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By June Gordon

The colour of educating addresses one of many significant issues of our lifetime: how to define certified and being concerned participants to aid within the schooling of low-income immigrant and minority adolescence. The voices of over two hundred people of colour are offered within the booklet, illustrating why scholars of colour aren't getting into educating.

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In contrast to this, my later research with Latino college students reflected a much stronger awareness of the many problematic relationships that Latino youth have experienced with the educational system. Their stories relate to misplacement in ESL/LED language classes, inability to use their primary language, ostracization by peers who do not see them as authentically Latino, and frustration with teachers who were unprepared to work with them. These concerns were echoed by only a few of the veteran teachers in this study.

All of these factors, however unjustified, contribute to the limited salaries of schoolteachers when compared with the well-paid professionals who provide the image of success in America. African American teachers 21 Even though low pay was the most immediate reason given by more than half of the teachers for students of color’s resistance to teaching careers, most of the more thoughtful responses actually countered this prevailing view. Reflecting on how the image of teachers’ pay may have been formed, one teacher noted how the union has been forced into an awkward position requiring it to advocate higher wages at the expense of portraying teachers as paupers.

It’s an irony. They have to say that we are poorly paid in order to get more money, but then, everyone thinks that it’s [teaching] a low-paying job. (53/AFf) Others often mentioned the benefits of teaching in their arguments. One teacher elaborated on this topic at length: Teachers actually have more stability than business. After three years, they have tenure—have a job for the rest of your life, even with five years off or whatever. Monetary-wise, teachers may look underpaid, but we have ten automatic sick days and lots of benefits.

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