Sunday, February 27, 2005

Students do better with teachers of their own race, says NBER study.
Teacher's Race May Play a Role in Student Achievement

Matching students with teachers based on race may improve pupils' academic achievement, according to a new study released by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

The paper, titled "
The Market for Teacher Quality," uses statistical and economic analysis to investigate differences in teacher quality and what accounts for them. The bureau, based in Cambridge, Mass., is a nonprofit, nonpartisan economic research organization.

The study, which was first made available last Friday, was written by a Hoover Institution fellow, Eric Hanushek; a professor at Amherst College, Steven Rivkin, and the University of Texas at Dallas's Daniel O'Brien and John Kain.

... For example, the researchers concluded that on average black students with black teachers "would be boosted 2-4 percentile points," Mr. Hanushek said in an e-mail.

"What we concluded, holding constant the overall quality of the teachers, was that it did make a difference that black kids have a black teacher, and white kids have a white teacher," he said in a telephone interview yesterday.

"What policy should come from that," he added, "is not obvious."...
[NY Sun]