Teachers who quit low-income city schools aren’t the best and the brightest, concludes a new study of a Texas district. Education Week reports:
Rather than measure teachers’ quality by whether they had passed certification exams or had earned advanced degrees, the researchers looked at the test-score gains students made from year to year on state mathematics tests to determine which teachers were effective.
For the most part, they found, the teachers who left inner-city schools between the 1989-90 school year and the 2001-02 school year were no better at raising their students%u2019 scores than those who stayed behind. In some cases, the analysis showed, the departing teachers may have even been worse.
However, departing teachers were replaced by brand-new teachers, who were less effective in the classroom because of their inexperience.
As a result, the researchers said, disadvantaged inner-city schools are still left with a disproportionate share of lower-quality teachers, even though most are novices who might one day turn out to be good at their jobs.
Teachers reach peak effectiveness in their fourth year on the job, the study concluded.