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Bowie State University, Prince George’s County Public Schools Target Males To Teach

September 1, 2005 -- Bowie State University President Calvin W. Lowe joined United States Congressman Steny H. Hoyer and Prince George’s County Board of Education
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 Chair Beatrice P. Tignor today in the university’s Thurgood Marshall Library to announce a critical partnership to recruit and train more men to teach in urban settings.

 “  The nurturing process is cyclical.  
Howard A. Burnett, Interim Chief Executive Officer for Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS), Dr. Patricia Pierce Ramsey, Provost, Bowie State University, Dr. Scott Jackson Dantley, Acting Dean of the Bowie State University School
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 of Education
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, and Homer McCall, Bowie State University Men Equipped to Nurture (MEN) Program Coordinator, participated in the announcement of a program designed to dramatically increase the number of African-American males and other minority male teachers entering the teaching profession. The MEN program provides tuition remission for male teachers who complete the program and fulfill a two-year commitment to teach in Prince George’s County public schools.

“Increasing the number of minority male teachers and mentors in our classrooms is essential to enhancing diversity in our public education system,” said Congressman Hoyer, who represents the Fifth Congressional District of Maryland. “I am very proud to have secured funding for the MEN program, which will help ensure that students have positive role models at school. This is crucial to their academic success.”

Congressman Hoyer is responsible for $350,000 in federal funding for direct costs. Bowie State University is contributing $52,000 and more than $160,000 is provided by Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS).

“Bowie State’s partnership with Congressman Hoyer and Prince George’s County Public Schools is a great initiative,” Dr. Lowe said. “The nurturing process is cyclical. It’s imperative that we continue to create a stronger presence of minority male teachers with programs such as this as our male youth need to experience more role models with whom they can identify.”

Only 23.2 percent of teachers in Maryland are male, which falls below the national average of 24.9% per state according to National Education Association research. At the same time, African-American males make up only 13 percent of teachers in PGCPS and just five percent of the profession statewide according to the Maryland State Department of Education (2004).

“Working with our neighbor, Bowie State University, we hope to turn this trend around and make a difference in a very positive way for students in Prince George’s County Public Schools,” Dr. Tignor said. “By developing an effective model for attracting and retaining male teachers, targeting minority males and especially bringing more African-American men into the teaching profession, we can produce positive role models for today’s young male students and inspire a new generation of teachers.”

According to the latest Maryland Teacher Staffing Report (2004), the teaching profession in Maryland and in the nation remains predominately white and female:

* Only 24.7 percent of newly hired teachers in Maryland were males. These percentages have been relatively stable over the last several years.
* The percentage of male teacher candidates from Maryland institutions of higher education was
16.9 percent.
* The percentage of minority new hires in 2003 was 26.4 percent and is slightly more than the minority Maryland teacher population as a whole (24.2 percent).
* This represents a decrease in minority hiring from 2002-2003 (31.1 percent) and is the first year since 1999-2000 in which a decrease occurred.

The state of Maryland currently has no initiatives to recruit male teachers into the classroom. The MEN Program, implemented by Bowie State University and PGCPS, includes:

* Financial assistance to support the acquisition of 15 credits toward content and pedagogical knowledge as required for teacher certification;
* Registration for Praxis assessment with instruction in reading, writing and mathematics;
* Use of laptop technology for academic and classroom tasks;
* Monthly lectures from experts in the field of community leaders;
* Mentoring guidance; and
* Peer support.

In exchange, all candidates will be required to commit to at least two years of teaching employment in Prince George’s County public schools. For more information on the program, prospective candidates should contact Mr. Homer McCall at (301) 860-3304.


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