Gains in the education of Peruvian women, 1940 to 1980
Since the mid 1950s, Peru's education policies have been designed to raise skill levels and make education available to more of the population. Those policies rested mainly on expanding the number of schools and as a result, school enrollment rates and attainment levels rose. However, an apparent parental preference to educate sons more than daughters meant that boys'schooling levels rose more quickly than girls'. Policies were not enough to bring girls'schooling even with boys', especially in rural areas. School quality, measured crudely by the supply of textbooks and the number of teachers, appears to have improved the schooling of women. Peru's education policies have reduced the direct costs associated with going to school. However, time allocation patterns reveal that the opportunity cost to the family of school attendance could be an effective barrier to further improvements in school enrollment and continuation rates. Even at a young age, girls - especially in rural families - participate in the labor market and contribute substantially to productive work at home.
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