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An important issue in education policy is whether the national rate of teacher turnover in the U.S. is higher than expected. A study by Harris and Adams [Harris, D. N. and Adams, S. J. (2007). Understanding the level and causes of teacher turnover: A comparison with other professions. Economics of Education Review] compares teachers to arguably similar vocational professions, including nursing, social work, and accounting. In this paper I build upon Harris and Adams (2007) by conducting a repeated cross-sectional analysis of teacher turnover in relation to other professions. I find that the rate of teacher turnover has remained strikingly stable over time at around 8 percent and exhibits less variation than comparable professions. Teachers and nurses share similar rates of turnover. A decline in the labor force leaver rate among older teachers approaching retirement explains a small decrease in the overall turnover rate between 2001 and 2017.

We develop a flexible test for changes in the SES-mortality gradient that accounts for changes in the distribution of education, the most commonly used marker of SES. We implement the test for the period between 1984 and 2006 in the United States using microdata from the Census and other surveys linked to death records. Using our flexible test, we find that the evidence for a change in the SES-mortality gradient is not as strong as previous research has suggested. Our results indicate that the gradient increased for females during this time period, but we cannot rule out that the gradient among males has not changed. Informally, the results suggest that the changes for females are mainly driven by the bottom of the education distribution.
Journal of Health Economics,2016