Improving Reading Skills by Encouraging Children to Read in School: A Randomized Evaluation of the Sa Aklat Sisikat Reading Program in the Philippines
We show that a short-term (31 day) reading program, designed to provide age-appropriate reading material, to train to teachers in their use, and to support teachers’ initial efforts for about a month improves students’ reading skills by 0.13 standard deviations. The effect is still present three months after the program but diminishes to 0.6 standard deviations, probably due to a reduced emphasis on reading after the program. We find that the program also encourages students to read more on their own at home, but find no evidence that improved reading ability improves test scores on other subjects.
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This paper was revised on February 26, 2013