The Effect of Teachers' Unions on Student Achievement: Evidence from Wisconsin's Act 10
36 Pages Posted: 18 Jul 2017 Last revised: 19 Aug 2017
Date Written: August 18, 2017
I estimate the causal effect of a weakening of teachers' unions on student achievement by exploiting a quasi-experiment that took place in Wisconsin following the enactment of Act 10, a measure that significantly limited the bargaining power of teachers' unions. Specifically, I exploit variation in the length of pre-Act 10 collective bargaining agreements among school districts that led to differences in the timing of exposure to Act 10. I find that test scores on Wisconsin's standardized exam decreased by approximately 30% of a standard deviation in low-performing schools, but find no evidence that the law impacted high-performing schools.
Keywords: Public Sector Unions, Collective Bargaining, Student Achievement, Economics of Education
JEL Classification: I20, I28, J45, J50
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation