Kitchener-Waterloo·Video

Kitchener high school teacher hopes to see more Black representation in school system

Chris Ashley, a history teacher at Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate and staff leader of the African Heritage Club at the school, says he hopes to see more Black representation in local school boards in the future.

WATCH: Chris Ashley shares experiences and hope for the future

Chris Ashley

CBC News Kitchener-Waterloo

2 months ago
0:59
Waterloo region teacher shares experiences and hope for the future. 0:59

A Kitchener high school teacher says he hopes to see more Black representation in local school boards in the future.

Just over one per cent of employees with the Waterloo Region District School Board identify as Black, while 92 per cent say they are white, according to a workforce census from 2019 that had a 40 per cent response rate.

"It's pretty astonishing when I look at those numbers and the length of time that I have been in this profession," Chris Ashley told The Morning Edition. Ashley has been an educator for more than two decades and is currently a history teacher at Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate.

"I was hoping to see more colleagues that look like me to be teaching beside me."

Ashley, who is also the staff leader of the African Heritage Club at the school, said he hopes his presence in the classroom shows Black youth "that they are capable."

"We have a place in every industry. In technology, in education and in higher education," he said.

"Looking at the studies, looking at the information, the rate of success goes up as those images are put in front of students. That they can be in that position."

Listen to the full interview below:

In a workplace census in 2019, only one per cent of Waterloo Region District School Board staff identified as Black, while 92 per cent said they are white. Chris Ashley, who is a history teacher at KCI and staff leader of the African Heritage Club at the school, hopes that will change in the future. 7:36

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