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Single Motherhood and (Un)Equal Educational Opportunities: Evidence for Germany

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  • Mahler, Philippe

    () (University of Zurich)

  • Winkelmann, Rainer

    () (University of Zurich)

Abstract

We examine the effect of single motherhood on children's secondary school track choice using a sample of 14 years old children drawn from the German Socio-Economic Panel. In line with previous studies for the U.S., the U.K. and Sweden, we find a negative correlation between disrupted family structure and children's educational outcome. Looking for alternative explanations for this correlation, we use ordered probit regression models to control for factors related to single motherhood such as lower educational background, lower household income and higher labor supply of the mother. Our evidence suggests that single parenthood reduces school attainment mainly because it is associated with lower resources (income and time) available for the child.

Suggested Citation

  • Mahler, Philippe & Winkelmann, Rainer, 2004. "Single Motherhood and (Un)Equal Educational Opportunities: Evidence for Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 1391, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1391
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    school choice; educational attainment; ordered response model; German Socio-Economic Panel;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure

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