Houston-area teachers told us what they need in order to succeed and stay in challenging academic environments. Amid teacher shortages and declines in enrollment to teacher preparation programs across the country, it’s time to invest in efforts to retain teachers of color that improve working conditions and provide opportunities for personal and professional growth that ultimately lead to improved student outcomes.

A new report we co-authored with Teach Plus Texas. Completing the Cycle: Supporting and Retaining Teachers of Color in Houston highlights that students of color are more likely to have better academic performance, improved graduation rates, and to attend college when taught by teachers of color. And a diverse educator workforce benefits all students, with reports of students feeling more cared for and academically challenged by teachers of color.