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Kindergarten for all: Long run effects of a universal intervention

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Abstract

Theory and evidence points towards particularly positive effects of high-quality child care for disadvantaged children. At the same time, disadvantaged families often sort out of existing programs. To counter differences in learning outcomes between children from different socioeconomic backgrounds, European governments are pushing for universal child care. However, empirical evidence on the effects of universal programs is scarce. We provide evidence on the long-run effect on schooling of mandating kindergarten at age 5--6. Our identifying variation comes from a reform that lowered school starting-age from 7 to 6 in Norway in 1997. Our precise DD estimates reveal hardly any effect, both overall, across subsamples, and over the grading distribution. A battery of specification checks supports our empirical strategy.

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  • Nina Drange & Tarjei Havnes, 2012. "Kindergarten for all: Long run effects of a universal intervention," Discussion Papers 695, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:695
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    Cited by:

    1. Siflinger, Bettina & van den Berg, Gerard, 2016. "The Effects of a Universal Child Care Reform on Child Health – Evidence from Sweden," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145765, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. repec:eee:pubeco:v:167:y:2018:i:c:p:1-20 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Vedeler Johnsen, Julian & Holm Reiso, Katrine, 2017. "Economic Impacts of Workfare Reforms for Single Mothers: Benefit Substitution and Labour supply responses," Working Papers in Economics 4/17, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
    4. Løken, Katrine V. & Lommerud, Kjell Erik & Holm Reiso, Katrine, 2018. "Single mothers and their children: Evaluating a work-encouraging welfare reform," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 167(C), pages 1-20.
    5. repec:bla:jorssa:v:180:y:2017:i:2:p:475-502 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Christina Felfe & Martin Huber, 2017. "Does preschool boost the development of minority children?: the case of Roma children," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 180(2), pages 475-502, February.
    7. Christina Felfe & Natalia Nollenberger & Núria Rodríguez-Planas, 2015. "Can’t buy mommy’s love? Universal childcare and children’s long-term cognitive development," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 28(2), pages 393-422, April.
    8. Andersland, Leroy, 2017. "A Universal Childcare Expansion, Quality, Starting Age, and School Performance," Working Papers in Economics 8/17, University of Bergen, Department of Economics.
    9. Felfe, Christina & Lalive, Rafael, 2014. "Does Early Child Care Help or Hurt Children's Development?," IZA Discussion Papers 8484, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. van den Berg, Gerard J. & Siflinger, Bettina M., 2018. "The Effects of Day Care on Health During Childhood: Evidence by Age," IZA Discussion Papers 11447, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    kindergarten; early childhood intervention; distributional effects; difference-in-differences; child care; child development;

    JEL classification:

    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • H40 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - General

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