Why does scholastic achievement differ across prefectures in Japan?
Using prefecture-level data on scholastic achievement tests in Japan, we found that parental income and education level positively affect student achievement. The effect of income on achievement is stronger for the high-scoring prefectures than for the low-scoring prefectures. The presence of grandparents also has a strong positive effect on student achievement. While the cross term between the percentage of absentees and the quantity of teachers is important in identifying the positive effects of teacher quantity, the effects of this quantity on elementary school achievement is nonlinear. We confirm the importance of teacher quality in determining junior high school achievement.
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