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PERC research is produced through collaboration between researchers from Research for Action and the School District of Philadelphia’s Office of Research and Evaluation. For more information, please visit

Teachers are the most important influence in schools on student achievement, which makes attracting and retaining excellent teachers a high priority for all school districts. But public schools in large cities like Philadelphia are especially challenged to provide every student with a highly-effective teacher. Teacher mobility—that is, transferring from one school to another or leaving the profession entirely—is disproportionately concentrated in urban school districts and has negative consequences for student performance. For these reasons, it is critical for policymakers and school leaders in Philadelphia to have a clear picture of the extent and nature of teacher mobility.