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Do Students Care about School Quality? Determinants of Dropout Behavior in Developing Countries

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  • Eric A. Hanushek
  • Victor Lavy
  • Kohtaro Hitomi

Abstract

School quality and grade completion by students are shown to be directly linked. Unique panel data on primary school-age children in Egypt permit estimation of behavioral models of school leaving that incorporate output-based measures of school quality. With the student's own ability and achievement held constant, a student is much less likely to remain in school if attending a low-quality school rather than a high-quality school. This individually rational behavior suggests that common arguments about a trade-off between quality and access to schools may misstate the real issue and lead to public investment in too little quality.

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  • Eric A. Hanushek & Victor Lavy & Kohtaro Hitomi, 2008. "Do Students Care about School Quality? Determinants of Dropout Behavior in Developing Countries," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 69-105.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jhucap:v:2:i:1:y:2008:p:69-105
    DOI: 10.1086/529446
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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