Parents prefer teachers who make their children happy

Filed under: Day Care & Education

If you could choose your child's school teacher, what would you consider more important - the ability to make your child happy or the ability to help your child achieve more academically? According to a new study by the University of Michigan, the answer to that question might depend on how much money your school district has.

Overall, parents were found to place a higher value on a teacher who received high student satisfaction ratings than those who got high marks for achievement. But in higher poverty schools, where there are fewer academic resources and less experienced teachers, parents preferred a teacher would help their child succeed academically over a teacher who would make their child happy.

"The value of this study is that it helps education practitioners and policymakers better understand how factors such as family poverty can influence what parents are looking for in a school," Jacob said. "While all parents presumably want what is best for their children, this can mean very different things depending on the school and neighborhood context."

The study, published in the latest issue of the Quarterly Journal of Economics, also found that the parents of low-income, minority and low-achieving students were less likely to even make a request for a specific teacher than other parents.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.