Do Principals Fire the Worst Teachers?

58 Pages Posted: 8 Feb 2010

See all articles by Brian Jacob

Brian Jacob

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: February 2010

Abstract

This paper takes advantage of a unique policy change to examine how principals make decisions regarding teacher dismissal. In 2004, the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) signed a new collective bargaining agreement that gave principals the flexibility to dismiss probationary teachers for any reason and without the documentation and hearing process that is typically required for such dismissals. With the cooperation of the CPS, I matched information on all teachers that were eligible for dismissal with records indicating which teachers were dismissed. With this data, I estimate the relative weight that school administrators place on a variety of teacher characteristics. I find evidence that principals do consider teacher absences and value-added measures, along with several demographic characteristics, in determining which teachers to dismiss.

Suggested Citation

Jacob, Brian, Do Principals Fire the Worst Teachers? (February 2010). NBER Working Paper No. w15715. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1548773

Brian Jacob (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-384-7968 (Phone)
617-496-5747 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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