Teacher quality: Improving teacher quality and distribution

Susanna Loeb
Year of Publication: 
National Academy of Education Policy White Paper Series

Teaching matters. Research evidence is persuasive that students benefit from high quality instruction, and that for students who have had good teachers several years in a row, the effect is cumulative. There are many out-standing teachers among the 3.7 million working in America’s public schools. However, not enough teach-ers are effective, especially in the schools that serve large numbers of poor and minority children. Labeling teachers as “highly qualified” because they have earned a degree or completed a training program does not in fact make them highly qualified. Instead, as a nation we need policies and programs that bring aca-demically talented and diverse recruits into teaching and help them to succeed. And, we need policies and programs to retain and reward effective early career teachers.

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