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Koranic Schools in Senegal : A real barrier to formal education?

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  • Pierre André
  • Jean-Luc Demonsant

    ()
    (THEMA, Universite de Cergy-Pontoise and THEMA
    EPS/INSTEAD)

Abstract

This paper studies the substitution between formal education and informal religious education for Senegalese households. We use the timing of the opening of formal schools to estimate whether Koranic and formal education systems compete for the children’s time. Adapting the diff-in-diff strategy in Duflo (2001), we assess the effect of school openings on Koranic and formal schooling. Our estimates show that formal school openings increase formal education attainment, especially in rural areas. Incidentally, this result highlights the lack of primary schools in rural areas : an additional primary school increases the probability to start primary school by 13 percentage points around this school. We then estimate that an additional formal school decreases the time spent in Koranic schools. This proves that, while both school systems are independent in terms of organization and pedagogical content, they still compete for the children’s time. This might increase the opportunity cost of formal primary school, and can narrow the political consensus around universal primary education.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise in its series THEMA Working Papers with number 2012-46.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:ema:worpap:2012-46

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Keywords: Koranic Schools; School demand; Senegal;

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  1. Jepsen, Christopher, 2002. "The role of aggregation in estimating the effects of private school competition on student achievement," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 477-500, November.
  2. Paul Glewwe, 2002. "Schools and Skills in Developing Countries: Education Policies and Socioeconomic Outcomes," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 436-482, June.
  3. David Card & Martin Dooley & Abigail Payne, 2008. "School Competition and Efficiency with Publicly Funded Catholic Schools," NBER Working Papers 14176, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Creevey, Lucy, 1980. "Religious attitudes and development in Dakar, Senegal," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 8(7-8), pages 503-512.
  5. Asadullah, Mohammad Niaz & Chaudhury, Nazmul, 2010. "Religious Schools, Social Values, and Economic Attitudes: Evidence from Bangladesh," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 205-217, February.
  6. Hsieh, Chang-Tai & Urquiola, Miguel, 2006. "The effects of generalized school choice on achievement and stratification: Evidence from Chile's voucher program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1477-1503, September.
  7. Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu & Khwaja, Asim Ijaz & Zajonc, Tristan, 2005. "Religious School Enrollment in Pakistan: A Look at the Data," Working Paper Series rwp05-024, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  8. Mohammad Niaz Asadullah & Nazmul Chaudhury, 2013. "Peaceful Coexistence? The Role of Religious Schools and NGOs in the Growth of Female Secondary Schooling in Bangladesh," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(2), pages 223-237, February.
  9. Orazem, Peter & King, Elizabeth M., 2008. "Schooling in Developing Countries: The Roles of Supply, Demand and Government Policy," Staff General Research Papers 12838, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  10. Daniel L. Chen, 2010. "Club Goods and Group Identity: Evidence from Islamic Resurgence during the Indonesian Financial Crisis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(2), pages 300-354, 04.
  11. Dev, Pritha & Mberu, Blessing & Pongou, Roland, 2013. "Communitarianism, Oppositional Cultures, and Human Capital Contagion: Theory and Evidence from Formal versus Koranic Education," MPRA Paper 46234, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 15 Apr 2013.
  12. 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.
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Cited by:
  1. Manos Antoninis, 2012. "Tackling the largest global education challenge? Secular and religious education in northern Nigeria," CSAE Working Paper Series 2012-17, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  2. Manos Antoninis, 2012. "Tackling the largest global education challenge? Secular and religious education in northern Nigeria," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2012-17, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  3. Goensch, Iris, 2013. "Does the availability of secondary schools increase primary schooling? Empirical evidence from northern Senegal," Discussion Papers 63, Justus Liebig University Giessen, Center for international Development and Environmental Research (ZEU).

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