Hiring for diversity: practices of human resource administrators in minority majority school districts in Texas
Vaughan, Donna Alonzo
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The focus of this study was on hiring practices in Texas school districts of over 500 students containing ethnic minority students as the majority of the student population. It examined differences between the practices of districts with ethnic minority teachers as the majority of the teaching population as compared to districts with ethnic minority teachers as the minority of the teaching population. The study compares the role and title of human resource administrators, method of attracting a candidate pool, and if a formal statement of intent to hire a diverse staff existed. Surveys were mailed to human resource administrators in 227 Texas school districts. The following practices have been observed at a statistically significant level: There is an administrator responsible for teacher recruitment employed 100% for human resources and that individual does not have the title ?Superintendent.? There is a formal statement of intent to have a diverse or reflective staff. Posting job vacancies through local newspapers and major statewide universities were the methods used by a statistically significantly higher proportion of districts with a diversified staff. Posting at the Texas Education Agency Service was used by a statistically significant higher proportion of districts where the teacher population is less diverse and reflective of the student population. In districts where the teacher population is more diverse and reflective of the student population, there is a significantly lower proportion of districts that utilize statewide universities in recruiting and obtaining a pool of candidates to hire. The difference between the proportions of districts that utilized all other types of specific postings, including technological methods listed in this observational study, was not statistically significant. The traditional practices of hiring teachers for our school systems must change to reflect the pluralistic society of today. The findings of this research support that leadership, as expressed by a clear mission statement with intent to hire a reflective staff and the assignment of an administrator whose sole responsibility is for human resources, can and will overcome barriers toward hiring a reflective staff.