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ERIC Number: ED509840
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Feb
Pages: 53
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 74
An Analysis of Student Achievement Growth, Teacher Working Conditions and Qualifications, and School Choice
Cannata, Marisa; Penaloza, Roberto V.
National Center on School Choice, Vanderbilt University (NJ1), Paper presented at the Second Annual Meeting of the Society for Research on Educational Effectiveness (Crystal City, Virginia, March 1-3, 2008)
Given the importance of teachers to student learning, it is important to understand how schools of choice differ in terms of the types and uses of human capital inside schools. Despite research that highlights important differences in the qualifications and staffing practices of schools of choice, there is no evidence about whether observed differences in teachers' qualifications, work contexts, and professional development across school types help understand the impact of school choice on student achievement. This paper explores the following question: How do variations in the work lives of teachers across charter, magnet, private, and traditional public schools contribute to differences in student achievement across these school types? This study highlights the difficulty researchers have faced in identifying characteristics of effective teachers or indicators of teacher quality as few characteristics of teachers, their assignments, or work contexts were related to student achievement gains. There is some evidence that the effects on student achievement growth of participating in reform-style professional development and activities that involve active learning differ by school choice. Despite the difficulties of explaining student achievement growth with teacher characteristics, the results here point to differences in achievement growth between different types of schools. Charter schools had larger student achievement gains than traditional public schools in math, reading, and language usage. Private and magnet schools had lower achievement gains in some subjects. An appendix is included. (Contains 8 tables.)
National Center on School Choice, Vanderbilt University. Box 459 GPC, 230 Appleton Place, Nashville, TN 37203. Tel: 615-322-8107; Fax: 615-322-8828; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Vanderbilt University, National Center on School Choice