The study found that when students had teachers of the same race as them, they reported feeling more cared for, more interested in their schoolwork and more confident in their teachers’ abilities to communicate with them. These students also reported putting forth more effort in school and having higher college aspirations.
When students had teachers who didn’t look like them, the study found, they reported lower levels of these feelings and attitudes. These trends were most visible in black students, especially black girls.
The authors of the new study, Anna J. Egalite and Brian Kisida wrote for Education Next last year about three different theories of why students might perform better when they have a teacher of the same race and how their study (which was then a working paper) helps illuminate the issue.
— Education Next