Instability in Education Systems, Randomized Controlled Trials,
and Children’s Achievement (PRIME)

Project Description

Funded by the National Science Foundation, the 21st Century Partnership (21PSTEM) is a partner in the effort with University of Pennsylvania to better understand district and state efforts to systematically capture the number of teachers who are leaving a teaching assignment both within a school year and across school years. Obtaining and analyzing available data to calculate teacher movement is also a primary goal of the project. Unlike traditional studies of teacher turnover, we are interested in documenting the extent to which teachers are shifting between teaching assignments within and across schools mid-year. We believe this type of teacher instability may have implications for how states and districts allocate professional development, for student achievement, and the evaluation of the federally funded interventions.


Dr. John Weathers, Co-Principal Investigator

Dr. John Baker, Research
Ms. Deanna Daugherty, Data systems
Mr. F. Joseph Merlino, Education systems
Mr. Dave Taylor, Databases


UPennDr. Robert Boruch
Principal InvestigatorDr. Andy Porter
Co-Principal Investigator

Graduate and post-doctoral students


Weathers, J., and Baker, J.Y. (2015, March). Teacher positional instability in the Philadelphia public school system and the potential impact on interventions to improve student achievement. Poster presented at the School District of Philadelphia Research, Policy, and Practice Conference. Philadelphia

Funding Source: National Science Foundation (NSF)

Start Date: October, 2013
Duration: 3 Years
Total Award: $428,763
Location: National
Fiscal Agent: 21PSTEM
Principal Investigator: Dr. John Weathers
Partners:  Penn GSE