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PDQ: Pretty Darn Quick Blog

Check out big changes to TR3, our district database

11/30/2011

We've recently made some big changes to our TR3 database, where you can compare the local policies and state laws governing teachers in over 100 school districts in the United States. This database allows you to compare districts on almost any factor that affects teachers, including:

  • Leave: amount of sick, personal, and other leave teachers get each year
  • Dismissal: the procedures districts must follow when dismissing teachers
  • Evaluation: how and when teachers are evaluated
  • Layoffs: how teachers are chosen for layoffs and the rights of laid-off teachers
  • Tenure: how and when teachers are granted tenure
  • Salary: teachers' annual salaries, and reasons for and amounts of raises and bonuses
  • Benefits: types and amounts of fringe benefits offered to teachers
  • Calendar: number of school days, work hours, and amount of preparation time
  • Class size: maximum class sizes allowed by grade
  • Union rights and privileges: benefits and roles of union officials and their ability to waive parts of the teacher contract
  • Transfer and assignment: rules for placing teachers at schools and assigning them classes
  • Professional development: types of professional development offered to teachers, including mentoring
  • General employment provisions: policies governing work conditions, such as dress codes and disciplinary practices
  • Grievances: types of grievances allowed and the process for filing and resolving grievances


We've pulled this data from state laws, teachers' contracts, school board policies, school calendars, salary schedules, teacher evaluation handbooks, and more. We've sorted through thousands of documents so you don't have to.

The upgrades we've made to TR3 make it easier for users to compare data from different districts. Visitors to the TR3 database can now:

  • Sort 100+ districts by state, student enrollment, and percent free/reduced lunch population. This change means you can see how often teachers are evaluated in Cleveland, for example, compared with teachers in similarly sized districts such as Omaha and Wichita.


  • Select sub-groups of districts to compare. If you only want to compare salaries of first-year teacher in New York City to salaries of their peers in other large, high-poverty districts, you can restrict your search to the ten largest districts in the nation that also have free/reduced lunch populations over 75 percent:




  • Keep track of the data you want to view. As you scroll through our 250 data points and check off the ones that address your own questions -- say, number of professional development days, layoff procedures, and sick leave allotments--TR3 will keep a running list of the data you've selected on the side of your screen:




  • Export all the data we have for all TR3 districts (a feature requested by researchers). This change will allow you to generate an admittedly massive spreadsheet that lists answers to our 250+ data points for every single one of the 100 TR3 districts. Citations will be included.


Let us know what you think of these changes. You can send feedback to Ginger Moored, our TR3 manager.

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