The impact of parental death on school enrollment and achievement: Longitudinal evidence from South Africa
AbstractWe analyse longitudinal data from a demographic surveillance area (DSA) in KwaZulu-Natal, to examine the impact of parental death on children's outcomes. We find significant differences in the impact of mothers' and fathers' deaths. The loss of a child's mother is a strong predictor of poor schooling outcomes. Maternal orphans are significantly less likely to be enrolled in school, and have completed significantly fewer years of schooling, conditional on age, than children whose mothers are alive. Less money is spent on their educations on average, conditional on enrolment. Moreover, children whose mothers have died appear to be at an educational disadvantage when compared to non-orphaned children with whom they live. We use the timing of mothers' deaths relative to children's educational shortfalls to argue that mothers' deaths have a causal effect on children's educations. The loss of a child's father is a significant predictor of household socioeconomic status. Children whose fathers have died live in significantly poorer households, measured on a number of dimensions. However, households in which fathers died were poor prior to fathers' deaths. The death of a father between waves of the survey has no significant effect on subsequent household economic status. While the loss of a father is correlated with poorer educational outcomes, this correlation arises because a father's death is a marker that the household is poor. Evidence from the South African 2001 Census suggests that the estimated effects of maternal deaths on children's school attendance and attainment in the Africa Centre DSA reflect the reality for orphans throughout South Africa.
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 Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town in its series SALDRU/CSSR Working Papers with number 097.
Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Leslie Social Science Building, Private Bag, Rondebosch, 7701
Phone: +27 21 650 5696
Fax: +27 21 650 5697
Web page: http://www.saldru.uct.ac.za/
More information through EDIRC
Other versions of this item:
- Anne Case & Cally Ardington, 2005. "The impact of parental death on school enrollment and achievement: Longitudinal evidence from South Africa," Working Papers 240, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
- Anne Case & Cally Ardington, 2005. "The impact of parental death on school enrollment and achievement: Longitudinal evidence from South Africa," Working Papers 168, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Claudia Olivetti & Francesco Strobbe & Mireille Jacobson, 2011.
"Breaking The Net: Family Structure And Street Children In Zambia,"
Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series
WP2011-042, Boston University - Department of Economics.
- Francesco Strobbe & Claudia Olivetti & Mireille Jacobson, 2010. "Breaking the Net: Family Structure and Street Children in Zambia," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series 11110, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
- Christopher Ksoll, 2007. "Family Networks and Orphan Caretaking in Tanzania," Economics Series Working Papers 361, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Edmonds, Eric V., 2006. "Child labor and schooling responses to anticipated income in South Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 386-414, December.
- Mont, Daniel & Nguyen, Cuong, 2013.
"Does Parental Disability Matter to Child Education? Evidence from Vietnam,"
Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 88-107.
- Cuong, Nguyen Viet & Mont, Daniel, 2011. "Does parental disability matter to child education ? evidence from Vietnam," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5743, The World Bank.
- World Bank, 2008. "Mozambique - Beating the Odds : Sustaining Inclusion in a Growing Economy - A Mozambique Poverty, Gender, and Social Assessment, Volume 1. Main Report," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7981, The World Bank.
- Sudeshna Maitra, 2006. "Population Growth and Rising Dowries: The Long-Run Mechanism of a Marriage Squeeze," Working Papers 2006_9, York University, Department of Economics.
- Rubén Castro & Jere Behrman & Hans-Peter Kohler, 2011. "Perception of HIV risk and the quantity and quality of children: The case of rural Malawi," Working Papers 20, Facultad de Economía y Empresa, Universidad Diego Portales.
- Ainsworth, Martha & Filmer, Deon, 2006. "Inequalities in children's schooling: AIDS, orphanhood, poverty, and gender," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(6), pages 1099-1128, June.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alison Siljeur).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.