Today's shifting demographics in schools show that teachers are more likely to be Caucasian while student populations increasingly are Hispanic and African American. This shift has led some teachers -- and some states -- to focus on culturally responsive teaching to better reach students and help them connect with classroom lessons. The effort can be controversial, such as in Tucson, Ariz., where Mexican-American studies courses were stopped in 2011, though analysis showed that students who took the courses were more likely to graduate.

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