Issues of Teacher Performance Stability are Not New: Limitations and Possibilities


  • Thomas L. Good University of Arizona
  • Alyson L. Lavigne Roosevelt University



teacher evaluation policy, teacher stability, teacher effects, teacher performance


Morgan, Hodge, Trepinski, and Anderson (2014) have written an article that continues to confirm what we have known for some time—teacher effects on student achievement have limited stability. In this commentary, we address the other potential contributions this work can make to inform practice, policy, and research. While illustrating Morgan et al.’s inattention to history, we take the opportunity to reframe their findings. Considering the authors’ work in the context of past and current research, we illustrate that this collective set of stable evidence should convince policymakers that it is not reasonable to assume that teachers and teaching is stable across time. Beyond this important opportunity to influence policy, we believe these findings underscore the need to build upon and expand the dependent measures we use to define and understand good teaching. After all, as we have noted (Lavigne & Good, 2014; in press) good teaching involves much more than increasing students’ scores on standardized achievement tests. 


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Author Biographies

Thomas L. Good, University of Arizona

Dr. Thomas L. Good is a professor emeritus of the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Arizona. He was the long time editor of the Elementary School Journal. He formerly taught at the University of Missouri-Columbia and The University of Texas -Austin. He is a member of the National Academy of Education.  His most recent publications include two books co-authored with Alyson L. Lavigne, entitled Teacher and Student Evaluation: Moving Beyond the Failure of School Reform (published in 2014) and Improving Teaching through Observation and Feedback: Going Beyond State and Federal Mandates (to be released in early 2015).

Alyson L. Lavigne, Roosevelt University

Dr. Alyson L. Lavigne, (pka Alyson Lavigne Dolan), is an assistant professor in the College of Education at Roosevelt University. She received her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology from the University of Arizona.  Her work in the area teacher evaluation and supervision includes a co-edited Teachers College Record special issue on high-stakes teacher evaluation and two co-authored books with Thomas L. Good. 




How to Cite

Good, T. L., & Lavigne, A. L. (2015). Issues of Teacher Performance Stability are Not New: Limitations and Possibilities. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 23, 2.