Diversity at a Glance: Educational Services

Authors: Keli Wilson, M.A. and Jon Geier, J.D.

This installment of DCI’s exploration of diversity benchmarks focuses on the profile within the Educational Services sector (NAICS 61).1 In contrast to the Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation sector explored in our last release, which covered highly disparate industry groups, the Educational Services sector includes a highly homogeneous set of industry groups.2 Notwithstanding administrative and operations staffs, educators are the primary employee group, albeit at varying levels of required degrees. In addition to comparing the employee demographics in the Educational Services sector to the general labor force, this release will also draw comparisons to the other sectors that have been explored in this series.3

Consistent with the series to date, the chart below displays the ratio of representation within the Educational Services sector to the representation in the overall labor force. The chart presents the results in a standardized way by setting the representation in the general labor force to 100%. As an example of how to interpret these comparisons, a ratio of 88% Black employees indicates that the percentage of that demographic group employed in the Educational Services sector is 88% of the average Black employee representation in the general labor force. As a reminder, the results are ordered from the highest to the lowest and DCI is only reporting on groups where the representation is greater than 2%.

Diversity at a Glance Week 7 Graph

The Educational Services sector, similar to other sectors explored, has a stark gender gap. Women generally, and women of each race/ethnic category, exceed their average in the general labor force, with White women being the most over the average. Black, Hispanic and Asian female employees are all between 107% and 112% of their average in the general labor force, while White female employees are 164% of their average. Conversely, men of all race/ethnic groups fall below 80% of their average representation in the general labor force, meeting the threshold for underrepresentation using practical significance.4 Furthermore, White, Black, and Asian male employees are between 61% and 71% of their average in the general labor force, whereas Hispanic male employees are only 38% of their average.

In prior releases, we have conjectured whether the requirement of educational credentials might provide
insight into the intersectional comparison of a sector with the general labor force. However, the fact that the Transportation and Warehousing sector and the Educational Services sector have similar female/ male comparisons to the general labor force confirms that it is more likely the type of work, rather than the educational requirements, that are the important differentiator.

As with any comparison to the all-sector average, it is essential to consider the industry groups that comprise that sector. The Educational Services sector includes generally similar industry groups. While female employees clearly are the majority in this sector, within both male and female employees there is a race and ethnicity gap that is the challenge to employers in this sector. To increase diversity, employers in this sector need to be creative in identifying strategies to attract and recruit more employees of color – of both sexes. In order to understand an employer’s organizational diversity, it is critical to identify useful benchmarks to make employment comparisons and, although there are advantages and disadvantages to many sources, the NAICS’ sector benchmark is useful for a high-level comparison. DCI can assist the industries covered by the Educational Services sector with more refined benchmarks to identify and mitigate potential employment barriers.

1 For purposes of these initial and high-level analyses we use the 2-digit NAICS code level in the EEO 2014-2018 EEO Tabulation (5- year ACS data) released by the United States Census Bureau to identify employer sectors.
2 The seven industry groups included in the Education Services sector are: Elementary and Secondary Schools; Junior Colleges; Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools; Business Schools and Computer and Management Training; Technical and Trade Schools; Other Schools and Instruction; and Educational Support Services.
3 Other installments in this series covered the overall labor force, the Finance and Insurance sector, the Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services sector, the Transportation and Warehousing sector, the Healthcare and Social Assistance sector, and the Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation sector.                                                                                                                                                             4 The 80% test is a commonly used method when comparing employment to availability to identify practical underutilization.

Meet The Authors

K Wilson Circle

Keli Wilson, M.A.
Director, Workforce Equity

J Geier Circle

Jon Geier, J.D.
Principal Consultant, Workforce Equity

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