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Pupil mobility and school disruption


  • Gibbons, Stephen
  • Telhaj, Shqiponja


Pupil mobility between schools is something to be encouraged if it facilitates the efficient matching of pupils to provision, but discouraged if turnover imposes costs on other pupils through disruption in teaching and learning. With this in mind, we consider the externalities imposed by entrants on the achievements of incumbent pupils in English primary schools. We find that immobile pupils who experience high pupil entry rates in their yeargroups (à la US "grades") progress less well academically between ages 7 and 11 than pupils who experience low mobility in the same school. The disruptive externalities of mobility are statistically significant, but quite small in terms of their educational impact. An increase in annual entry rates from 0 to 10% (a 4 standard deviation change) would set the average incumbent pupil back by between 1 and 2Â weeks, or about 5% of one standard deviation of the gain in pupil achievement between ages 7 and 11.

Suggested Citation

  • Gibbons, Stephen & Telhaj, Shqiponja, 2011. "Pupil mobility and school disruption," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(9-10), pages 1156-1167, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:9-10:p:1156-1167

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    Cited by:

    1. Gibbons, Stephen & Silva, Olmo & Weinhardt, Felix, 2017. "Neighbourhood Turnover and Teenage Attainment," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 746-783.
    2. Zhang, Hongliang, 2016. "The role of testing noise in the estimation of achievement-based peer effects," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 113-123.
    3. Kristoffersen, Jannie Helene Grøne & Krægpøth, Morten Visby & Nielsen, Helena Skyt & Simonsen, Marianne, 2015. "Disruptive school peers and student outcomes," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-13.
    4. Figlio, D. & Karbownik, K. & Salvanes, K.G., 2016. "Education Research and Administrative Data," Handbook of the Economics of Education,, Elsevier.
    5. Gibbons, Stephen & Scrutinio, Vincenzo & Telhaj, Shqiponja, 2021. "Teacher turnover: Effects, mechanisms and organisational responses," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(C).
    6. Rangvid, Beatrice Schindler, 2019. "Returning special education students to regular classrooms: Externalities on peers’ reading scores," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 13-22.
    7. Shqiponja Telhaj, 2018. "Do social interactions in the classroom improve academic attainment?," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 440-440, June.
    8. Emilia Kmiotek-Meier & Jan Skrobanek & Birte Nienaber & Volha Vysotskaya & Sahizer Samuk & Tuba Ardic & Irina Pavlova & Zsuzsanna Dabasi-Halázs & Celia Diaz & Jutta Bissinger & Tabea Schlimbach & Klau, 2019. "Why is it so hard? And for whom? Obstacles to intra-European mobility," Migration Letters, Transnational Press London, UK, vol. 16(1), pages 31-44, January.
    9. Stephen Gibbons & Sandra McNally, 2013. "The Effects of Resources Across School Phases: A Summary of Recent Evidence," CEP Discussion Papers dp1226, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    10. Sean Tanner & Jenna Terrell & Emily Vislosky & Jonathan Gellar & Brian Gill, "undated". "Predicting Early Fall Student Enrollment in the School District of Philadelphia," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 63a18bf538bd41f98d72ff91d, Mathematica Policy Research.

    More about this item


    Mobility Student achievement Externalities;

    JEL classification:

    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • R - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics
    • J - Labor and Demographic Economics


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