CURMUDGUCATION: The Opportunity Myth Myth
Matthew A. Kraft Brown University
Eric J. Brunner University of Connecticut S
haun M. Dougherty University of Connecticut
David Schwegman Syracuse University
In recent years, states across the country have attempted to increase the accountability of public school teachers by implementing rigorous, high-stakes evaluation systems and in some cases repealing teacher tenure protections. We examine the effect of these reforms on the supply of new entrants into the teacher labor market by exploiting a unique panel dataset that includes the number of teaching licenses granted by states. Leveraging variation in the adoption of reforms across states and time, we find that evaluation reforms resulted in a steady decline in the statewide supply of new teachers, whereas tenure reforms produced a sharp but more temporary contraction. In exploratory analyses, we find no evidence that decreases in labor supply differed systematically across non-shortage and shortage licensure areas. We find mixed evidence of the effect of accountability on the selectivity of the institutions where prospective teachers earned their teaching degrees. Tenure reforms appear to have reduced supply most among candidates from less selective universities, while there is little evidence evaluation reforms had any differential effect by university selectivity.