There is a 4% fall in student proficiency rates in states where teachers’ unions are stronger.
According to a study by Johnathan Lott of the University of Chicago Law School and Lawrence W. Kenny of the University of Florida of 721 U.S. school districts in 42 states shows a 1-standard-deviation rise in teachers’ union dues per teacher is associated with a 4% fall in student proficiency rates.
Dues support union lobbying, which typically pushes for policies such as blocking merit pay and limiting the Teach for America program. Consequently, student proficiency is lower in states with stronger teacher unions, the researchers say.
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