The term rent-seeking is defined as when teacher unions prefer different school inputs than parents primarily because their
objectives are not solely the maximization of student achievement.
Hoxby, C. M. 1996. “How Teacher Unions Affect Education Production.” Quarterly
Journal of Economics, v11: pp670-718.
The results indicate that “mobile” parents may be able to pressure teachers into accepting lower budget increases, higher levels of effort, and add fewer administrative encumbrances. Hoxby concludes that unions are primarily rent seeking
and may be a primary means in which the lack of district competition leads to an increase in inputs and worse student performance. Instead, these results arguably suggest that teachers unions effectively separate their rent-seeking quality from their role as educators.
Those opposed to teachers unions argue that they have separate agendas from
improving education quality. Hoxby (1996) argues that, aside from their goal of
improving education quality, teachers unions have a rent-seeking attribute—they prefer
different school inputs than parents primarily because their objectives are not solely the Castelo 5
maximization of student achievement. This rent-seeking quality could prevent optimal
inputs from entering the educational system. For example, teachers unions tend to dislike
the use of merit pay and tend to oppose anything that induces competition among schools