Do You Get What You Pay for with School-Based Health Programs? Evidence from a Child Nutrition Experiment in Rural China

12 Pages Posted: 15 Nov 2013

See all articles by Sean Sylvia

Sean Sylvia

Renmin University of China - School of Economics

Renfu Luo

Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) - Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy (CCAP)

Linxiu Zhang

Chinese Academy of Sciences - Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy

Yaojiang Shi

Shaanxi Normal University

Alexis Medina

Stanford University

Scott Rozelle

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute of International Studies

Date Written: December 2013

Abstract

This study uses a randomized controlled trial of a school-based anemia reduction program in rural China to examine how increased school emphasis on health promotion affects academic performance. Although education and health promotion are complementary functions of schools, they do compete for finite school resources. We compare the effects of a traditional program that provided only information about anemia and subsidies to an otherwise identical program that included performance incentives for school principals based on school-level anemia prevalence. By the end of the trial, exam scores among students who were anemic at baseline improved under both versions of the program, but scores among students in the incentive group who were healthy at baseline fell relative to healthy students in the control group. Results suggest that performance incentives to improve student health increase the impact of school-based programs on student health outcomes, but may also lead to reallocation of school resources.

Keywords: Economic development, Human capital, Teacher salaries, Resource allocation, Educational economics

JEL Classification: C93, O15, I12, I21, M52

Suggested Citation

Sylvia, Sean and Luo, Renfu and Zhang, Linxiu and Shi, Yaojiang and Medina, Alexis and Rozelle, Scott, Do You Get What You Pay for with School-Based Health Programs? Evidence from a Child Nutrition Experiment in Rural China (December 2013). Economics of Education Review, Vol. 37, 2013 Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2353538

Sean Sylvia (Contact Author)

Renmin University of China - School of Economics ( email )

No. 59, Zhongguancun Street
Beijing, Beijing 100080
China

Renfu Luo

Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) - Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy (CCAP) ( email )

Building 917, Datun Road
Beijing 100101
China

Linxiu Zhang

Chinese Academy of Sciences - Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy ( email )

Anwai, Beijing, 100101
China

Yaojiang Shi

Shaanxi Normal University ( email )

Chang'an Chang'an District
199 South Road
Xi'an, Shaanxi Province 710062
China

Alexis Medina

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Scott Rozelle

Stanford University - Freeman Spogli Institute of International Studies ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
41
Abstract Views
484
PlumX Metrics