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Flourish or Fail? The Risky Reward of Elite High School Admission in Mexico City

Author

Listed:
  • Andrew Dustan

    () (Vanderbilt University)

  • Alain De janvry

    () (University of California at Berkeley)

  • Elisabeth Sadoulet

    () (University of California at Berkeley)

Abstract

Winning admission to an elite school both promises modest rewards and imposes substantial risks on many students. Using variation in school assignment generated by the allocation mechanism, we ï¬ nd that admission to a system of elite public high schools in Mexico City raises end-of-high school test scores by an average of 0.17 standard deviations for the marginal admittee. On the other hand, for these students admission increases the probability of high school dropout by 9.5 percentage points. Students with weaker middle school grades and whose commute is lengthened by admission experience a larger rise in dropout probability, suggesting that the additional dropout risk is a result of both higher academic rigor and greater opportunity costs of attendance.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew Dustan & Alain De janvry & Elisabeth Sadoulet, 2015. "Flourish or Fail? The Risky Reward of Elite High School Admission in Mexico City," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 15-00002, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:van:wpaper:vuecon-15-00002
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Avitabile,Ciro & Bobba,Matteo & Pariguana,Marco, 2015. "High school track choice and financial constraints : evidence from urban Mexico," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7427, The World Bank.
    2. Avitabile, Ciro & Bobba, Matteo & Pariguana, Marco, 2017. "High School Track Choice and Liquidity Constraints: Evidence from Urban Mexico," IZA Discussion Papers 10506, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Elite schools; Academic achievement; School dropout;

    JEL classification:

    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education

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