NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A new report released by a group of Tennessee educator preparation programs focuses on eliminating the barriers preventing diverse candidates from choosing teaching as a career.

The Tennessean reports the Trailblazer Coalition is led by Lipscomb University, Belmont University and the Nashville Teacher Residency and released its report Tuesday, titled “Fixing the Broken Pipeline: Teacher Diversity and the Classroom.”

The report identified poor perceptions of the profession, a lack of finances and few mentors as barriers, and offered five keys to getting teachers of color in the profession, including promoting more inclusivity in teacher preparation programs and removing barriers to licensure and testing.

The report highlights research proving diverse teachers have a positive effect on student outcomes, including driving down discipline numbers.