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Race, poverty, and teacher mobility

Publication Abstract

Scafidi, B., D.L. Sjoquist, and Todd R. Stinebrickner. 2007. "Race, poverty, and teacher mobility." Economics of Education Review, 26:145-159.

This paper provides information about the importance of non-pecuniary school characteristics, such as race and poverty, on teacher turnover in Georgia. Simple descriptive statistics indicate that new teachers are more likely to leave schools with lower test scores, lower income, or higher proportions of minorities. A linear probability and a competing risks model of transitions out of first teaching jobs allow us to separate the importance of these highly correlated school characteristics. The estimates imply that teachers are much more likely to exit schools with large proportions of minority students, and that the other univariate statistical relationships are driven to a large extent by their correlation with the minority variable. Thus, while the common notion that teachers are more likely to leave high poverty schools is correct, it occurs because teachers are more likely to leave a particular type of poor school-one with a large proportion of minorities.

DOI:10.1016/j.econedurev.2005.08.006 (Full Text)

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