BELOIT — The number of minority employees has slightly decreased in the Beloit School District over the past three years, according to data from its 2020-2021 diversity report.
The School District of Beloit reported 22% minority staff in the 2020-2021 school year; 22% in 2019-2020; and 24% in 2018-2019.
According to data from the 2020-2021 school year, 31% of students are white; 30% are Hispanic; and 25% are Black. The there are 6,467 students in the district, down from 6,943 in 2016-2017.
Of the district’s 903 total employees in the 2020-2021 school year, there were 702 white employees, 103 black employees, 83 Hispanic employees, 12 Asian/Pacific Islander and three Indian/Alaskan employees.
Out of the 903 employees, there were 716 female employees and 187 male employees.
The following are the percentages of minority employees per employment group: administrator, 21%; administrative support, 24%; educators, 16%; paraeducators, 47%; security officers, 25%; secretaries 23% and permanent substitutes 40%.
Human Resources Director Tonya Williams said the percentage of minority administrators has fluctuated. In 2016-2017 it was 36% minority. It increased through 2016-2017 through 2018-2019. It went down in 2019-2020 and this year’s percentage is 21%. She said the district had minority administrators resign for employment in other districts and the district will continue to monitor this, as well as recruit from diverse areas to support growth in this area.
There has been a steady increase of minority teaching staff from 2016-2017 through 2018-2019. In 2018-2019, the minority percentage was 14%. 2019-2020, brought a slight decrease of 0.2% followed by an increase in 2020-2021 to 16%.
Due to COVID-19, Williams said there haven’t been any in-person recruitment fairs. Spring is a heavy recruitment fair time, and the district will be participating in them in a virtual formal.
One of the successes of the year, Williams said, was the district signing up with diversityjobs.com which pushes jobs out to a variety of job sites.
“The people at diversityjobs.com have viewed our jobs 699 times this December,” Williams said.
The district includes a question on Wisconsin Education Career Access Network (WECAN) to find out where people are learning about positions so the district can be strategic about targeting diverse candidates.
The district is also using its Facebook careers page to build candidate pools.
“Our software platform is Wisconsin-based and sometimes doesn’t provide outreach outside of Wisconsin. We are using our Facebook careers page, to highlight positions such as paraeducators, crossing guards and substitute teachers,” Williams said.
To increase the diversity of teachers and administrators, the district is networking with a talent consortium which will enable it to partner with student cohorts with students at historically black colleges and universities. It’s a long-term recruitment strategy. With relationships built with students, the students may later recall the Beloit School District in their future career years after becoming teachers or administrators.
Williams noted concerns mentioned in the culture survey will be incorporated into the school improvement plan to help drive staff retention efforts. The district is working on creating a request for proposal to have a consultant come in and review the scope of roles to see if there is an appropriate number for staffing and help the district build a rewards and compensation plan that supports the district’s strategic plan. Williams said the consultant would be able to provide unbiased guidance.