-tell or in other informal exchanges at school, they know that their teachers will have experienced similar events and will be able to reinforce their stories. •

    The color of my children’s skin causes most adults in school offices, classrooms and hallways to have neutral or positive assumptions about them. •

    My children know that the vast majority of adults in their schools will be of their same racial background, even in classrooms where many or most of their fellow students are of races different from theirs. •

    I am confident that policy decisions that affect my children’s school experience will be made by state and local bodies dominated by people who understand our racial history and culture

    I am sure that some things can be replaced for children who are LGBT, disabled, from the Traveller community, female etc
  3. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    In British society BME people are at the bottom of the pile socially and economically



    To change this situation will need a massive injection of resources, 68000 extra BME teachers being an example of the sort of thing needed.

    Much much more is required of course and if resources are going to be allocated to these endeavours then (as there are only a finite amount of resources) it is obvious that people will lose out in this process.

    If black people start getting jobs they wouldn't otherwise have got then white people will not get these jobs.

    If black people are allocated funds for educational endeavours then it will be white people who are the more numerous and dominant group that will have to pay for this.

    There will be a positive effect to all this in the long run as we will have a fairer, happier and much more cohesive society but white people will have to pay for this in one form or another.

    Can't see this happening myself but I can hope.
  4. Mr_Ed

    Mr_Ed Established commenter

    I have never said 'racism doesn't exist', but we are a world away from the 1960s, too. However, what is hindering progress, to a degree, are views that I have read on here, from the BME community, to suggest that: "...you can't understand what it's like, because you aren't black" (I paraphrase). It just reinforces the notion that some BME people are always on the defensive, when they really shouldn't be, in 2017. It is also a form of one-upmanship too: I could always get training to be a better teacher, but I could never get training to be a BME one.

    Like Mr_FW, I have also taught for most of my career in schools with many BME students. In one, the ratio was about 99% BME : 1% white and I believe, when necessary (in citizenship, for example), I have taught/discussed the subject of racism respectfully and sympathetically.

    I have never played football to any great level, but I teach that. I haven't written a novel, but I teach literacy, never processed accounts, but I teach numeracy, never had an exhibition of paintings shown, but I teach art, never discovered a new land, but I teach geography... you get the idea..... You don't have to be a BME teacher to successfully teach BME pupils and to infer otherwise, as the NASUWT have done, is just wrong.

    Plus, none of this talk of '68,000', has taken into account the ridiculous churn-rate of modern UK teachers (a quarter of those trained since 2011, leaving, I believe) and I bet that is across all races, too. Or should BME teachers be paid more, or given an easier ride on 'workload', to try to keep them in post, to even up the numbers?

    Finally, I'm not trying to totally dismiss the racial angle, I know it is still a problem in some places, I just don't believe Smithy84's assertion (in #2) about 'institutional racism' in education. For a start, the profession is still populated by too many 'right-on' left wingers!
    FrankWolley likes this.
  5. Smithy84

    Smithy84 New commenter

    And you still seem to be responding...

    How was your Britain first meeting?
  6. Smithy84

    Smithy84 New commenter

    It would be a lot more productive if the opposing argument wasn't "there's no racism against BME teachers".
  7. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    Your problem is that it can be replaced by many children, of whatever background.
    You lose credibility when you cite papers about issues in America, this isn't America and the issues there are very different.
    SomethingWicked and FrankWolley like this.
  8. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    You've lost the argument, lost the plot. Brain dead. Troll.
  9. MonMothma

    MonMothma Lead commenter

    Except straight,white, middle class men....

    The default
  10. MonMothma

    MonMothma Lead commenter

    I have no doubt you'd say that about women, LGBT people etc

    That quote sums you up. You really don't get it. And you don't want to get iit.
  11. marihair

    marihair New commenter

    Just to clarify I said one cannot comment on what it is like to be a BME teacher if you aren't one. Like I cannot comment on what it is like to be a White teacher because I am not one. Anyone can join in this discussion however:

    Some people do have advantages in life. I'm not sure what harm it causes to admit that. As a BME teacher an advantage I have had in life is being born to parents who have a positive attitude/interest in education. I believe this is an advantage over those who have parents with none.

    I also think some commenters need to be careful as well- just because one hasn't seen racism in their own workplace doesn't mean it doesn't exist at all. We can't always generalise our experiences and should never negate or dismiss others. If someone of a different ethnic background said to me "I could have been more successful but there were barriers I couldn't change like home environment/parenting/poverty", I would never respond "oh well should have worked harder/that's an excuse/well in my school experience that never happened".

  12. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    As there is a shortage of Maths/Science teachers, financial incentives (bursaries) are offered to attract people to teach these subject.

    I see no reason why this should not be the same for BME teachers given the shortage is just as acute.
    wanet likes this.
  13. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    I think the figures quoted earlier showed that, as a % of the population as a whole, the % of BME teachers is, at most, only slightly lower. Where there IS an issue seems to be in the % of BME staff in SLTs & esp. as HTs.

    So, again, you miss the point (or rather try to derail the thread to your own preoccupations).
  14. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    From the report


    That's a big difference, a difference that should be addressed.

    Derailing the thread? This is what the thread is about, isn't it?
  15. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    The figure of BME pupils in English schools is challenged by a fair number of other sources (google it if you don't believe me). In any case the % in schools is not the same as the % of the whole population,m a more relevant figure, IMHO.

    Yes, this is what this thread is about, not the other nonsense spouted out earlier.
  16. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    These figures approximate well to the NASUWT calculations.


    I suppose by 'nonsense' you mean my solution to attracting more BME teachers?

    Ouch Frankie. Very ouch.
  17. Sisyphus_rolls_again

    Sisyphus_rolls_again Established commenter

    Bursaries are to attract people into training, they have no bearing on employment.
    If the problem is around institutional racism or the visibility of BME teachers to BME students then it doesn't matter how many are trained, it matters how many get jobs.
    If not enough are trained, then the low numbers in employment cannot be solely down to racist barriers at the interview stage.
    If bursaries would attract more applicants, then surely the issue is about the attractiveness of teaching rather than any perceived barriers.
    SomethingWicked likes this.
  18. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Actually I was referring to several of the posts made by you & your alter egos 'supporters'...
  19. Sisyphus_rolls_again

    Sisyphus_rolls_again Established commenter

    In the school in which I teach, 37% of students are BME / from BME backgrounds.
    In our department, 36% of teachers are BME.

    The biggest issue for us is that only 27% are male. We are keen to take on male teachers although we will take on anyone if they are good enough. We are not hung up on their gender, country of origin, culture or the colour of their skin ...just their ability to deliver skills and content in a way that is accessible to our students.
  20. SomethingWicked

    SomethingWicked Occasional commenter

    What do you (plural) think of the practice of All-women shortlists? Do you think a similar thing should be applied to BME teachers (incl. senior roles)? Are they a good idea in principle even if the current shortage makes them impractical?

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