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What makes special-education teachers special? Teacher training and achievement of students with disabilities

  • Feng, Li
  • Sass, Tim R.

Using statewide data from Florida, we analyze the impact of both pre-service and in-service training on the ability of teachers to promote academic achievement among students with disabilities. We find students with disabilities whose teacher is certified in special education have greater achievement in both math and reading than similar students whose teacher is not special-education certified. However, students without disabilities experience slightly lower achievement when taught by a special-education certified teacher. In-service professional development has no effect on the value-added of teachers in special education courses, but non-disabled students whose regular education teachers received special education training exhibit modestly higher achievement. Similarly, the gain in effectiveness associated with teacher experience is greater for teachers of regular education courses than for teachers of special education courses. Teachers with advanced degrees are more effective in boosting the math achievement of students with disabilities than are those with only a baccalaureate degree.

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

Volume (Year): 36 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 122-134

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:36:y:2013:i:c:p:122-134
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

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  1. Donald Boyd & Pamela Grossman & Hamilton Lankford & Susanna Loeb & James Wyckoff, 2006. "How Changes in Entry Requirements Alter the Teacher Workforce and Affect Student Achievement," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 1(2), pages 176-216, April.
  2. Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin, 2002. "Inferring Program Effects for Special Populations: Does Special Education Raise Achievement for Students with Disabilities?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 584-599, November.
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  6. Jason M. Fletcher, 2009. "The Effects of Inclusion on Classmates of Students with Special Needs: The Case of Serious Emotional Problems," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 4(3), pages 278-299, July.
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  10. Thomas J. Kane & Eric S. Taylor & John H. Tyler & Amy L. Wooten, 2011. "Identifying Effective Classroom Practices Using Student Achievement Data," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 46(3), pages 587-613.
  11. Brian A. Jacob & Lars Lefgren, 2002. "The Impact of Teacher Training on Student Achievement: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from School Reform Efforts in Chicago," NBER Working Papers 8916, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Sass, Tim R. & Semykina, Anastasia & Harris, Douglas N., 2014. "Value-added models and the measurement of teacher productivity," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 9-23.
  13. Kane, Thomas J. & Rockoff, Jonah E. & Staiger, Douglas O., 2008. "What does certification tell us about teacher effectiveness? Evidence from New York City," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 615-631, December.
  14. Petra E. Todd & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 2003. "On The Specification and Estimation of The Production Function for Cognitive Achievement," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(485), pages F3-F33, February.
  15. Chingos, Matthew M. & Peterson, Paul E., 2011. "It's easier to pick a good teacher than to train one: Familiar and new results on the correlates of teacher effectiveness," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 449-465, June.
  16. Daniel Aaronson & Lisa Barrow & William Sander, 2007. "Teachers and Student Achievement in the Chicago Public High Schools," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 95-135.
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