The Impact of School Quality and School Incentive Programs on Children's Schooling and Work in Brazil

Mary Arends-Kuenning, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Ana L. Kassouf, Universidade de São Paulo
Ana Fava, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Alexandre Nunes, Universidade de São Paulo

During the 1990s in Brazil, school enrollment increased dramatically, while the proportion of children working fell. These trends in children's activities might be explained by increases in household income, changes in school quality such as increases in teachers' education levels, and implementation of programs that pay poor children to attend school. We use multilevel analysis to examine the impact of school quality and changes in school policy on child enrollment rates, child labor, and children's progress through the school system. Data from large annual household surveys, the Pesquisa Nacional Amostra por Domicilios covering the 1992 to 2001 period are combined with yearly data from the Ministry of Education on class size, teacher characteristics, and repetition rates, which are aggregated by urban and rural areas within Brazil's 27 states. Some policies were adopted at different times in different states, allowing us to use a differences-in-differences approach to estimate their impacts.

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Presented in Session 14: Child Work and Schooling I