Selective retention bonuses for highly effective teachers in high poverty schools

Evidence from Tennessee

Walker A. Swain, Luis Rodriguez, Matthew G. Springer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Research has established that racially isolated schools with high concentrations of low-income students disproportionately struggle to recruit and retain highly effective teachers, limiting disadvantaged students’ exposure to high-quality instruction and driving institutional and community instability. This study estimates the effect of selective retention bonuses (SRB) for highly effective teachers on low-performing, high poverty schools’ ability to elevate student performance by increasing access to effective instruction. The theory of action behind the bonus program is simple: SRBs result in greater numbers of highly effective teachers at participating schools, who subsequently drive larger student gains than the teachers who would otherwise fill their positions. To examine whether students in high poverty schools benefit from retention of highly effective teachers, we use differences in eligibility for schools to offer bonuses and the discrete timing of the program in a matched sample, difference-in-differences framework. Results indicate that schools who offered SRBs saw greater test score gains in subsequent years, especially on state reading exams.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)148-160
Number of pages13
JournalEconomics of Education Review
Volume68
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2019

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poverty
teacher
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student
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Bonuses
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community
performance

Keywords

  • E24
  • I20
  • J01
  • J24
  • J33
  • J45

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

Selective retention bonuses for highly effective teachers in high poverty schools : Evidence from Tennessee. / Swain, Walker A.; Rodriguez, Luis; Springer, Matthew G.

In: Economics of Education Review, Vol. 68, 01.02.2019, p. 148-160.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Swain, Walker A. ; Rodriguez, Luis ; Springer, Matthew G. / Selective retention bonuses for highly effective teachers in high poverty schools : Evidence from Tennessee. In: Economics of Education Review. 2019 ; Vol. 68. pp. 148-160.
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