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Sorting and inequality in Canadian schools

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  • Friesen, Jane
  • Krauth, Brian

Abstract

Researchers and educators often argue that a student's peers strongly influence his or her educational outcomes. If so, an unequal distribution of advantaged and disadvantaged students across schools in a community will leave many students doubly disadvantaged and amplify existing inequalities. We explore the relationship between the degree of sorting by socioeconomic characteristics, ethnicity and language across schools within a community and inequality as measured by the variance of standardized high school exam scores within the community. Simple cross- sectional estimates suggest a direct relationship between sorting by ethnicity and the variance of test scores, but no direct relationship between sorting by income or primary parent's education and the variance of test scores. We then implement a fixed effects estimator to control for endogeneity in the extent of sorting: the results indicate that sorting by ethnicity does not affect the variance of test scores, but that sorting by home language and primary parent's education does.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 91 (2007)
Issue (Month): 11-12 (December)
Pages: 2185-2212

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:91:y:2007:i:11-12:p:2185-2212

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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Cited by:
  1. Matilde Bombardini & Giovanni Gallipoli & Germán Pupato, 2009. "Skill Dispersion and Trade Flows," Working Paper Series 20_09, The Rimini Centre for Economic Analysis, revised Jan 2009.
  2. Simone Celant, 2013. "The analysis of students’ academic achievement: the evaluation of peer effects through relational links," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 47(2), pages 615-631, February.
  3. Robert Bifulco & Jason M. Fletcher & Stephen L. Ross, 2009. "The Effect of Classmate Characteristics on Individual Outcomes: Evidence from the Add Health," Working papers 2009-15, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  4. Simon Burgess & Deborah Wilson & Adam Briggs & Anete Piebalga, 2008. "Segregation and the Attainment of Minority Ethnic Pupils in England," The Centre for Market and Public Organisation 08/204, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  5. Robert Bifulco & Jason M. Fletcher & Stephen L. Ross, 2011. "The Effect of Classmate Characteristics on Post-secondary Outcomes: Evidence from the Add Health," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 3(1), pages 25-53, February.

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