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School Quality and the Longer-Term Effects of Head Start

Author

Listed:
  • Janet Currie
  • Duncan Thomas

Abstract

Recent research on Head Start, an enriched preschool program for poor children that effects on test scores fade out' more quickly for black children than for white children. This" paper uses data from the 1988 wave of the National Educational Longitudinal Survey to show that" black children who attended Head Start go on to attend schools of worse quality' than other black" children, in the sense that they attend schools in which most children have worse test scores. We" do not see any similar pattern among white children, indicating that on average children attend schools similar to those attended by other white children. Moreover stratify by school type, we find that gaps in test scores between Head Start and other children are" very similar for blacks and whites. These patterns suggest that the effects of Head Start may fade" out more rapidly among black students than among whites, at least in part because black Head Start" children are more likely to subsequently attend bad schools.

Suggested Citation

  • Janet Currie & Duncan Thomas, 1998. "School Quality and the Longer-Term Effects of Head Start," NBER Working Papers 6362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6362
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Currie, Janet & Thomas, Duncan, 1999. "Does Head Start help hispanic children?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 235-262, November.
    2. Currie, Janet & Thomas, Duncan, 1995. "Does Head Start Make a Difference?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 341-364, June.
    3. David Card & Alan B. Krueger, 1994. "The Economic Return to School Quality: A Partial Survey," Working Papers 713, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    4. W. Steven Barnett, 1992. "Benefits of Compensatory Preschool Education," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 27(2), pages 279-312.
    5. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 1-40, February.
    6. Ehrenberg, Ronald G. & Brewer, Dominic J., 1994. "Do school and teacher characteristics matter? Evidence from High School and Beyond," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-17, March.
    7. repec:fth:prinin:334 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Michael A. Boozer & Alan B. Krueger & Shari Wolkon, 1992. "Race and School Quality Since Brown vs. Board of Education," Working Papers 681, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    9. Robert J. LaLonde, 1995. "The Promise of Public Sector-Sponsored Training Programs," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 149-168, Spring.
    10. Korenman, Sanders & Miller, Jane E. & Sjaastad, John E., 1995. "Long-term poverty and child development in the United States: Results from the NLSY," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(1-2), pages 127-155.
    11. Murnane, Richard J & Willett, John B & Levy, Frank, 1995. "The Growing Importance of Cognitive Skills in Wage Determination," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(2), pages 251-266, May.
    12. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1994. "The Economic Return to School Quality: A Partial Survey," Working Papers 713, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs

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