Teacher-to-Classroom Assignment and Student Achievement
We study the effects of counterfactual teacher-to-classroom assignments on average student achievement in elementary and middle schools in the US. We use the Measures of Effective Teaching (MET) experiment to semiparametrically identify the average reallocation effects (AREs) of such assignments. Our findings suggest that changes in within-district teacher assignments could have appreciable effects on student achievement. Unlike policies which require hiring additional teachers (e.g., class-size reduction measures), or those aimed at changing the stock of teachers (e.g., VAM-guided teacher tenure policies), alternative teacher-to-classroom assignments are resource neutral; they raise student achievement through a more efficient deployment of existing teachers.
We thank seminar audiences at the 2017 All-California Econometrics Conference at Stanford University, UC Riverside, NESG, University of Duisburg-Essen, Tinbergen Institute Amsterdam, Lund University, IFN Stockholm, the University of Bristol, and the University of Southern California for helpful feedback. We thank Tommy Andersson, Kirabo Jackson, Magne Mogstad, Hessel Oosterbeek, Daniele Paserman, and Hashem Pesaran for useful comments and discussions. All the usual disclaimers apply. Financial support for Graham was provided by the National Science Foundation (SES #1357499, SES #1851647). Thiemann was affiliated with USC Dornsife INET while working on this paper. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.