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Evaluating public per-student subsidies to low-cost private schools : regression-discontinuity evidence from Pakistan

Author

Listed:
  • Barrera-Osorio, Felipe
  • Raju, Dhushyanth

Abstract

This study estimates the causal effects of a public per-student subsidy program targeted at low-cost private schools in Pakistan on student enrollment and schooling inputs. Program entry is ultimately conditional on achieving a minimum stipulated student pass rate (cutoff) in a standardized academic test. This mechanism for treatment assignment allows the application of regression-discontinuity (RD) methods to estimate program impacts at the cutoff. Data on two rounds of entry test takers (phase 3 and phase 4) are used. Modeling the entry process of phase-4 test takers as a sharp RD design, the authors find evidence of large positive impacts on the number of students, teachers, classrooms, and blackboards. Modeling the entry process of phase-3 test takers as a partially-fuzzy RD design given treatment crossovers, they do not find evidence of significant program impacts on outcomes of interest. The latter finding is likely due to weak identification arising from a small jump in the probability of treatment at the cutoff.

Suggested Citation

  • Barrera-Osorio, Felipe & Raju, Dhushyanth, 2011. "Evaluating public per-student subsidies to low-cost private schools : regression-discontinuity evidence from Pakistan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5638, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5638
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    4. Battistin, Erich & Rettore, Enrico, 2008. "Ineligibles and eligible non-participants as a double comparison group in regression-discontinuity designs," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 715-730, February.
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    7. David K. Evans & Arkadipta Ghosh, 2008. "Prioritizing Educational Investments in Children in the Developing World," Working Papers 587, RAND Corporation.
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    12. Gauri, Varun & Vawda, Ayesha, 2003. "Vouchers for basic education in developing countries : a principal-agent perspective," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3005, The World Bank.
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    Cited by:

    1. Alejandro J. Ganimian & Richard J. Murnane, 2014. "Improving Educational Outcomes in Developing Countries: Lessons from Rigorous Impact Evaluations," NBER Working Papers 20284, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Barrera-Osorio, Felipe & Raju, Dhushyanth, 2010. "Short-run learning dynamics under a test-based accountability system : evidence from Pakistan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5465, The World Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tertiary Education; Education For All; Primary Education; Teaching and Learning; Secondary Education;

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