From the Field

Effects of Teacher Diversity on Hispanic Student Achievement

While there is a growing body of research on the positive effects of Black teachers on Black students, there is less information about how teacher diversity influences academic results for Hispanic students.

In The Effects of Teacher Diversity on Hispanic Student Achievement in Texas, Urban Institute researchers Constance A. Lindsay, Tomás Monarrez, and Grace Luetmer examined the effects of exposure to Hispanic teachers on Hispanic students’ scholastic and economic outcomes in Texas public schools.

Using administrative data from the state’s education agencies, the researchers found that exposure to Hispanic teachers significantly improves short- and medium-term outcomes among elementary school Hispanic students, including fewer disciplinary actions, lower dropout rates, and a greater likelihood of high school graduation.

The researchers could not offer conclusions on long-term college and career outcomes, but the results suggest that hiring teachers of color is an important consideration for improving student achievement, especially in places with increasingly diverse student populations.

-Noa Neubia