NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Do School Entry Laws Affect Educational Attainment and Labor Market Outcomes?

Carlos Dobkin, Fernando Ferreira

NBER Working Paper No. 14945
Issued in May 2009
NBER Program(s):   ED   LS   HE   PE   CH

Age based school entry laws force parents and educators to consider an important tradeoff: Though students who are the youngest in their school cohort typically have poorer academic performance, on average, they have slightly higher educational attainment. In this paper we document that for a large cohort of California and Texas natives the school entry laws increased educational attainment of students who enter school early, but also lowered their academic performance while in school. However, we find no evidence that the age at which children enter school effects job market outcomes, such as wages or the probability of employment. This suggests that the net effect on adult labor market outcomes of the increased educational attainment and poorer academic performance is close to zero.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w14945

Published: Dobkin, Carlos & Ferreira, Fernando, 2010. "Do school entry laws affect educational attainment and labor market outcomes?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 40-54, February. citation courtesy of

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