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Changing Labor Market Opportunities for Women and the Quality of Teachers 1957-1992

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  • Sean P. Corcoran
  • William N. Evans
  • Robert S. Schwab

Abstract

School officials and policy makers have grown increasingly concerned about their ability to attract and retain talented teachers. A number of authors have shown that in recent years the brightest students at least those with the highest verbal and math scores on standardized tests are less likely to enter teaching. In addition, it is frequently claimed that the ability of schools to attract these top students has been steadily declining for years. There is, however, surprisingly little evidence measuring the extent to which this popular proposition is true. We have good reason to suspect that the quality of those entering teaching has fallen over time. Teaching has remained a predominately female profession for years; at the same time, the employment opportunities for talented women outside of teaching have soared. In this paper, we combine data from four longitudinal surveys of high school graduates spanning the years 1957-1992 to examine how the propensity for talented women to enter teaching has changed over time. We find that while the quality of the average new female teacher has fallen only slightly over this period, the likelihood that a female from the top of her high school class will eventually enter teaching has fallen dramatically from 1964 to 1992 by our estimation, from almost 20% to under 4%.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9180.

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Date of creation: Sep 2002
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Publication status: published as Corcoran, Sean P., William N. Evans and Robert M. Schwab. "Changing Labor-Market Opportunities For Women And The Quality Of Teachers, 1957-2000," American Economic Review, 2004, v94(2,May), 230-235.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9180

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  1. Flyer, F. & Rosen, S., 1994. "The New Economics of Teachers and Education," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center, Chicago - Economics Research Center 94-1, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  2. Alan B. Krueger, 2002. "Economic Considerations and Class Size," NBER Working Papers 8875, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Peter Temin, 2002. "Teacher Quality and the Future of America," NBER Working Papers 8898, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Hanushek, Eric A. & Pace, Richard R., 1995. "Who chooses to teach (and why)?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 101-117, June.
  5. Peter Temin, 2002. "Teacher Quality and the Future of America," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 28(3), pages 285-300, Summer.
  6. Polachek, Solomon William, 1981. "Occupational Self-Selection: A Human Capital Approach to Sex Differences in Occupational Structure," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 60-69, February.
  7. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Brewer, Dominic J., 1994. "Do school and teacher characteristics matter? Evidence from High School and Beyond," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-17, March.
  8. Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin, 1998. "Teachers, Schools, and Academic Achievement," NBER Working Papers 6691, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Darius Lakdawalla, 2001. "The Declining Quality of Teachers," NBER Working Papers 8263, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hanushek, Eric A. & Rivkin, Steven G., 2006. "Teacher Quality," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier, Elsevier.
  11. Hanushek, Eric, 1971. "Teacher Characteristics and Gains in Student Achievement: Estimation Using Micro Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 61(2), pages 280-88, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Eric A. Hanushek, 2010. "The Economic Value of Higher Teacher Quality," NBER Working Papers 16606, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Gianna Barbieri & Piero Cipollone & Paolo Sestito, 2007. "Labour Market for Teachers: Demographic Characteristics and Allocative Mechanisms," Giornale degli Economisti, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University, vol. 66(3), pages 335-373, November.
  3. Gregory Gilpin & Michael Kaganovich, 2009. "The Quantity and Quality of Teachers: A Dynamic Trade-off," CESifo Working Paper Series 2516, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Roland G. Fryer, 2011. "Teacher Incentives and Student Achievement: Evidence from New York City Public Schools," NBER Working Papers 16850, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Scafidi Benjamin & Sjoquist David L. & Stinebrickner Todd R., 2006. "Do Teachers Really Leave for Higher Paying Jobs in Alternative Occupations?," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-44, December.
  6. Chetty, Raj & Friedman, John Norton & Hilger, Nathanial & Saez, Emmanuel & Schanzenbach, Dianne Whitmore & Yagan, Danny, 2011. "How Does Your Kindergarten Classroom Affect Your Earnings? Evidence from Project Star," Scholarly Articles 9639983, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  7. Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu & Khwaja, Asim Ijaz, 2013. "Students today, teachers tomorrow: Identifying constraints on the provision of education," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 1-14.
  8. Arnaud Chevalier & Peter Dolton, 2004. "The Labour Market for Teachers," Working Papers, School Of Economics, University College Dublin 200411, School Of Economics, University College Dublin.
  9. Grönqvist, Erik & Vlachos, Jonas, 2008. "One Size Fits All? The Effects of Teacher Cognitive and Non-Cognitive Abilities on Student Achievement," CEPR Discussion Papers, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers 7086, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Richey, Jeremiah, 2014. "Divergent Trends in U.S. Teacher Quality: 1980-2010," MPRA Paper 55637, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Grönqvist, Erik & Vlachos, Jonas, 2008. "One Size Fits All? The Effects of Teacher Cognitive and Non-cognitive Abilities on Student," Working Paper Series, Research Institute of Industrial Economics 779, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  12. Clemens, Michael A., 2009. "Skill Flow: A Fundamental Reconsideration of Skilled-Worker Mobility and Development," MPRA Paper 19186, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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