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The Long Term Impacts of Compulsory Schooling: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in School Leaving Dates

  • Emilia Del Bono
  • Fernando Galindo-Rueda

This paper investigates a unique feature of the English educational system to estimate the causal effect of compulsory schooling on labour market outcomes. We examine school leaving rules that allow for discrete variation in exit dates by date of birth within school cohorts. This natural experiment enables a regression discontinuity design that differences out confounding factors discussed in the literature. Individuals compelled to stay in school for as little as three months longer than their classmates tend to achieve significantly higher qualification levels and experience better labour market outcomes. Our analysis of variation of impacts by age of compulsory schooling allows us to provide valuable new insights on the role of education credentials in the labour market.

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File URL: http://cee.lse.ac.uk/ceedps/ceedp74.pdf
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Paper provided by Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE in its series CEE Discussion Papers with number 0074.

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Date of creation: Jan 2007
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Handle: RePEc:cep:ceedps:0074
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://cee.lse.ac.uk/publications.htm

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  16. Callan, Tim & Harmon, Colm, 1999. "The economic return to schooling in Ireland," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(4), pages 543-550, November.
  17. John Bound & David A. Jaeger, 1996. "On the Validity of Season of Birth as an Instrument in Wage Equations: A Comment on Angrist & Krueger's "Does Compulsory School Attendance Affect Scho," NBER Working Papers 5835, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Rice, P.G. & McVicar, D., 1996. "Participation in full-time further eduction in England and Wales: an analysis of post-war trends," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 9604, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  19. Plug, Erik J. S., 2001. "Season of birth, schooling and earnings," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 22(5), pages 641-660, October.
  20. Joshua Angrist & Alan Krueger, 1990. "The Effect of Age at School Entry on Educational Attainment: An Application of Instrumental Variables with Moments from Two Samples," Working Papers 654, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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