Graduation date: 2001Racial integration of the Louisiana public school system had a devastating\ud effect on its number of Black teachers. The state has yet to recover from this\ud reduction, as fewer Black college students pursue education degrees. This study\ud reports on whether or not the lack of Black educators has influenced high school\ud students' racial preferences for a teacher. The study's theoretical framework\ud places racial preference within the context of racial identity theory, and filters\ud student response through these lenses. The research project was conducted\ud during the 1999-2000 academic year. It involved 170 Louisiana high school\ud students from four parishes across the state. The student sample consisted of\ud Black, White, and Other participants (self-described) with both genders\ud represented. Qualitative research methods were used for data collection and\ud analysis. Results indicate approximately one-third of students, Black and White,\ud have racial preferences for a teacher. Based on student response, it is believed\ud that exposure to a racially diverse teaching staff may have influenced individual\ud racial identity, affecting racial preference. Implications for university teacher\ud education programs and public school systems are discussed
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