LOS ANGELES, Feb. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Leading Grammy-nominee Carlos Santana and the California Teachers Association (CTA) have joined forces to attract Hispanics, African-Americans and members of other under-represented ethnic groups to the teaching profession in California. (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000220/LASU004 ) One facet of a broad-based CTA teacher recruitment program is "Club Ed: Teachers for Tomorrow," which targets minority high school students. TV viewers will soon be seeing an eye- and ear-catching public service announcement featuring the Mexican-born Santana. His 30-year career is at an all-time high with platinum sales surpassing 10 million units worldwide and 11 Grammy nominations in 10 different categories for his latest Arista CD "SUPERNATURAL." Santana was chosen as a widely known and respected artist whose appeal bridges all age groups and cultural heritages. The multi-honored singer/songwriter/guitarist will be explaining California's important need for more teachers of color. He is also issuing a challenge designed to create excitement among Hispanics, African-Americans, Asians, Native Americans and Pacific Islanders about becoming educators. According to the CTA's latest data, roughly 78 percent of California's public school teachers are Caucasian, 12 percent Latino, and 5 percent African-American, with other groups accounting for the remaining 5 percent. Yet, the overall student population reflects a vastly different ethnic mix: roughly 39 percent Caucasian and 61 percent minority. "We are thrilled to have Carlos Santana's help in recruiting new teachers," said Wayne Johnson, president of the 295,000-member California Teachers Association. "His commitment is a tremendous boost to our efforts to inspire more people of color to enter the teaching profession and serve as role models for our richly diverse student population." Johnson noted that having minority young people become teachers sends a strong message into their home community about the value of public education and can inspire children to stay in school and go to college when they graduate. Santana's public service announcement, which is sponsored by two non- profit organizations -- CTA and California Business for Educational Excellence -- is merely one part of the CTA's drive for greater diversity among the state's educators. To encourage students to become teachers, the organization has launched a program that will establish after-school clubs on high school campuses in 15 California cities. The "Club Ed: Teachers for Tomorrow" program is targeting ethnic minority students in multicultural communities, but is open to all youths interested in teaching careers. California faces a severe teacher shortage and will need an estimated 300,000 new teachers over the next 10 years. To learn more about the California Teachers Association and its programs please contact 650/697-1400 or check out their Web site at www.cta.org. The public service announcement was created and produced by Woodenship Productions in Monterey, California.
SOURCE Carlos Santana