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Who gained from the introduction of free universal secondary education in England and Wales?

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  • Hart, Robert A
  • Moro, Mirko
  • Roberts, J Elizabeth

Abstract

This paper investigates the introduction of free universal secondary education in England and Wales in 1944. It focuses on its effects in relation to a prime long-term goal of pre-war Boards of Education. This was to open secondary school education to children of all social backgrounds on equal terms. Adopting a difference-in-difference estimation approach, we do not find any evidence that boys and girls from less well-off home backgrounds displayed improved chances of attending selective secondary schools. Nor, for the most part, did they show increased probabilities of gaining formal school qualifications. One possible exception in this latter respect relates to boys with unskilled fathers.

Suggested Citation

  • Hart, Robert A & Moro, Mirko & Roberts, J Elizabeth, 2015. "Who gained from the introduction of free universal secondary education in England and Wales?," Stirling Economics Discussion Papers 2015-02, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:stl:stledp:2015-02
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/22616
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    Cited by:

    1. Hart, Robert A. & Moro, Mirko, 2017. "Date of Birth and Selective Schooling," IZA Discussion Papers 10949, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. Robert A. Hart & Mirko Moro, 2020. "Date of birth and selective schooling: Some lessons from the 1944 education reforms in England and Wales," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 67(5), pages 523-538, November.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    school qualifications; family background; free secondary education; 1944 Education Act;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy

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