Budapest Working Papers on the Labour Market BWP - 2017/2
This paper examines the effect of teacher gender on student achievement in 20 European countries. We employ a student fixed effect approach to account for unobservable subject-invariant student ability and non-random student-teacher sorting. Our results show that female teachers tend to increase students' test scores, especially for girls. However, this effect is far from universal; it is present in half of the countries in our sample. The female effect is likely to reflect selection into the teaching profession, as it is stronger in countries where the teacher wages relative to graduate wages are higher for women than for men. Having a teacher of the same gender also benefits students in Western Europe. We further find that the female teacher effect is more pronounced for low achievers, and in Western Europe for students with an immigrant background.