Child Labor and Learning

41 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2013

See all articles by Patrick M. Emerson

Patrick M. Emerson

Oregon State University - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Vladimir P. Ponczek

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Sao Paulo School of Economics

Andre Portela Souza

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Sao Paulo School of Economics

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Abstract

This paper investigates the impact of working while in school on learning outcomes through the use of a unique micro panel dataset of students in the São Paulo municipal school system. The potential endogeneity of working decisions and learning outcomes is addressed through the use of a difference-in-difference estimator and it is shown that the results are robust. A negative and significant effect of working on learning outcomes in both math and Portuguese is found. The effects of child work from the benchmark regressions range from 3% to 8% of a standard deviation decline in test score which represents a loss of about a quarter to a half of a year of learning on average. Additionally, it is found that this effect is likely due to the interference of work with the time kids can devote to school and school work.

Keywords: child labor, learning, proficiency, education

JEL Classification: J13, I21

Suggested Citation

Emerson, Patrick M. and Ponczek, Vladimir P. and Portela Souza, Andre, Child Labor and Learning. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7578, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2318759 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2318759

Patrick M. Emerson (Contact Author)

Oregon State University - Department of Economics ( email )

Corvallis, OR 97331
United States
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HOME PAGE: http://oregonstate.edu/~emersonp/side2.htm

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
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Germany

Vladimir P. Ponczek

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Sao Paulo School of Economics ( email )

Andre Portela Souza

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Sao Paulo School of Economics ( email )

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