Teacher attrition is a concern in all educational sectors but is of
special importance to Catholic schools because of the salary disparity
between public and Catholic schools. This review examines the research
on teacher retention in general with a view to understanding how this
knowledge might inform teacher recruitment and retention strategies in
Catholic schools and dioceses. The relationship between salient teacher
characteristics--such as job satisfaction and salary--and teacher
retention is discussed.
The ability to develop successful schools is directly related to
the ability to attract and retain quality teachers (Goodlad, 1984).
Understanding conditions which promote teacher retention, provides
educational administrators with pertinent information for developing
successful schools. Catholic schools like public schools should be aware
of the need to understand the conditions that surround the practices of
hiring and retaining qualified personnel.
The retention of teachers in public schools has been a continuing
concern for educators in recent years. Significant numbers of teachers
leave the teaching force each year. The need to replace large numbers of
the teachers at a school has a negative effect on the educational
program. The issue of teacher retention becomes even more critical when
added to the condition of teacher shortages (Norton, 1999; Shen, 1998).
Catholic schools also face the challenge of teacher shortages and
teacher retention. Cimino, Haney, and Jacobs (2000) observe that
superintendents and principals in Catholic schools cite the difficulty
of finding and retaining high quality teachers as their most difficult
The Catholic elementary and secondary schools in the United States
constitute the largest independent school system in the world. Over 2.6
million students are currently enrolled in Catholic schools. Problems
confronting public school administrators are also found in Catholic
schools. Thus, the ability of Catholic schools to retain high quality
teachers is an important issue to Catholic school administrators
(Groome, 1998; Youniss & Convey, 2000).
THE NEED FOR QUALITY TEACHERS
Teachers and teaching are the most important component in the
development of quality schools (Goodlad, 1984; Hawley & Rosenholtz,
1985). Lortie (1975) found that faculty commitment has a favorable
influence upon students. The instructional program directly benefits
from hiring and retaining superior teachers. This may be the most
critical task facing school administrators in their efforts to establish
and maintain effective schools (Jensen, 1989). According to Shen (1998),
"In addition to the issue of quality, high rates of teacher
attrition disrupt program continuity and planning, hinder student
learning, and increase school districts' expenditures on recruiting
and hiring" (p. 81).
The field of education has become acutely aware of the need to
recruit, induct, and retain qualified professionals. The important role
of the teacher has been noted in numerous studies aimed at understanding
the establishment of excellent schools. According to Chubb and Moe
(1990), "An effective school is one characterized by an academic
focus, a strong educational leader, a sharing of decision-making, a high
level of professionalism and cooperation among teachers, and respect for
discipline among students" (pp. 136-137).
Lortie (1975) noted that when students graduate from high school,
they have accumulated approximately 13,000 hours with classroom
teachers. The ability to influence, challenge, inspire, and alter the
thinking of students during this time is the domain of the teacher.
Without effective teachers, there are no effective schools. It is
possible that we could locate good schools without good educational
leaders. However, it is doubtful that there are any good schools without
TEACHER ATTRITION: WHY ARE TEACHERS LEAVING THE FIELD?
Schuttloffel (2001) states there are serious concerns over teacher
attrition and retention facing both public and Catholic schools today.
School administrators and principals are increasingly concerned about
filling teaching positions. Norton (1999) commented that the loss of
teachers is a condition that continues to plague school districts.
Literature on the conditions which contribute to teacher attrition and
retention provide valuable insights into this issue. It is estimated
that 25% of the students who complete a teacher-training program never
become teachers or leave the profession within the first 5 years
(Chapman & Hutcheson, 1982; Charters, 1970; Mark & Anderson,
1978). More recent research indicates that 50% of teachers hired in 1994
for service in Catholic schools have left their jobs (Curtin, 2001;
O'Keefe, 1999; Squillini, 1999, 2001).
The fear of a teacher shortage increased during the 1980s along
with concerns over teacher attrition and retention. Increased student
enrollments, an aging teacher workforce, and a decline in graduates
majoring in education focused attention on these issues (Grissmer &
Kirby, 1987). Research indicated that academically stronger students
were not entering teacher-training programs (Chapman & Holzemer,
1985; Vance & Schlecty, 1982). Additionally, the more academically
talented teachers were found to be leaving the teaching profession at a
more significant rate (Murnane, Singer, Willett, Kemple, & Olsen,
1991; Schlecty & Vance, 1981). Vegas and Murnane (1997) indicated
that female college graduates during the 1980s with high math and
reading scores were less likely to become teachers than those with lower
scores. The problem facing the educational community consisted of a
teacher shortage involving both quantity and quality.
Conditions can vary greatly from one school district to another.
Urban districts and less desirable school systems labor to find
qualified teachers (Kozol, 1991). An acute shortage of teachers in urban
school districts continues to challenge administrators. A study by
Feistritzer (1990) of 3,201 teachers hired since 1985 concluded that
only 12% of these teachers would be willing to work in an urban school.
This conclusion is significant because the highest teacher attrition
rates occur in urban districts (Adams & Dial, 1993). In urban areas,
20% of the teachers leave after the first year and 33% leave prior to
the third year (Schwartz, 1996). Jones and Sandidge (1997) report that
threats of violence, inadequate funding, and a lack of appropriate
training increases the hesitation of teachers to either begin or
continue their professional careers in urban districts.
A majority of states have introduced alternative certification
methods as a means of filling their classrooms with teachers. According
to Feistritzer (1993), between 1985 and 1992, 40,000 teachers were
certified through these alternative programs as a means of addressing
the issues of teacher shortages, attrition, and retention.
The National Education Association (NEA, 1999) reports the United
States is facing a teacher shortage due to several factors. An unusually
large number of teachers are expected to retire over the next 10 years.
Student enrollments are currently at 52 million and are expected to
increase to over 54 million by 2008. The U.S. is projected to need 2.4
million teachers over the next 11 years due to teacher attrition,
retirement, and the increases in student enrollment. This projection
could grow to 2.7 million teachers when allowances are made for class
reduction efforts promised by a number of state legislatures as part of
their efforts to improve the quality of education.
DEMAND FOR TEACHERS
Teaching is beset by an attrition rate which surpasses all normal
expectations. Norton (1999) explained that approximately 25% of new
teachers leave the profession after only 1 year, and that 50% leave the
profession after 5 years. Eubanks (1996) reported that 77% of the 39
largest urban school districts hired teachers with emergency
certifications to fill their staffing shortages in 1995. Questions of
shortages, attrition, and retention are concerns to school
During the 1960s and early 1970s, the baby-boomer generation
increased school enrollments by 25% and fueled an increase in the demand
for entry-level teachers to 190,000 by 1971. A significant drop in
student enrollment occurred in the late 1970s and early 1980s and demand
for entry-level teachers fell to about 50,000. Increasing enrollments in
the 1990s have again pushed the need for entry-level teachers to about
75,000. These erratic swings in the demand for entry-level teachers
demonstrate the need for accurate statistics and prudent planning by
school administrators (Grissmer & Kirby, 1997).
Schools of education are currently facing a demand for more
entry-level teachers. Grissmer and Kirby (1997) report that enrollments,
which began to rise in the late 1980s, will continue to grow until after
2005. The anticipated increase for elementary and secondary student
enrollment is approximately 20%. The increasing demand for teachers is
based on student to teacher ratios remaining at current levels. Future
decreases in the student to teacher ratio or efforts by state
legislatures to promote student achievement through smaller class size,
could increase the demand for teachers. The net results of these
conditions will be an increase in the demand for new teachers or a
return to the classroom of teachers who previously left the profession.
TEACHER ATTRITION AND RETENTION
The ability to recruit, induct, and retain quality personnel is
directly related to the success of an organization and its ability to
survive and prosper. The cost of seeking and replacing staff is
significant. The premature exit of personnel is expensive and depletes
an organization of the opportunity to imprint culture and develop a
cadre of skilled professionals (Peters & Waterman, 1982; Wanous,
Teacher attrition rates are highest for professionals early in
their careers and again when they approach the retirement-eligible age
(McLoone, 1987). Teachers at mid-career status are less likely to leave
the profession based on the structure of teacher retirement programs.
According to Auriemma, Cooper, and Smith (1992), attractive retirement
incentives offered by school systems promote retention of mid-career
teachers. Research indicates a growing demand for entry-level teachers
along with a "graying" of the current teaching force. Over the
next 15 years, a significant number of teachers will enter the
retirement-eligible category as the baby-boomers begin to exit the job
market. The two fastest growing segments of the teaching force will be
entry-level personnel and retirement-eligible teachers. They are also
the two groups with the greatest rates of attrition (Grissmer &
Kirby, 1987, 1992, 1997; Haggstrom, Darling-Hammond, & Grissmer,
1988; Murnane & Olsen, 1990).
Research by Kirby and Grissmer (1993) centered on the concepts of
human capital theory. The length of a professional career is directly
related to the cost and benefits of entering and remaining in the
profession. The ease of entry into the teaching profession could lead to
higher rates of attrition. Younger teachers would be more prone to leave
teaching than experienced veteran teachers. The research of Lortie
(1975) examined the relationship between the easy and casual entry into
teaching and the difficulty in retaining teachers, who expended a small
amount of human capital entering the profession.
Chapman and Green (1986) conducted a study on 1,591 University of
Michigan graduates with teaching certificates. The subjects either
taught continuously, were intermittent teachers, left the teaching
profession, or never taught. Differences were found in personal
characteristics, educational experience, initial commitment,
professional integration into teaching, external influences, and overall
career satisfaction. They concluded that the roots of attrition began
with differences in initial career commitment and early work
Additionally, Chapman and Green (1986) stressed the importance of
work conditions and their relationship to teacher retention. The quality
of professional life that new teachers experience can have long-term
impact on the careers of those teachers.
Theobald (1990) conducted a study on teachers in the state of
Washington from 1984 to 1987. He concluded that teachers are
economically rational decision makers. Retention of teachers becomes
more difficult when they view their social and financial status as being
inferior to that of the surrounding community.
Murnane et al. (1991) conducted extensive research in North
Carolina and Michigan to determine why teachers remain in the
profession. They reported that attrition rates are highest during the
first years of teaching. In Michigan, 21% of new teachers left after the
first year and an additional 13% left after the second year. In North
Carolina, 11% of new teachers left after the first year and 8% left
after the second year. The rate of attrition fell to 4% in each state
after 10 years. Mature women, those over 30 years old, remain in
teaching longer than young women who tend to leave teaching at much
higher rates. With regard to school level, elementary school teachers
were found to stay longer than secondary school teachers. The importance
of their findings on attrition and retention is underlined by the fact
that if just 10% of the nation's teaching force of 2.4 million
teachers leave the profession, new hires will number 240,000.
The authors also examined scores on the National Teachers
Examination (NTE), which revealed that teachers with higher test scores
were less likely to remain in teaching than those with lower scores.
Teachers with higher test scores also have greater access to occupations
outside of teaching than teachers with lower test scores. These findings
remained consistent when comparing teachers with up to 10 years of
experience. Their results confirm earlier research by Schlechty and
Vance (1981) which found a relationship between attrition rates and
teachers with higher test scores.
Murnane et al. (1991) also concluded that teachers in high paying
school districts remained longer than teachers in low paying school
districts. The condition of salary was found to influence the
decision-making process of newly hired teachers. The research by Murnane
et al. indicates that salary considerations are most important during
the first 5 years of teaching and remain somewhat important during the
first 10 years in the profession. An examination of the data reveals the
significance of salary with relation to teacher demand. During times of
decreasing enrollments and declining demand for teachers, there is no
relationship between salary and teacher attrition. Salary plays a larger
role when demand for teachers is stable or increasing. This finding
becomes more important when we consider current conditions that include
increases in both student enrollments and demand for new teachers.
Studies on the teaching of particular subjects found only small
differences between the length of career for teachers of science, math,
English, or social studies (Bobbit, Faupel, & Burns, 1991; Bobbit,
Leich, Whitener, & Lynch, 1994). Several studies found that race
does not appear to be a significant factor affecting teacher attrition
and retention (Chapman & Hutcheson, 1982; Heyns, 1988; Singer, 1993;
Theobald, 1990). However, other studies indicate that African American
teachers remain in teaching longer than White teachers and that African
American teachers stay at schools in urban districts longer than White
teachers (Bloland & Selby, 1980; Dworkin, 1980; Murnane et al.,
THE QUALITY OF THE TEACHING WORKFORCE
The publication of A Nation at Risk (National Commission on
Excellence in Education, 1983) promoted public awareness about the
quality of education and also predicted dire future conditions unless
drastic steps were taken. The proclaimed deficiencies in the American
educational system were not as significant as the public was led to
believe. Berliner and Biddle (1995) have documented improvements in
teaching and the quality of the teaching force in the United States.
Current teachers are better educated than their predecessors. The United
States Department of Education (1994) states that less than 1% of all
teachers have not earned a bachelor's degree and a majority of
teachers have advanced degrees. They also concluded that the minimum
requirements to become a teacher are similar throughout the United
States. The female teacher population has increased and the teaching
force has also become older and more ethnically diverse. They also state
that public and private schools are hiring more first-time teachers.
First-time teachers have lower salaries, less experience, and a higher
Pyszkowski (1991) noted that a decline in the talent pool for
teachers was associated with an increase in employment opportunities
outside of teaching. The ability to seek employment in other fields has
given first-time teachers and reentrants additional options outside of
education. Increasing opportunities in the marketplace for prospective
teachers is another condition which promotes concerns over a teacher
shortage and related issues of attrition and retention.
Prior to 1960, the majority of teachers in Catholic schools were
members of a religious community. Sisters, priests, and brothers
occupied over 90% of the teaching positions. Since 1960, there has been
a dramatic reversal of this condition. Lay teachers comprised 85% of the
teaching force in Catholic schools in 1990, which increased to 93% by
the year 2000 (McDonald, 2001). Unlike their religious counterparts, who
were assigned to a position indefinitely, Catholic lay teachers choose
to teach in Catholic schools and are free to terminate their employment
at their discretion. School stability is directly related to the
stability and experience of the educational staff. Due to increases in
lay faculty, issues of teacher attrition and retention are important to
Catholic school administrators (Yeager, Benson, Guerra, & Manno,
Catholic schools have made a significant contribution to education
in America since Colonial times. During the 1700s and early 1800s, the
Catholic school was not viewed as an educational system but as
individual schools seeking to instill the teachings and values of the
Roman Catholic Church. Even as a public school system began to develop
in the 1800s, Catholic schools received public funding in Massachusetts,
Wisconsin, Connecticut, and New Jersey. The schools flourished because
of large waves of Catholic immigrants from Europe and the rise of
anti-Catholic sentiment. The desire to attend schools with a Catholic
philosophy rather than public schools, where core Protestant values were
advanced, was an additional motivation for the development of Catholic
schools. The American Catholic Bishops recommended and reconfirmed their
belief in Catholic schools at the Councils of Baltimore in 1829, and
again in 1866 (Bryk, Lee, & Holland, 1993).
The Third Council of Baltimore in 1884 called for the establishment
of a Catholic school near each church and for parents to send their
children to Catholic schools. This mandate, although never fully
realized, greatly increased the number of Catholic schools found
throughout the United States (Bryk et al., 1993; Groome, 1998).
In the early part of the 20th century, Catholic schools grew in
numbers and prospered under the governance of religious communities.
Sisters, priests, and brothers dedicated their lives to the Catholic
Church and received a small stipend for their service to Catholic
schools. In 1904, the creation of the Catholic Educational Association,
which would later become the National Catholic Educational Association
(NCEA), enhanced the national scope and identity of Catholic schools
(Buetow, 1970). With a reliance on religious personnel, Catholic schools
provided education to increasing numbers of students.
The Code of Canon Law (Canon Law Society of America, 1983) contains
specific requirements for a school being classified as a Catholic
school. It states that a school may bear the title Catholic only with
the written consent of the competent ecclesiastical authority. The
education must be based upon the principles of Catholic doctrine,
teachers are to teach correct doctrine and have integrity, and
supervision of the school must be under the guidance of a proper
ecclesiastical authority. The Code of Canon Law does not require that
teachers be religious personnel.
Catholic schools grew from 10,000 schools and 2.5 million students
in 1930 to 11,000 schools and 3.1 million students in 1950. Growth in
both the number of schools and student enrollments continued until 1965.
At its peak, Catholic schools numbered over 13,000 schools and 5.5
million students. This would represent about 12% of the total American
elementary and secondary students. The Catholic school system prospered
because of an abundance of religious men and women who worked for room,
board, and a modest stipend. The significant decline of religious
vocations in the 1960s led to an increased reliance on a lay teaching
force. The financial burdens on schools resulting from the loss of
sisters, priests, and brothers forced school closings and the
introduction of higher student tuition (Bryk et al., 1993; Buetow, 1985;
Important changes in the Catholic Church paralleled this period of
peak school growth. Pope John XXIII was elected in 1958 and within
months he called for the convening of the Second Vatican Council.
Vatican II was in session intermittently between 1962-1965. This
assembly, which called the bishops of the Catholic Church to Rome, had a
profound effect on the role of the Church and Catholic schools. The
results of Vatican II were revolutionary in many respects. Vatican II
promoted involvement of the Church in the modern world, an embracing of
other religions through an ecumenical movement, and an activism towards
creating a more just society. The Latin Mass was replaced with the local
vernacular, clergy attire embraced a more modern appearance, and the lay
community assumed a more prominent role in both the Church and schools.
The call for a more active and involved laity coincided with the
challenge of staffing Catholic schools as they faced a shortage of
sisters, priests, and brothers (Bryk et al., 1993; Buetow, 1985; Youniss
& Convey, 2000).
Several important church documents relating to education were
issued as a result of Vatican II. In 1965 The Declaration on Christian
Education defined a more active and humane role for Catholic schools.
The doctrinaire approach mandated by earlier directives on education was
replaced by a challenge to make schools respond to the spirit of freedom
and charity (Abbott, 1996).
The National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) issued the
pastoral entitled, To Teach as Jesus Did (1972). In this document, they
stated that schools were to be agents of social change and they were
expected to promote social justice. The message of this document on
education articulated a three-part mission for Catholic schools. Schools
were to teach the message of hope contained in the Gospels of Christ,
create a sense of Christian community, and foster a life of service to
In 1977, the Congregation for Catholic Education (CCE) published
The Catholic School, which further defined the mission of schools in the
post Vatican II period. Catholic schools were to be viewed as
communities with a goal of providing service to society. Prior to
Vatican II, Catholic schools were viewed as depositories of doctrine
that was transmitted to the faithful. The Catholic School explained the
importance of building up the Kingdom of God through a commitment of
service and participation in the ecumenical movement. Students were
urged to understand the role of religion and how it permeates their
education and personal development. An appreciation of cultural
diversity and pluralism were also lessons contained in The Catholic
School. The dignity of the person was reaffirmed and the school becomes
a place where religion can permeate all aspects of student life. Within
this context, teachers were given the opportunity to practice their
profession and participate in the moral, spiritual, and intellectual
development of the students. Therefore, the role of lay teachers in
Catholic schools took on additional significance with the publication of
The Catholic School (Bryk et al., 1993).
The Catechism of the Catholic Church (1997) reminds parents of
their responsibility for "seeing to the Christian education of
their children" (p. 239). Catholic schools have undertaken this
mission and responsibility with the support and cooperation of the
Church and parents. Today, the Catholic schools in the United States are
the largest independent and privately funded system of education in the
world. The American Catholic schools have been built and continue due to
the commitment and support of parents who made significant sacrifices
for the Christian education of their children (Buetow, 1985; Groome,
1998; Youniss & Convey, 2000).
THE STUDENT POPULATION
The National Center for Educational Statistics (1994) reported that
there were approximately 26,093 private elementary and secondary schools
in the United States based on the Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS).
These non-public schools serve an estimated population of about
4,974,548 students. The non-public schools are serving around 10% of the
nation's elementary and secondary school students.
The largest number of non-public students and schools are under the
jurisdiction of the Roman Catholic Church. In 1965-1966, Catholic
schools accounted for 87% of private elementary and secondary
enrollment. By 1985-1986 the enrollment in Catholic schools accounted
for 60% of the students in non-public schools. Catholic schools enroll
over 2.5 million or 52% of all non-public school students (McDonald,
2003). Catholic schools are also facing issues of teacher attrition and
retention. According to Polansky (1999), the much documented and
discussed teacher shortage found in the nation's public school
systems has serious implications for Catholic schools.
CATHOLIC LAY TEACHERS
Until the mid-1960s, 95% of the teaching in Catholic schools was
under the direction of sisters, priests, and brothers. The Catholic
identity of the schools was assured through the significant presence of
the religious community. The steep decline in religious vocations led to
the establishment of a lay teaching staff, which approached 95% in a
majority of schools by the mid-1990s. The movement from a religious
staff to a lay staff did not translate into a loss of Catholic identity
in the schools. The lay faculties have developed a strong spiritual
vision and commitment to the Catholic identity of the schools (Groome,
1998). The retention of a dedicated lay teaching staff is of paramount
importance to administrators intent on maintaining a strong Catholic
identity in the schools.
On September 12, 1987, Pope John Paul II addressed the National
Catholic Educational Association in New Orleans. The Holy Father
expressed his gratitude and support for Catholic schools and lay
teachers in Catholic schools:
The importance and need for lay teachers in Catholic schools has
increased since the 1987 address of Pope John Paul II. Guerra (1991)
found that "teachers Przygocki/TEACHER RETENTION IN CATHOLIC
SCHOOLS 531 are the heart and soul of all effective schools. Schools
need teachers who see their work as something more than a job, and
Catholic schools apparently are blessed with an extraordinary number of
such teachers" (p. 18).
Chubb and Moe (1988) report that teachers in Catholic schools are
more committed and collegial than their counterparts in public schools.
They also enjoy greater job satisfaction and have better relationships
with their principals. Hannaway and Abramowitz (1985) and McMillen
(1988) explained that lay teachers in Catholic schools believe they have
greater input with regard to school policy and decisions regarding
curriculum. Literature on teachers in Catholic schools reports that they
have a better understanding of the goals of their schools and are in
agreement with those goals. Catholic school educators also promote a
sense of educational community and a school culture in which learning is
valued and there are fewer disciplinary problems (Chubb & Moe, 1988;
Coleman & Hoffer, 1987; Coleman, Hoffer, & Kilgore, 1982;
Commentary by Hawker (1985) explains that Catholic schools have
distinctive qualities and teachers are expected to promote the values of
a Catholic education. Hawker states that lay teachers can be either
Catholic or non-Catholic, the only restriction on the non-Catholic
members of the staff is a prohibition against the teaching of religion.
All lay members of the teaching staff are invited to participate in the
faith community of the school. There are many non-Catholic teachers
providing Catholic schools with outstanding service. Hawker believes
that they are valuable members of the teaching force and they should be
recognized for their efforts to promote the finest traditions of
The Congregation for Catholic Education (1982) recognized the
changing condition of teaching staffs in Catholic schools when it issued
the document entitled, Lay Catholics in Schools: Witnesses to Faith.
Although teaching staffs were changing from sisters, priests, and
brothers to lay persons, the vital mission and purpose of Catholic
education was reaffirmed. Proclaiming the Gospel message of Jesus Christ
and developing the mental, spiritual, and physical attributes of
students would continue to be the essential mandate of Catholic schools.
Cook (1983) and Bleich (1984) cited a sense of service and ministry
to the Church as reasons for teaching in a Catholic school. Other
factors attracting teachers to work in a Catholic school included a
school culture with discipline, respect, orderly behavior, and a
reliance on values. Sisters, priests, and brothers had created schools
centered on the traditions of the Catholic Church. These schools were
noted for their spiritual development and academic achievement. The
decline in the number of religious vocations and the subsequent decline
in religious personnel teaching created an opportunity for lay teachers
to enter the formerly exclusive domain of the clergy (Convey, 1992). The
synergy of the post Vatican II period and the need for greater lay
involvement prompted many lay teachers to accept positions in Catholic
schools. In a period of less than 50 years, the percentage of lay
teachers in Catholic schools had changed from a minority to a majority.
Convey (1992) and Wittberg (1994) noted that Catholic schools could not
have continued to exist without a significant reliance on lay teachers.
The rise in importance of a lay faculty created a need to better
understand the issues surrounding teacher retention.
CONTEMPORARY CATHOLIC SCHOOLTEACHERS
Schaub (2000) reports that Catholic schools employ a workforce that
is 91% female in elementary schools and 53% female in secondary schools.
Ninety-six percent of elementary teachers have a bachelor's degree
and 24% have a master's degree. In secondary schools, 99% have a
bachelor's degree and 51% have a master's degree. Schaub
states that teachers in Catholic schools are somewhat less educated than
their public school counterparts, but more educated than teachers in
other non-public schools. These trends are also reflected in the number
of teachers certified by state boards, with Catholic school teachers
ranking behind public school teachers but ahead of teachers in other
The National Catholic Educational Association (McDonald, 2000)
reported there were 157,134 full-time equivalent (FTE) teaching staff in
Catholic elementary and secondary schools for the school year 1999-2000.
Lay teachers accounted for 146,123 or about 93% of the total teaching
population while sisters, priests, and brothers accounted for 11,011 or
about 7%. The student population in the 8,144 Catholic schools totaled
2,653,038. There were 2,013,084 elementary school students in 6,923
schools, and 639,954 secondary school students in 1,221 schools.
Minority enrollment rose to 656,393 students, which is 24.7% of the
total enrollment. Non-Catholic enrollment was listed at 354,628
students, which is 13.4% of the total enrollment. To summarize the
statistical analysis of Catholic schools would indicate a significant
reliance on lay teachers and schools in which minority students and
non-Catholics play an important role. Influences of cultural and
religious diversity could attract teachers looking for opportunities to
practice their profession in schools where pluralism is practiced.
Lortie (1975) indicated a number of reasons for the choice of
teaching as a profession. Primary motivations for choosing and remaining
in a teaching career included an interpersonal theme, service theme,
continuation theme, material benefits, and time compatibility. Teachers
enjoy working with people and feel the need to provide service to the
community. The condition of continuation is associated with the desire
to keep working in an educational setting. Areas of salary, benefits,
and status were associated with the material aspects of teaching. Time
compatibility was directly related to the number of vacations and
holidays associated with teaching. Weekends, summer vacations, and
extended holiday breaks were valued and important to teachers.
Goodlad (1984) supports the work of Lortie (1975). Research
indicates that the majority of public school teachers tended to show
characteristics of being idealistic and altruistic and would again
choose teaching as a career. Goodlad believes that monetary benefits are
not a primary reason for choosing a career in teaching; however, they
become important when conditions of retention are examined. Educational
professionals desire financial rewards for years of experience and
service. The belief that teaching is a noble and worthy profession and
the sincere desire to be of service to others continue to be important
motivators in the selection of teaching as a career.
Teachers choose Catholic schools because of a sense of commitment
and dedication. They are motivated by their love of teaching, the desire
to teach in a quality environment, and view teaching as a form of
ministry. The motivations for teachers in Catholic schools are
predominately intrinsic and spring from a sense of service (Bleich,
1984; Ciriello, 1987; Guerra, 1991).
Catholic schools promote the belief of high expectations for
students. The Catholic Church holds high expectations for teachers
because of their influence on the faith and moral development of
students (Barrett-Jones, 1993). Frequently, teachers in Catholic schools
refer to their choice of teaching as either a ministry or mission.
Buetow (1988) explains that teachers in Catholic schools have a
vocation. Their vocation promotes contributions that are not just the
fulfillment of a job, but rather, a commitment to the Christian
development of students and a spirit of generosity, which provides an
enthusiastic fullness of life.
COMMUNITY, COMMITMENT, AND VALUES IN CATHOLIC SCHOOLS
Convey (1992) noted a number of reasons for working in a Catholic
school. Reasons include a love of teaching, enjoyment of working with
students, the practice of a faith ministry, school environment, and
support of Catholic education. Schaub (2000) observed that teachers in
Catholic schools expressed general job satisfaction despite salaries
lower than those offered in public schools. Schaub also noted that
almost 8 of 10 Catholic schoolteachers would teach in these schools
again, if given the opportunity to start over.
Significant satisfaction with working conditions and the work
environment has important implications for issues of teacher retention.
Catholic school culture promotes both the spiritual and intellectual.
Hawker (1985) observes,
The importance of schools becoming communities is stressed by
Sergiovanni (2000) when he states, "Communities are defined by
centers of values, sentiments, and beliefs that provide the needed
conditions for creating a sense of 'we' from the 'I'
of each individual" (p. 65). The Congregation for Catholic
Education (1988) explained the importance of Catholic school culture.
Visitors as well as students at Catholic schools should experience the
feeling that they have entered a totally unique environment when they
enter the school. It is an environment with characteristics permeated by
the Gospel's spirit of love, freedom, and faith. "The prime
responsibility for creating this unique Christian school climate rests
with the teachers, as individuals and as a community" (p. 13). The
Congregation further stated that the community should include teachers,
administrators, auxiliary staff, parents, and students.
Literature on Catholic schools is rich in reference to the school
as community. The Catholic school is not created for the sole purpose of
dispensing academic wisdom. The purpose of the school community is to
nurture and develop all of its members. The spirit of community is a
very significant characteristic for attracting and retaining teachers.
Teachers in Catholic schools have a proclivity for involvement and are
expected to participate in the development of the faith community. The
need to develop a faith community is even more important with the
increase in lay faculties and continual teacher turnover. Despite great
diversity in Catholic schools, the development of a faith community
establishes a common element found in all schools (Wojcicki &
Catholic education is often referred to as being value driven.
McDermott (1985) explains, "Catholic schools are not neutral. They
propose many Christian values to the students, above board and out in
the open, in subject area and in co-curricular activities, in liturgies
and other religious celebrations" (p. 50). McDermott further
explains that the primary values espoused by Catholic schools would
include the practice of, "community, faith, hope, reconciliation,
courage, service, justice, and love" (p. 53).
Although individual states differ in the amount and type of aid
that Catholic and other private schools can receive, most Catholic
schools are tuition-driven, with parents paying taxes to support public
schools they do not use, and tuition to support their Catholic school of
choice. After the Supreme Court rejected various forms of financial
assistance to parents in non-public schools, the United States Catholic
Conference (USCC) wrote "A Statement in Support of Catholic
Schools" (1983). The bishops urged the Catholic community to
reexamine and renew their commitment to Catholic schools and he also
spoke of the values inherent in a Catholic education. They commented
The bishops spoke to the essence of Catholic schools when they
stressed the importance of values. The literature on Catholic schools
makes reference to academic achievements and accomplishments; however,
the primary emphasis of a Catholic education is on the values found in
its culture and teachings (Groome, 1998). Educators, who choose Catholic
schools, place a high degree of importance on the teaching and
transmission of values.
The literature on teachers in Catholic schools frequently makes
reference to commitment. Ciriello (1987) conducted a study on teachers
in Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Washington, DC. Data from 655
teachers were reported. Ciriello found a majority of the teachers (about
54%) were influenced by the faith dimension in the selection of their
school. The lay teacher population in the study accounted for 85% of the
teaching force in the Catholic elementary schools responding to the
survey on conditions of commitment, attachment, and satisfaction.
Squillini (2001) conducted a study on 339 lay teachers in the
Archdiocese of New York on the characteristics of job satisfaction that
lead to commitment and longevity in the Catholic school system. The
study noted that 63% of the teachers in Catholic schools rated the
opportunity to be an active member of a faith community as being very
important to their job satisfaction. Catholic school teachers are
expected to make a commitment to the philosophy and principles promoted
by the Catholic Church for education.
Research by Lortie (1975) and Rosenholtz (1989) affirms the
importance of intrinsic motivation for teachers. Additional work by Bryk
et al. (1993) affirms the importance of the relationship between
community and commitment of teachers in Catholic schools. Their
observations on the distinctive atmosphere of Catholic schools centers
on the existence of a community shared by both the students and the
adults. Teachers in Catholic schools appeared highly committed, took on
numerous additional duties, and were very satisfied with their work.
Bryk et al. (1993) explained that when a school develops a feeling
of community, important consequences result for both teachers and
students. Working in a school community allows educators greater
opportunity to realize the intrinsic rewards vital to the satisfaction
of teachers. An increase in enjoyment, efficacy, and morale could result
from membership in a school community. Teachers working in a Catholic
school community report greater student participation, fewer
disciplinary problems, and a more attractive work environment. The
establishment of an ethic of caring is typical of a communally organized
school (Noddings, 1988). Teachers in Catholic schools frequently make
reference to their ministry and teaching in a school community. Powerful
intrinsic forces can promote the retention of teachers in Catholic
THE INFLUENCE OF SALARY ON TEACHER RETENTION IN CATHOLIC SCHOOLS
Teachers in Catholic schools are more likely to leave their
positions than teachers in public schools. This condition is found at
every age level, however the greatest rate of attrition takes place
prior to age 40. The salary comparison between Catholic and public
school teachers indicates a significant difference at every level of
experience (Cimino et al., 2000; Schuttloffel, 2001).
The 1993-1994 average teaching salaries for public school
elementary and secondary teachers were $33,116 and $34,387 respectively.
The 1993-1994 average teaching salaries for Catholic school elementary
and secondary teachers were $17,926 and $25,089 respectively (Schaub,
2000). Guerra (1991) observed that salary schedules for Catholic schools
are historically lower than public schools. Guerra also commented that
it is customary to find salary and job satisfaction linked together.
Teachers in Catholic schools usually cite their desire to teach in a
quality environment, a love of teaching, and teaching as a faith
ministry as the most important reasons for teaching in a Catholic
school. Salary and benefits are usually ranked lower in a review of
motivations (Convey, 1992). However, Guerra notes the importance of
salary and the relationship between lower salaries and the tendency of
many lay teachers in Catholic schools to leave within 5 years. This high
rate of turnover does not provide the school with an experienced staff
capable of transmitting the culture and traditions of the school.
Potential problems for Catholic schools include an imbalance between a
large number of young inexperienced teachers prone to attrition and a
declining number of more experienced teachers committed to the
school's history and purpose.
Squillini (2001) found salary to be the only job characteristic
viewed as dissatisfying in a survey of 339 lay teachers in the
Archdiocese of New York. Of the 27 issues presented on the survey
questionnaire, only salary was viewed as dissatisfying by over 50% of
the teachers. Improving salary was viewed as an important step in
encouraging teachers to remain in the school system. Although there are
a number of conditions that promote employee turnover, the importance of
salary should not be discounted (Mowday, Porter, & Steers, 1982).
Salaries at Catholic schools have undergone significant changes in
the past 50 years. The Catholic school system had been built on the
dedication of sisters, priests, and brothers who received a stipend or
reduced salary. Their religious communities supplied the material needs
of the religious staff. The decline of the religious teaching force and
the rise of a lay teaching force had significant implications for
Catholic schools. School budgets skyrocketed in the years after 1967 as
the number of lay teachers in Catholic schools increased (Bryk et al.,
COST OF CATHOLIC EDUCATION
Prior to 1967, tuition was low or nonexistent in Catholic schools.
Low labor costs allowed most schools to be supported by a parish church
and a small tuition charge. Tuition costs in 1967 averaged $203 per
child. The average per child tuition had increased to $1,875 by 1988.
This significant increase in tuition was implemented while teaching
salaries were still considered much lower than those offered in public
schools (Bryk et al., 1993). Tuition increases have become the norm as
Catholic schools struggle to pay teachers a just and fair wage. The
average Catholic school tuition in 1992 was $2,800 reflecting increases
at both the elementary and secondary school level (Guerra, 1995).
Data from the National Catholic Educational Association (McDonald,
2003) report tuition rates for both elementary and secondary schools.
Elementary school tuition averages $2,178 per pupil, while secondary
school tuition averages $4,075. The need to increase lay teacher
salaries will impact future tuition increases, as will the rising costs
of educating each student. Church support, endowments, foundations, and
contributions will offset differences between tuition and costs (Guerra,
The current financial model of a Catholic school includes a heavy
reliance on tuition. The need to cover rising lay teacher costs has
resulted in an escalation of tuition and dependence on additional
sources of revenue. The past financial model of relying on church
subsidies and cheap religious labor is no longer viable. The
transformation to a predominately lay faculty has significant
implications for family finances. A Catholic family with one child in
elementary and one in secondary school face a tuition bill between
$5,000 and $6,000. Tuition has grown from about 3% of annual family
income to over 11% of annual family income (Harris, 2000). The financial
implications on teacher retention are an important part of this
equation. Higher salaries result in tuition increases. The added drain
on family incomes could result in a loss of students and subsequent
reductions in the teaching force. Teachers in Catholic schools are faced
with the reality of accepting lower pay or placing the solvency of the
school in jeopardy. Public schools are not faced with the financial
constraints of tuition and the higher salaries offer an attractive
option to Catholic educators during times of teacher shortages. The
issue of salary difference between public and Catholic schools is vital
to the question of teacher retention.
THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SALARY AND TEACHER RETENTION
Murnane et al. (1991) investigated the influence of teacher
salaries on the retention of teachers. Evidence clearly indicates that
teachers who are paid more will stay in the profession longer and the
impact of higher salaries was greatest during the first years on the
job. Teachers with below average salaries were one and a half times more
likely to leave after 1 year than a teacher in the above average salary
Murnane et al. (1991) noted that after 10 years, the effect of
salary on teacher attrition is minimal. There are two explanations for
this condition. Changing occupations after a number of years becomes
less attractive an option, as teachers with experience acquire skills
which make the practice more enjoyable and less difficult. Additionally,
those who would have left because of low salary have usually exited the
system by this time.
Goodlad (1984) reports that money ranks low as a motivation for
entering the teaching force. However, salary ranked second as a
motivation for leaving the teaching force. Intrinsic motivators may lure
teachers to the profession, but economic reality can cause enough
distress to abandon the profession. It is estimated that a teacher at
retirement makes approximately twice the salary of a beginning teacher.
This dose of economic reality could give young teachers serious second
thoughts about continuing in a teaching career. Goodlad indicates that
only 2% to 4% of elementary and secondary teachers choose the profession
for economic reasons. He further notes that 18% to 25% of teachers claim
low salaries were a major reason for leaving the profession. The
starting salaries of teachers are among the lowest of all professions
and the rate of growth is one of the slowest. The salary conditions for
Catholic school teachers are even more discouraging (Byrd, 1999).
A study by Murnane et al. (1991) of teachers in North Carolina and
Michigan found that teachers who are paid more were more prone to remain
in the profession. The implication for the retention of teachers in
Catholic schools is important and underlines the importance of salaries.
Research examining teacher attrition and retention has discovered
compelling evidence that school district spending has a direct
relationship on the decisions of teachers to remain with a school system
(Grissmer & Kirby, 1992; Murnane & Olsen, 1989, 1990; Murnane,
Singer, & Willett, 1989; Rickman & Parker, 1990).
Buetow (1985), Radecki (1987), and Squillini (2001) discussed the
relationship between salary and teacher retention in Catholic Schools.
Pyszkowski (1991) claims the attraction of higher salaries in the
marketplace affects both first-time teachers and those considering a
return to the profession. A study by Gritz and Theobald (1996) of the
career histories of 9,756 teachers in the state of Washington, found
that female teachers remain in a teaching position longer when salaries
increase relative to salaries available in other areas of employment.
Salaries are also important when initially choosing a teaching position
among competing school districts. The methods school districts use to
spend their resources does make a difference.
Schaub (2000) explains that the salaries of Catholic school
teachers are 20% to 60% lower than those of their colleagues in public
schools. Significant differences are noticed for beginning teacher
salaries and the differences in salary increase with additional years of
experience. Teachers in Catholic schools may start off earning 20% less
than their public school counterparts. This trend continues over the
course of a career with an eventual disparity approaching 60%.
Differences in salary between Catholic and public school teachers are
greater at the elementary level than the secondary level.
There is great disparity between salaries of public and Catholic
school teachers. These differences grow as teachers gain years of
experience. The issue of salary differences that increase with years of
experience has important implications for retention of teachers in
Catholic schools. Schaub (2000) commented that:
Retention of teachers in Catholic schools may also include
compensation beyond salary considerations. A study by Squillini (2001)
involving a random sample of 600 teachers in Catholic schools, examined
issues of job satisfaction, commitment, and longevity. The importance of
salary diminished as years of experience are gained; however, there
appears to be an increase in the importance of working benefits. Young
teachers may be more influenced by salary, but veteran teachers pay
particular attention to the issues of compensation benefits. Since
retirement becomes more of a reality with age, retention of experienced
teachers may be more difficult without an adequate benefits package.
Catholic schools may not offer enough retirement benefits to provide
their teachers with sufficient resources to cover acceptable living
A recent review of benefits offered in Catholic schools reveals 91%
offer health insurance, 89% offer a retirement plan, 63% offer life
insurance, 66% offer unemployment compensation, and 61% offer a dental
plan (Cimino et al., 2000). It is important to note that the mere
existence of a plan does not denote its quality. Comparisons with public
schools have found a comparable number of benefits, but the cash value
of these benefits has not been determined. Retention of experienced
teachers in Catholic schools may be directly related to the offering of
an attractive benefits package (Schaub, 2000).
STRATEGIES FOR RETENTION
Attrition rates for teachers in Catholic schools are higher than
attrition rates for teachers in public schools. A lack of tenure for
experienced teachers combined with lower salaries are cited as possible
causes for higher attrition rates in Catholic schools (Bryk et al.,
1993). Catholic schools must be attentive to the issue of low salaries
especially when public schools are facing teacher shortages and offering
A study by Shen (1998) involving 4,761 teachers examined conditions
that promote teacher retention. He found that teachers with less
experience tend to leave, that salary is positively correlated with
teacher retention, and that an appreciation of the intrinsic merits of
the teaching profession promotes retention.
Murnane et al. (1991) support a retention strategy that includes
reimbursement to teachers for courses taken that would enhance and
promote good practice. Studies by Adams and Dial (1994) on the career
paths of 2,327 teachers, indicates there is a relationship between
graduate studies and teacher retention. Results demonstrate that
teachers who pursue graduate studies remain with school districts longer
than teachers who do not pursue graduate studies. Encouragement and
support from the administration could prove vital in the implementation
of this retention strategy.
Kestner (1994) noted that effective teacher induction programs and
a collegial atmosphere are helpful to the retention of both new and
experienced teachers. The involvement of the entire faculty promotes a
spirit of school community, which can assist in eliminating feelings of
isolation. Effective induction programs can also promote higher
expectations, standards of quality, and greater potential for teacher
Benson and Guerra (1985) and Ciriello (1987) found commitment and a
sense of ministry are major motivations for teachers who choose to work
in a Catholic school. Schuttloffel (2001) completed a study on 200
teachers in Catholic schools. Findings from her survey supported the
importance of sharing the faith through the ministry of teaching.
A study by Radecki (1987) on 330 teachers in the Archdiocese of San
Francisco, found merit-pay, career ladders, and advancement
opportunities as factors that could increase teacher retention.
Barrett-Jones (1993) supports the importance of salary and benefits as
conditions that affect teacher retention in a study of 177 teachers in
the Catholic schools of Indiana. The importance of the school
environment, support from the administration, and issues of salary and
benefits were listed as factors promoting teacher retention in a study
on 339 Catholic schoolteachers by Squillini (2001).
The need to attract and retain qualified professionals will
continue to place significant demands upon Catholic school
administrators. Additionally, teachers who are age 25 or younger are
leaving positions at Catholic schools at rates that exceed attrition
rates at public schools. A lack of new teachers who are retained can
have negative consequences. Schools could find their faculty dominated
by a core of experienced teachers and a number of inexperienced teachers
who are not retained. The resulting imbalance of experienced and
inexperienced teachers could result in instability or stagnation of the
faculty (O'Keefe, 1999).
The importance of establishing effective hiring practices is
reinforced by current conditions relating to teacher employment. The
National Commission on Teaching and America's Future (1996)
estimates that over half of the teachers who will be teaching 10 years
from now will be hired during the current decade.
A study conducted by Caruso (2002) compared the successful hiring
practices of the Disney Company and their implications for Jesuit higher
education. The author stressed the importance of identity and mission
values in attracting the most successful employees. Catholic schools
have both an identity and mission values that could be used to
effectively seek the most qualified teaching candidates. Matching
prospective teachers' qualifications with the identity and mission
values of Catholic schools could significantly benefit school
administrators during the hiring process.
Church documents related to Catholic education have also supported
the importance of mission in the lives of Catholic school teachers. The
Catholic School on the Threshold of the Third Millennium (CCE, 1997)
maintains that teaching in a Catholic school is a form of vocation or
ministry that involves participation in the mission of the Catholic
This sense of mission is further enhanced by the development of the
school as a community. Church leaders have indicated that one of the
basic goals of Catholic schools is to build a community involving the
entire staff and students (Drahmann, 1985). The Second Vatican Council
declared in The Declaration on Christian Education that the school
should move from a role of educational institution to one of school
community that promotes a spirit of liberty, charity, and the message of
salvation (Abbott, 1996). Teachers seeking to practice their profession
within a school community may find Catholic schools meet their
expectations in an area that may promote a greater degree of job
The importance of mission and community to teachers in Catholic
schools is confirmed through research conducted by Barrett-Jones (1993)
and Squillini (1999, 2001). Their studies indicate that teachers are
motivated to remain teaching in Catholic schools due to the existence of
intrinsic motivators that include the mission and community conditions
found in Catholic schools.
The creation of a Catholic teacher service corps has the potential
to attract recent college graduates to teaching opportunities in
Catholic schools. The Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) was founded
in 1993 at the University of Notre Dame. This program sends
approximately 160 recent graduates to teach in Catholic schools each
year. A majority of the ACE graduates continue to teach after completion
of their program. The development of a Catholic teacher service corps as
a means of attracting college graduates to teaching positions in
Catholic schools could prove to be a successful teacher recruitment
option (Hunt, Joseph, & Nuzzi, 2002).
Research still indicates that concerns over low salaries and a lack
of benefits are major obstacles to the retention of teachers in Catholic
schools (Hunt et al., 2002). These areas must be addressed, especially
when the pool of available, quality educational professionals is being
absorbed by public schools that can afford to meet the extrinsic
motivators that applicants are seeking.
Traviss (2001) reports that there is no national plan currently in
place to assist a diocese with its teacher recruitment needs. Diocesan
officers, like individual schools, suffer from the same problems that
plague teacher recruitment efforts. There is a shortage of expertise,
time, and money. Issues of better salaries and benefits, especially
retirement benefits, are central to the retention of teachers in
Catholic schools. Unless improvements in these areas take place,
Catholic schools will continue to lose teachers to the neighboring
public school systems.
Buetow (1988) explains that there should be opportunities for
teachers as good as those found in businesses. Teachers in Catholic
schools should have a career ladder that provides them with increasing
responsibilities, including the ability to exercise innovation and
experimentation in their professional development. He further states,
"Very importantly, the Church as well as other institutions, must
learn what keeps teachers happy and act upon it" (p. 267).
Herzberg, Mausner, and Snyderman (1959) asked a simple question,
"What do people want from their jobs?" (p. 107). It was a
valid question in 1959 and is still relevant as strategies to promote
greater teacher retention are explored. The authors explained that
workers desired to be happy in their employment. Happiness includes both
the intrinsic and extrinsic conditions of their position. Providing
teachers with greater opportunities to be successful and happy in their
profession could promote greater teacher retention.
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WALTER F. PRZYGOCKI
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Walter F. Przygocki is an adjunct professor in the department of
educational leadership at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte
and the principal at Saint Mark Catholic School in Huntersville, North
Carolina. Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to
Dr. Walter F. Przygocki, 1215 Parsons Trail, Denver, NC 28037.
In recent years, thousands of lay people have come forward as
administrators and teachers in the Church's schools and educational
programs. By accepting and developing the legacy of Catholic thought
and educational experience which they have inherited, they take
their place as full partners in the Church's mission of educating
the whole person and of transmitting the Good News of salvation in
Jesus Christ to successive generations of young Americans. Even if
they do not "teach religion," their service in a Catholic school or
educational program is part of the Church's unceasing endeavor to
lead all to profess the truth in love and grow to the full maturity
of Christ the head.
For a Catholic educator, the Church should not be looked upon
merely as an employer. The Church is the Body of Christ, carrying
on the mission of the Redeemer throughout history. It is our
privilege to share in that mission, to which we are called by the
grace of God and in which we are engaged together. (pp. 13-14)
The school can and must be a community of faith in which an
evangelizing and catechizing ministry is being fulfilled. The
Catholic school can and must be a truly pastoral setting in which
all of the participants--adults and students, Catholics and
non-Catholics--are comforted and challenged, enriched and
encouraged, refreshed and renewed, strengthened and supported.
We are in an age in which our nation seems to be adrift in waters
where the guiding lights of a sound moral code and values are
frequently obscured. Those natural and supernatural virtues on which
a healthy society are rooted are often poorly understood and poorly
practiced. Obedience to law, respect for the rights of others,
honesty in public and private life, reverence for the right to life
of the young and old, truthfulness, concern for the less fortunate
... how are young people to find their way in a world in which
people so frequently operate without regard for these and other
important values. (USCC, p. 375)
Catholic schoolteachers clearly make significant financial
sacrifices to teach in these schools. As the faculty moves toward a
fully lay corps of teachers, there is a range of implications of
these salary levels for sustaining high-quality personnel. Teacher
recruitment and retention may become significantly more difficult in
the face of large salary disparities. Most important, teacher
quality could be diminished as the most qualified and experienced
teachers are attracted to higher-paying jobs. (p. 77)