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Early Adolescent Sex and Diminished School Attachment: Selection or Spillovers?


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  • Joseph J. Sabia

    (Department of Housing and Consumer Economics, University of Georgia)

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    Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, this study examines the relationship between adolescent virginity and four measures of school attachment: out-of-school suspensions, unexcused absences from school, affinity for school, and preference to attend college. Ordinary least squares and school fixed effects estimates reflect that adolescents who engage in sexual activity are less likely to be attached to school than virgins. However, after controlling for unmeasured heterogeneity via individual fixed effects and instrumental variables, the evidence of a causal link is weaker, with modest adverse effects of early teen sex observed for the youngest teenagers. The results suggest that adverse educational spillovers of early teen sex are sensitive to controls for unobservables.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Southern Economic Association in its journal Southern Economic Journal.

    Volume (Year): 74 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 1 (July)
    Pages: 239-268

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    Handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:74:1:y:2007:p:239-268

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    Cited by:
    1. Brown, Timothy Tyler, 2014. "How effective are public health departments at preventing mortality?," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 13(C), pages 34-45.
    2. Albert Okunade & Andrew Hussey & Mustafa Karakus, 2009. "Overweight Adolescents and On-time High School Graduation: Racial and Gender Disparities," Atlantic Economic Journal, International Atlantic Economic Society, International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 37(3), pages 225-242, September.


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