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The Effect of School Entrance Age on Educational Outcomes: Evidence Using Multiple Cutoff Dates and Exact Date of Birth

Listed author(s):
  • Attar, Itay

    ()

    (Ben Gurion University)

  • Cohen-Zada, Danny

    ()

    (Ben Gurion University)

Registered author(s):

    Using Israeli data, we estimate the effect of school entrance age (SEA) on student outcomes. Unlike much of the recent literature, our identification strategy strictly satisfies the monotonicity assumption required for interpreting our estimates as the local average treatment effect (LATE), and also separates the effect of SEA from date of birth effects. We find that delaying school entry by one year increases fifth grade test scores in Hebrew by 0.34 standard deviations and in math by 0.19. Interestingly, while the advantage in Hebrew slightly decreases in eighth grade, in math it almost doubles. We also show that by failing to control for date of birth fixed effects we would have erroneously concluded that the SEA effect on math test scores decreases slightly from fifth grade to eight grade while it actually substantially increases.

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    File URL: http://ftp.iza.org/dp10568.pdf
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    Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 10568.

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    Length: 50 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2017
    Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10568
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    1. Patrick Puhani & Andrea Weber, 2007. "Does the early bird catch the worm?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 359-386, May.
    2. Sandra E. Black & Paul J. Devereux & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2011. "Too Young to Leave the Nest? The Effects of School Starting Age," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(2), pages 455-467, May.
    3. Rashmi Barua & Kevin Lang, 2009. "School Entry, Educational Attainment and Quarter of Birth: A Cautionary Tale of LATE," NBER Working Papers 15236, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Dionissi Aliprantis, 2012. "Redshirting, Compulsory Schooling Laws, and Educational Attainment," Journal of Educational and Behavioral Statistics, , vol. 37(2), pages 316-338, April.
    5. Dobkin, Carlos & Ferreira, Fernando, 2010. "Do school entry laws affect educational attainment and labor market outcomes?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 40-54, February.
    6. Imbens, Guido W & Angrist, Joshua D, 1994. "Identification and Estimation of Local Average Treatment Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 467-475, March.
    7. James J. Heckman & Sergio Urzua & Edward Vytlacil, 2006. "Understanding Instrumental Variables in Models with Essential Heterogeneity," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(3), pages 389-432, August.
    8. Andrea M. Mühlenweg & Patrick A. Puhani, 2010. "The Evolution of the School-Entry Age Effect in a School Tracking System," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 45(2).
    9. Stacy Dickert-Conlin & Amitabh Chandra, 1999. "Taxes and the Timing of Birth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(1), pages 161-177, February.
    10. McCrary, Justin, 2008. "Manipulation of the running variable in the regression discontinuity design: A density test," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 698-714, February.
    11. Todd E. Elder & Darren H. Lubotsky, 2009. "Kindergarten Entrance Age and Children’s Achievement: Impacts of State Policies, Family Background, and Peers," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(3).
    12. Datar, Ashlesha, 2006. "Does delaying kindergarten entrance give children a head start?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 43-62, February.
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