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Measuring the Impacts of Teachers: Comment

Jesse Rothstein ()

American Economic Review, 2017, vol. 107, issue 6, 1656-84

Abstract: Chetty, Friedman, and Rockoff (2014a, b) study value-added (VA) measures of teacher effectiveness. CFR (2014a) exploits teacher switching as a quasi-experiment, concluding that student sorting creates negligible bias in VA scores. CFR (2014b) finds VA scores are useful proxies for teachers' effects on students' long-run outcomes. I successfully reproduce each in North Carolina data. But I find that the quasi-experiment is invalid, as teacher switching is correlated with changes in student preparedness. Adjusting for this, I find moderate bias in VA scores, perhaps 10-35 percent as large, in variance terms, as teachers' causal effects. Long-run results are sensitive to controls and cannot support strong conclusions.

JEL-codes: H75 I21 J45 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20141440
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