A Role Model Pipeline For Young Black Men : NPR Ed : NPR: Less than 2 percent of the nation's elementary school teachers are black men. A program at Clemson University in South Carolina is looking to change that.
This summer, at least twice a week, a group of young men — usually in flip-flops, T-shirts and cargo pants — will meet in a tiny apartment on the Clemson campus. They're part of Call Me Mister, a program to train and support black men who want to become teachers. The goal is not just to diversify the nation's teacher corps but to provide role models for troubled black boys.
Like 21-year-old Marshall Wingate, many of the teacher trainees share the background and experiences of some of their students.
"I actually can relate to a lot of kids because my father has been locked up. I remember seeing him beat my mom, and I've seen a lot I shouldn't have seen," he says. "I grew up too fast, as they say."