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Early grade teacher effectiveness and pre-K effect persistence: Evidence from Tennessee

In recent years, states have significantly expanded access to prekindergarten (pre-K), and federal policy makers have proposed funding near-universal access across the country. However, researchers know relatively little about the role of subsequent experiences in prolonging or truncating the persistence of benefits for participants. This study examines the interaction between pre-K participation and one of our most important educational interventions--teaching quality. We pair student-level data from a statewide pre-K experiment with records of teacher observation scores from Tennessee's new formal evaluation program to assess whether a student's access to high-quality early grade teachers moderates the persistence of pre-K effects. Our analyses indicate a small positive interaction between teaching quality and state pre-K exposure on some but not all early elementary cognitive measures, such that better teaching quality in years subsequent to pre-K is associated with more persistent positive pre-K effects. (author abstract)
Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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