The Impact of School Lunches on Primary School Enrollment: Evidence from India's Midday Meal Scheme
AbstractAt the end of 2001, the Indian Supreme Court issued a directive ordering states to institute school lunches – known locally as “midday meals” – in government primary schools. This paper provides a large-scale assessment of the enrollment effects of India’s midday meal scheme, which offers warm lunches, free of cost, to 120 million primary school children across India and is the largest school feeding program in the world. To isolate the causal effect of the policy, we make use of staggered implementation across Indian states in government but not private schools. Using a panel data set of almost 500,000 schools observed annually from 2002 to 2004, we find that midday meals result in substantial increases in primary school enrollment, driven by early primary school responses to the program. Our results are robust to a wide range of specification tests.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3679.
Date of creation: 2011
Date of revision:
primary school enrollment; school lunches; natural experiment; ITT;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Esther Duflo, 2000.
"Schooling and Labor Market Consequences of School Construction in Indonesia: Evidence from an Unusual Policy Experiment,"
NBER Working Papers
7860, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Esther Duflo, 2001. "Schooling and Labor Market Consequences of School Construction in Indonesia: Evidence from an Unusual Policy Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 795-813, September.
- Geeta Gandhi Kingdon, 2007.
"The progress of school education in India,"
Economics Series Working Papers
GPRG-WPS-071, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Doug Miller & A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach, 2006.
"Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors,"
621, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
- A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2008. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 90(3), pages 414-427, August.
- A. Colin Cameron & Jonah B. Gelbach & Douglas L. Miller, 2007. "Bootstrap-Based Improvements for Inference with Clustered Errors," NBER Technical Working Papers 0344, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Harounan Kazianga & Damien de Walque & Harold Alderman, 2009.
"Educational and Health Impacts of Two School Feeding Schemes: Evidence from a Randomized Trial in Rural Burkina Faso,"
Economics Working Paper Series
0904, Oklahoma State University, Department of Economics and Legal Studies in Business.
- Kazianga, Harounan & de Walque, Damien & Alderman, Harold, 2009. "Educational and health impacts of two school feeding schemes : evidence from a randomized trial in rural Burkina Faso," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4976, The World Bank.
- Marianne Bertrand & Esther Duflo & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2002.
"How Much Should We Trust Differences-in-Differences Estimates?,"
NBER Working Papers
8841, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- 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.
- Gauri, Varun, 2009. "Public interest litigation in India : overreaching or underachieving ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5109, The World Bank.
- Dreze, Jean & Goyal, Aparajita, 2003. "Future of Mid-Day Meals," MPRA Paper 17386, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Hanushek, Eric A, 1995.
"Interpreting Recent Research on Schooling in Developing Countries,"
World Bank Research Observer,
World Bank Group, vol. 10(2), pages 227-46, August.
- Eric A. Hanushek, . "Interpreting Recent Research on Schooling in Developing Countries," Wallis Working Papers WP3, University of Rochester - Wallis Institute of Political Economy.
- Jonathan Gruber & Daniel M. Hungerman, 2008. "The Church versus the Mall: What Happens When Religion Faces Increased Secular Competition?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(2), pages 831-862, 05.
- Chin, Aimee, 2005. "Can redistributing teachers across schools raise educational attainment? Evidence from Operation Blackboard in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 384-405, December.
- Farzana Afridi, 2010. "The Impact of school meals on school participation: Evidence from rural India," Indian Statistical Institute, Planning Unit, New Delhi Discussion Papers 10-02, Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, India.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julio Saavedra).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.