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Peers and Achievement in Englands Secondary Schools

  • Steve Gibbons
  • Shqiponja Telhaj

The belief that children thrive if educated amongst higher-achieving schoolmates guides many parents in their choice of school. We extend the literature on this issue by considering children making the transition from primary to secondary schooling at age-11 in England. We use year-to-year changes in school composition to identify the impact of schoolmates on pupil progress at age 14. Traditional "linear-in-means" specifications lead us to conclude that prior achievements of a child's schoolmates are, on average, unrelated to his/her academic progress. However, this masks evidence that lower achieving pupils are disadvantaged by higher achieving schoolmates, whereas upper-middle ranking pupils benefit.

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Paper provided by Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE in its series SERC Discussion Papers with number 0001.

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Date of creation: Jul 2008
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Handle: RePEc:cep:sercdp:0001
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  1. Kang, Changhui, 2007. "Classroom peer effects and academic achievement: Quasi-randomization evidence from South Korea," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 458-495, May.
  2. Donald Robertson & James Symons, 2003. "Do Peer Groups Matter? Peer Group versus Schooling Effects on Academic Attainment," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 70(277), pages 31-53, February.
  3. Petra E. Todd & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 2003. "On The Specification and Estimation of The Production Function for Cognitive Achievement," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(485), pages F3-F33, February.
  4. McEwan, Patrick J., 2003. "Peer effects on student achievement: evidence from Chile," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 131-141, April.
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