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The Future Of Majority-Minority Public Schools


From Alaska to Maine, Texas to North Dakota, public schools have dramatically changed during the past two decades. Walk into these schools and you’ll likely find that the majority of students are children of color.

How this demographic shift plays out in the classroom is explored in “Tomorrow’s Test,” a new series by a team of reporters for Slate and Columbia Journalism School’s Teacher Project.

Sarah Carr, editor of the Teacher Project, will be on Think at noon today talking with host Krys Boyd about the series.

The multimedia project looks at refugee students in Anchorage, Alaska, where kids split their day between a newcomer center for new arrivals and neighborhood schools.

It looks at the need for more Hispanic teachers in Boston public schools, where Hispanics make up more than 40 percent of the student population but only 10 percent of teachers.

The weeklong series dives into New Orleans charter schools and the challenges sparked by the few number of black teachers there.

And, it explores what happens when the neighborhood around a historically black public school in Portland, Oregon changes.

The entire series, “Tomorrow’s Test,” can be found here. You can listen to Think on 90.1 FM or stream online. A podcast of the show will be posted later.

Stella M. Chávez is KERA’s immigration/demographics reporter/blogger. Her journalism roots run deep: She spent a decade and a half in newspapers – including seven years at The Dallas Morning News, where she covered education and won the Livingston Award for National Reporting, which is given annually to the best journalists across the country under age 35.