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The effect of pre-primary education on primary school performance

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  • Berlinski, Samuel
  • Galiani, Sebastian
  • Gertler, Paul

Abstract

The theoretical case for universal pre-primary education is strong. However, the empirical foundation is less so. In this paper, we contribute to the empirical case by investigating the effect of a large expansion of universal pre-primary education on subsequent primary school performance in Argentina. We estimate that one year of pre-primary school increases average third grade test scores by 8% of a mean or by 23% of the standard deviation of the distribution of test scores. We also find that pre-primary school attendance positively affects student's self-control in the third grade as measured by behaviors such as attention, effort, class participation, and discipline.

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Bibliographic Info

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

Volume (Year): 93 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1-2 (February)
Pages: 219-234

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:93:y:2009:i:1-2:p:219-234

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

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Keywords: Pre-primary education Primary school performance Argentina;

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  1. Galiani, Sebastian & Gertler, Paul & Schargrodsky, Ernesto, 2008. "School decentralization: Helping the good get better, but leaving the poor behind," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 2106-2120, October.
  2. Michael Baker & Jonathan Gruber & Kevin Milligan, 2008. "Universal Child Care, Maternal Labor Supply, and Family Well-Being," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(4), pages 709-745, 08.
  3. Jens Ludwig & Douglas L. Miller, 2005. "Does Head Start Improve Children's Life Chances? Evidence from a Regression Discontinuity Design," NBER Working Papers 11702, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Berlinski, Samuel & Galiani, Sebastian & Manacorda, Marco, 2007. "Giving children a better start : preschool attendance and school-age profiles," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4240, The World Bank.
  5. Samuel Berlinski & Sebastian Galiani, 2004. "The effect of a large expansion of pre-primary school facilities on preschool attendance and maternal employment," IFS Working Papers W04/30, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  6. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 1-40, February.
  7. Joshua D. Angrist & Victor Lavy, 1999. "Using Maimonides' Rule To Estimate The Effect Of Class Size On Scholastic Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 533-575, May.
  8. Eliana Garces & Duncan Thomas & Janet Currie, 2000. "Longer Term Effects of Head Start," Working Papers 00-20, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  9. James Heckman, 2011. "Policies to foster human capital," Educational Studies, Higher School of Economics, issue 3, pages 73-137.
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  12. Currie, Janet & Thomas, Duncan, 1995. "Does Head Start Make a Difference?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 341-64, June.
  13. Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2004. "How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 249-275, February.
  14. Janet Currie, 2001. "Early Childhood Education Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 213-238, Spring.
  15. Katherine A. Magnuson & Christopher J. Ruhm & Jane Waldfogel, 2004. "Does Prekindergarten Improve School Preparation and Performance?," NBER Working Papers 10452, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Miguel Urquiola, 2006. "Identifying Class Size Effects in Developing Countries: Evidence from Rural Bolivia," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(1), pages 171-177, February.
  17. David Blau & Janet Currie, 2004. "Preschool, Day Care, and Afterschool Care: Who's Minding the Kids?," NBER Working Papers 10670, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Christopher J. Ruhm, 2000. "Parental Employment and Child Cognitive Development," NBER Working Papers 7666, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  20. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," NBER Working Papers 12006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. W. Steven Barnett, 1992. "Benefits of Compensatory Preschool Education," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(2), pages 279-312.
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