Does Pollution Increase School Absences?

35 Pages Posted: 13 Jul 2007 Last revised: 23 Oct 2013

See all articles by Janet Currie

Janet Currie

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); Princeton University

Eric A. Hanushek

Stanford University - Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

E. Kahn

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Matthew Neidell

Columbia University; University of Chicago - Department of Economics and CISES; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

Steven G. Rivkin

Amherst College - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: July 2007

Abstract

We examine the effect of air pollution on school absences using unique administrative data for elementary and middle school children in the 39 largest school districts in Texas. These data are merged with information from monitors maintained by the Environmental Protection Agency. To control for potentially confounding factors, we adopt a difference-in-difference-in differences strategy, and control for persistent characteristics of schools, years, and attendance periods in order to focus on variations in pollution within school-year-attendance period cells. We find that high levels of carbon monoxide (CO) significantly increase absences, even when they are below federal air quality standards.

Suggested Citation

Currie, Janet and Hanushek, Eric A. and Kahn, E. and Neidell, Matthew and Rivkin, Steven G., Does Pollution Increase School Absences? (July 2007). NBER Working Paper No. w13252. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1000356

Janet Currie (Contact Author)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Princeton University ( email )

Princeton, NJ 08544-1021
United States
6092587393 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.princeton.edu/~jcurrie

Eric A. Hanushek

Stanford University - Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305-6010
United States
650-736-0942 (Phone)
650-723-1687 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

E. Kahn

affiliation not provided to SSRN

No Address Available

Matthew Neidell

Columbia University ( email )

3022 Broadway
New York, NY 10027
United States

University of Chicago - Department of Economics and CISES ( email )

1126 East 59th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

2048 Analysis Drive
Suite A
Bozeman, MT 59718
United States

Steven G. Rivkin

Amherst College - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 5000
Amherst, MA 01002-5000
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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