Diverse Hiring in the ICCSD

  • Increasing staff diversity is a priority in the Iowa City Community School District. The District continues efforts to increase the number of teachers of color, and while annual increases have fluctuated, the District is above the State and National averages for staff diversity. 

  • Click here to view ICCSD Diverse Hiring Demographic Data

      Why Focus on Diversity in Hiring?

      • Why Focus on Diversity in Hiring? 

        • The number of minority teachers nationwide is not representative of the number of minority students
          • Currently, racial/ethnic minority students are the demographic majority of students attending public schools in the United States, but less than 20% of teachers are racial/ethnic minorities
        • Statistical projections show that while the percentage of students of color in public schools is expected to increase, the percentage of teachers of color is not expected to rise unless action is taken 

        Importance of Increasing Diversity

        • Students of color benefit from seeing adults with a similar racial/ethnic background in a position of authority
        • A diversified staff reflects the world in which our students will live and work
        • Racially diverse teachers might be more culturally sensitive and less likely to subscribe to biased stereotypes about their students
        • Diverse teachers might also influence the instructional context 

        Research-Supported Benefits of a Racially and Ethnically Diverse Workforce

        Who Benefits?

        Minority Students 

        • Minority teachers can be motivated to work with disadvantaged minority students in high-poverty, racially and ethnically segregated schools, a factor that may help to reduce rates of teacher attrition in hard-to-staff schools. 
        • Minority teachers tend to have higher academic expectations for minority students, which can result in increased academic and social growth among students. 
        • Minority students profit from having, among their teachers, individuals from their own racial and ethnic group who can serve as academically successful role models and who can have greater knowledge of their heritage culture. 

        All Students

        • Positive exposure to individuals from a variety of races and ethnic groups, especially in childhood, can help to reduce stereotypes, attune unconscious implicit biases and help promote cross-cultural social bonding. 
        • All students benefit from being educated by teachers from a variety of different backgrounds, races, and ethnic groups, as this experience better prepares them to succeed in an increasingly diverse society. 

        Source: AST

      Terms and Definitions

      • Diversity in the Workforce

        Below is the operational definition for three terms used to help determine the number of employees of color that the District should be able to hire given the geographic location and the applicant pool needed to fill job openings:

        • Availability – the extent to which members of a racial/ethnic group and women, men, or persons with disabilities are present within the relevant labor market.
        • Relevant labor market – the geographic area in which an agency can reasonably be expected to recruit for a particular job category.
        • Under representation – having fewer members of a racial/ethnic group, or women, men, or persons with disabilities in a particular job category than would be reasonably expected based on their availability in the relevant labor market.

        There are no established criteria for determining the geographic area in which a District can reasonably be expected to recruit for any given job category. There is, however, a general perception that guidelines for recruitment should stretch to school districts beyond the area parameters in which the District is currently recruiting.

      Evidence of Success

        • Increased percentage of staff from underrepresented groups
        • Increased percentage of applicants from underrepresented groups in pool
        • Staff surveys and evaluations
        • Change in Rec for Hire forms and EEOC numbers
        • During the last year, the District has seen an increase in diverse talent at many levels of the organization including
          • The HR team
          • Equity Department
          • Teachers at all age levels.

      Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Plan

      • Goal 4: Diverse and Culturally Proficient Teachers, Administrators and Staff

        Baseline Measures: Percent of Diverse teachers, administrators, and staff, school climate survey data
        Outcome Measures: Increase percent of diverse teachers, administrators, staff, school climate survey data 

        STRATEGY 4A: Increase the recruitment of underrepresented teachers, administrators, and staff. 

        Critical Tasks

        1. Establish “Grow Your Own” program with current staff and students
        2. Expand relationships with universities, colleges, search firms, and other educational programs within the state and nation
        3. Expand advertisement protocol for positions
        4. Maintain diverse recruitment team
        5. Embed equity in the hiring process

        STRATEGY 4B: Increase the retention and advancement of underrepresented teachers, administrators, and staff.

        Critical Tasks

        1. Collect data to inform policies and practices
        2. Provide greater support and mentorship


        STRATEGY 4C: Increase teachers, administrators, and staff use of culturally responsive and equity-informed practices.

        Critical Tasks

        1. Provide differentiated professional development
        2. Provide supports for implementation
        3. Provide equity training for leadership

        View a full version of the Comprehensive Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan