Do Low-Income Students Have Equal Access to the Highest-Performing Teachers?

NCEE Evaluation Brief
Publisher: Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance
Apr 30, 2011
Steven Glazerman and Jeffrey Max
Most research on equal educational opportunity has focused on inputs like teacher experience and degrees. This brief estimated teachers’ value added (contribution to student achievement growth) and measured access to highest-performing teachers in high- and low-poverty schools. Across 10 selected districts in seven states students in the highest-poverty schools had unequal access, on average, to the district’s highest-performing middle school teachers. The pattern for elementary school was less clear. The degree of equal access varied by district.