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NEW YORK — U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan elicited a collective gasp from an audience at the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network convention today when he revealed that less than two percent of the nation’s schoolteachers were Black and male.

“And we wonder why our boys are struggling,” Duncan said. “We need more Latino and African American male teachers. We need to show these kids that they can also educate people just like them when they grow up.” Duncan used the convention to promote the federal TEACH campaign that persuades male minorities to enter education.
 The program was launched in the Fall 2010.

RELATED: Top Five Things To Watch For At Sharpton’s NAN Convention

Keep us bookmarked for continuous coverage of Sharpton’s 2011 NAN Convention!

Duncan recounted a story from the days after he was appointed to President Obama‘s cabinet in 2008, when he sat down with Sharpton and professed that the civil rights issue of the 21st century was no longer race.

“The issue is education,” Duncan told Sharpton. “We have to do whatever it takes to educate our children and we’re currently failing,” said Duncan.


RELATED: President Obama To Speak At Sharpton Convention Today

Keep us bookmarked for continuous coverage of Sharpton’s 2011 NAN Convention!

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