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Students and the market for schools in Haiti


  • Demombynes, Gabriel
  • Holland, Peter
  • Leon, Gianmarco


Uniquely among Latin American and Caribbean countries, Haiti has a largely non-public education system. Prior to the earthquake of January 2010, just 19 percent of primary school students were enrolled in public schools, with the remainder enrolled in a mix of religious, for-profit, and non-governmental organization-funded schools. This paper examines changes in Haitian schooling patterns in the last century and shows the country experienced tremendous growth in school attainment, driven almost entirely by growth in the private sector. Additionally, it provides evidence that the private market"works"to the extent that primary school fees are higher for schools with characteristics associated with education quality. The paper also analyzes the demand and supply determinants of school attendance and finds that household wealth is a major determinant of attendance. Given these findings, the authors conclude that in the near-term paying school fees for poor students may be an effective approach to expanding schooling access in Haiti.

Suggested Citation

  • Demombynes, Gabriel & Holland, Peter & Leon, Gianmarco, 2010. "Students and the market for schools in Haiti," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5503, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5503

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    Cited by:

    1. World Bank & Observatoire National de la Pauvreté et de l’Exclusion Sociale, 2014. "Investing in People to Fight Poverty in Haiti : Reflections for Evidence-based Policy Making
      [Haïti - Investir dans l’humain pour combattre la pauvreté : Éléments de réflexions pour la prise de déc
      ," World Bank Other Operational Studies 21519, The World Bank.

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    Education For All; Tertiary Education; Primary Education; Disability; Gender and Education;

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