There's an interesting story and graphic (above) in the Post today about public school teachers. Though the city has been attempting to hire more minority teachers, very few minorites are teaching students. Over 71% of public school students are black or Hispanic, but only 33% of the teachers are black or Hispanic. And recruitment of black and Hispanic teachers has dropped in the past years. Why is this a problem? Well, a 2004 National Collaborative on Diversity in the Teaching Force study finding: "Students of color tend to perform better – academically, personally and socially – when taught by teachers from their own ethnic groups."

One hypothesis is that less minorities are interested in teaching when there are better paying opportunities out there, while another is that certification is too tough.

Christopher Brown, an executive with the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education, said the federal No Child Left Behind law has hampered recruitment of minorities because teaching licenses are now not as easily transferable from state to state.

"The majority of blacks in this nation attend traditionally black colleges, most of which are in the South," Brown said. "We're seeing an increasing number of teacher candidates remaining in the states where they earned their degrees, because that's where they get certified."

The Department of Education tells the Post that the DOE is working to recruit more minorities, by going to traditionally black colleges and even looking abroad in Spain and Puerto Rico.

Here's the DOE teaching recruitment website.