Part 2 – Stretching the Truth, Not Dollars: Considering the Application of Cost-Benefit Analysis to Teacher Layoff Alternatives

Bruce Baker examines the costs and benefits of layoffs made by seniority versus those made by “quality,” as encouraged by Petrilli and Roza. He argues that the tradeoff is not between “keeping old, dead wood” versus “keeping quality teachers,” as it is often put, but rather the tradeoff between laying off teachers on the unfortunately crude basis of seniority only versus laying off teachers on a marginally-better-than-random, roll-of-the-dice basis. He concludes that the latter may actually be more problematic for the future quality of the teaching workforce.

Document Reviewed:

Stretching the School Dollar: A Brief for State Policymakers

Michael J. Petrilli and Marguerite Roza
Fordham Institute