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Dropout, School Performance, and Working while in School


Author Info

  • Claude Montmarquette

    (CIRANO and Department of Economics, University of Montreal)

  • Nathalie Viennot-Briot


  • Marcel Dagenais

    (CIRANO and Department of Economics, University of Montreal)


We develop an econometric model where the determinants of working while in school, academic performance, and the decision to drop out are set in the context of two types of high school students: those who prefer schooling and those who are more likely to join the labor market. The likelihood function of this model with heterogeneous preferences for schooling is composed of 48 individual contributions of a standard quadrivariate normal function. Exploiting a unique Canadian microdata set of high school students and school dropouts, we show that being a female student, attending a private school, and living with educated parents are linked to having a strong preference for schooling over the labor market. We also find that working fewer than fifteen hours per week while in school is not necessarily detrimental to success in school. Our results indicate that the decision to drop out is affected by the legal age to access the labor market, high minimum wages, and low unemployment rates. Several policies that aim at reducing the number of high school dropouts are identified. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Review of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): 89 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 752-760

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:89:y:2007:i:4:p:752-760

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Cited by:
  1. Kalenkoski, Charlene M. & Pabilonia, Sabrina Wulff, 2009. "Time to Work or Time to Play: The Effect of Student Employment on Homework, Sleep, and Screen Time," IZA Discussion Papers 4666, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Charles L. Baum & Christopher J. Ruhm, 2014. "The Changing Benefits of Early Work Experience," NBER Working Papers 20413, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Thomson, Henry, 2013. "The Impact of Agriculture and Farm Produce Prices on Human Capital Formation: Education Decisions of Young Americans in Agricultural Areas Before and During the Food Crisis 2000-2010," Master's Theses, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics 148745, University of Minnesota, Department of Applied Economics.
  4. Darolia, Rajeev, 2014. "Working (and studying) day and night: Heterogeneous effects of working on the academic performance of full-time and part-time students," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 38-50.
  5. Cathleen Johnson & Claude Montmarquette, 2011. "Loan Aversion among Canadian High School Students," CIRANO Working Papers, CIRANO 2011s-67, CIRANO.
  6. Cristina Lopez-Mayan, 2013. "Performance in Post-compulsory Education: Evidence from Vocational and Academic Tracks," Working Papers, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona wpdea1302, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
  7. Franz Buscha & Arnaud Maurel & Lionel Page & Stefan Speckesser, 2007. "The Effect of High School Employment on Educational Attainment : A Conditional Difference-in-Differences Approach," Working Papers, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique 2007-40, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  8. Shiyuan Chen & Sally Wallace, 2008. "Determinants of Education Duration in Jamaica," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University paper0803, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
  9. Driouchi, Ahmed, 2009. "Failure of Participation & “Missing Women” in South Mediterranean Economies," MPRA Paper 21541, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 22 Mar 2010.


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