THE IMPACT OF RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION OF HISPANIC TEACHERS ON THE ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF HISPANIC STUDENTS IN SELECTED TEXAS SCHOOLS

A Dissertation by ROBERT MARCEL BRANCH

Submitted to the Graduate School Prairie View A&M University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of

DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

March 2009

Major Subject: Educational Leadership

ABSTRACT The Impact of Recruitment and Retention of Hispanic Teachers on the Academic Performance of Hispanic Students in Selected Texas Schools. (MARCH 2009) Robert Marcel Branch; B.A. Louisiana State University; M.A., M.Ed. - Prairie View A&M University Dissertation Chair: William A. Kritsonis, Ph.D. The purpose of this study was twofold: To identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in selected schools in Texas; and, to assess whether the presence of Hispanic teachers is related to Hispanic student performance. A mixed methods design involving quantitative and qualitative measurements was utilized. Quantitatively, data from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) on selected schools were consolidated and analyzed for possible relationships between Hispanic teachers and Hispanic student performance. Qualitatively, Hispanic teachers and district administrators were surveyed and interviewed to examine factors associated with the effective recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers in the sample. The quantitative portion of the study showed that the average annual percentage for Hispanic teachers ranged from 6.5%

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to 8.2%; the average annual increase over the years under study was 0.15 percentage points. The average percentage for Hispanic students ranged from 27.8% to 35.2%; the average annual increase over the same years under the study was 1.78 percentage points. When the relationship between the average percent of Hispanic teachers and the average percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in Mathematics was determined for the three years under study, all Pearson r values were negative. The results of r = – 0.372 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.418 for school year (SY) 2005 – 2006 were significant at 0.05 level, two-tailed. Likewise, when the relationship between the average percent of Hispanic teachers and the average percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in English/Language Arts was determined for the three years under study, all Pearson r values were also negative. The results of r = – 0.328 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.520 were significant at 0.05 level, two-tailed. The increase of Hispanic teachers in SY 2006 – 2007 did not significantly affect the performance of Hispanic students in both Mathematics and Reading/ELA TAKS Exit level examinations. Possibly, the additional Hispanic teachers were assigned to subjects other than Mathematics and Reading/ELA.

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The qualitative portion of the study posed questions to Hispanic teachers and school administrators and district personnel regarding recruitment and retention initiatives experienced by both groups. Forty Hispanic teachers answered the survey and 14 school and district administrators were interviewed. Of the nine motivating factors advanced by the researcher in terms of recruiting Hispanic teachers, the top five ranked by the Hispanic teachers were: opportunity to help others, job location, salary, needed a job and prestige of the district or school. The researcher had identified 15 factors that may motivate Hispanic teachers to remain in their teaching job after they have joined the teaching force. Results of the rating done by the Hispanic teachers identified the top five reasons: opportunity to help others, job satisfaction, job security, salary and working conditions.

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DEDICATION This work is dedicated to my parents, Willie Mae Fusilier-Phillips and Robert L. Branch. Thank you for teaching me to be diligent in my work and to always finish any task that I begin.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS There are so many people who have helped me through this academic journey, and I cannot begin to thank you enough. First, this accomplishment would not have been possible without God’s grace, and I am eternally grateful. Thank you God! I must thank my parents for instilling in me the importance of education. I actually remember them calling me “Dr. Branch” even at the early age of seven---well Mom and Dad, it has finally happened. I know that your prayers have helped me stay focused, and I thank you both. Eric, I thank you for pushing me and for the constant encouragement. From the beginning to the end, your technical support has been a tremendous help. To all of my dear friends, family members, and fellow classmates of Cohort II---thank you for motivating me and for being great encouragers. You know who you are and I thank each of you for being on my team. Without the support of my Dissertation Chair, Dr. William A. Kritsonis, I am uncertain as to how far I would have gotten on this project. Your continuous encouragement and thoroughness will never be forgotten. Dr. Hermond, Dr. Gibson, and Dr. Herrington, thank each of you for serving on my committee. Your critical thoughts, constructive feedback, and positivity have helped to shape this document…and I thank you. You are all my heroes and

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I hope to one day be as valuable a servant to students as each of you has been for me.

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TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT ........................................................................................ iii DEDICATION .................................................................................... vi ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ............................................................... vii TABLE OF CONTENTS ................................................................... ix TABLE OF TABLES ........................................................................ xiii CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION .........................................................1 Statement of the Problem .........................................................3 Research Questions ..................................................................5 Null Hypotheses ........................................................................6 Purpose of Study ......................................................................6 Significance of the Study ..........................................................7 Assumptions and Limitations of Study ...................................8 Definition of Terms ..................................................................9 Organization of Study .............................................................11 CHAPTER II. REVIEW OF LITERATURE ...................................13 The Hispanic Student Population .........................................13 Hispanic Student Academic Performance Trends .................14 Diversity in the Teaching Profession .....................................14 Positive Role Models ...............................................................15 Successful Interactions ...........................................................15

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Page Recruitment Into Teaching.....................................................16 The Motivation to Teach .........................................................21 Factors Contributing to the Low Number of Minorities Entering Teaching ..................................................................................27 The Perceived Low Esteem of the Teaching Profession ........27 Inadequate College Preparation and Guidance .....................29 Factors Hindering Retention of Teachers ..............................31 Stress ............................................................................31 Role Ambiguity ............................................................34 Summary and Conceptual Framework .................................35 CHAPTER III. METHOD .................................................................37 Purpose of the Study ...............................................................37 Research Questions .................................................................38 Null Hypotheses ......................................................................39 Research Design ......................................................................39 Quantitative .................................................................40 Qualitative ....................................................................41 Pilot Study ...............................................................................42 Qualitative ....................................................................42 Participants of the Study ........................................................43 Quantitative .................................................................43

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Page Qualitative ....................................................................44 Instrumentation and Data Collection ....................................45 Quantitative .................................................................45 Qualitative ....................................................................46 Validity and Reliability...........................................................46 Research Procedures ...............................................................47 Quantitative .................................................................47 Qualitative ....................................................................47 Data Collection ........................................................................48 Quantitative .................................................................48 Qualitative ....................................................................49 Analysis of Data ......................................................................50 Quantitative .................................................................50 Qualitative ....................................................................52 Summary .................................................................................53 CHAPTER IV. RESULTS ..................................................................55 Results of Study ......................................................................56 Quantitative Research Question 1 .........................................56 Quantitative Research Question 2 .........................................57 Quantitative Research Question 3 .........................................59 Qualitative Demographics ......................................................61

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Page Recruitment Factors ...............................................................75 Qualitative Research Question 1............................................80 Qualitative Research Question 2............................................82 Qualitative Research Question 3............................................84 Qualitative Research Question 4............................................85 Administrative Demographics ................................................87 Qualitative Research Questions for Administrators .............91 Discussion................................................................................99 Summary ...............................................................................105 CHAPTER V. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS ........................107 Summary ...............................................................................107 Conclusions ...........................................................................111 Recommendations .................................................................116 Recommendations for Further Study ...................................117 REFERENCES ................................................................................119 APPENDIXES..................................................................................131 VITA .................................................................................................142

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TABLE OF TABLES Page Table 1 Average Percentages of Hispanic Teachers and Hispanic Students in Selected Schools in Texas ..............................................57 Table 2 Relationship of the Percent Hispanic Teachers and Percent of Hispanic Students Passing the TAKS Mathematics Exit Level Examination in Sixty Four High School ...........................................58 Table 3 Regression Equations Predicting % Hispanic Students Passing Mathematics TAKS Exit Level Examinations (Dependent Variable Y) Using % Hispanic Teachers as Predictor Variable (X) .....................59 Table 4 Relationship of the Average Percent of Hispanic Teachers and Percent of Hispanic Students Passing the TAKS ELA Exit Level Examination.......................................................................................60 Table 5 Regression Equations Predicting % Hispanic Students Passing ELA TAKS Exit Level Examinations (Y) Using % Hispanic Teachers as Predictor Variable (X) ........................................................................61 Table 6 Gender of Hispanic Teacher Respondents...........................62 Table 7 Ethnicity of Hispanic Respondents......................................63 Table 8 Country of Origin of Hispanic Teacher Respondents .........64 Table 9 Age Bracket of Hispanic Teacher Respondents ..................65 Table 10 Respondents from Immigrant Families (Hispanic Teachers) ............................................................................................................66

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Page Table 11 Years of Teaching Experience of Hispanic Teacher Respondents .......................................................................................67 Table 12 Grade Levels Handled by Hispanic Teachers ...................68 Table 13 Highest Academic Degree Earned by the Hispanic Teachers ............................................................................................................69 Table 14 Path to Certification of Hispanic Teachers .......................70 Table 15 Persons Who Influenced Hispanic Teachers to Teach ......71 Table 16 Subjects Taught by Hispanic Teachers .............................72 Table 17 Recruitment Factors – What motivated you to take your current teaching position? .................................................................75 Table 18 Recruitment Factors – What keeps you in your current teaching position? ..............................................................................78 Table 19 Part 3 – Question No. 1. What do you think about the teaching profession? ..........................................................................80 Table 20 Part 3 – Question No. 2. What factors influenced your decision to teach? ...............................................................................82 Table 21 Part 3 – Question No. 3. How were you recruited into your district?...............................................................................................84 Table 22 Part 3 – Question No. 4. What are the reasons why you chose to remain in the teaching profession? ...............................................85

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Page Table 23 Gender of Respondents (School Administrators and District Personnel) ..........................................................................................87 Table 24 Ethnicity of Respondents (School Administrators and District Personnel) ..........................................................................................87 Table 25 Highest Education Degree of School Administrators and District Personnel ..............................................................................88 Table 26 Years of Experience in Education of School Administrators and District Personnel .......................................................................89 Table 27 Administrative Positions of Interviewed Respondents .....90 Table 28 What are the approaches used by the districts to recruit Hispanic teachers? .............................................................................91 Table 29 What is the impact, if any, of having Hispanic teachers on your campus relating to the academic success of your Hispanic students? ............................................................................................93 Table 30 What are the approaches used by your district to retain Hispanic teachers? .............................................................................94 Table 31 What approaches appear to be successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers?.............................................................97

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CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION Diversity in schools across the nation must be addressed. While the ethnic diversity of the school-aged population is increasing, the K-12 teachers are becoming homogeneous as a group in terms of ethnicity. Increasing numbers of culturally diverse students in the public schools create a corresponding need for qualified teachers who can communicate with students and articulate their needs within the context of their cultures and/or native language (Talbert-Johnson, 2001). It is not necessarily true that all minority students need a minority teacher to become educated, but a diverse teacher population is important in that minority teachers can bring positive images and unique perspectives to their students (Southern Regional Education Board, 2003). Between the years 1989 and 2000, the population of minorities in schools increased throughout the southern parts of the United States. In Texas, the of minority student population grew 11% from 49% to 57% (Southern Regional Education Board, 2003). However, during the same period of time in the southern region of the United States, the number of teachers in the education profession has become less diverse (Southern Regional Education Board, 2003). Since the late 1980s, most states in the 1

2 south have experienced a decline in their number of minority teachers (Southern Regional Education Board, 2003). To proceed efficaciously in educating all students, the literature suggests abandoning the quest for cultural homogeneity and embracing differences in the current society (American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education,1990a). In schools with high minority enrollments, school districts continue to have a critical shortage of qualified teaching professionals. There is a great need for mathematics, science, special education, bilingual and ESL teachers (Haselkorn, 2002). The teacher shortages in these areas could possibly explain why minority students have historically performed worse than white student on academic measures. This gap in achievement has declined only slightly over the past 30 years (Campbell, Hombo, & Mazzeo, 2000). As the number of students from diverse backgrounds grows, culturally responsive education becomes more important. Schooling is, among other things, a social activity. Minority teachers often think that they can play a significant role in connecting with and relating to minority students (Klassen & Carr, 1997). According to Klassen and Carr’s study, most minority teachers believe that they play an important role in connecting with minority students, but they believe that

3 district administration and principals of the school is critical to the institutionalization of culturally responsive education. Statement of the Problem According to the 2000 United States Census, Hispanics or Latinos have become the largest minority group in the United States and the fastest growing, representing 12.5% of the total United States population. This represents a 58% increase in the Hispanic population since 1990 (U. S. Census Bureau, PHC-T-1, 2000). Along with being the fastest growing minority group, Hispanics are also one of the youngest population groups in the United States, with one-third of the population being under 18 years of age (U. S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, 2007). Within the metropolitan area of Houston, Texas, where this study occured, 37.5% of the population is of Hispanic or Latino origin (U. S. Census Bureau, Harris County Quick Facts, 2007). Hispanic enrollment in elementary schools nationwide has increased by 157% between 1978 and 1998 (ERIC Clearinghouse, 2001). In 2001 Hispanic students comprised of at least 15% of the K-12 population (ERIC Clearinghouse, 2001). It was predicted in 2001 that by the year 2025 that Hispanics would represent 25% of the school population (ERIC Clearinghouse, 2001). However, in 2006, those figures actually showed that Hispanic K-12 school

4 enrollment represents 27.2% (U. S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey, 2006). While the Hispanic population continues to grow, the educational attainment of this community lags behind the rest of the population at all levels. Texas Education Agency PEIMS data from the 2006-2007 school year indicated that 21% of the teachers in the state of Texas were Hispanic. However, Hispanic students for the same year represented 46% of the total student population (TEA, 2007). With respect to demographic trends, educational leaders must take a closer look at the statistics. For example, the dropout rate among Hispanic students is one of the highest in the country. Hence, it is necessary to minimize this problem toward Hispanic students’ success. In 2005, more than 22% of Hispanic students ages 16 through 24 were considered high-school dropouts, (National Center for Education Statistics, 2006). This means they were not enrolled in school, and had not graduated from high school or passed General Education Development (GED) tests. The shortage of Hispanic educators plays a role in the educational experiences of Hispanic students. Findings indicate that increasing the number of Hispanic educators positively affects the educational attainment of Hispanic students (Darder, Torres, & Gutierrez, 1997). Because population projections show that

5 Hispanic students will continue to increase, schools must determine the best strategies to teach these students. Research Questions The following quantitative and qualitative research questions guided the study: Quantitative 1. For school years (SY) 2000 through 2007, is the increase in Hispanic teachers proportional to the increase in Hispanic students in Texas? 2. Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit level examination in the core area of Mathematics? 3. Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit level examination in the core area of English/Language Arts (ELA)? Qualitative 1. What factors influenced Hispanic teachers to go into and remain in the teaching profession in select Texas schools? 2. What is the value of increasing the number of Hispanic teachers in Texas school districts?

6 3. What are the approaches used by the school districts to recruit and retain Hispanic teachers? 4. Which of these approaches appear to be successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers? Null Hypotheses The null hypotheses below were generated for the quantitative research questions. H01 There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level Mathematics examination. H02 There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level English/Language Arts (ELA) examination. Purpose of the Study The purpose of the study was to first establish whether the number of Hispanic teachers was proportional to the number of Hispanic students and whether the presence of these teachers influenced Hispanic student performance. It was also to identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic

7 teachers in selected Texas schools. Information from the study will help educational leaders meet the educational needs of all children through maximizing their human resources. Through the use of a survey and interviews, factors associated with effective recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers within selected Texas school districts is described. The study also involved an examination of available data to determine whether the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools is related to the academic achievement of Hispanic students as measured on exit level examinations. This study garnered from Hispanic teachers, school district administrative personnel, and Texas Education Agency data the need for more Hispanic teachers. Qualitative data were used to evaluate methods to best recruit and retain Hispanic teachers in Texas schools. Significance of the Study This study provides useful data for school districts, institutions of higher education, and other governing entities regarding effective recruitment and retention initiatives of Hispanic teachers. This is particularly pertinent within a greater context of teacher shortage; furthermore, school districts may be better equipped to hire and retain highly qualified Hispanic teachers for their students.

8 Assumptions 1. All teachers answered each question truthfully regarding why they chose teaching as a profession. 2. Teachers honestly responded to questions regarding their desire to remain in the teaching profession. 3. A teacher representative distributed the survey/questionnaire to their employees. 4. All employees received the online survey and questionnaire. 5. All employees have access to a computer. 6. All instruments used are reliable and valid. Limitations of the Study 1. Aspects of the study were limited to information gathered from survey responses and the interview responses of the teachers and administrators in the selected school districts participating in the study. 2. The results are not generalizable. 3. Aspects of the study were limited to the extant data gathered from the Texas Education Agency. 4. The study limited the participants to those teaching in the secondary grade levels; thereby, excluding the input of Hispanic teachers in the elementary grades. 5. The study was limited to information gathered from school and district personnel sampled in the state of Texas.

9 6. The study was limited to the extent that participants were truthful in their responses. Definition of Terms For the purpose of the study, the key terms used are defined as follows: Academic Achievement Gap, according to Bowman is: The condition where millions of students (primarily poor African-American, Asian, Native American, and Hispanic) have not obtained the education necessary for full participation in the economic and civic life of the country. Furthermore, the inequality that results from differences in educational achievement of children is likely to make the social stability of the United States increasingly doubtful (Bowman, 1994 p. 1). This is indicated by the increased number of drop-outs and people living in poverty. Achievement Ideology is the belief that “glass ceilings” and injustices will not hinder achievement (Ford & Thomas, 1997). Culture “is the collective programming of the mind that distinguishes the members of one group or category from another” (Hofstede, 1997 p. 4).

10 Dealing with Diversity is to rid of the desire for cultural homogeneity and to seek cultural values as a nation, while at the same time embracing the differences of the entire population (AACTE,1990). Ethnic Groups refers to a group of people who share a common heritage, value system and way of believing, distinguishable by cultural and sociological traits (Baptiste, 1976). Hispanic or Latino persons are of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture origin, regardless of race. The term “Spanish origin” is sometimes used in addition to “Hispanic or Latino” (U. S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, 2002). Minority is a term typically used to refer to United States citizens who are African-American, Asian, Hispanic, or American Indian. For the purposes of this study, the term minority will refer to African-Americans and Hispanics (Author or Source, June, 2008). Mixed-Method Study refers to a research design that includes at least one quantitative method (designed to analyze numbers) and one qualitative method (often designed to analyze words). Defined as “the class of research where the researcher mixes or combines quantitative and qualitative research techniques, methods, approaches, concepts, or language into a single study” (Johnson & Onwuegbuzie, 2004, p. 17).

11 Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) testing “refers to a standardized test used in Texas primary and secondary schools to assess students’ attainment of reading, writing, math, science, and social studies skills required under Texas education standards”. Although created before the No Child Left Behind Act was passed, it complies with the law. It replaced the previous test called the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills or TAAS, in 2003 (Texas Education Agency, 2007). Teacher Retention refers to the proportion of teachers in one year who are still teaching in the same school the following school year (TEA, 2002). Texas Education Agency (TEA) is a state agency comprised of the commissioner of education and agency staff. “The TEA and the State Board of Education (SBOE) guide and monitor activities and programs related to public education in Texas. SBOE consists of 15 elected members representing different regions of the state” (TEA, 2002). Organization of the Study This study has five chapters. Chapter I contains an introduction, background of the problem, statement of the problem, purpose of the study, significance of the study, assumptions, and limitations. It also includes the research

12 questions and null hypotheses of the present study. Also, included are definitions of terms valuable to the study. Chapter II is a review of the literature on recruitment and retention issues in public schools. Method for the study, data analysis, procedures, and instrumentation are found in Chapter III. Chapter IV presents the findings of the study in relation to the research questions. A summary of major findings of the study with conclusions and recommendations for further study are discussed in Chapter V.

13 CHAPTER II REVIEW OF LITERATURE The recruitment and retention of minority teachers became significant in public policy academic discourse in the 1980s, out of a concern about the diminishing pool of minority teachers (Cole, 1986). The racial and ethnic disparity between teachers and students was stark. The United States public school population had become more diverse; while the nation’s public school teachers had become less diverse. This chapter includes concepts of diversity in the teacher workforce and the impact that role models, successful interactions, and understanding play in the decision for minority students to be motivated to go into the teaching profession. This chapter also illustrates factors that research indicates as the contributors to the low number of minorities entering the teaching profession. All of these factors together, as described in the review of literature, map the course for historical reasons that minorities do not go into or remain in the teaching profession. The Hispanic Student Population There has been a 5% increase in public school enrollment from 1995 to 2000 in the United States (NCES, 2007). The most drastic demographic change has occurred with the Hispanic student population. This population of students has had a 6.4%

14 increase while the white student population has decreased by 9.2% (U. S. Department of Education, NCES, 2003a). Hispanic Student Academic Performance Trends The National Center for Educational Statistics (2001) reported that low-income children, mostly from culturally diverse backgrounds, begin kindergarten with lower reading and mathematics skills than do more advantaged children. The center further reports that high school reading, mathematics, and science performance is strongly associated with eventual enrollment in a four-year institution (NCES, 2001). The achievement trends of Hispanic students over the past 20 years indicate that their achievement in the three primary content areas is not competitive with the achievement of White students in the nation (Ochoa, 2003). Diversity in the Teaching Profession There are at least three reasons for the Texas teaching force to reflect the racial/ethnic composition of the state: (a) students need role models in professional positions who look like them; (b) teachers may interact, at least initially, more successfully with students who share similar cultural backgrounds and values; (c) diversity in the teaching force may foster students’ knowledge and understanding of different cultures through the interactions with teachers (Kirby, Naftel, & Berands, 1999; Texas Education Agency,

15 1994). Diversity has the potential to foster the teachers’ knowledge and appreciation of diversity in their student population, which has the potential for improving teacher effectiveness. Positive Role Models More effective learning occurs when students see their teacher as a role model (Wehrman, 2002). When teachers are respected as role models, they are more effective instructors (Nachbaur, 2004). Teachers of color can ultimately help minority students boost their confidence level and make them more excited about learning (Dee, 2004). Successful Interactions Gibson (2002) reported that in order for teachers to be successful in their interactions with students, the teacher had to be “both competent in passing along academic information and caring” (p. 201). Similarly, Howard (2003) suggested that students are rewarded by having experienced instructors who share a familiar ethnic background. These teachers can contribute to the students’ sense of belonging and academic achievement. This familiarity can potentially cause significant performance gains. Dee’s (2004) research indicated that African-American students who had an African-American instructor for one school year had a significant three to five percent point increase in math scores and a three to six percent point increase in reading scores.

16 Recruitment into Teaching In a paper presented at the Conference for Teaching for Diversity, Gordon (1993) summed up the complex problem of Hispanic recruitment into the teaching profession when she asked, Can we expect people who have been excluded and then marginalized by our educational system to come forward willingly to participate in a national enterprise to educate this country’s youth? The problem with which we are confronted might be far greater than expected (p. 10-11). Efforts to recruit teachers, traditionally, do not begin until a student enters a college program, but because of the great need and the complexity of the problem, Quezada, Galbo, Russ, and Vang (1996) suggest that the recruitment of future educators should begin much earlier, possibly as early as the elementary and intermediate grades. The survey conducted by Quezada et al. sought to identify the quantity and quality of teacher recruitment programs reaching into the K-12 public schools located within the service area of a university in north central California. Quezada et al. found that only 4% of the 295 K-12 schools studied had any teacher recruitment programs at all, and none of the schools had focused on minority student groups.

17 Barnes (2000) described a program started in 1988 at the University of Iowa (UNI), called Minorities in Teaching (MIT), which encourages and nurtures minority students as they pursue a career in teaching. The MIT program focuses on minority students in grades from intermediate and high schools representing grade 612 and offers four basic components to interested middle school students: (a) an introduction to the teaching profession, (b) strategies for school success, (c) an opportunity to tutor, and (d) participation in a summer enrichment program. The high school students enroll in workshops to help them plan for college, perform community service projects, practice teaching through tutoring opportunities, visit the UNI campus, and take advantage of the opportunity to apply for scholarships and other financial aid. Parental involvement is an integral aspect of the program. An MIT coordinator communicates frequently with the parents of the MIT participants concerning their students’ academic progress. Parents are also strongly encouraged to visit the campus with the students and to participate in the college planning process and financial aid workshops. The support in the MIT program continues into the college experience at UNI, as MIT students are mentored and provided with college enrichment opportunities through the Multicultural Teaching Alliance (MTA), a group of college students concerned about assisting minority students.

18 Yopp, Yopp, and Taylor (1992) described a program for high school students, the Teacher Track Project, this program encourages high school students’ interest in the teaching profession by offering a tuition-free college class. During the course, the students study teaching strategies and best-practices, listen to guest speakers from the university, take field trips to the universities, and are required to tutor high school, intermediate, or elementary students for eight hours each week. By 1992, at least 205 students had participated in the one-semester class, and 45% of students indicated that the class was the most influential determinant of their decision to become a teacher. In order to identify which program components helped to increase the number of minority students who entered and remained in the teaching profession, Gonzalez (1997) documented the views of students who participated in six special recruitment programs. According to Gonzalez (1997), the following eight components were viewed as being most important: (1) professors and mentors are caring and involved, (2) peer members actively recruit, (3) support and activities help to ease transition into college, (4) faculty members monitor participant progress regularly, (5) student self-reliance and acceptance of responsibility are encouraged, (6) high standards are set and then participants are given the necessary support to meet these standards, (7) mediation

19 assistance with college offices and help with necessary paperwork are provided, and (8) a more positive view of the teaching profession is promoted. Middleton, Mason, Stilwell, and Parker (1998) reported on a Hispanic teacher recruitment model that emphasized an integrated and broad approach. Their program design included these major factors: (a) cooperation and coordination among school, campus, and community groups; (b) a design that meets the cultural and ethnic needs of the students; (c) faculty and staff training; and (d) a plan for constant program monitoring and evaluation. Haberman (1989), considered by many as an expert in urban teacher education, proposed five key points for recruiting minorities into education: (a) giving teacher aides and paraprofessionals, who already possess college degrees, an opportunity to become teachers while continuing to work in the classroom under the mentorship of a master teacher; (b) requiring universities to provide the equitable support and guidance for teacher recruits as they do for athletic recruits; (c) forming strong working relationships between two-year and four-year colleges; (d) making job sharing and part-time employment a viable alternative for all teachers; (e) and requiring that universities be held accountable for providing effective educational experiences for all

20 students, for providing financial aid, and for having student populations that are reflective of their state’s population. Contreras and Micklas (1993) reported on a program implemented to encourage first generation college students to complete four-year education degrees. Based on the understanding that Hispanic and African-American students would be more likely to complete their degrees if provided with the proper introduction to the college experience, the program focused on providing a bridging experience to familiarize participants with academic and counseling support services. Participants indicated that the beneficial program components were: learning how to obtain financial aid, improving study and academic skills, and becoming aware of campus student activities. All of the programs reported here focus on recruiting more minority students into education and have increased the number of minority students entering the teaching field. These programs combined services and resources to influence, motivate, and support minority students as they considered teaching careers (Quezada, Galbo, Russ, & Vang, 1996). The components identified as being a significant part of most of the programs were: an early identification and recruitment of potential minority candidates, the teaching of strategies for obtaining financial aid, the involvement of family and community members, continual monitoring and

21 evaluation of the program, the teaching of academic and study skills, the early opportunity to tutor or work in a classroom setting, and transitional support between the community college or high school experience into a four-year institution (Mehan, Hubbard, Villanueva, & Lintz, 1996). The Motivation to Teach The available research, although limited, reflects a variety of possible factors as being instrumental in motivating and influencing students of color to enter the field of education. Although research reporting factors preventing or discouraging Hispanics from entering the field of education can be readily located, research on what motivates or influences Hispanics to enter the teaching field is scarce. Su (1996) writes: Despite reform rhetoric on the necessity to recruit and prepare more minority teachers for the nation’s schools with an increasingly large number of minority students, little is known about why or why not minorities choose to enter the teaching profession (p. 117). Teaching, because of the size and accessibility of the profession, may be seen as a possible career choice by first generation college students (Gordon, 2000). After completing studies of minority teachers in three major cities, Gordon

22 concluded that the majority of Hispanic teachers surveyed felt a great deal of pride in their profession. These teachers thought that teaching provided them with a good income, security, benefits, and the opportunity to help others. Many of the teacher’s who were interviewed, including Hispanics, were immigrants themselves and had not yet assimilated the less-respectful views of teaching held by the dominant culture. Teaching had allowed them to move from a low economic status to that of middle class. Many of the Hispanic women reported having to give up a great deal in order to continue their education and were proud of their accomplishments. Hispanic teachers were shown to have been influenced to enter college and the teaching profession by their families (Mullen, 1997). Mullen’s study of Hispanic pre-service teachers reported that the most of teacher candidates interviewed had parents who communicated to their children the expectations that they would obtain college degrees. The families of the teacher candidates were in frequent contact with their children and provided financial assistance, as they were able to afford. In reference to minority students choosing the teaching profession, Mullen stated, “Without exception, participants emphasized the role of parental support and familial encouragement in bringing about their emotional,

23 political, and, in some cases, intellectual capabilities and ambitions” (p. 7). From interviews with minority teacher education students, Hood and Parker (1994) reported that the majority of the study participants chose teaching as a career because they were positively influenced by either a family member who was a teacher or by an unrelated significant teacher. The teachers who had inspired the students to become teachers themselves had taken a personal interest in their students’ academic and social lives. Much of the available research showed that Hispanic students had decided to enter the teaching profession for primarily altruistic reasons. Cabello, Eckimer, and Baghieri (1995) interviewed teacher candidates during their first years in teacher education programs. The majority of the candidates remembered negative school experiences and reflected on the need for more teachers who authentically cared and were willing to listen to students’ concerns. The Hispanic students who participated expressed a strong desire to change things within their own communities and to be of greater influence to the students around them. In their study, Hood and Parker (1994) reported that Hispanic teacher education students had a strong desire to return home to their racial/cultural communities to teach. Viewing the

24 education of children as a personal mission, the participants shared a desire to serve as positive role models for minority students, as well as to inspire them to achieve both academically and professionally (Hood & Parker, 1994). Participants expressed concern that White teachers might do more harm than good when teaching minority students. The candidates did not believe that teaching would be especially financially rewarding but rather emotionally and culturally. They expressed the desire to teach in urban settings and to work with disadvantaged or at-risk students. In a study done by Darder (1995), Hispanic teachers identified the desire to be a role model as an important factor in their reason for going into the teaching profession. Hispanic teachers realize their significance in the lives of those they taught and that it was important to help minority students express themselves and to appreciate their cultural heritage. Teachers shared that it was through their modeling and sharing of culture that Hispanic students gained confidence. Their students had the opportunity to see the teacher as someone who had struggled, persevered through the educational system, yet still managed to maintain his or her own cultural identity. Guyton, Saxton, and Wesche’s (1996) study of minority preservice teachers revealed that the participants’ primary reason for becoming teachers was to be role models, believing that they had

25 something special to offer specifically because of either gender or ethnicity. The exact definition of what constituted a role model differed between the participants. According to the study, some believed that minority children just needed to see people like themselves in professional positions. Others thought that being a role model involved making a difference for children who might otherwise lose interest or not be able to achieve in school. All candidates related that an important component of being a role model was the chance for children to see themselves as capable of achieving. A study completed by Su (1996) of minority and White teacher candidates concluded that the minority students were committed to entering the teaching profession as agents for social change. Many of the minority participants chose to become teachers while working in a school-related role, such as instructional assistant or tutor. Both White and minority students cited practical reasons for becoming teachers: the teaching schedule, the availability of a reliable job market, the steady income, and an interesting career path. The participants also cited a variety of altruistic reasons for becoming teachers: desiring to transform society, giving of themselves through work with children, or having a positive impact on students’ lives. Many of the minority participants, especially

26 those perceiving their schooling experiences as negative due to their ethnicity or language difficulties, shared an awareness of unequal educational opportunities for poor and oftentimes minority children. These participants voiced concerns about the existing curriculum, perceiving a great deal of the material as irrelevant to minority students. These concerns and a perceived need for change were not expressed by any of the White participants. Although limited, the available research reflects a variety of factors as being instrumental in motivating and influencing minority students to pursue in the teaching professions. Pragmatic reasons, such as income, job security, benefits, and vacations attract minority students to the educational field (Su, 1996). Family and parental support and interest influenced minority students. Former teachers, who had demonstrated personal interest in students, impacted minority career choice (Mullen, 1997). In research conducted by Cabello, Eckimer, and Baghieri (1995), it was revealed that minority students have altruistic reasons for entering the teaching field, such as, desiring to be role models, wanting to give back to the community, aspiring to be social change agents, and seeking to improve the educational system for minority students.

27 Factors Contributing to the Low Number of Minorities Entering Teaching There are more studies attempting to find better approaches to recruit minority students into higher education than studies specifically designed to target minority candidates to enter the teaching profession. Both types of studies examine factors hindering minority college students from entering and successfully completing their higher education. In general, the studies identify a number of different hindering factors ranging form personal to institutional and societal attributes. The Perceived Low Esteem of the Teaching Profession College students’ perception is a major determinant of their decision to choose or avoid teaching as a profession. Many academically accomplished minority students are not necessarily drawn to the teaching profession because of the low-status that is often associated with teaching (AACTE, 1990b). In addition, those who consider teaching as a profession are greatly influenced by significant individuals in their life, especially teachers and parents (AACTE, 1994). Berry’s 1989 study also identified the influence of teachers on students’ career choice. He concluded that many academically able students were being discouraged from teaching by their own teachers and by parents who were teachers. A survey

28 of pre-collegiate programs participants substantiates this finding (Recruiting New Teachers, 1993). In addition to perceived low salaries and low occupational prestige as recruiting obstacles (National Education Association, 1992), salaries and working conditions are often least attractive in schools with predominately minority enrollments, where minority teachers are most needed. Changes in the unified salary schedule, benefits, teacher assignment, work responsibilities, and other incentives may have to be negotiated (Murphy & DeArmand, 2003). Thus, districts trying to recruit new teachers may have limited latitude in the ability to shift resources to increase the financial incentives for new hires (Haladyna, Hurwitz, & Painter, 2007). Related factors that hinder recruitment initiatives include restrictive bureaucratic processes, unsupportive administrators, and lack of opportunities for advancement (Darling-Hammond, 1990). Another reason that contributes to the decrease in minority teachers is the reality that academically talented minorities now have more career choices available to them than in the past. These other careers may offer greater financial rewards and better working conditions. This is a critical factor in immigrant families where many potential teacher candidates are first in their family to

29 graduate from college and they are expected to provide for their family. Inadequate College Preparation and Guidance Attempts to alleviate the shortage of teachers have taken place on multiple levels. Some have focused on the attrition rate of new teachers and recommended attention to mentoring and developing new teachers in order to keep them in the profession (Ingersoll, 2001; Johnson, Verg, & Donaldson, 2005). Other responses have centered on methods to attract more beginning teachers, such as providing routes to teacher certification in order to increase the general pool of certified teachers available to apply for positions (NCEI, 2006). Of course, minorities cannot become teachers unless they graduate from college. Education enrollment rates of AfricanAmericans and Hispanics, which had been increasing, were on the decline in 1996 (Archer, 1996). Fewer minority students were entering college because of (a) reduced availability of financial aid (AACTE, 1990a), (b) a perceived non-correlated relationship between a college degree and a good job, and (c) inadequate high school counseling, which left students ill-prepared for entering and succeeding in college (Haselkorn, 1996). However, 2004 figures from NCES indicate that 32% of all students entering colleges are

30 minorities (NCES, 2007). This is a 15% increase in the enrollment of minority students from 1976. Recruitment efforts also influence access to higher education. Programs that target minority pre-collegiate students often provide academic support and advisement and thus, improve students’ chance to enter and succeed in college (Recruiting New Teachers, 1993). Once attending college, economic, social, and cultural factors exert great influence on minority students’ in terms of career choice and ability to complete a university program. Minority students who overcome difficulty to complete their college education and graduate are more likely to enter business industry or health professions rather than education (NEA, 1992). Schools being labeled “underperforming” or “academically unacceptable” also have an impact on the number of minorities and non-minorities wanting to enter the teaching profession (Haladyna, Hurwitz, & Painter, 2007). Their research indicated that many educated professionals are not interested in being in a “highrisk” environment. This finding is consistent with the general knowledge that urban high-poverty schools are hard to staff and with the recent finding of Winter and Melloy (2005) that labeled a school as low achieving had significant effects on the perceptions of potential applicants.

31 Factors Hindering Retention of Teachers Stress The education community has come to realize that the much-publicized teacher shortage does not stem from insufficient teachers in the general population but rather from high teacher turnover. Teachers come and go as if going “through a revolving door”; therefore, there will continue to be a demand new for teachers (Ingersoll, 2001, pg. 499). According to Darling-Hammond (2003), more teachers have exited the education profession than entered the profession since the 1990’s and staffing classrooms with experienced instructor’s will continue to be a challenge. Winter and Melloy (2005) asked 168 preservice teachers and 168 experienced teachers to read and rate job descriptions for schools that differed in student achievement levels (as described by the state’s performance labels). They discovered that the inexperienced teachers generally gave the jobs higher ratings than those of the experienced teachers, and that higher student achievement influenced the ratings positively. Much of this is due to the many stressors in the teaching profession. Aside from ensuring the success of their students and making sure that they are doing their part in helping their district’s accountability rating, teachers have other stressors as well. This idea is consistent with the findings of Liu, Kardos,

32 Kauffman, Peske and Johnson (2004) also interviewed early career teachers and found them worried about being able to afford to stay in teaching. The authors concluded that the most teachers stayed in teaching in spite of the salary, rather than being attracted to it because of the financial incentives. Stress is a natural part of existence and a major source of concern for the teaching profession (Botwinik, 2007). Litt and Turk (1985) report that 79% of teachers mentioned their jobs as a major source of stress (defined in a negative manner) as compared with only 38% of the sample of non-teaching semi-professionals, matched for age, sex, and marital status. The difference of 41% represents a significant disparity in stress perception between similar work groups. Stress has been linked with a variety of physiological ailments including cardiovascular disease, and is implicated in increases in alcoholism and other forms of drug abuse. The literature demonstrates that stress is a significant societal problem impacting the health care, governmental, and legal fields. Stress results from negative experiences between an individual and his/her environment. The vast majority of environmental stressors are not considered harmful; however, the individual’s response to these stressors may be dysfunctional and have negative consequences. Stress, in the form of pain, is an

33 important, functional component of the body’s proper operation. It is generally held in the business community that a certain amount of stress is both inevitable and useful in motivating employees. A distinction needs to be made, however, between normally occurring stress, which serves an important function, and stress which is dysfunctional and may result in lowered motivation, output and negative consequences for the individual. Distress is that form of stress which is debilitating and viewed negatively whereas eustress is that form of stress which is energizing and viewed positively (Farkas & Milstein, 1986). It is the dysfunctions of distress which may lead to burnout and which researchers are seeking to identify and define. The early conceptions of the scientific term “stress” are credited primarily to work by Hans Selye. Stress referred initially to the physiological response to physical “demands” placed upon the individual by the environment. This concept of demand was expanded to encompass psychological, as well as actual physiological demands, as potential stressors. Selye described the resulting response pattern or syndrome. Psychological demands include sources such as, the type of work an employee does and the lifestyle of an individual (Selye, 1974). Much of the research about stress has used Selye’s ideas as a starting point. The

34 concept has been further refined but still provides a basic component in the understanding of stress. Two types of teacher support have been identified by Gold (1996). These are instructional support and psychological support. According to Gold (1996), instructional support aides teachers by supporting their classroom needs while psychological support establishes methods to help teachers to handle stress. Role Ambiguity Role ambiguity is the nonexistence of concise, consistent information regarding duties and responsibilities of teaching and how these duties should and can best be performed. Role ambiguity has been shown to have a significant and positive correlation with increased levels of stress. Role ambiguity may compound the stress caused by role conflict as the information necessary to determine which of the conflicting role demands to satisfy is lacking. According to Schwab and Iwanicki (1982) high levels of role conflict and role ambiguity were positively correlated with increased feelings of emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, critical elements in one definition of burnout. Scholars have examined teachers’ roles through a variety of lenses. Some have been interested in the historical development and persistence of a culture in isolation (Feiman-Nemser & Floden, 1986; Little, 1989; Rosenholtz, 1991; Sarason, 1971) in which

35 teachers work in “egg crate schools” that promote “teacher separation rather than teacher interdependence” (Lortie, 1975, p. 14). Summary and Conceptual Framework The review of literature outlines factors that influence the effective recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers. These factors include: the motivation to teach, the perceived low esteem of the teaching profession, inadequate college preparation and guidance, stress, and role ambiguity. Much of the included literature does not specifically include Hispanics as an ethnic group in the research that has traditionally focused on only Black and White student/teacher composition. A need clearly exists to recruit and retain more diverse teacher candidates. An understanding of why teachers choose to teach may help educators better recruit teacher candidates, specifically, Hispanic teachers. The purpose of this study was to: identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in the selected schools in Texas, determine the impact that Hispanic teachers have on the academic performance of Hispanic students, and identify the internal motivations of Hispanic teachers. Information gleaned from the study may help educational leaders who are committed to meet the educational needs of all children and those who are looking to appropriately use the human

36 resources available to them. Through the use of a survey instrument, this study examined factors associated with the effective recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers within the selected school districts in Texas.

37 CHAPTER III METHOD In this chapter, methods used to conduct the study are described. The chapter includes the purpose of the study, research design, population and sample, instrumentation, data collection procedures, and data analysis. Purpose of the Study The purpose of the study was to first determine if the relationship between race/culture of students and teachers was relevant in meeting the academic needs of students, and then to identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in selected schools in Texas. Educational leaders who are committed to meet the educational needs of all children and those who are looking to appropriately use the human resources available to them may be able to use this information to assist in that effort. The researcher used a survey and interviews to examine factors associated with effective recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers within the selected school districts in Texas. Quantitative and qualitative data were used to evaluate the benefits of having Hispanic teachers and the method to best recruit and retain Hispanic teachers in Texas schools, respectively. The results may determine the level of need for more Hispanic teachers

38 by gathering information from Hispanic teachers, school district administrative personnel, and from reviewing Texas Education Agency data. Research Questions The following quantitative and qualitative research questions guided the study: Quantitative 1. Is there a corresponding increase in the percent of Hispanic teachers with the increase of Hispanic students in Texas from schools years 2000 through 2007? 2. Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit level examination in the core area of Mathematics? 3. Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit level examination in the core area of English/Language Arts (ELA)? Qualitative 1. What factors influenced Hispanic teachers to go into and to remain in the teaching profession in Texas schools?

39 2. What is the value of increasing the number of Hispanic teachers in Texas school districts? 3. What are the approaches used by the school districts to recruit and retain Hispanic teachers? 4. Which of these approaches appear to be successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers? Null Hypotheses H01 There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level Mathematics examination. H02 There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level English/Language Arts (ELA) examination. Research Design A mixed methods study involving both quantitative and qualitative measurements was used in this study. For this study, a complementary design was used. Quantitative data provided information regarding the relationship between the presence of Hispanic teachers in the schools and the performance of Hispanic

40 students in the TAKS Exit level examinations in Mathematics and English/Language Arts while qualitative data gave information on how Hispanic teachers were recruited and retained by the school districts. This included descriptive and correlation analysis of existing data as well as open-ended interviews and surveys. Quantitative data for this research were obtained from the Texas Education Agency’s (TEA) Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) to determine if a correlation exists between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the academic achievement of Hispanic students as determined by the percent of students who passed the exit level examination in the areas of Mathematics and English/Language Arts. Qualitative data were obtained through a survey, open-ended questionnaire, and individual interviews about the various recruitment and retention strategies that currently exist. Quantitative Quantitative research methods were employed using descriptive statistics. Descriptive statistics are defined as mathematical techniques for organizing, summarizing, and displaying a set of numerical data (Gall, Gall, & Borg, 2003). Spatz (1996) further defined descriptive statistics as a number that expresses some particular characteristic of a set of data. He also

41 states that graphs and tables are often included in descriptive statistics. The researcher obtained data from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to determine if there was a correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers employed in 64 Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students from the same schools who successfully passed the Exit level TAKS examination in the areas of Mathematics and English/Language Arts. Qualitative Qualitative data were obtained through a survey that was distributed to Hispanic teachers in Independent School Districts in Southeast Texas. The survey has both a structured rating scale related to recruitment and retention factors and also four openended questions. In order to gather demographic data, section one of the survey obtained data pertaining to personal characteristics and general education/career experience. Section two of the survey consisted of a rating scale and section three asked the respondents several open-ended questions to determine their reasons for going into and remaining in the teaching profession. The survey also asked the respondents how they were initially recruited into the teaching profession. District administrators received a separate set of open-ended questions that addressed their Hispanic teacher recruitment and retention initiatives.

42 The interview component asked questions of Hispanic teachers, school administrators, and district personnel. The goal of these questions was to gather information regarding recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers from the unique perspective of each of these individuals. Pilot Study In order to test the reliability and validity of the procedure and survey questions, a pilot study was necessary. Qualitative Twenty Hispanic teachers were invited to participate; they were not included in the final group of respondents. A test-retest method was used to demonstrate the reliability of the close-ended portion of the instrument. Participants were asked to respond to the survey on two separate occasions approximately three weeks apart. Any necessary changes were made based on the input from these teachers. Frequencies from the emergent themes brought forth by the responses of the 20 Hispanic teachers were tallied and computed. Listing of the categories was based on the frequencies; categories that were most often identified by the respondents were listed first followed by the responses with the lower frequencies. During the pilot study, the survey was pre-tested under three basic considerations: (1) administer the pretest under

43 conditions comparable to those anticipated in the final study; (2) analyze the results to assess the effectiveness of the trial questionnaire to yield the information desired; and (3) make appropriate additions, deletions, and modifications to the questionnaire (Isaac & Michael, 1995). The teachers who participated in the pilot study were not part of the actual, final study. Participants of the Study Quantitative The researcher used purposive sampling in selecting schools for this study. Purposive sampling is based on the assumptions that the investigator wants to discover, understand, and gain insight and therefore must select a sample from which the most can be learned (Merriam, 1998). The participants of the study were Hispanic teachers from 64 high schools employed with the public school districts in the state of Texas and the corresponding Hispanic students from the said schools. With a high concentration of students in Southern Texas, the study specifically utilized data from 64 high school in five school districts in that area where at least 5% Hispanic teachers are employed serving a population of more than 25% Hispanic students.

44 The Texas Education Agency keeps a database that tracks the population of students and teachers employed by the school districts. These data initially come from PEIMS entries and selfselected demographic selections. For this study, the TEA database was used to obtain the number of students and teachers sorted by ethnicity and grade level. These data were used to indicate trends in Hispanic teacher recruitment and retention in Texas school districts from 20002007. The data also included information from the Exit level TAKS examination whereby conclusions were made regarding correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Exit level TAKS examination in the core areas of Mathematics and English/Language Arts. Qualitative The subjects of this research study were Hispanic teachers employed in Texas school districts with a teacher population of at least 5% of Hispanic teachers and a population of more than 25% Hispanic students as reported to the Texas Education Agency. Section one, two, and three of the survey instrument addressed these Hispanic teachers. Twenty-three of the Hispanic teachers were interviewed. School level administrators and district administrators were also instrumental in providing information related to the

45 recruitment and retention process. Ten school principals and five human resource directors were asked two open-ended questions, as well as interview questions related to recruitment and retention initiatives in their districts. The school districts were selected from Texas Education Agency’s Snapshot (2006) data that indicated the percent of Hispanic students and teachers. The TEA Snapshot (2006) data contain the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS) and the Academic Excellence Indicator System (AEIS) data. These data included all information requested and received by Texas Education Agency regarding public education, including student demographics and academic performance, personnel, financial, and organizational information. Given that the researcher has the obligation of protecting and respecting the rights and needs of the research participants, the following actions were done in writing: (1) the researcher informed the participants about the purpose of the survey; and (2) the researcher protected the anonymity of the participants by using computer codes for coded responses. Instrumentation and Data Collection Quantitative Quantitative data were accessed and retrieved from the TEA website regarding the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas

46 schools, the percent of Hispanic students in Texas schools, and the Exit level TAKS passing rate for Hispanic students in Texas schools. Data were organized for computations utilizing the SPSS software package, Version 12. To determine correlation between the variables, the researcher computed the Pearson r. Qualitative The survey with open-ended questions along with interviews, were the primary components of the qualitative data. Triangulation of data collection included interviews of the teachers, school administrators, and district personnel. Validity and Reliability Validity and reliability are the most important components of any research measurement. It includes the appropriateness of the analysis derived from the test scores or outcomes (Gay & Airaisan, 2000). Several strategies were used to determine validity and reliability of the research instrument. A review of literature was completed to identify factors that have been identified as hurdles crippling the efforts of recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers. For the qualitative component, a pilot study was undertaken. The factors identified from the literature review were used for a preliminary survey of a panel of Hispanic teachers. After input from the panel, the survey questions were modified. Content

47 validity of the interview questions was checked by a panel of five selected respondents. Each panelist evaluated the instrument for content, clarity, and appropriateness. A thorough review of literature was conducted to identify the purpose of the study. A test-retest method was used to determine the instruments reliability. The 20 respondents were asked to answer the survey on two occasions approximately three weeks apart. Research Procedures Quantitative Data generated from the Texas Education Agency database were presented in tabular form. The researcher identified trends regarding enrollment of students in Texas school. The data were quantified by ethnicity and grade level. From these data, the researcher identified trends in the employment of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools. This information was also quantified by ethnicity and grade level taught. Exit level TAKS data were utilized to determine if there was a correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in 64 Texas schools and the percent of Hispanic students who passed the Exit level TAKS examination in the core areas of Mathematics and ELA. Qualitative The selected school districts received a letter addressed to the superintendent of the school district requesting permission to

48 conduct research within the addressed district. A letter assuring district confidentially and subject anonymity was sent to the superintendent with a copy of the survey instrument. Due to the confidentiality agreement that was made with the districts, a list of participating districts was not included in the written portion of this study. Only the following demographics of the teachers completing the survey were stated in the study: ethnicity, gender, years in field of education, job position level, and degree level. After the approval to conduct research was granted by the superintendent of the designated district administrator, each participating school campus principal received a letter requesting his or her support and assistance with the study. The researcher identified the possible respondents and sent the survey to those participants through electronic mail. The purpose was specified and a request was made for their participation. They were informed that their participation would help increase the body of knowledge for Hispanic teachers and students. A personalized “thank you” note was sent to each of the participants of this study after the survey was returned. Data Collection Quantitative Data collection for this study occurred in two phases. First, the quantitative data were collected from the TEA website. The

49 information was downloaded into the SPSS software package to calculate the correlations between percent of Hispanic teachers and percent of Hispanic students passing in the Exit Level TAKS from 2005 to 2007 tests in Mathematics and English Language Arts, using the Pearson Product Moment Correlation coefficient. Qualitative Second, the qualitative data were collected. Each of the returned questionnaires was coded for confidentiality and anonymity. This process was used to monitor response rates. The use of this coding system was done for more efficient management of the data collected and to assist in the confidentiality and reliability of the study (Dunlop, 1997). Section one of the survey requested information concerning the teacher’s personal and educational background. Section one consisted of seven questions that were used for the qualitative data. For section two, a Likert-type scale was used and participants were asked to respond to a list of recruitment and retention strategies by designating – VE – very encouraging; E – encouraging; N – neutral; D – discouraging; and VD – very discouraging. In section three, the participants answered four open-ended questions related to their teaching experience as a Hispanic teacher. The district administrators answered two openended questions concerning recruitment and retention efforts

50 geared toward Hispanic teachers in their respective school districts. The last part of the data collection was in the form of the interviews. Interviews involved Hispanic teachers, school administrators, and district personnel to determine their unique perspectives related to the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools. Data from the interviews were recorded using hand notes and examined for specific themes. The participants were asked for their permission for the researcher to audio-tape the session. This ensured accuracy, if they participants allowed it. All data collected for the study are stored in a vault. Seven years after this study, the data collected from the Hispanic teachers, school administrators, and district administrators will be destroyed. Analysis of Data Quantitative This study sought to establish whether there is a significant correlation between: (1) the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level Mathematics examination, and (2) the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level English/Language Arts examination. The trend in average percent of Hispanic teachers

51 and the corresponding percent of Hispanic students enrolled in the schools where the teachers serve was shown in tabular form, indicating the increase or decrease. For the quantitative research questions the researcher generated two hypotheses. These were: 1) There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level Mathematics examination. 2) There is no statistically significant correlation between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas high schools and the percent of Hispanic students passing the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) Exit Level English/Language Arts (ELA) examination. Each hypothesis was tested by calculating the Pearson productmoment correlation coefficient (Pearson’s r); significance level was set at 0.05, two-tailed. This study used the Pearson productmoment correlation coefficient (Pearson’s r). A Pearson’s r is used when both variables are expressed in terms of quantitative scores and is designed for use with interval or ratio data (Fraenkel & Wallen, 2003).

52 For the first null hypothesis, the data drawn from the 64 schools (for the three years included in the study) regarding the percent of Hispanic teachers and the corresponding percent of Hispanic students that passed the TAKS Exit level examinations in Mathematics were inputted into the SPPS, Version 15, to determine if the relationship was significant at the desired level of 0.05, two-tailed. Using the same sets of data, the regression equations were determined for each of the three years under study; the equations may be applicable if the resulting value of Pearson's r was significant. The regression equation may predict the value of the dependent variable (percent Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit level in Mathematics) assuming a certain value of the independent variable (percent Hispanic teachers). For the second null hypothesis, a similar process was followed, except that the core area involved was English/Language Arts. Qualitative Data resulting from the questionnaire were presented in tabular form showing the categories and frequencies. The weighed mean were computed for recruitment and retention factors to indicate how the respondents rated each factor. For part three of the questionnaire, responses to the questions given by the Hispanic teachers, school administrators, and district personnel were categorized into emergent themes. In

53 order to analyze qualitative data, the researcher used emergent category designation, cross-case analysis, and triangulation. Emergent category designation involves taking the data and sorting them into categories of ideas. This allows themes of ideas to exist intuitively based on the data given (Erlandson et al., 1993). The qualitative dimension of the study resulting from the questionnaire was presented in tabular form showing the categories with the corresponding frequencies and percentages given by the Hispanic teachers regarding the four questions asked. After each of the questions given to the administrators and district personnel were answered, inputs of the respondents were identified, summarized, and explained. Cross-case analysis consists of a constructive conceptual framework containing dominant themes and cross referencing these themes to look for similarities and differences (Maxwell, 2005). Summary Chapter III presents the research questions, the research methodology, and the design for the study. Recruitment and retention rates for Hispanic teachers were explored as well as an exploration of relationships between the percent of Hispanic teachers in Texas schools and the percent of Hispanic students who successfully pass the Exit level TAKS examination. Both

54 qualitative and quantitative research approaches were used to analyze data for the study. The quantitative data were sourced as aggregate data from the TEA website to include the percent of Hispanic teachers, the percent of Hispanic students, and the percent of Hispanic students who passed the TAKS exit level examination in the core areas of Mathematics and English/Language Arts in the school years involved in the study. The qualitative data explored findings from the questionnaire and data analysis regarding Hispanic teacher recruitment and retention initiatives in Texas schools. These provided the researcher with the data needed to proceed with the formulation of recommendations. The analysis of the data collected in the study is presented in Chapter IV.

55 CHAPTER IV RESULTS The purpose of the study was to identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in selected schools in Texas. A mixed methods design involving quantitative and qualitative measurements was utilized in this study. Data from the Texas Education Agency (TEA) involving the selected schools were consolidated and inputted into the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software for required computations. Results were presented and analyzed to provide answers to the quantitative dimension of the study. Inputs of Hispanic teachers and district administrative personnel contributed to answering the qualitative portion of the study. The researcher used a survey and conducted interviews to examine factors associated with the effective recruitment and retention initiatives for Hispanic teachers within the area of study. A pilot study was conducted using the survey. Twenty Hispanic teachers were given the said instrument on two separate occasions approximately three weeks apart. The test-retest method produced a reliability coefficient of 0.82. Few questions were reworded according to suggestions of the respondents. Respondents of the pilot study were not included in the main study.

56 Results of the Study Quantitative For the quantitative portion of the study, three questions were asked. The TEA database was utilized to select 40 school districts in Southern Texas where 64 high schools employed an average of at least 5% Hispanic teachers and the average Hispanic student population was more than 25%. Quantitative Research Question No. 1: Is there a corresponding increase in the percent of Hispanic teachers with the increase of Hispanic students in Texas from school years 2000 through 2007? Table 1 shows the average percentages of Hispanic teachers and students during the different school years included in the study. For Hispanic teachers, the average annual percentage ranged from 6.5% in SY 2001 – 2002 to 8.2% in SY 2003 – 2004; the average annual increase over the years under study was 0.15 percentage points. The average percentage for Hispanic students ranged from 27.8% in SY 2000 – 2001 to 35.2% in SY 2006 – 2007; the average annual increase over the same years during the study was 1.78 percentage points. Compared to the previous year, there was a 0.21 drop in percentage points in SY 2001 – 2002 and 1.22 drop in percentage points in SY 2004 - 2005 for Hispanic teachers. For the population of Hispanic students included in the study, it was only in SY 2003 – 2004 that there was a 2.40 drop in

57 percentage points compared to the previous year. The caveat here is that race/ethnicity is a self-report measure. Some respondents may be multi-racial as well.

Table 1 Average Percentages of Hispanic Teachers and Hispanic Students in Selected Schools in Texas School Year 2002-2001 2001-2002 2002-2003 2003-2004 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 Avg. Inc/Dec % Hispanic Teachers 6.67 6.46 7.56 8.24 8.57 8.99 9.54 Inc/Dec _ -0.21 1.10 0.68 0.33 0.42 0.55 0.48 % Hispanic Students 27.79 29.04 34.46 32.06 32.22 33.81 35.16 Inc/Dec _ 1.25 5.42 -2.40 0.16 1.59 1.35 1.23

Quantitative Research Question No. 2: Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in the core area of Mathematics? Table 2 shows the average percentages of Hispanic teachers and the corresponding average percentages of Hispanic students

58 who passed the TAKS Exit Level examination in Mathematics. All Pearson r values are negative. The results of r = – 0.372 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.418 for SY 2005 – 2006 are significant. It is difficult to explain why the negative correlations; possibly due to the situation where only 22.5% of the Hispanic teachers were handling Mathematics. See Table 4.14. When the percentage of Hispanic teachers increased, the additional teachers possibly handled other subjects, not Mathematics. For negative or inverse correlation to happen, when one set of values for one variable increases, the other set of values of the other variable decreases or vice versa.

Table 2 Relationship of the Percent Hispanic Teachers and Percent of Hispanic Students Passing the TAKS Mathematics Exit Level Examination in Sixty Four High Schools __________________________________________________________________ School Year % Hispanic % Hispanic Pearson r Teachers Students (N=64) Passing TAKS __________________________________________________________________ 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 7.02 7.46 7.56 79.81 75.25 75.61 - 0.37 *

- 0.418 * - 0.229 **

* Significant at 0.05 level, two-tailed **Not Significant __________________________________________________________________

59 Table 3 shows the regression equations which may be utilized to predict the percent of Hispanic students that may pass the Mathematics TAKS Exit level examination, given the percent Hispanic teachers.

Table 3 Regression Equations Predicting % Hispanic Students Passing Mathematics TAKS Exit Level Examinations (Dependent Variable Y) Using % Hispanic Teachers as Predictor Variable (X) __________________________________________________________________ School Year % Hispanic % Hispanic Regression Teachers Students Equation (N=64) Passing TAKS __________________________________________________________________ 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 7.02 7.46 7.56 79.81 75.25 75.61 Y = 86.116 – 0.898X Y = 83.172 – 1.062X Y = 80.054 – 0.588X*

*May not be applicable since Pearson r = - 0.229 is not significant __________________________________________________________________

Quantitative Question No. 3: Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in the core area of English/Language Arts? Table 4 displays the average percentages of Hispanic teachers and the corresponding average percentages of Hispanic

60 students who passed the TAKS Exit Level Examination in English/Language Arts. For SY 2004– 2005, the relationship of r = - 0.328 between the 7.02% average Hispanic teachers and the 84.56% average Hispanic students who passed the Exit Level examination in ELA was significant. The r-value of – 0.520 for SY 2005 – 2006 was also significant. The increase in the percentages of Hispanic teachers did not significantly affect the percentages of Hispanic students who passed the ELA Exit Level TAKS examinations in SY 2006 – 2007. The number of Hispanic teachers who accounted for the increase may not have handled subjects involving the ELA TAKS test.

Table 4 Relationship of the Average Percent of Hispanic Teachers and Percent of Hispanic Students Passing the TAKS ELA Exit Level Examination __________________________________________________________________ School Year % Hispanic % Hispanic Pearson r Teachers Students (N=64) Passing TAKS __________________________________________________________________ 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 7.02 7.46 7.56 84.56 85.19 86.50 - 0.328 - 0.520 - 0.098 * * **

* Significant at 0.05 level, two-tailed **Not Significant __________________________________________________________________

61 Table 5 shows the regression equations which may be used to predict the percent of Hispanic students that may pass the Reading/ELA TAKS Exit level examination, assuming the percent of Hispanic teachers.

Table 5 Regression Equations Predicting % Hispanic Students Passing ELA TAKS Exit Level Examinations (Y) Using % Hispanic Teachers as Predictor Variable (X) __________________________________________________________________ School Year % Hispanic % Hispanic Regression Teachers Students Equation (N=64) Passing TAKS __________________________________________________________________ 2004-2005 2005-2006 2006-2007 7.02 7.46 7.56 84.56 85.19 86.50 Y = 89.803 – 0.746X Y = 92.730 – 1.011X Y = 87.757 – 0.166X*

*May not be applicable since Pearson r = - 0.098 is not significant __________________________________________________________________

Qualitative For the qualitative portion of the study, 40 Hispanic teachers answered three portions of the survey. Part one requested background information regarding the Hispanic teachers. This information included: gender, ethnicity, country of origin, whether coming from an immigrant family, years of teaching experience,

62 grade levels taught, highest academic degree earned, how did they attain teaching certificate, who influenced their decision to teach and subjects taught. Part two required the respondents to rate motivating factors identified by the researcher as being associated with the recruitment and retention of teachers. Part three requested comments of the Hispanic teachers regarding the teaching profession, what factors influenced their decision to teach, how they were recruited into the district and what reasons they have for remaining in their teaching profession. Table 6 shows that of the 40 Hispanic teachers who responded to the survey, 65% were female and 35% were male. Table 6 Gender of Hispanic Teacher Respondents Gender Female Male Total Frequency 26 14 40 % 65.0 35.0 100.0

63 Table 7 shows that 72.5% of the respondents were Hispanic in ethnicity. The remaining 27.5% of the Hispanic teachers were Mexican American, Mexican or Cuban.

Table 7 Ethnicity of Hispanic Respondents __________________________________________________________________ Ethnic Group Frequency % __________________________________________________________________ Hispanic Mexican-American Mexican Cuban Total 26 14 4 1 40 72.5 15.0 10.0 2.5 100.0

Of the 40 respondents, 30% of the Hispanic teachers were born in the United States; another 30% came from Mexico, 10% from Puerto Rico and 7.5% from Cuba. The remaining 22.5% came from 11 other countries; one respondent from each country (Panama, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Peru, Spain, Argentina, Nicaragua, Chile and Colombia). Table 8 shows the country of origin of the respondents.

64 Table 8 Country of Origin of Hispanic Teacher Respondents Country United States Mexico Puerto Rico Cuba Panama Dominican Republic Costa Rica Peru Spain Argentina Nicaragua Chile Colombia Total Frequency 12 12 4 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 40 % 30.0 30.0 10.0 7.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 2.5 100.0

65 It is shown in Table 9 that 55% of the respondents were 35 years old or younger; 10% of the Hispanic teachers were older than 50 years old. The remaining 35% were between 35 years old and 50 years old. The average age was around 33 years old. Table 9 Age Bracket of Hispanic Teacher Respondents Age (years) 21-25 26-30 31-35 36-40 41-45 46-50 >50 Total Frequency 1 10 11 5 6 3 4 40 % 2.5 25.0 27.5 12.5 15.0 7.5 10.0 100.0

66 Table 10 shows that 26 or 65% of the respondents came from immigrant families; 81% belonged to either first or second generation immigrants.

Table 10 Respondents from Immigrant Families (Hispanic Teachers) Response Yes No Total If Yes* 1st Generation 2nd Generation 3rd Generation Total Frequency 26* 14 40 Frequency 10 11 5 26 % 65.0 35.0 100.0 % 38.5 42.3 19.2 100.0

67 In terms of teaching experience, 27.5% of the respondents have taught between 3 to 5 years. Table 11 further shows that 57.5% of the Hispanic teachers have taught more than 5 years while 15% belonged to the neophyte group that has taught two years or less.

Table 11 Years of Teaching Experience of Hispanic Teacher Respondents Years 0-2 3-5 6-10 11-15 16-20 >20 Total Frequency 6 11 7 7 6 3 40 % 15.0 27.5 17.5 17.5 15.0 7.5 100.0

68 Most of the Hispanic teachers have taught more than one grade level. Table 12 shows that 72.5% of the respondents have taught Grade 10. Almost 60% have taught either Grade 9 or 11. Only 45% (or 18 teachers) have taught Grade 12.

Table 12 Grade Levels* Handled by Hispanic Teachers Grade Level 9 10 11 12 Frequency 23 29 24 18 % 57.5 72.5 60.0 45.0

*A respondent may have taught more than one grade level

69 Considering the highest degree earned, 62.5% of the respondents have earned their Bachelor’s degree. Table 13 shows that the remaining 37.5% further studied to pursue their Master’s degree.

Table 13 Highest Academic Degree Earned by the Hispanic Teachers Degree Bachelor’s Master’s Total Frequency 25 15 40 % 62.5 37.5 100.0

70 When asked how they got their teacher’s certificate, 62.5% of the respondents indicated that they obtained their teacher’s certificate as part of either their Bachelor’s or Master’s degree program. Table 14 shows that 37.5% of the respondents enrolled in the Alternative Certification Program to earn their teacher’s certificate; possibly these were college graduates whose degrees were not in Education. Table 14 Path to Certification of Hispanic Teachers Path Through their Bachelor’s Degree Through their Master’s Degree Alternative Certification Program Total Frequency 18 7 15 40 % 45.0 17.5 37.5 100.0

71 Table 15 shows the different groups of individuals who have influenced the respondents to go into the teaching profession. Of the respondents who indicated the group that influenced them, 32.5% mentioned their immediate family; 30% cited others, including themselves. Other groups referred to by the respondents included their friends (20%) and their high school teacher or principal (also 20%); the remaining respondents pointed to their elementary or intermediate teacher , principal and their counselor as providing motivation for them to join the teaching profession.

Table 15 Persons* Who Influenced Hispanic Teachers to Teach Influenced to Teach By: Elementary Teacher/Principal Counselor Intermediate Teacher/Principal High School Teacher/Principal Family Member Friend Others Frequency 3 3 1 8 13 8 12 % 7.5 7.5 2.5 20.0 32.5 20.0 30.0

*May have been influenced by more than one person

72 As shown in Table 16, Hispanic teachers who responded to the study may have taught more than one subject area. As expected, most of them (40%) handled Spanish. Other Hispanic teachers taught Mathematics (22.5%), Social Studies (20%), Science (17.5%) and English (15%). Possibly because of their background and exposure, 5% of the Hispanic teachers taught French. The remaining 12.5% of the respondents handled other subjects, including one who did some coaching job and another teacher who taught the blind.

Table 16 Subjects Taught by Hispanic Teachers

Subject Social Studies Spanish Mathematics Science French English Others

Frequency 8 16 9 7 2 6 5

% 20 40 22.5 17.5 5 15 12.5

Part two of the survey required that the respondents give a rating for each of the recruitment or retention factors identified by the researcher as important reasons, based on his readings and

73 interactions with teachers and administrators. The Hispanic teachers were requested to give appropriate rating of “very encouraging” (VE), “encouraging” (E), “neutral” (N), “discouraging” (D) or “very discouraging” to each of the reasons mentioned. Percentages were computed based on the frequencies of answers; the weighted means were computed to determine the rank of the reason rated. Since the reasons were stated in the positive, the higher the weighted mean, the higher the ranking. Table 17 shows the nine different reasons identified by the researcher as recruitment factors that may have motivated the Hispanic teachers to take their current teaching positions. Ninety percent of the respondents were motivated by the “opportunity to help others” as their primary reason to go into teaching; based on the weighted mean this was ranked as the number one reason why the respondents joined the teaching force. Another significant reason for going into teaching was “job location” as mentioned by 70% of the respondents; this was ranked as number two reason. The third ranked reason was indicated by 70% of the respondents that credited “salary” of teachers as the reason for joining the teaching profession, while 67.5% became teachers because they “needed a job” was ranked fourth. The “prestige of the district or school” was also mentioned by 65% of

74 the respondents as possible reason why a Hispanic may go into teaching; this was ranked as the number five reason. Other lesser ranked reasons regarded as motivating factors for Hispanic teachers included “size of the district/school” (37.5%), “signing bonus” (35%), “social status” (25%) and “family tradition” (17.5%).

75 Table 17 Recruitment Factors – What motivated you to take your current teaching position? Weighted Mean Rank 10.0 0.0 0.0 2.5 2.5 7.5 2.5 2.5 15.0 3.80 4.45 3.65 3.98 3.18 3.35 3.35 3.60 3.08 3 1 4 2 8 6.5 6.5 5 9

Factor Salary

VE/E 70.0 90.0 67.5 70.0

N

D/VD 20.0 10.0 32.5 27.5 80.0 57.5 60.0 32.5 60.0

Opportunity to Help Others I Needed a Job Job Location

Family Tradition 17.5 Signing Bonus 35.0

District/School Size 37.5 Prestige of District 65.0 Social Status 25.0

76 The researcher had identified 15 factors that may motivate Hispanic teachers to remain in their teaching job after they have joined the teaching force. Table 18 summarizes the results of the survey regarding what kept the Hispanic teachers in their current teaching positions. Similar to the reason for going into the teaching profession, 95% of the respondents indicated the “opportunity to help others” as their number one reason for remaining in the teaching profession. “Job satisfaction” was given as the number two reason for remaining in teaching as indicated by 90% of the respondents. The third major reason of “job security” pointed out by 77.5% of the respondents was followed by another financial reason of “salary” indicated by 75% of the Hispanic teachers. Ranked next to these financial reasons were “working conditions” and “job location” which had equal weighted mean of 3.90. Again, the “prestige of the district” was considered by 70% of the respondents as a favorable factor for staying in their current teaching position. Another retention factor of “professional development” indicated by 57.5% of the respondents implied that the school or district has taken steps to help teachers with knowledge and skills to perform better in their jobs. The next motivating factor also supported the professional growth of the teachers by providing

77 them “mentors” who can give guidance, encouragement and support during difficult or trying times. “Family support” added to the favorable situation of the respondents; a pat on the back or a word of encouragement that teachers get when they are at home has been a positive reinforcement for Hispanic teachers to go on teaching. The other financial reason of “incentive pay or bonus”, “prestige of the district” and “family tradition” have also been considered as retention factors by the Hispanic teachers. Table 18 summarizes what Hispanic teachers thought of the teaching profession. Thirty-five percent considered teaching as a noble and rewarding profession. In addition to this, 17% also realize the burden of responsibility and 13% considered teaching as an opportunity to help others. Other reasons given included the following: love for teaching, practice to help and make a difference in a community and consider teaching as an art.

78 Table 18 Recruitment Factors – What keeps you in your current teaching position? Weighted Mean Rank 4.00 4.78 3.90 4 1 6.5

Factor Salary Opportunity to Help Others Job Location

VE/E 75.0 95.0 65.0

N 22.5 5.0 32.5

D/VD 2.5 0.0 2.5

Professional Development 57.5 Family Tradition Incentive Pay/Bonus 40.0 District/School Size 37.5 Prestige of District Family Support 70.0 37.5 60.0 30.0 62.5 27.5 45.0 50.0 17.5 5.0 17.5 2.5 0.0 0.0 5.0 7.5 2.5 5.0 5.0 7.5 3.35 3.88 3.45 3.98 3.50 3.55 4.03 4.30 3.90 13.5 8 12 5 11 10 3 2 6.5 50.0 10.0 3.35 13.5 15.0 32.5 82.5 10.0 2.5 3.58 3.15 9 15

Administrative Support 67.5 Mentor Community Support Job Security Job Satisfaction Working Conditions 47.5 47.5 77.5 90.0 75.0

79 Part three of the survey posed questions to the respondents to get their views or comments on four key areas: what teachers think of the teaching profession, what factors influenced them to teach, how they were recruited by the district and why they chose to remain in the teaching profession. Table 19 summarizes what Hispanic teachers thought of the teaching profession. Thirty-five percent considered teaching as a noble and rewarding profession. In addition to this, 17% also realize the burden of responsibility and 13% considered teaching as an opportunity to help others. Other reasons given included the following: love for teaching, practice to help and make a difference in a community and consider teaching as an art.

80 Table 19 Part 3 – Question No. 1. What do you think about the teaching profession? Response Noble and Rewarding Profession A Responsibility Opportunity to Encourage Others Love Teaching Practice of Helping Community Make Difference in Community An Art Frequency 8 4 3 2 2 2 2 % 34.8 17.4 13.0 8.7 8.7 8.7 8.7

Hispanic teachers knew what obstacles they had to surmount when they became teachers; however, the experience of being told that they had touched a student’s life may be considered the great reward. One Hispanic teacher said this: “I believe it is a very difficult but rewarding job. I love moments when former students return and talk about how they used what I taught them.” Another Hispanic teacher realized the challenge of creating an impact on the life of students: “Teaching is such a complex profession. It’s the profession that is shaping education and therefore America’s future, molding the skills of our future

81 workforce and laying the foundation for good citizens and full participation in community and civic life.” Table 20 gives the main factors that influenced Hispanic teachers to venture into the world of teaching. Reasons given were similar to what the researcher had identified and were rated in Part Two of the survey. Primary reasons given were: enjoyment in being a teacher and fulfilling (both 17.4%); influenced by professor, enhance lives of young people, follow footsteps of a loved one, opportunity to help others and make a difference – all mentioned by 13% of the respondents. Other reasons include: same schedule as children, an option after being laid off from another job, job location and security and able to coach, the love of his life.

82 Table 20 Part 3 – Question No. 2. What factors influenced your decision to teach? Response Enjoy Teaching Fulfilling Job Influenced by Professor Enhance Live of Young People Follow Footsteps of Mother/Friend Opportunity to Help Others Make a Difference Same Schedule as Own Children Option After Lay-Off Knowledge of Spanish Able to Coach Job Location Job Security Frequency 4 4 3 3 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 1 1 % 17.4 17.4 13.0 13.0 13.0 13.0 13.0 8.7 4.3 4.3 4.3 4.3 4.3

When Hispanic teachers were asked what factors steered them towards teaching, their answers indicated their noble intention to help others. One teacher expressed it this way: “I felt that I would be able to positively influence students and be able to make an impact on young lives.” Another optimistic outlook is

83 shown in this comment: “The fulfilling and rewarding experiences I get from teaching influenced me to be a teacher. It makes me feel great when I know I have helped build and mold our future America.” The methods on how Hispanic teachers were recruited into a district are shown in Table 21. Almost 61% of the Hispanic teachers applied for the job through the district’s website or formally wrote a letter of application or availed of an opportunity through the job fair. Thirteen percent first served as a substitute and then earned a permanent position. Others became teachers through friends who vouched for them or had the opportunity to find a teaching job after moving to the area, possibly because the school is near their home.

84 Table 21 Part 3 – Question No. 3. How were you recruited into your district? Method of Recruitment On-line Application Applied for Job/Job Fair Substitute, then Permanent Through Friends Moved to Area Looked for Something New Near Home Frequency 7 7 3 2 2 1 1 % 30.4 30.4 13.0 8.7 8.7 4.3 4.3

Two Hispanic teachers commented on how they were recruited into teaching for a district; one said: “I found a job posting on the district website. I was called for the interview and received a job offer.” Another teacher had this experience: “One of my professors suggested I substitute teach for his school district. The principal of this first middle school referred me to another principal who hired me for my first full time teaching job.” Table 22 shows the different reasons why Hispanic teachers chose to remain in their teaching profession. Reasons given by the teachers who gave their comments support what the respondents for the survey ranked as retention factors. The fulfilling and

85 rewarding job was mentioned by 48% of the teachers. Supporting this reason was the altruistic view of 39% of the Hispanic teachers that by teaching they are able to help others. Other reasons cited by the Hispanic teachers were to their benefit like getting time off with their family since their school schedule allowed them the opportunity, good working conditions, job satisfaction and security and a chance to do something they liked by being able to teach Advanced Placement classes or coach a football team. Table 22 Part 3 – Question No. 4. What are the reasons why you chose to remain in the teaching profession? Reason for Remaining in Teaching Fulfilling/Rewarding Job Able to Help Others Time Off with Family Good Working Conditions Job Satisfaction/Security Teach AP Classes Schedule Okay to Raise Own Kids Coach Football Frequency 11 9 6 6 3 2 2 1 % 47.8 39.1 26.1 26.1 13.0 8.7 8.7 4.3

86 A Hispanic teacher had this to say regarding staying in the current teaching profession: “I want to encourage the minorities in my classes to continue their education and become leaders in their community. I want to be there for kids who are struggling.” Another Hispanic teacher supported this sentiment: “I believe teaching is very fulfilling and rewarding. I feel so good when I know that I making some difference in someone’s life.” To support one of the reasons why teachers remain in the teaching profession, another Hispanic teacher expressed this sentiment: “I feel that good working conditions, an opportunity to help or mentor young people, and the satisfaction of the overall teaching experience are reasons that I choose to remain in the teaching profession.” A fourth Hispanic teacher similarly said: “I like to help others. I am blessed to have a very enjoyable work environment and my family benefits from the teaching schedule. In the end, I love what I do.” Finally, from a practical situation, a female Hispanic teacher commented that: “It was a perfect ‘mom’ schedule while raising my children. Now it is the comfort zone which every once in while some star pupils make it a great pay-off!” Hispanic Teacher Recruitment and Retention Initiatives Fourteen 14 of the intended 15 school administrators and district personnel provided inputs to the four interview questions given by the researcher. The following tables provide information

87 regarding the respondents. Table 23 shows that of the fourteen respondents, 57.1% were females and 42.9% were males. Table 23 Gender of Respondents (School Administrators and District Personnel) Gender Female Male Total Frequency 8 6 14 % 57.1 42.9 100.0

Table 24 shows the ethnicity of the school administrators and district personnel; 85.7% of the 14 respondents were White and 14.3% were African-American. Table 24 Ethnicity of Respondents (School Administrators and District Personnel) Ethnicity White African-American Total Frequency 12 2 14 % 85.7 14.3 100.0

88 Table 25 shows the highest degree earned by the school administrators and district administrators; 86% had Masters’ degrees and the remaining 14% owned Bachelors’ degrees. Table 25 Highest Education Degree of School Administrators and District Personnel Degree Master’s Bachelor’s Total Frequency 12 2 14 % 85.7 14.3 100.0

Table 26 shows the educational experience of the school administrators and district personnel who responded in the study; they had at least six years of exposure to education. Twenty-nine percent of the respondents had six to 10 years of experience in schools; a similar percentage had 16 years of school work.

89 Table 26 Years of Experience in Education of School Administrators and District Personnel Years in Education 6-10 11-15 16-20 21-25 26-30 >30 Total Frequency 4 2 4 1 2 1 14 % 28.6 14.3 28.6 7.1 14.3 7.1 100.0

Table 27 shows the positions of the respondents who were interviewed on practices of the school or district regarding initiatives to recruit and retain Hispanic teachers. Ten of the 14 school administrators and district personnel interviewed had school responsibilities as assistant principal, dean of instruction or principal. One assistant superintendent expressed his ideas regarding the questions given to them while two directors added their own comments and observations regarding recruitment and retention initiatives involving Hispanic teachers.

90 Table 27 Administrative Positions of the Interviewed Respondents Administrative Position Principal Asst. Principal Dean of Instruction Director (HR/Character Education) Asst. Superintendent Total Frequency 4 4 2 3 1 14 % 28.6 28.6 14.3 21.4 7.1 100.0

After giving information about their background and other characteristics, the fourteen school administrators and district personnel answered four questions on Hispanic teacher recruitment and retention initiatives. Table 28 shows the different approaches used by administrators to recruit teachers to work in their districts. Eightyfive percent mentioned job fairs and assigning recruiters to find bilingual teachers from inside the country and abroad. This practice ties up with the process of how teachers get hired in a school or district – through job fairs and formal application by mail or through a school’s or district’s website. School districts which have websites include a listing of available jobs in their district and the process through which

91 applicants can communicate with the assigned person or office that handles the applications. Table 28 What are the approaches used by the district to recruit Hispanic teachers? Approaches Job Fairs Recruit bilingual teachers here & abroad Newspaper Ads/Internet Recruit Diverse Workforce Equal Opportunity Employer Frequency 6 6 2 2 1 % 42.9 42.9 14.3 14.3 7.1

One district personnel informed the researcher regarding the practice in their district: “Our district conducts international recruitment in South America. Our district also targets recent college graduates in the state of Texas who are majoring in Spanish.” An HR Director gave this strategy: “The Human Resource Department attends job fairs across the state throughout the year to recruit teachers. They also visit college career centers to recruit as well. The district does not specifically recruit Hispanic teachers but does recruit specifically bilingual educators.”

92 Although not so sure, a school administrator offered this comment: “I don’t know of specific approaches for recruiting Hispanic teachers. My assumption would be that Hispanic teachers are recruited through job fairs and media sources like the internet or newspaper.” School and district administrators were asked regarding the impact or benefit of having Hispanic teachers on campus where a sizeable number of students are Hispanic. The feedbacks are shown in Table 29. Of the 14 respondents, 57% considered the Hispanic teachers as role models whom the Hispanic students can emulate and 36% expect to have strong alignment between the Hispanic teachers and Hispanic students. These administrators also envision a campus where there is better relationship between students and teachers and teachers are able to relate realities in life to what they teach in and out of the classroom.

93 Table 29 What is the impact, if any, of having Hispanic teachers on your campus relating to the academic success of your Hispanic students? Impact Role Model for Hispanic Students Inspire Hispanic Students/ Strong Alignment Relate Life Experiences into Curriculum Build Better Relationships Faster Faculty Reflects Diverse Population Frequency 8 5 4 4 3 % 57.1 35.7 28.6 28.6 21.4

One of the school administrator’s interviewed has this expectation: Teachers of Hispanic descent are wonderful role models for our Hispanics students. They are able to relate life experiences into the curriculum they teach. They teach in a way that inspires our Hispanic students. There is an emphasis on relationships between teachers and students on our campus this year. Administration encourages teachers to get to know their students on a personal level. We have found that when a student can relate to a teacher from

94 a similar culture, it will affect the student’s behavior, attendance and academics in a positive way. Another school administrator explained the situation in the school: In my campus there is a cultural and language barrier that is hard to overcome. Having educated Hispanic person could be used as role model for others to follow. That person could also assist in blending parts of that culture into the educational setting, creating some harmony, hopefully. Table 30 What are the approaches used by your district to retain Hispanic teachers? Approaches Partnered with Veteran Teachers as Mentors Competitive Salary/Benefits Provide Stipend/Incentive Program Diversity Training/Support Strong Induction Program Conveniences and Savings for Staying Successful Campus Frequency %

8 6 3 2 2 1 1

57.1 42.9 21.4 14.3 14.3 7.1 7.1

95 A school administrator specified his system of keeping his new, Hispanic teachers: “Hispanic teachers, like other new teachers to our district, are partnered with a veteran teacher who mentors him or her. Second year teachers continue a mentoring program at the campus level with support from the Dean of Instruction and curriculum specialists.” Another administrator favored the financial approach: “I would think that benefits, demographics, a mentoring program, incentive programs and monetary approaches would help school districts hire and retain Hispanic teachers.” Another administrator supported this contention: Stipends are the most successful approach we have and it works temporarily. Teacher who are bilingual (English + Spanish) are targeted in Texas, therefore they can demand more. The stipend sometimes drives the decision for to change districts to become eligible for another sign-on bonus after meeting the requirement of the 1st stipend. Our district has a mentoring program which is used to improve retention rates. Also, we target local teachers and discuss and explain the convenience and saving on gas.

96 Another administrator advocated the strategy of support systems and partnership: I am bilingual and I try to search out other bilingual staff and bring them into an educational partnership. I have asked them to be mentors for teachers and students and take leadership roles in teacher- andstudent groups. The more buy-in and participation, the more I anticipate a long relationship. A final question was given to school and district administrators – Of the approaches or strategies that they practice in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers, which ones do they consider as successful? The answers that they gave are shown in Table 31. Forty-three percent or six of the 14 administrators considered monetary incentives and benefits as successful factors to entice and retain Hispanic teachers in the teaching profession. Taking care of them through the mentoring program and making them feel important and of value are also considered as effective strategies to invite and keep Hispanic teachers in the campuses. Administrators provide the fitting environment to help assure the continued presence of Hispanic teachers especially in schools surrounded by high number of Hispanic families.

97 Table 31 What approaches appear to be successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers? Approaches Monetary Incentives/Benefits Sense of Belonging and Value Successful Mentoring Program Recruit with Another Hispanic Teacher High Number of Hispanic Families Quality of District Hispanic Teacher Support Group Frequency 6 2 2 2 1 1 1 % 42.9 14.3 14.3 14.3 7.1 7.1 7.1

An administrator described his concern regarding the question this way: I think the greatest challenge to retaining and recruiting Hispanic teachers today is salary. Many employers are drastically trying to change their workforce to reflect the society they serve. This makes for much competition between the public education community and the private sector to employ highly sought-after, qualified Hispanics. The temptation, wants, or need for higher salary in the private sector is many times too great for those who want to work in

98 public education. Competition is stiff for qualified Hispanic teachers. Higher salary and benefits, in my opinion, is the most effective approach to retaining qualified Hispanic teachers. Another administrator expressed his views about dealing with Hispanic teachers in ways other than monetary or financial: I think our recruiting efforts targeting Hispanic teachers need to be enhanced by utilizing our current Hispanic teachers, researching the community activities and resources that relate to the Hispanic community and making sure to highlight those events in our recruiting activities. With regards to retaining Hispanics teachers in our district, I feel that the establishment of a Hispanic teacher support group would be beneficial so that they have the opportunity to network with each other and support each other. The district is very large and our Hispanic teachers feel isolated because they are few of them on each campus but collectively they would be a huge asset and support for each other.

99 Discussion Quantitative Research Questions Quantitative Research Question No. 1: Is there a corresponding increase in the percent of Hispanic teachers with the increase of Hispanic students in Texas from school years 2000 through 2007? The average annual percentage for Hispanic teachers ranged from 6.5% in SY 2001 – 2002 to 8.2% in SY 2003 – 2004; the average annual increase over the years under study was 0.15 percentage points. The average percentage for Hispanic students ranged from 27.8% in SY 2000 – 2001 to 35.2% in SY 2006 – 2007; the average annual increase over the same years during the study was 1.78 percentage points. There was an average increase ratio of approximately 1 is to 12 (or 0.15 is to 1.78) when the average percentage of Hispanic teachers was compared to the average percentage of Hispanic students. Quantitative Research Question No. 2: Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in the core area of Mathematics? All Pearson r values were negative; the results of r = – 0.372 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.418 for SY 2005 – 2006 were significant. The null hypothesis was rejected for the results of this specific school year.

100 It is difficult to explain the negative correlations; possibly due to the situation where only 22.5% of the Hispanic teachers were handling Mathematics. When the percentage of Hispanic teachers increased, the additional teachers possibly handled other subjects, not Mathematics. Quantitative Question No. 3: Is there a relationship between the percent of Hispanic teachers and the percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in the core area of English/Language Arts? For SY 2004 – 2005, the relationship of r = - 0.328, between the 7.02% average Hispanic teachers and the 84.56% average Hispanic students who passed the Exit Level examination in ELA was significant. Similarly, the result of SY 2005 – 2006, where obtained r = - 0.520, was also significant. The increase in the percentages of Hispanic teachers did not significantly affect the percentages of Hispanic students who passed the ELA Exit Level TAKS examinations in SY 2004 - 2005 and SY 2006 – 2007. The number of Hispanic teachers who accounted for the increase may not have handled subjects involving the ELA TAKS test. For the results of SY 2005 – 2006, the null hypothesis was rejected. Qualitative Research Questions Questions Answered by Hispanic Teachers: 1. What do you think of the teaching profession?

101 The answers of the Hispanic teachers were in line with the factors they considered as leading them towards a teaching profession; 35% considered teaching as a noble and rewarding profession, while 17% also realized the burden of responsibility and 13% considered teaching as an opportunity to help others. Other reasons given included the following: love for teaching, practice to help and make a difference in a community and consider teaching as an art. 2. What factors influenced your decision to teach? Primary reasons given were: enjoyment in being a teacher and fulfilling (both 17.4%); influenced by professor, enhance lives of young people, follow footsteps of a loved one, opportunity to help others and make a difference – all mentioned by 13% of the respondents. Other reasons include: same schedule as children, an option after being laid off from another job, job location and security and able to coach, the love of his life. Reasons given were similar to what the researcher had identified and were rated in Part Two of the survey. 3. How were you recruited into your district? Almost 61% of the Hispanic teachers applied for the job through the district’s website or formally wrote a letter of

102 application or availed of an opportunity through the job fair. Thirteen percent first served as a substitute and then earned a permanent position. Others became teachers through friends who vouched for them or had the opportunity to find a teaching job after moving to the area, possibly since the school is near their home. Hispanic teachers availed of the normal ways of applying for a job. 4. What are the reasons why you chose to remain in the teaching profession? The fulfilling and rewarding job was mentioned by 48% of the teachers. Supporting this reason is the altruistic view of 39% of the Hispanic teachers that by teaching they are able to help others. Other reasons cited by the Hispanic teachers were an appreciation for the time off with their family since their school schedule allows them the opportunity, good working conditions, job satisfaction and security and a chance to do something they like by being able to teach Advanced Placement classes or by coaching a football team. Reasons given by the teachers who gave their comments support what the respondents for the survey ranked as retention factors. Questions Answered by School and District Administrators: 1. What are the approaches used by your district to recruit Hispanic teachers?

103 Eighty-five percent of the administrators utilized job fairs and recruiters to find bilingual teachers from inside the country and abroad. This practice ties up with the process of how teachers get hired in a school or district – through job fairs and formal application by mail or through a school’s or district’s website. School districts which have websites include a listing of available jobs in their district and the process through which applicants can communicate with the assigned person or office that handles the applications. 2. What is the impact, if any, of having Hispanic teachers on your campus relating to the academic success of your Hispanic students? Of the 14 respondents, 57% considered the Hispanic teachers as role models whom the Hispanic students can emulate and 36% expect to have strong alignment between the Hispanic teachers and Hispanic students. These administrators also envision a campus where there is better relationship between students and teachers; also, teachers are able to relate realities in life to what they teach in and out of the classroom. 3. What are the approaches used by your district to retain Hispanic teachers?

104 School administrators assigned mentors to new Hispanic teachers to guide them and monitor their performance. Advice from mentors is offered to mentees especially when difficulties arise. Fifty-seven percent or eight administrators utilized this strategy to retain new Hispanic teachers. Other strategies advocated by 64% of the respondents include financial considerations like competitive salary/benefits and stipends or incentive programs. Support systems and dialog may also help Hispanic teachers to remain in the campuses where they are currently employed. 4. Which approaches appear to be successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers? Forty-three percent or six of the 14 administrators considered monetary incentives and benefits as successful factors to entice and retain Hispanic teachers in the teaching profession. Taking care of them through the mentoring program and making them feel important and of value are also considered as effective strategies to invite and keep Hispanic teachers in the campuses. Administrators provide the fitting environment to help assure the continued presence of Hispanic teachers especially in schools surrounded by high number of Hispanic families.

105 Summary The purpose of the study was to identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in selected schools in Texas. A mixed methods design involving quantitative and qualitative measurements was utilized in this study. The quantitative portion of the study showed that the average annual percentage for Hispanic teachers ranged from 6.5% in SY 2001 – 2002 to 8.2% in SY 2003 – 2004; the average annual increase over the years under study was 0.15 percentage points. The average percentage for Hispanic students ranged from 27.8% in SY 2000 – 2001 to 35.2% in SY 2006 – 2007; the average annual increase over the same years during the study was 1.78 percentage points. All Pearson r values were negative when the relationship between the average percent of Hispanic teachers and the average percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in Mathematics was determined. The results of r = – 0.372 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.418 for SY 2005 – 2006 were significant. For SY 2004 – 2005, the relationship of r = - 0.328, between the 7.02% average Hispanic teachers and the 84.56% average Hispanic students passing the Exit Level examination in ELA and for SY 2005 – 2006 where r = - 0.520 were significant. The

106 increase in the percentages of Hispanic teachers did not significantly affect the percentages of Hispanic students who passed the ELA Exit Level TAKS examinations in SY 2006 – 2007. The number of Hispanic teachers who accounted for the increase may not have handled subjects requiring the ELA TAKS test. The qualitative portion of the study posed questions to Hispanic teachers and school administrators and district personnel regarding recruitment and retention initiatives experienced by both groups. The factors utilized by the researcher for the ranking in the survey were similar to what the Hispanic teachers, school administrators and district personnel identified as recruitment and retention factors that they encountered or experienced. However, there was a disconnect between teachers and administrators with respect to the value of monetary incentives as a retention tool. Most of the administrators cited stipends and other monetary incentives as a primary reason that Hispanic teachers remain in a particular school district; however, when the Hispanic teachers responded to the same question, monetary incentives were not high on their list for wanting to remain in a district.

107 CHAPTER V SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS This chapter provides a summary of the study, conclusions drawn from the results and information to answer the research questions and recommendations for further study suggested by the researcher. The purpose of the study was to identify methods to assist with the recruitment and retention of Hispanic teachers in selected schools in Texas. A mixed methods design involving quantitative and qualitative measurements was utilized in this study. Summary The quantitative portion of the study showed that the average annual percentage for Hispanic teachers ranged from 6.5% to 8.2%; the average annual increase over the years under study was 0.15 percentage points. The average percentage for Hispanic students ranged from 27.8% to 35.2%; the average annual increase over the same years under the study was 1.78 percentage points. When the relationship between the average percent of Hispanic teachers and the average percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in Mathematics was determined for the three years under study, all Pearson r values were negative. The results of r = – 0.372 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r =

108 - 0.418 for SY 2005 – 2006 were significant at 0.05 level, twotailed. Likewise, when the relationship between the average percent of Hispanic teachers and the average percent of Hispanic students passing the TAKS Exit Level examination in English/Language Arts was determined for the three years under study, all Pearson r values were also negative. The results of r = – 0.328 for SY 2004 – 2005 and r = - 0.520 were significant at 0.05 level, two-tailed. The qualitative portion of the study posed questions to Hispanic teachers and school administrators and district personnel regarding recruitment and retention initiatives experienced by both groups. Forty Hispanic teachers answered the survey and 14 school and district administrators were interviewed. Of the nine motivating factors advanced by the researcher in terms of recruiting Hispanic teachers, the top five ranked by the Hispanic teachers were: opportunity to help others, job location, salary, needed a job and prestige of the district or school. The researcher had identified 15 factors that may motivate Hispanic teachers to remain in their teaching job after they have joined the teaching force. Results of the rating done by the Hispanic teachers identified the top five reasons: opportunity to help others, job satisfaction, job security, salary and working conditions.

109 When asked what they thought of teaching, the Hispanic teachers considered teaching as a noble and rewarding profession, at the same time realized that teaching is a major responsibility and an opportunity to help others. Hispanic teachers joined the field of education because they saw enjoyment in being a teacher and considered it as a fulfilling undertaking. Or they could have been influenced by their professors or members of the family. They also considered following the footsteps of a loved one because they saw the opportunity to help others and realized the challenge of how they can enhance the lives of young people. In order to be hired as a teacher, Hispanic candidates applied for the job through the district’s website or formally wrote a letter of application or availed of an opportunity through the job fair. What motivated Hispanic teachers to remain in the teaching profession was due to their experience where they saw an avenue to help others, especially the young students under their tutelage and care. They also came across ways they can help themselves with their modest earnings and opportunity to enjoy life with their family. School and district administrators reinforced the recruitment process given by the Hispanic teachers. Entry to a teaching job

110 was through the normal process of applying and being selected after some sort of interview and examination of documents. School and district administrators hope that Hispanic teachers become role models whom the Hispanic students can emulate and may result to a strong alignment between the Hispanic teachers and Hispanic students. These administrators also envision a campus where there is better relationship between students and teachers; also, teachers are able to relate realities in life to what they teach in and out of the classroom. School administrators assigned mentors to new Hispanic teachers to guide them and monitor their performance. Advice from mentors is offered to mentees especially when difficulties arise. Retention factors may include financial considerations like competitive salary/benefits and stipends or incentive programs. Support systems and dialog may also help Hispanic teachers to remain in the campuses where they are currently employed. Although Hispanic teachers did not rate monetary incentives as a primary reason for remaining in a district, school and district personnel considered monetary incentives and benefits as successful factors to entice and retain Hispanic teachers in the teaching profession. Taking care of them through the mentoring program and making them feel important and of value are also

111 considered as effective strategies to invite and keep Hispanic teachers in the campuses. Conclusions After analyzing the results of the study, this researcher arrives at the following conclusions: 1. The increase of Hispanic teachers in the selected Texas

schools did not significantly affect the Hispanic students’ performance in the TAKS Exit Level examinations in the core areas of Mathematics and English/Language Arts; the relationship for both areas was only significant in one of three school years under study. 2. Hispanic teachers consider teaching as a noble profession as

shown in their reason for being recruited and retained as a teacher- to help others. However, they also see the challenge of influencing the lives of young people and consider this as a responsibility. Although limited, the available research reflects a variety of factors as being instrumental in motivating and influencing students of color to pursue teaching careers. Pragmatic reasons, such as income, job security, benefits, and vacations attract minority students to the educational field (Su, 1996). Family and parental support and interest influenced minority students. Former teachers, who had demonstrated personal interest in

112 students, impacted minority career choice (Mullen, 1997). In research conducted by Cabello, Eckimer, and Baghieri (1995), it was revealed that minority students have altruistic reasons for entering the teaching field, such as, desiring to be role models, wanting to give back to the community, aspiring to be social change agents, and seeking to improve the educational system for minority students. This is consistent with the researchers findings. 3. Hispanic teachers were employed by utilizing the normal

process of applying through the internet or through the designated offices of the district. Others though may have been selected by recruiters assigned by the district to hire teachers from inside the country or from abroad. In order to identify which program components helped to increase the number of minority students who entered and remained in the teaching profession, Gonzalez (1997) documented the views of students who participated in six special recruitment programs. The following eight components were viewed as being most important: (1) professors and mentors are caring and involved, (2) peer members actively recruit, (3) support and activities help to ease transition into college, (4) faculty members monitor participant progress regularly, (5) student self-reliance and acceptance of responsibility are encouraged, (6) high standards are set and then participants are given the necessary

113 support to meet these standards, (7) mediation assistance with college offices and help with necessary paperwork are provided, and (8) a more positive view of the teaching profession is promoted. The researcher found this to be important to the participants, as many of them were inspired to teach because of a mentor-type relationship. 4. Aside from the altruistic reasons (like opportunity to help

others, etc.) that Hispanic teachers had when they joined the teaching force, they also considered pragmatic reasons like competitive salary, job security, good working conditions and job satisfaction. Although, the majority of administrators in this study believed that monetary incentives were the primary reason for Hispanic teachers to either go into or remain the profession, the Hispanic teachers did not hold this thought. According to this study, money was not the most important factor for going into or remaining in the teaching profession. Much of the available research showed that Hispanic students had decided to enter the teaching profession for primarily altruistic reasons. Cabello, Eckimer, and Baghieri (1995) interviewed teacher candidates during their first years in teacher education programs. The majority of the candidates remembered negative experiences while in school and reflected on the need for more teachers who genuinely cared and were willing to listen to

114 students. The Hispanic students who participated expressed a strong desire to change things within their own communities. Teaching, because of the size and accessibility of the profession, may be seen as a possible career choice by first generation college students (Gordon, 2000). After completing studies of minority teachers in three major cities, Gordon concluded that the majority of Hispanic teachers surveyed felt a great deal of pride in their profession. These teachers thought that teaching provided them with a good income, security, benefits, and the opportunity to help others. Many of the teachers who were interviewed, including Hispanics, were immigrants themselves and had not yet assimilated the less-respectful views of teaching held by the dominant culture. Teaching had allowed them to move from a low economic status to that of middle class. Many of the Hispanic women reported having to give up a great deal in order to continue their education and were proud of their accomplishments. 5. School and district administrators expect that Hispanic

teachers become role models not only for Hispanic students but for all students in school. In their study, Hood and Parker (1994) reported that Hispanic teacher education students expressed a strong desire to return to their racial/cultural communities to teach. Viewing the education of children as a mission, the

115 participants hoped to serve as role models for minority students, as well as to inspire them to achieve both academically and professionally (Hood & Parker, 1994). Participants expressed concern that White teachers might do more harm than good when teaching minority students. The candidates did not believe that teaching would be especially rewarding financially but rather emotionally and culturally. They expressed the desire to teach in urban schools and to work with disadvantaged or at-risk students. The desire to be a role model was identified by Hispanic educators in a study done by Darder (1995). Hispanic teachers realize their significance in the lives of those they taught and that it was important to help minority students express themselves and to appreciate their cultural heritage. Teachers shared that it was through their modeling and sharing of culture that Hispanic students gained confidence. Their students had the opportunity to see the teacher as someone who had struggled, persevered through the educational system, yet still managed to maintain his or her own cultural identity. 6. Diverse groups of students require attention from a diverse

group of teachers who can have alignment and rapport with them, because they come from the same culture and speak the same language. Howard (2003) suggested that students would benefit from having qualified teachers who come from similar

116 backgrounds. These teachers could contribute to the students’ sense of belonging and academic achievement. The research is consistent with the findings of this study. Both the Hispanic teachers and school/district administrators agreed that non-minority students benefit from the opportunity to interact with minority teachers. The interaction with minority teachers will result in an increased familiarity with other cultures. In a more globally-dependent world, students in classrooms need to learn about world diversity, which includes racial diversity (Wehrman, 2002). Recommendations From the analysis of this study, the researcher advances the following recommendations: 1. Create an interactive orientation program where new

Hispanic teachers meet their veteran counterparts for a meaningful exchange of questions and answers about the challenges of teaching. The first year can be fighting for survival, but the years after can be filled with joy and hope. 2. Support the new Hispanic teachers with a mentoring

program where the mentor and mentee often meet to discuss problems and opportunities, so that the teacher finds his or her way through the maze of the teaching world and become a change agent for the benefit of students under his or her care.

117 3. New Hispanic teachers will not only need the support and

guidance of their mentors. School administrators should also give them support and understanding so that these neophytes will feel they belong in a school culture that allows growth and advancement. 4. The path to teaching is not all rosy; new Hispanic teachers

may face certain realities or difficulties that they could not handle. They need the support of administrators and people at home. Families have influenced somebody in the family to go into teaching; now is the time for them to show support. Recommendations for Further Study Based on the results of this study, the researcher suggests the following issues or concerns for further study: 1. A study could be conducted regarding other minority

teachers (African Americans, Asians, and others) regarding factors on how they were recruited and retained in school districts. 2. A similar study could be conducted with a larger sample to

include several districts in Texas. 3. A similar study could be conducted by increasing the

number of core areas in TAKS Exit Level Examinations which Hispanic students have to pass: Science, Mathematics, English/Language Arts, and Social Studies. Also increase the number of years as scope of the study.

118 4. A qualitative study could be conducted to understand how

the presence of diverse teachers affects student behavior and academic performance and to further understand any reciprocal affects on teachers.

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APPENDIXES

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APPENDIX A IRB APPROVAL

133

134

APPENDIX B LETTER TO SUPERINTENDENTS

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September 5, 2008 District Superintendent School District Address Address Dear __________: This letter is to request permission to conduct research in your school district. The purpose of the research is to fulfill requirements for a Doctorate Degree in Educational Leadership from Prairie View A & M University. The title of my research study is “The Impact of Recruitment and Retention of Hispanic Teachers on the Academic Performance of Hispanic Students in Selected Texas Schools.” The research will explore the recruitment and retention initiatives of teachers as perceived by Hispanic teachers. This research will involve gathering data from Hispanic teachers in your school district and will not include any school age students. The respondents will be composed of a sample of school districts in Texas with at least five percent Hispanic teachers. The information gathered from this research study will be confidential and used for research purposes only. A final copy of the research study will be available at your request. The attached confidential survey instrument will be used to gather information for this study. Please review the survey instrument and inform me of your approval. I am also requesting a mailing list of possible participants or a list of campuses where the survey instrument may be distributed by the campus principal to random participants. All information and collection procedures will be in strict adherence to the Institutional Review Board (IRB) policy. If you need any further information, please contact me at (713) 446-6931 or (281) 284-2331. Thank you for your professional consideration of this matter. Sincerely, Robert M. Branch Graduate Student

Prairie View A & M University

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APPENDIX C SURVEY

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Teacher Recruitment and Retention Initiatives Survey Background Information

Part One: Please check/list the appropriate response(s) for each item:
1. Gender: _____ a. Female _____ b. Male 2. Ethnicity _____________________________ 3. Country of Origin _____________________ 4. Age ______ 5. Are you from an immigrant family? _____a. Yes _____b. No If Yes, please list how many generation of immigrants (i.e. 1st generation, 2nd generation, etc.). ____________________________ 6. Years of teaching experience: _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ a. b. c. d. e. f. 0–2 3–5 6 – 10 11 – 15 16 – 20 20 +

7. Grade Level(s) for which you teach: (Check all that apply) _____ _____ _____ _____ a. 9 b. 10 c. 11 d. 12

8. Highest academic degree earned: _____ a. Bachelors _____ b. Masters _____ c. Doctorate

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9. How did you attain your teaching certificate: _____ a. Through my bachelors degree _____ b. As a part of a graduate degree/program _____ c. I completed an alternative certification program 10. Who influenced your decision to teach: (check all that apply) _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ a. elementary teacher b. elementary principal e. intermediate principal g. high school principal i. friend _____ _____ _____ _____ _____ b. counselor d. intermediate teacher f. high school teacher h. a member of my family j. other__________________

11. What subjects have you taught? ____________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________

139 Recruitment and Retention of Teachers: Motivating Factors Part Two: The following items represent various factors that influence
the recruitment and retention of teachers. Please rate each factor as you regard its relative degree of encouragement for considering entering and remaining in your current teaching position. Place the appropriate letter(s) in the space provided to the left of each number. All surveys will remain anonymous.

Ratings:

VE E N

very encouraging encouraging neutral

D VD

discouraging very discouraging

Recruitment Factors ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ 1. 3. 5. 7. 9.

What motivated you to take your current teaching position?

Salary I needed a job Family Tradition Size of District/School Social Status

____ 2. Opportunity to help others ____ 4. Job Location ____ 6. Signing Bonus ____ 8. Prestige of District 10.Other___________________

Retention Factors ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____ ____

What keeps you in your current teaching position?

1. Salary 3. Job Location 5. Family Tradition 7. Size of District/School 9. Family Support 11. Mentor 13. Job Security 15. Working Conditions

____ 2. Opportunity to help others ____ 4. Professional Development ____ 6. Incentive Pay/Bonus ____ 8. Prestige of District ____ 10. Administrative Support ____ 12. Community Support ____ 14. Job Satisfaction 16. Other___________________

140 Part Three: This portion of questions is intended for you to elaborate
and thoroughly explain your responses. This information will remain confidential and responses will remain anonymous.

1. What do you think about the teaching profession?

2. What factors influenced your decision to teach?

3. How were you recruited into your district?

4. What are the reasons that you choose to remain in the teaching profession?

141 Hispanic Teacher Recruitment and Retention Initiatives: Questions for District Administrators
Please answer the following questions related to how your district approaches the recruitment and retention of Hispanic Teachers.

1. What are the approaches used by your district to recruit Hispanic teachers?

2. What are the approaches used by your district to retain Hispanic Teachers?

3. Which approaches appear to be the most successful in recruiting and retaining Hispanic teachers?

4. What is the value, if any, of increasing the number of Hispanic teachers in your school district?

142 VITA Name: Address: Email Address: Education: Robert Marcel Branch 11515 Burdine St. #502, Houston, TX 77035
rmarcelb@yahoo.com

Louisiana State University B.S. Communication Sciences, 1998 Prairie View A&M University M.A. Counseling, 2002 Prairie View A&M University M.Ed., Education Administration, 2004 January 2006-Present Assistant Principal, Clear Creek Independent School District, League City, TX. July 2004-December 2005 Counselor, Clear Creek Independent School District, League City, TX. July 2002-July2004 Behavior Management Consultant, Project GRAD/Houston Independent School District, Houston, TX. August 1999-June 2002 Special Education Teacher, Clear Creek Independent School District, League City, TX.

Experience:

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