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The effect of foreclosure on Boston Public School student academic performance

Author

Listed:
  • Katharine L. Bradbury
  • Mary A. Burke
  • Robert K. Triest

Abstract

Although the recent wave of mortgage foreclosures has clearly been accompanied by economic hardship, relatively little research has examined how foreclosures affect the academic performance of students. This paper investigates the relationship between mortgage foreclosures and the academic performance of students using a unique dataset that matches information on the standardized test scores and attendance of individual Boston Public School students with real estate records indicating whether the student lived at an address involved in foreclosure and whether that student's parent or guardian was the owner or a tenant in the property. Econometric analysis of this relationship suggests that foreclosures are associated with slightly lower test scores and attendance, controlling for the previous-year's test score and attendance as well as other student characteristics and environmental factors. The results suggest that both the foreclosure event and the diminished student outcomes stem from underlying economic stress within the family. School changes during the school year, which are sometimes induced by foreclosure-related residential moves but also occur independently of foreclosure, may be associated with more substantial negative effects on academic performance than foreclosures, although this causal relationship is not certain. This latter finding suggests that policies that decouple residential moves from school changes during the school year may help to mitigate this indirect effect of foreclosure on student performance.

Suggested Citation

  • Katharine L. Bradbury & Mary A. Burke & Robert K. Triest, 2013. "The effect of foreclosure on Boston Public School student academic performance," Working Papers 13-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedbwp:13-12
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle & Mark Votruba, 2011. "Parental Job Loss and Children's School Performance," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 78(4), pages 1462-1489.
    2. 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 3-33, February.
    3. Christopher L. Foote & Jeffrey C. Fuhrer & Eileen Mauskopf & Paul S. Willen, 2009. "A proposal to help distressed homeowners: a government payment-sharing plan," Public Policy Brief, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    4. Amy Ellen Schwartz & Leanna Stiefel & Sarah A. Cordes, 2017. "Moving Matters: The Causal Effect of Moving Schools on Student Performance," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 12(4), pages 419-446, Fall.
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    Cited by:

    1. Katharine L. Bradbury & Mary A. Burke & Robert K. Triest, 2014. "Within-school spillover effects of foreclosures and student mobility on student academic performance," Working Papers 15-6, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    2. Katharine L. Bradbury & Mary A. Burke & Robert K. Triest, 2013. "Do foreclosures affect Boston public school student academic performance?," Public Policy Brief, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    3. Vicki Been & Ingrid Ellen & David N. Figlio & Ashlyn Nelson & Stephen Ross & Amy Ellen Schwartz & Leanna Stiefel, 2021. "The Effects of Negative Equity on Children’s Educational Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 28428, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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