Black Educator Empowerment Program Surpasses One Million Views, Focusing On Issues Like Diversity

 TED Talk, A program to empower Black teachers in the US, recently surpassed 1 Million views.
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(New Orleans, LA – January 24, 2022) New Orleans education leader and Brothers Empowered to Teach CEO and Cofounder, Larry Irvin Jr.’s TED Talk, A program to empower Black teachers in the US, recently surpassed 1 Million views. Irvin’s talk offers a new and fresh take on the importance of teacher diversity while also igniting a global conversation around how Black male teachers are recruited, trained and perceived as educators.

Less than 3% of all teachers in the United States are Black men. That's 3 out of 100. Research shows that just 1 Black male teacher in 3rd, 4th or 5th grade for young Black men substantially decreases his chances of dropping out of high school by 40%.

Brothers Empowered to Teach, the organization Irvin cofounded, is a solution. Starting as an idea in 2012, BE2T recruits and trains Black men to become teachers in Louisiana while working to return the prestige and honor to the profession. Through innovative programming, mentorship and paid fellowships, BE2T is increasing the number of Black male teachers in United States public schools -- starting with the state of Louisiana.

A newly released study reveals that there is a 30% drop in aspiring teachers in Louisiana. Further alarming is the lack of diversity in the K-12 classroom --23.5% of teachers in Louisiana are Black and of that number only 5% are Black men.

The findings, compiled by the 17-member Teacher Recruitment, Recovery and Retention Task Force, were presented during a joint meeting of the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and the state Board of Regents. The panel said one goal for both BESE and the Board of Regents should be more diversity in the classroom.

“We are in such a pivotal moment in education, and I hope this talk further ignites the discourse around teacher training, development, and demographics. My own personal leadership journey is parallel to the struggles of Black men in education. Most times our value assessment starts from a deficit, and we work upward from there,” said Irvin, 2021 TED Fellow who was just featured in a U.S. News & World Report story.

Irvin’s TED Talk was recorded in New York City in the fall of 2021as part of [email protected]: Recalibrate. The eleventh event, hosted by TED and Boston Consulting Group, gathered global leaders from business, academia, science and tech and has been held all over the world in countries such as India, France, and Singapore.

Idrissa Simmonds-Nastili, Institute Senior Vice President of the national education leadership group, the Pahara Institute, said, “The Pahara Institute invests in courageous leaders who are transforming public education through innovative, values-driven approaches that center communities and voices historically decentered and underrepresented. This is why we support Larry Irvin and his work with BE2T. Brothers Empowered 2 Teach's approach to pathways to the classroom and other education careers centers the whole human, is culturally relevant, and is steeped in the assets and opportunities each fellow brings, versus a deficit-based focused. Black youth deserve to be celebrated, and we celebrate BE2T for doing so.”

About Brothers Empowered to Teach:

Less than 3% of all teachers in the United States are Black men. That's 3 out of 100. Research shows that just 1 Black male teacher in 3rd, 4th or 5th grade for young Black men substantially decreases his chances of dropping out of high school by 40%.

Starting as an idea in 2012, Brothers Empowered to Teach (BE2T) is an organization recruiting and training men of color to become teachers. Through innovative programming, mentorship and paid fellowships, BE2T is increasing the number of Black male teachers in United States public schools.

Watch CEO and Cofounder, Larry Irvin’s TED Talk: A program to empower Black teachers in the US.

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