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ERIC Number: ED536080
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-May
Pages: 52
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Speaking of Salaries: What It Will Take to Get Qualified, Effective Teachers in All Communities
Adamson, Frank; Darling-Hammond, Linda
Center for American Progress
The fact that well-qualified teachers are inequitably distributed to students in the United States has received growing public attention. By every measure of qualifications--certification, subject matter background, pedagogical training, selectivity of college attended, test scores, or experience--less-qualified teachers tend to be found in schools serving greater numbers of low-income and minority students. The problem of inequitably distributed teachers has continued to be a widespread major concern despite the intentions expressed in No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) as well as noteworthy progress in some states. Disparity in the access of rich and poor children to well-qualified teachers is one of the constant issues surfaced in the more than 40 state school finance suits that are currently active across the country. Efforts to address the issue--ranging from training subsidies and bonus pay to alternative pathways into teaching--have been only erratically helpful. This study examines how and why teacher quality is so inequitably distributed by reviewing research and examining data from California and New York--two large states that face similar demographic diversity and educational challenges. In this paper, the authors examine how funding, salaries, and teacher qualifications vary across districts and how these variations affect achievement. They explore whether and to what extent unequal salaries and the district revenues that underlie pay and working conditions may be at the root of the teacher distribution problem. They briefly review the literature on these questions and present analyses from California and New York state. In addition, they discuss strategies that have proven to be successful in recruiting qualified and effective teachers to high-need schools, and they draw implications for federal policy that may finally resolve this dilemma that has for so long reinforced the achievement gap. Data sources and methodology are appended. (Contains 11 figures, 11 tables, and 73 endnotes.)
Center for American Progress. 1333 H Street NW 10th Floor, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-682-1611; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Ford Foundation; Sandler Foundation
Authoring Institution: Center for American Progress
Identifiers - Location: California; New York; United States
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001