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Unwelcome Guests? The Effects of Refugees on the Educational Outcomes of Incumbent Students

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  • David Figlio
  • Umut Özek

Abstract

A point of contention in the refugee crisis involves possible adverse effects on host communities associated with poor, low-skilled migrants with low host-community language knowledge. We use unique matched birth and schooling records to examine the effects of a large influx of poor, non-English-speaking Haitian migrants into Florida public schools immediately following the devastating 2010 earthquake. We find zero or modestly positive estimated effects of these migrants on the educational outcomes of incumbent students in the year of the earthquake or in the 2 years that follow, regardless of the socioeconomic status, grade level, ethnicity, or birthplace of incumbent students.

Suggested Citation

  • David Figlio & Umut Özek, 2019. "Unwelcome Guests? The Effects of Refugees on the Educational Outcomes of Incumbent Students," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(4), pages 1061-1096.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/703116
    DOI: 10.1086/703116
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    Cited by:

    1. Tumen, Semih, 2021. "The effect of refugees on native adolescents’ test scores: Quasi-experimental evidence from PISA," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 150(C).
    2. Clemens, Michael A. & Pritchett, Lant, 2019. "The new economic case for migration restrictions: An assessment," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 138(C), pages 153-164.
    3. Figlio, David & Giuliano, Paola & Marchingiglio, Riccardo & Ozek, Umut & Sapienza, Paola, 2021. "Diversity in Schools: Immigrants and the Educational Performance of U.S. Born Students," CEPR Discussion Papers 15933, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Morales, Camila, 2022. "Do refugee students affect the academic achievement of peers? Evidence from a large urban school district," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 89(C).
    5. Alexandra de Gendre & Nicolás Salamanca, 2020. "On the Mechanisms of Ability Peer Effects," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2020n19, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    6. Chevalier, Arnaud & Isphording, Ingo E. & Lisauskaite, Elena, 2020. "Peer diversity, college performance and educational choices," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    7. Diyi Li & Cheng Qian & Cory Koedel, 2020. "Nonresident Postsecondary Enrollment Growth And The Outcomes Of In‐State Students," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 38(4), pages 736-757, October.
    8. Jason Fletcher & Jinho Kim & Jenna Nobles & Stephen Ross & Irina Shaorshadze, 2021. "The Effects of Foreign-Born Peers in US High Schools and Middle Schools," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(3), pages 432-468.
    9. Holmlund, Helena & Lindahl, Erica & Roman, Sara, 2021. "Immigrant peers in the class: responses among natives and the effects on long-run revealed preferences," Working Paper Series 2021:16, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    10. Diemer, Andreas, 2022. "Endogenous peer effects in diverse friendship networks: Evidence from Swedish classrooms," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 89(C).
    11. Mayda, Anna-Maria & Parsons, Christopher & Pham, Han & Vézina, Pierre-Louis, 2022. "Refugees and foreign direct investment: Quasi-experimental evidence from US resettlements," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 156(C).
    12. Sergio Parra Cely & Clotilde Mahé, 2020. "Does Internal Displacement Affect Educational Achievement in Host Communities?," DEM Discussion Paper Series 20-05, Department of Economics at the University of Luxembourg.
    13. Kelvin K. C. Seah, 2021. "Impact of Immigrant Peers on Native Students’ Achievement: Evidence from Australia, Canada and the United States," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 54(1), pages 94-116, March.
    14. Green, Colin & Iversen, Jon Marius Vaag, 2022. "Refugees and the educational attainment of natives: Evidence from Norway," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 88(C).

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General

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