Skip to main content
No Access

Newly Hired Teacher Mobility in Charter Schools and Traditional Public Schools: An Application of Segmented Labor Market Theory

Charisse Gulosino, an associate professor in the Leadership and Policy Studies Program at the University of Memphis, received her doctorate in education from Columbia University. Her research focuses on the evaluation of educational policies and programs with a specific interest in school choice that enhances education access, equity, efficiency, and results-based accountability. Yongmei Ni is the department chair and associate professor of educational leadership and policy at the University of Utah. Ni’s scholarship focuses on economics of education, school choice, educational leadership, and quantitative research methods. Andrea K. Rorrer is a professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, director of the Utah Education Policy Center, and associate dean for research for the College of Education at the University of Utah. Her expertise is school, district, and state leadership, policy, and educational change, particularly those changes aimed at increasing equity in student access and outcomes.

Compared with traditional public schools (TPS), charter schools on average have much higher teacher turnover rates. Our study draws on segmented labor market theory to examine the dynamics of the teacher labor market in charters and TPS, focusing on newly hired teachers. Based on longitudinal data for Utah’s public school teachers, we employ multiple methods to determine how the timing of newly hired teachers’ decisions to transfer or exit can be attributed to the sector differences. Results indicate that newly hired teachers in charters are more likely to exit the teaching profession and less likely to transfer to another school than TPS teachers.