Logo for the Black Educators Initiative

A national effort to recruit, develop and retain black educators through teacher residencies.

Cynthia Fitz-Wilson is a Resident at the Dallas Teacher Residency. She is pictured with her mentor, Chaslyn Reynolds. This picture was taken at Ben Milam Elementary School.

NCTR’s Black Educators Initiative is a response to an urgent and pressing challenge:

Black students who have just one Black teacher in elementary school are more likely to graduate from high school and consider going to college, yet just 7 percent of public school teachers are Black. As the nation’s students become more diverse, teacher residencies are best able to prepare the next generation of teachers.

Roxy Nance is a Resident at the Chicago Public Schools Teacher Residency. This photo was taken at King Elementary School.

NCTR’s Black Educators Initiative will improve student outcomes by increasing student access to effective, Black teachers.

NCTR launched the initiative in September 2019 after receiving a five-year, $20-million grant from the Ballmer Group to recruit, develop, and retain 750 new Black teachers through our national Network of teacher residency partners.

This funding allows NCTR to invest in residency programs that are improving diversity through new and innovative strategies.

This collective learning informs new research and support for all of NCTR’s Network partners, and it helps the teacher preparation field better understand how to prepare a diverse and effective teacher workforce.

NCTR is excited to announce our third cohort of the Black Educators Initiative.

In grant funds have been awarded to 20 teacher residencies for the 2021-2022 academic year
Black educators will be prepared through teacher residencies in NCTR's Network during the five-year initiative
New teacher residencies have joined cohort three for the 2020-2021 academic year
BEI Investments At a Glance
  • Scholarships, stipends, and other incentive funds to support Black residents’ full participation in essential clinical experiences.
  • Partnerships with organizations like the Black Teacher Project to provide consulting and training for mentors of Black residents.
  • Increased induction support, including job search assistance, alumni networks, and professional development for graduates.
  • Memberships to professional development and networking organizations.
  • Increased mentor stipends to attract experienced, effective teachers as mentors of Black residents.
  • Mental health and social-emotional learning supports, including contracting with Black therapists.

Pilot Year Activities

In the pilot year 2019-20, NCTR and our grantees dove into a yearlong Roundtable Series to examine research-based practices and tackle persistent challenges as a learning community. Topics included the effectiveness of emergency funds for candidates, mentor support, and resident effectiveness. NCTR also collaborated and sought guidance from national experts to help maximize this opportunity.