Philadelphia teachers say affinity groups are capable of ‘rewriting the structure of education’

Posted by Chalkbeat on April 16, 2024

Can affinity groups for teachers of color help give Philadelphia a stronger, more diverse, and more stable teaching workforce? One education group is putting time and energy behind its belief that they can.

Teach Plus Pennsylvania, the state affiliate of a national nonprofit that trains teachers to advocate for policy change, launched a Philadelphia affinity group network this year that they say will provide teachers with a sense of community, belonging, and understanding in an effort to “diversify and strengthen Philadelphia’s educator workforce.”

Philadelphia public school teachers of color from traditional public or charter schools can join one of 21 teacher-led groups meeting in classrooms, coffeeshops, and other locations across the city.

The goal is to create “safe, culturally affirming spaces where educators of color can develop personal and professional connections that ultimately support and empower them and encourage them to stay in the profession,” said Andrea Terrero Gabbadon, an expert on teacher retention and an education leadership coach with Teach Plus Pennsylvania.

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