Conference logo featuring title A Modern Teaching Profession

A Modern Teaching Profession

Compensation, Preparation, Representation, Evaluation

May 2 — June 6, 2024

Thursdays at 12 p.m. ET

Great teaching remains the bedrock of student academic success. However, recruiting and supporting effective teachers has become increasingly difficult in recent years. Education spending has steadily increased since the pandemic, yet teacher salaries remain stagnant and educator morale low. What’s more, the bipartisan reform consensus on teachers that anchored the Bush-Obama era is a distant memory. Greater political division now constrains the policies that will shape the future of the teaching profession.

Amid that backdrop, the Program on Education Policy and Governance at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government is hosting six one-hour virtual sessions with the nation’s leading policymakers, scholars, and experts on K-12 teacher policy. The purpose of this virtual series is to examine current challenges to reforming the teaching profession to drive student academic success. On May 2, the first session begins with a discussion of teacher pay. Subsequent sessions are described below.

Please join us on Thursdays at 12:00 p.m. ET from May 2 to June 6, 2024.


Photo of Paul E. Peterson Paul E. Peterson
Director, Program on Education Policy and Governance, Harvard University 


Photo of Michael Hartney Michael Hartney
Hoover Institution Fellow, Stanford University

Register to attend the conference now


May 2

Why aren’t we paying teachers more?

Aaron Garth Smith, Director of Education Reform at the Reason Foundation

Michael McShane, Director of National Research at EdChoice



Can teachers be paid a better way?

Andrew Johnston, Assistant Professor of Economics at University of California, Merced
Eric Hanushek, Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution

Chad Aldeman, Founder of Read Not Guess


MAY 16

Should teachers be held accountable for student outcomes?

Matthew Kraft, Associate Professor of Education and Economics at Brown University
Thomas S. Dee, Barnett Family Professor at Stanford University and Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution

Michelle Rhee, Former Chancellor of the District of Columbia Public Schools


MAY 23

What is the teacher’s role in civics education?


MAY 30

What is the union impact on student learning?

Michael Lovenheim, Professor in the Department of Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University; Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution
Melissa “Mimi” Lyon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University at Albany, SUNY

Kira Orange Jones, CEO of TeachPlus



How should teachers be taught?

Peter Blair, Associate Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Dr. Heather Peske, President of the National Council on Teacher Quality

Daniel Weisberg, First Deputy Chancellor, New York City Public Schools