Date of Award

Fall 2003

Degree Type


Degree Name

PhD Higher Education Leadership, Management, Policy


Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Charles Achilles

Committee Member

Charles Mitchel

Committee Member

Sue Gerber

Committee Member

Kathleen Garcia


Public schools, Teacher turnover, Teachers, Recruiting, Teachers, Training of, New York (State)


The rate of teacher turnover appears to be higher than employee turnover in many other occupations. What is currently perceived as a teacher shortage may in reality be a problem of teacher retention. This study examined the use of the Urban Teacher Selection Interview, developed by Martin Haberman, Ph.D., as a tool for choosing teachers for urban districts. Almost 36% of those teachers eligible for employment in Buffalo refused employment. This compares favorably with a national average of 40% of teachers who choose not to teach. In general, the higher the interview scores the longer a teacher was retained in the district after being hired. There was no significant difference between those teachers who received a passing score under the alternate scoring procedure used in Buffalo and the traditional method of scoring the interview. As a group, pupil personnel support teachers scored highest on the interview followed by humanities, math/science and vocational teachers. Math/science teachers were retained in the District longer on average than were other groups. Average retention rates for other groups were, in descending order: humanities, vocational education, and pupil personnel support teachers. The Urban Teacher Selection Interview provided a viable method of identifying teachers who were likely to continue teaching in urban Buffalo schools after being hired.