Main Page > Cautions and Assumptions
Caution is Necessary When Interpreting the National Data Shown by Default in the Pipeline Figure! As we describe in more detail here, there is no nationally representative dataset that allows for longitudinal tracking of candidates in the teacher pipeline—instead, each node in the pipeline is informed by statistics reported across both national (e.g., NCES, Census, Title 2, IPEDS) and state sources (Washington state West B statistics, Goldhaber et al, 2014), and, in some cases, our information is pretty spotty. Indeed, there are some nodes in our teacher pipeline tool that are not informed by data at all and are instead imputed from adjacent junctures on the pipeline. While this approach is likely to be less accurate than other studies that use state longitudinal data that provide a better state-specific view (Rucinski & Goodman, 2019; Wan et al., 2021), assumptions are necessary to provide a national picture of how diversity changes throughout the pipeline.
Many teachers of color come from traditional teacher preparation programs, which includes a sizeable population from Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), and these teachers are included in our pipeline statistics. That said, a disproportionate number of Black and Hispanic teacher candidates are trained in “alternative” programs, which we can not include–we describe these individuals in more detail here.
Another important caution is that the default assumptions for national rates may not apply well for individual states because they do not account for cross-state movement of candidates. For instance, teacher candidates may complete their college degree and TEP training in California and enter the workforce in Massachusetts—this would lead to national numbers overstating applications in California and understating them in Massachusetts.
Below, we describe the sources of information used in the pipeline figure:
- 12th grade: NCES Common Core of Data for the 2014-15 school year, https://nces.ed.gov/ccd/.
- HS Diploma: NCES 4-year adjusted graduation rates https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2018/2018117.pdf.
- Attend college: NCES percentage of recent grads enrolled in college, https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d18/tables/dt18_302.20.asp.
- Basic Skills Tests: Author’s calculations from Washington State West-B test data.
- Attend TEP/Complete TEP: IPEDS data on postsecondary enrollment and program completion, https://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/datacenter/DataFiles.aspx. There is no data on race/ethnicity of TEP completers. Instead, we make an educated guess using information from Title II on a cross-section of demographics for teacher candidates enrolled TEPs and assume that the distribution of enrolled candidates is the same as those who complete TEP and graduate from college, https://title2.ed.gov/Public/Home.aspx.
- Subject Tests: Praxis II, Elementary Test results reported by NCTQ, https://www.nctq.org/dmsView/A_Fair_Chance.
- Apply to Schools: No data.
- Offered a Position: No data.
- In Classroom: Washington study where non-white teachers are 2.5 percentage points less likely to be employed in public schools, all else equal (Goldhaber et al., 2014).
- Workforce, 3yrs: NCES Beginning Public School Teacher Survey, https://nces.ed.gov/pubs2015/2015337.pdf.