No Evidence That Teacher Raises Raise Outcomes

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

A Yale professor who supports raising teacher salaries nevertheless admits that there is little evidence showing that such salary increases affect educational outcomes. “A few existing studies have shown that modest across-the-board increases in wages of existing teachers has no direct effect on teachers’ performance or effort, and in turn no effect on students’ outcomes,” Barbara Biasi, a labor economist at Yale says. “However, we do not have good evidence on whether a large and sustained wage increase could attract different people to the teaching profession and in turn affect who decides to become a teacher.”

Nevertheless, she avers that “In addition, some of my work has shown that raising salaries for those teachers who prove to be the most effective in raising achievement helps discourage them from leaving, and even attracts similarly talented teachers from nearby schools and districts. This suggests that, if properly designed, pay can indeed be a lever for improving the success of our schools.”