How Schools Can Support Leaders of Color, According to Experts

February 1, 2022

While 53 percent of public school students are people of color, 80 percent of public school educators and administrators are white. Ensuring these educators and administrators more accurately reflect the populations they serve means retaining and supporting more educational leaders of color.

That was the topic of a Jan. 25 Education Week panel discussion featuring Penn GSE’s Andrea Kane.

Kane, the first Black superintendent for Queen Anne’s County Public Schools in Maryland, spoke alongside South Carolina superintendent Baron R. Davis and Branch Alliance for Educator Diversity Senior Vice President Patricia Alvarez McHatton. She discussed being under a microscope as a Black woman in leadership — specifically, her experience in a rural Maryland school district with an all-white school board who objected to a letter she wrote in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd.

“There are so few Black superintendents but even fewer Black women superintendents,” Kane said in the panel. “Particularly it is difficult if you are leading a district that doesn’t look like you. It’s tough to get Black teachers and, when you look at the matriculation from teacher to leader, the numbers start to dwindle the higher you go in leadership.”

Kane joined Penn GSE last fall as a Professor of Practice in the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership master’s degree program and the Mid-Career Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership

Read the article in Education Week and watch the video of the panel here.