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The French Zones D'Education Prioritaire: Much Ado About Nothing?

Author

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  • Bénabou, Roland
  • Kramarz, Francis
  • Prost, Corinne

Abstract

We provide an assessment of the French ZEP (Zones d’Education Prioritaire), a programme started in 1982 that channels additional resources to schools in disadvantaged areas and encourages the development of new teaching projects. Focusing on middle-schools, we first evaluate the impact of the ZEP status on resources, their utilization (teacher bonuses versus teaching hours) and key establishments characteristics such as class sizes, school enrolments, teachers’ qualifications and experience, and student composition and mobility. We then estimate the impact of the ZEP programme on four measures of individual student achievement: obtaining at least one diploma by the end of schooling, reaching 8th grade, reaching 10th grade and success at the Baccalauréat. We take into account the endogeneity of the ZEP status by using both differences in differences and instrumental variables based on political variables. The results are the same in all cases: there is no impact on student success of the ZEP programme.

Suggested Citation

  • Bénabou, Roland & Kramarz, Francis & Prost, Corinne, 2005. "The French Zones D'Education Prioritaire: Much Ado About Nothing?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5085, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5085
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James Heckman, 2011. "Policies to foster human capital," Educational Studies, Higher School of Economics, issue 3, pages 73-137.
    2. Stephen Machin & Sandra McNally & Costas Meghir, 2004. "Improving Pupil Performance in English Secondary Schools: Excellence in Cities," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 396-405, 04/05.
    3. Marianne Bertrand & Francis Kramarz, 2002. "Does Entry Regulation Hinder Job Creation? Evidence from the French Retail Industry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1369-1413.
    4. Roland Bénabou, 1996. "Equity and Efficiency in Human Capital Investment: The Local Connection," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 63(2), pages 237-264.
    5. Gary-Bobo, Robert J. & Picard, Natalie & Prieto, Ana, 2006. "Birth Order and Sibship Sex Composition as Instruments in the Study of Education and Earnings," CEPR Discussion Papers 5514, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Hsieh, Chang-Tai & Urquiola, Miguel, 2006. "The effects of generalized school choice on achievement and stratification: Evidence from Chile's voucher program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1477-1503, September.
    7. van der Klaauw, Wilbert, 2008. "Breaking the link between poverty and low student achievement: An evaluation of Title I," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 731-756, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sáez-Martı´, Maria & Zenou, Yves, 2012. "Cultural transmission and discrimination," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 137-146.
    2. Goux, Dominique & Gurgand, Marc & Maurin, Eric, 2017. "Reading enjoyment and reading skills: Lessons from an experiment with first grade children," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 17-25.
    3. Stephen Machin & Sandra McNally & Costas Meghir, 2010. "Resources and Standards in Urban Schools," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 4(4), pages 365-393.
    4. Cabrera, José María & Webbink, Dinand, 2018. "Do higher salaries yield better teachers and better student outcomes?," MPRA Paper 86972, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Bisin, Alberto & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2011. "Formation and persistence of oppositional identities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(8), pages 1046-1071.
    6. Pugatch, Todd & Schroeder, Elizabeth, 2014. "Incentives for teacher relocation: Evidence from the Gambian hardship allowance," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 120-136.
    7. repec:wly:econjl:v:127:y:2017:i:599:p:177-198 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Victor Lavy, 2012. "Expanding School Resources and Increasing Time on Task: Effects of a Policy Experiment in Israel on Student Academic Achievement and Behavior," NBER Working Papers 18369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Denis Fougère, 2011. "Social and Labor Market Integration of Ethnic Minorities in France: Has the French Integration Model Broken Down?," Chapters,in: Ethnic Diversity in European Labor Markets, chapter 5 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    10. Brian Nolan, 2010. "Promoting the Well-Being of Immigrant Youth," Working Papers 201017, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
    11. Monique De Haan, 2017. "The Effect of Additional Funds for Low‐ability Pupils: A Non‐parametric Bounds Analysis," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(599), pages 177-198, February.
    12. Filatriau, Olivier & Fougère, Denis & Tô, Maxime, 2013. "Will Sooner Be Better? The Impact of Early Preschool Enrollment on Cognitive and Noncognitive Achievement of Children," CEPR Discussion Papers 9480, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Brunello, Giorgio & De Paola, Maria, 2013. "The Costs of Early School Leaving in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 7791, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Barbieri, Gianna & Rossetti, Claudio & Sestito, Paolo, 2011. "The determinants of teacher mobility: Evidence using Italian teachers’ transfer applications," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 1430-1444.
    15. Smyth, Emer & McCoy, Selina & Kingston, Gillian, 2015. "Learning from the Evaluation of DEIS," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number RS39.
    16. Silliman, Mikko, 2017. "Targeted Funding, Immigrant Background, and Educational Outcomes: Evidence from Helsinki's “Positive Discrimination†Policy," Working Papers 91, VATT Institute for Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    class size; disadvantaged schools; education policy; education production function; School finance;

    JEL classification:

    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid

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