we described what we see as the spin resulting from a joint report
by the Heritage Foundation
and the American Enterprise Institute.
The report claims that state and local governments are being "overcharged" by $120 billion
annually for teacher salary and benefits. Now we want to get back to the question of substance: How right or wrong are the authors? We asked economist Dick Startz, author of Profit of Education
, for his assessment of the study. His is a frank critique
, to say the least, and delightfully easy to read.
Startz's conclusion? A "fair summary" of the data presented by the paper itself should have led to a far different conclusion than what was actually made: teachers are underpaid by a bit
if one doesn't adjust for their shorter years of work and overpaid — but only by a bit
— if one does.