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Can districts keep good teachers in the schools that need them most?

  • Guarino, Cassandra M.
  • Brown, Abigail B.
  • Wyse, Adam E.

This study investigates how school demographics and their interactions with policies affect the mobility behaviors of public school teachers with various human capital characteristics. Using data from North Carolina from 1995 to 2006, it finds that teachers' career stage and human capital investments dominate their decisions to leave public school teaching and school demographic characteristics play a dominant role in intra-system sorting. Schools serving at-risk children struggle to attract and retain teachers with desirable observable characteristics. We find evidence to suggest that across-the-board school-based pay-for-performance policies have small but significant associations with mobility decisions and appear to exacerbate inequities in the distribution of teacher qualifications.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

Volume (Year): 30 (2011)
Issue (Month): 5 (October)
Pages: 962-979

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:30:y:2011:i:5:p:962-979
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

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  1. Podgursky, Michael & Monroe, Ryan & Watson, Donald, 2004. "The academic quality of public school teachers: an analysis of entry and exit behavior," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 507-518, October.
  2. Murnane, Richard J & Olsen, Randall J, 1989. "The Effects of Salaries and Opportunity Costs on Duration in Teaching: Evidence from Michigan," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 71(2), pages 347-52, May.
  3. Ernst P. Goss & Chris Paul, 1986. "Age and Work Experience in the Decision to Migrate," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 21(3), pages 397-405.
  4. Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin, 2001. "Why Public Schools Lose Teachers," NBER Working Papers 8599, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. David N. Figlio, 2002. "Can public schools buy better-qualified teachers?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 55(4), pages 686-699, July.
  6. Clotfelter, Charles & Glennie, Elizabeth & Ladd, Helen & Vigdor, Jacob, 2008. "Would higher salaries keep teachers in high-poverty schools? Evidence from a policy intervention in North Carolina," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1352-1370, June.
  7. Richard J. Murnane & Randall J. Olsen, 1990. "The Effects of Salaries and Opportunity Costs on Length of Stay in Teaching: Evidence from North Carolina," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 25(1), pages 106-124.
  8. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Brewer, Dominic J., 1995. "Did teachers' verbal ability and race matter in the 1960s? Coleman revisited," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 1-21, March.
  9. Murnane, Richard J, 1984. "Selection and Survival in the Teacher Labor Market," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 66(3), pages 513-18, August.
  10. J. S. Cramer, 2007. "Robustness of Logit Analysis: Unobserved Heterogeneity and Mis-specified Disturbances," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 69(4), pages 545-555, 08.
  11. Charles T. Clotfelter & Helen F. Ladd & Jacob L. Vigdor & Roger Aliaga Diaz, 2004. "Do school accountability systems make it more difficult for low-performing schools to attract and retain high-quality teachers?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(2), pages 251-271.
  12. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Brewer, Dominic J., 1994. "Do school and teacher characteristics matter? Evidence from High School and Beyond," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-17, March.
  13. Monk, David H., 1994. "Subject area preparation of secondary mathematics and science teachers and student achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 125-145, June.
  14. Mont, Daniel & Rees, Daniel I, 1996. "The Influence of Classroom Characteristics on High School Teacher Turnover," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(1), pages 152-67, January.
  15. Donald Boyd & Hamilton Lankford & Susanna Loeb & James Wyckoff, 2005. "Explaining the Short Careers of High-Achieving Teachers in Schools with Low-Performing Students," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 166-171, May.
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