Making Do: Why Do Administrators Retain Low-Performing Teachers?

Luis A. Rodriguez, Seth B. Hunter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Previous reports suggest that administrators rarely dismiss low-performing teachers despite the changing policy landscape allowing them to do so. This brief uses survey data from Tennessee to investigate the underlying reasons explaining administrators’ decisions to retain low-performing teachers. The presented analysis suggests that administrators largely retain low-performing teachers due to a persistent belief that these teachers will improve with time; further analysis presents some evidence regarding observable improvement among low-performing teachers. The brief concludes with a brief discussion of implications for policy and practice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)673-676
Number of pages4
JournalEducational Researcher
Issue number9
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • administration
  • decision making
  • descriptive analysis
  • retention
  • school/teacher effectiveness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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