What’s a Good Teacher Worth? How about $400,000

You can’t make this stuff up:

Over the course of a school year, a good teacher produces $400,000 more in future earnings for a class of 20 students than an average teacher. What’s more, replacing the worst-performing five to eight percent of teachers with average teachers could catapult the U.S. to near the top of international math and science rankings, padding GDP by $100 trillion and generating returns that dwarf “the discussions of U.S. economic stimulus packages related to the 2008 recession ($1 trillion).”

That’s the Atlantic Wire’s Uri Friedman summary of a new study by education’s master of the sublime economic truth, Eric Hanushek.

You can find the study here, but it costs $5, so I’ll just summarize Friedman, who says that the Stanford economist “investigates the interplay between teacher effectiveness and the economic impact of higher student achievement, specifically in terms of test scores.”

Is that not a worthy subject?

–Peter Meyer

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