Quality Teachers MATTER Teacher quality is one of the most significant school influences on student achievement. (Sanders & Rivers, 1996) The single biggest influence on student academic growth is the quality of the teacher standing in front of the classroom—not socioeconomic status, not family background, but the quality of the teacher at the head of the class. (Duncan, 2009)
Teacher Training Reality Most of our 1,450 schools, colleges, and departments of education are doing a mediocre job of preparing teachers for the realities of the 21 st century classroom. (Duncan, 2009) Until we transform teacher education, too many students will continue to receive subpar education, with devastating personal and societal consequences (Miller, 2009)
Call to action-Time is NOW This is the moment to reform university-based teacher preparation—the first time that government has been able to match the rhetoric of improving teaching with the resources to do it. Race to the Top and the upcoming Elementary and Secondary Education Act reauthorization process provide opportunities to turn a smorgasbord of teacher preparation initiatives into more comprehensive approaches.” Levine (2009)
Call to action-Time is NOW Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (2009) is urging all teacher education programs to make better outcomes for students the overarching mission.
Dear Educators, Economists have already been doing THIS!
“Linking” Issues Both policy makers and practitioners are clamoring for more information about the performance of preparation options in order to develop strategies for improving them. Such analyses require robust data systems that can connect individual teacher data to individual student-data and link that information to teacher preparation. Miller (2009) The bottom line is that we lack empirical evidence of what works in preparing teachers for an outcome-based education system. We don’t know what, where, how, or when teacher education is most effective. Levine (2006)
Teacher Training and Student Outcomes
Causal Effects Angrist and Lavy (2001) researched the causal effect of teachers’ on-the-job training on their students’ test scores Training emphasized pedagogy-not subject content Raised Test Scores of Students
Economic Value Angrist and Lavy (2001) determined the economic value of teachers’ on-the-job training Compared treatment effect and costs of training to the effect size and costs of alternative school improvement strategies Determined teacher training may provide a less expensive strategy for raising test scores than reducing class size or adding school hours.
Causal Effect Jacob and Lefgren (2004) linked student outcomes to in-service training of Chicago teachers Found marginal increases in in-service training had NO statistically or academically significant effect on either math or reading achievement
Economic Value Jacob and Lefgren (2004) Suggest modest investments in professional development of teachers may not be significant to increase the achievement of elementary school children in high-poverty schools.
Causal Effect Harris and Sass (2007) researched found: Obtaining an advanced degree has no effect on the ability of teachers to promote student achievement Only in middle school math teachers did an advanced degree have a significant effect on student outcomes No positive effects of pedagogical in-service training on the productivity of elementary school teachers Math teachers benefitted from content-focused professional development
Causal Effect Harris and Sass (2007) Pre-service training in a school of education v. a non-education discipline showed no significant difference in teacher productivity. The only finding of College-of-Education coursework positively correlated with student achievement was in the case of subject content credits obtained by math teachers.
What can educators learn from economic studies linking student achievement to teacher training?
Economists’ Lessons for Educators Economic literature is specific to teacher training post-service, however, educators can use: Economists’ research designs as they link student outcomes to teacher training in the pre-service arena Economists’ correlation formulas as they seek to identify most cost-effective /student-effective training and acquire Race to the Top funding
References Angrist, J. D., and Lavy. (2001). Does Teacher Training Affect Pupil Learning? Evidence from Matched Comparisons in Jerusalem Public Schools: Journal of Labor and Economics, 19, 2. Duncan, Arne. (October 2009). Teacher Preparation: Reforming the Uncertain Profession- Remarks of Secretary Arne Duncan at Teachers College, Columbia University. ed.gov. Retrieved November 23, 2009, from Harris, D.N., and T.R. Sass. (2007). Teacher Training, Teacher Quality, and Student Achievement. Retrieved April 15, 2010, from hhtp://teacherqualityresearch.org/teacher_training.pdf Jacob, B.A. and L. Lefgen. (2004). The Impact of Teacher training on Student Achievement. Quasi- Experimental Evidence from School Reform Efforts in Chicago. The Journal of Human Resources, 1, Levine, Arthur. (September 2006). Educating School Teachers. Retrieved November 23, 2009, from Levine, Arthur. (November 2009). Reforming university-based teacher preparation. TheHill.com. Retrieved November 24, 2009, from Miller, M. (November 2009). Teaching for a New World: Preparing High School Educators to Deliver College- and Career-Ready Instruction. Alliance For Excellent Education: Policy Brief. Natalicio, D., and A. Pacheco. (2000). The Future of Teacher Preparation: Two Experts Share Their Thoughts. edutopia.org. Retrieved November 24, 2009, from November, 24, 2009, from