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Teachers are systematically sorted across schools. Often, schools serving the lowest-achieving students staffed by the least-skilled teachers. While teachers' school preferences account for some of the sorting, school practices are also likely to be a key factor. Using value-added methods, the authors examine the relationship between a school's effectiveness during a given principal's tenure and the retention, recruitment and development of its teachers. Three key findings emerge about principal effectiveness. More effective principals: (1) are able to retain higher-quality teachers and remove less-effective teachers; (2) are able to attract and hire higher-quality teachers to fill vacancies; (3) have teachers who improve at a greater pace than those in schools with less effective leadership (there is some evidence for this, albeit weak). These findings drive home the importance of personnel practices for effective school leadership.
Citation: Tara Beteille, Demetra Kalogrides, Susanna Loeb (2009). Effective Schools: Managing the Recruitment, Development, and Retention of High‐Quality Teachers. CALDER Working Paper No. 37
Using individual teacher and student-level longitudinal data from North Carolina, this research brief presents selected findings from work examining the stability of value-added model estimates of teacher effectiveness, focusing on their implication for teacher tenure policies and making high stakes personnel decisions. Findings show year-to-year correlations in teacher effects are modest, but pre-tenure estimates of teacher job performance do predict estimated post-tenure performance in both math and reading, and would therefore seem to be a reasonable metric to use as a factor in making substantive teacher selection decisions.
Citation: Dan Goldhaber, Michael Hansen (2008). Assessing the Potential of Using Value Added-Estimates of Teacher Job Performance for Making Tenure Decisions. CALDER Working Paper No.
There is little doubt that teacher quality is a key determinant of student achievement, but finding ways to identify and reward the best teachers has proven illusive. This research brief considers the stability of value-added measures of teacher effectiveness over time and the resulting implications for the design and implementation of performance-based teacher compensation schemes.
Citation: Tim Sass (2008). The Stability of Value-Added Measures of Teacher Quality and Implications for Teacher Compensation Policy. CALDER Working Paper No.
This important research explores the effects of district policy interventions on the distribution of teacher qualifications and student achievement. Authors use a 5-year span of individual teacher- and student-level longitudinal data from New York City (NYC) from 2000 through 2005 to estimate the differences in the effectiveness of teachers entering NYC schools through different pathways to teaching. The study finds that the gap between the qualifications of NYC teachers in high-poverty and low-poverty NYC schools has narrowed substantially since 2000, mostly ensuing from the city's concentrated effort to match exceptionally capable teachers with very needy students and the virtual substitution of newly hired uncertified teachers in high-poverty schools with new hires from alternative certification routes: NYC Teaching Fellows and Teach for America.
[Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 27(4):793-818 (2008)]
Citation: Donald Boyd, Hamilton Lankford, Susanna Loeb, Jonah Rockoff, James Wyckoff (2008). The Narrowing Gap in New York City Teacher Qualifications and Its Implications for Student Achievement in High Poverty Schools. CALDER Working Paper No.
This research brief examines differences in teacher effectiveness by school transition status and school characteristics in a large urban school district in Texas, using estimates of teacher effectiveness based on teacher contributions to student learning outcomes across classrooms. This research finds little or no evidence to support the view that more effective teachers have higher exit probabilities. In fact, the study finds that teachers who exit are significantly less effective, on average, than those who stay.
Citation: Eric Hanushek, Steven Rivkin (2008). Do Disadvantaged Urban Schools Lose Their Best Teachers?. CALDER Working Paper No.
Value-added models in education research allow researchers to explore how a wide variety of policies and measured school inputs affect the academic performance of students. The impacts of such interventions are typically quantified in terms of effect sizes. We estimate the overall extent of test measurement error and how this varies across students using the covariance structure of student test scores across grades in New York City from 1999 to 2007. Results reinforce the importance of accounting for measurement error, as it meaningfully increases effect size estimates associated with teacher attributes. There are important differences in teacher effectiveness that are systematically related to observed teacher attributes. Such effects are important in the formulation and implementation of personnel policies.
Citation: Donald Boyd, Pamela Grossman, Hamilton Lankford, Susanna Loeb, James Wyckoff (2008). Measuring Effect Sizes: The Effect of Measurement Error. CALDER Working Paper No. 19
This brief describes estimation and measurement issues relevant to estimating the quality of instruction in the context of a cumulative model of learning. The discussion highlights the importance of accounting for student differences and the advantages of focusing on student achievement gains as opposed to differences in test scores.
Most studies that have fueled alarm over the attrition and mobility rates of high-quality teachers have relied on proxy indicators of teacher quality, which recent research finds to be only weakly correlated with value-added measures of teachers' performance. We examine attrition and mobility of teachers using teacher value-added measures for early-career teachers in North Carolina public schools from 1996 to 2002. Our findings suggest that the most-effective teachers tend to stay in teaching and in specific schools. Contrary to common expectations, we do not find that more-effective teachers are more likely to leave more-challenging schools.
Citation: Dan Goldhaber, Betheny Gross, Daniel Player (2007). Are Public Schools Really Losing Their Best? Assessing the Career Transitions of Teachers and Their Implications for the Quality of the Teacher Workforce. CALDER Working Paper No. 12
This paper explores the relationship between teacher testing and teacher effectiveness using a unique dataset that links teachers to their individual students. My findings show a positive relationship between some teacher licensure tests and student achievement. But they also suggest that states face significant tradeoffs when they require particular performance levels as a precondition to becoming a teacher: some teachers whom we might wish were not in the teacher workforce based on their contribution toward student achievement are eligible to teach based on their performance on these tests, while other individuals who would be effective teachers are ineligible.
Citation: Dan Goldhaber (2007). Everyone's Doing It, but What Does Teacher Testing Tell Us about Teacher Effectiveness?. CALDER Working Paper No. 9
This study considers the efficacy of a certification system for teachers established by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). The authors utilize a four-year span of the longitudinal data from Florida to determine the relationship between teacher NBPTS certification and student test scores on low-stakes and high-stakes exams. They find evidence that NBPTS certification provides a positive signal of teacher productivity in some cases, but it is highly variable. The process of becoming NBPTS certified does not appear to increase teacher productivity nor do NBPTS-certified teachers appear to enhance the productivity of their colleagues.
Citation: Douglas Harris, Tim Sass (2007). The Effects of NBPTS-Certified Teachers on Student Achievement. CALDER Working Paper No. 4
In this paper, the authors use a ten-year span of longitudinal data from North Carolina to explore a range of questions related to the relationship between teacher characteristics and credentials, on the one hand, and student achievement on the other. They conclude that a teacher's experience, test scores and regular licensure all have positive effects on student achievement, with larger effects for math than for reading. Taken together the various teacher credentials exhibit quite large effects on math achievement, whether compared to the effects of changes in class size or to the socio-economics characteristics of students.
Citation: Charles Clotfelter, Helen Ladd, Jacob Vigdor (2007). How and Why Do Teacher Credentials Matter for Student Achievement?. CALDER Working Paper No. 2