CPS principals more racially diverse than in many other districts
When it comes to racial diversity among principals, CPS does a better job than many other urban school systems, per a new UChicago report analyzing data in the district.
Why it matters: Research suggests principals can affect student achievement nearly as much as teachers do, increasing pupils' learning by up to 3 months.
- Plus, "race/ethnicity of principals matters in … helping to recruit teachers, [of color] into the workforce," researcher Molly Gordon told WBEZ recently.
Zoom in: Most Black and white CPS students have principals of the same race/ethnicity, per the report.
- Yes, but: That's not true for Latinos. They make up 47% of the CPS student body yet only 17% of principals. That's an issue Gordon says needs "more attention."
By the numbers: Beyond race, the reports also looked at how often principals stayed in the job for at least five years, an important factor for school stability.
- Elementary (52%) vs. high school (32%)
- Schools with high levels of poverty (45%) vs. other schools (50-54%)
- Predominantly Black (49%), Latino (58%), racially mixed (57%), and Black and Latinx (23%)
Context: The reports were created by the UChicago Consortium on School Research, the National Opinion Research Center at UChicago, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
- They looked at eight years of demographic and retention data among hundreds of CPS principals.
- The researchers also interviewed principals to glean the most important skills for the job. The winners: emotional intelligence, organizational and managerial skills.
What they're saying: "We wanted to identify existing gaps in the critical experiences and essential skills of CPS principals so that policymakers and programs can better support their leadership development," Gordon said in a statement.
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