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School Dropouts and Conditional Cash Transfers: Evidence from a Randomised Controlled Trial in Rural China's Junior High Schools

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Listed:
  • Di Mo
  • Linxiu Zhang
  • Hongmei Yi
  • Renfu Luo
  • Scott Rozelle
  • Carl Brinton

Abstract

The overall goal of this study is to examine if there is a dropout problem in rural China and to explore the effectiveness of a Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) programme on the rate of dropping out. To meet this goal, we conduct a randomised controlled trial (RCT) to assess the impact of the CCT using a sample of the poorest 300 junior high school students in a nationally-designated poor county in Northwest China. We find that the annual dropout rate in the study county was 7.8 per cent and even higher, 13.3 per cent, among the children of poor households. We demonstrate that a CCT program reduces dropout by 60 per cent. The programme is most effective among students with poor academic performance, and likely more effective among girls and younger students.

Suggested Citation

  • Di Mo & Linxiu Zhang & Hongmei Yi & Renfu Luo & Scott Rozelle & Carl Brinton, 2013. "School Dropouts and Conditional Cash Transfers: Evidence from a Randomised Controlled Trial in Rural China's Junior High Schools," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(2), pages 190-207, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:49:y:2013:i:2:p:190-207
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2012.724166
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joshua Angrist & Victor Lavy, 2009. "The Effects of High Stakes High School Achievement Awards: Evidence from a Randomized Trial," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1384-1414, September.
    2. World Bank, 2003. "World Development Indicators 2003," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 13920.
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    Cited by:

    1. Fan Li & Prashant Loyalka & Hongmei Yi & Yaojiang Shi & Natalie Johnson & Scott Rozelle, 2016. "Ability Tracking and Social Capital in China’s Rural Secondary School System," LICOS Discussion Papers 37916, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    2. Hongyan Liu & Chengfang Liu & Fang Chang & Prashant Loyalka, 2016. "Implementation of Teacher Training in China and Its Policy Implications," China & World Economy, Institute of World Economics and Politics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, vol. 24(3), pages 86-104, May.
    3. Lu, Ming & Zhang, Xi, 2019. "Towards an intelligent country: China’s higher education expansion and rural children’s senior high school participation," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 1-1.
    4. Chu, Jessica Hsiaochieh & Loyalka, Prashant & Chu, James & Qu, Qinghe & Shi, Yaojiang & Li, Guirong, 2015. "The impact of teacher credentials on student achievement in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 14-24.
    5. Sandra García & Juan Saavedra, 2017. "Educational Impacts and Cost-Effectiveness of Conditional Cash Transfer Programs in Developing Countries: A Meta-Analysis," NBER Working Papers 23594, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Gao, Shen & Yang, Meredith & Wang, Xiaohong & Min, Wenbin & Rozelle, Scott, 2019. "Peer relations and dropout behavior: Evidence from junior high school students in northwest rural China," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 134-143.
    7. Yi, Hongmei & Song, Yingquan & Liu, Chengfang & Huang, Xiaoting & Zhang, Linxiu & Bai, Yunli & Ren, Baoping & Shi, Yaojiang & Loyalka, Prashant & Chu, James & Rozelle, Scott, 2015. "Giving kids a head start: The impact and mechanisms of early commitment of financial aid on poor students in rural China," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 1-15.
    8. Fan Li & Prashant Loyalka & Hongmei Yi, 2016. "Ability Tracking and Social Capital in China’s Rural Secondary School System," Working Papers id:10972, eSocialSciences.
    9. Wang, Huan & Yang, Chu & He, Fei & Shi, Yaojiang & Qu, Qinghe & Rozelle, Scott & Chu, James, 2015. "Mental health and dropout behavior: A cross-sectional study of junior high students in northwest rural China," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 1-12.

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