How Does Early Childcare Enrollment Affect Children, Parents, and Their Interactions?
63 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2017 Last revised: 5 May 2018
Date Written: April 26, 2018
We estimate the effects of childcare enrollment on child outcomes by exploiting a staggered childcare expansion across regions in Japan. We find that childcare improves language development and reduces the symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity, and aggression among the children of low-education mothers. Estimates show that the improved child behavior is strongly associated with better parenting quality, which seems to be brought about by reducing parents' stress and improving their subjective well-being. Our estimates for marginal treatment effects indicate that children who would benefit most from childcare are less likely to attend, implying inefficient allocation.
Keywords: cognitive skill, non-cognitive skill, early childhood education, marginal treatment effect
JEL Classification: H4, I2, J13, J18
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