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New evidence on the effect of time in school on early achievement

  • Edwin Leuven

    (University of Amsterdam & Tinbergen Institute)

  • Mikael Lindahl

    (Swedish Institute of Social Research SOFI , Stockholm University)

  • Hessel Oosterbeek

    (University of Amsterdam & Tinbergen Institute)

  • Dinand Webbink

    (CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis)

This study estimates the effect of expanding enrollment possibilities in early eduction on the achievement of young children. To do so it exploits two features of the Dutch schooling system. First, children are allowed to enroll in school on their fourth birthday. Second, children having their birthday before, during and after the summer holiday are placed in the same class. Together these features generate sufficient exogenous variation in children s potential time in school to identify its effects on test scores. We find that allowing disadvantaged pupils to start school one month earlier increases their test scores on average by 0.06 of a standard deviation. This effect is of the same magnitude for pupils with lower educated parents and for minority pupils. For non- disadvantaged pupils we find no effect. Results are similar for language and math scores.

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File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/hew/papers/0410/0410001.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series HEW with number 0410001.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 05 Oct 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwphe:0410001
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 25
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://econwpa.repec.org

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  1. James J. Heckman, 1999. "Policies to Foster Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 7288, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Angrist, Joshua D & Krueger, Alan B, 1991. "Does Compulsory School Attendance Affect Schooling and Earnings?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(4), pages 979-1014, November.
  3. Currie, J. & Thomas, D., 1995. "Does Head Start make a Difference?," Papers 95-10, RAND - Reprint Series.
  4. Eliana Garces & Duncan Thomas & Janet Currie, 2000. "Longer Term Effects of Head Start," Working Papers 00-20, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
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