JPEF awards grants to organizations for recruiting, supporting and retaining diverse male teachers


JACKSONVILLE, FLA – The Jacksonville Public Education Fund (JPEF) is pleased to announce grant awards to three local organizations in support of their work to recruit, support and retain diverse male teachers. Teach for America - Jacksonville, the Center for Children’s Rights, and The Ones/Los Unos will each receive $10,000 for programs and activities that support the 1,000 by 2025 initiative to diversify the teacher population in Duval County.

Research has shown that all students benefit from having diverse teachers as role models. Several national studies have shown that students of color are disadvantaged by a lack of teacher diversity as they are more likely to be seen as discipline problems and less likely to qualify for gifted and talented programs. 

JPEF, Duval County Public Schools and the University of North Florida announced the 1,000 by 2025 initiative last year and have been working with a group of committed partners  to establish a collective impact model that can be adapted nationwide for recruiting, retaining, and supporting Black male and Latino teachers. The initiative has received more than $1 million in financial support, including funding from the Michael J. Ward and Jennifer Glock Foundation to provide grants to organizations supporting the work.

“We are pleased to be able to announce these grant awards during Black History Month, when we are celebrating Black history and achievements,” said JPEF President Rachael Tutwiler Fortune. “The men in the classroom today are creating history and leaving a legacy for student achievement for generations to come. As our student population grows more diverse, it’s important that students see themselves represented in the classroom and know that teaching is also an option for them.” 

The Ones and Los Unos are Duval County Schools affinity groups for Black male and Latino educators, respectively. The grant will provide additional funding for recruitment and networking events held by the two groups. 

“We are exceptionally excited about the synergy created when The Ones and Los Unos unite to empower each other, share best practices, and ultimately inspire the students that they serve,” said Vicki Schultz, assistant superintendent of human resources for Duval County Public Schools.  “The grant will provide additional resources to recruit, advertise and strengthen the network of support.” 

Teach for America – Jacksonville will use its grant to provide targeted support to diverse male educators both within its program and at the school district, including certification tutoring and professional development opportunities.

“At Teach For America, we know that we can't do this work alone; we need a strong network of partners all working towards seeing success for our students,” said Lakeisha Wells-Palmer, executive director of Teach For America Florida Regions.” We are grateful for the support we are receiving so that we can give back to our teachers by lowering barriers to enter the field of education.”

The Center for Children’s Rights will use the funding for restorative justice circles to cultivate a listening community within the school between administrators and staff, promote retention for Black male and Latino educators through a staff-based culture of care, and engage Black and Latino youth as potential future educators through classroom-based circles with their Black male and Latino teachers.

"CCR is grateful for the support and leadership of JPEF in supporting our efforts to cultivate belonging and care within our school ecosystems for Black and Latino male teachers as well as future teachers - the young men sitting in classrooms across our community," said Betsy Dobbins, executive director for the Center for Children's Rights. "It is a powerful thing to feel both seen and heard, for both teachers and students. We are honored to facilitate restorative practices, with the support of JPEF, that create opportunities for our teachers and youth and move our community forward together towards 1,000 thriving Black and Latino male teachers by 2025."

 For more about the 1,000 by 2025 initiative visit




of public schools in Duval County earned an "A," "B," or "C" in 2021-2022.