Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1156265
 
 

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'Every Catholic Child in a Catholic School': Historical Resistance to State Schooling, Contemporary Private Competition, and Student Achievement Across Countries


Martin R. West


Brown University

Ludger Woessmann


Ifo Institute for Economic Research; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research); University of Munich - Ifo Institute for Economic Research

June 2008

CESifo Working Paper Series No. 2332

Abstract:     
Nineteenth-Century Catholic doctrine strongly opposed state schooling. We show that countries with larger shares of Catholics in 1900 (but without a Catholic state religion) tend to have larger shares of privately operated schools even today. We use this historical pattern as a natural experiment to estimate the causal effect of contemporary private competition on student achievement in cross-country student-level analyses. Our results show that larger shares of privately operated schools lead to better student achievement in mathematics, science, and reading and to lower total education spending, even after controlling for current Catholic shares.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 40

Keywords: private school competition, student achievement, Catholic schools

JEL Classification: I20, L33, N30, Z12

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Date posted: July 7, 2008  

Suggested Citation

West, Martin R. and Woessmann, Ludger, 'Every Catholic Child in a Catholic School': Historical Resistance to State Schooling, Contemporary Private Competition, and Student Achievement Across Countries (June 2008). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 2332. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1156265

Contact Information

Martin R. West
Brown University ( email )
Box 1860
Providence, RI 02912
United States
Ludger Woessmann (Contact Author)
Ifo Institute for Economic Research ( email )
Poschingerstr. 5
Munich
Germany
++49 89 9224 1699 (Phone)
++49 89 9224 1460 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.cesifo.de/link/woessmann_l.htm
Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany
CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)
Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany
University of Munich - Ifo Institute for Economic Research
Schackstr. 4
Munich, 80539
Germany
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