Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Coats, Linda T.

Committee Member

Labat, Myron

Committee Member

Johnson, Susan

Committee Member

King, Stephanie B.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Educational Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)


College of Education


Department of Educational Leadership


Closing the teacher diversity gap was fundamental to closing the achievement gap between White and Black students. The gap in teacher diversity has continued to widen over the last decade. As the number of Black students in public education increases, the number of Black teachers continued to decline. The teaching profession remained a predominately white female workforce. A lack of teacher diversity had a negative effect on all student achievement. Black teachers served as role models to Black students. Those Black students taught by Black teachers had better academic achievement, behavior, motivation, and aspirations to attend college. In order to improve the Black teacher pipeline, policy makers and stakeholders must improve the academic attainment for Black students. When more Black students attend and complete college, the nation could improve the number of Black teachers in the classroom. This research study has compared the teacher diversity gap’s effect in two school districts. Both school districts were similar in population demographics, but different in teacher diversity. The variables compared included student performance data and student outcome gaps. The results showed that teacher diversity did not have a statistically significant effect on student outcome gaps or student performance.

Available for download on Wednesday, May 15, 2024