The Black-White Gap in Non-Cognitive Skills among Elementary School Children
50 Pages Posted: 27 Nov 2018
Date Written: November 2, 2018
Using data from two Early Childhood Longitudinal Study cohorts, we find large black-white gaps in teacher-reported measures of non-cognitive skills. We show that these measures likely understate true racial disparities in non-cognitive skills because of systematic differences across schools in what teacher reports represent. Correcting for the resulting bias nearly doubles the size of the estimated gaps, to roughly the same magnitude as analogous gaps in achievement test scores. We then use the British Cohort Study of 1970 to provide suggestive evidence that non-cognitive skills account for large black-white disparities in adult outcomes, including arrest rates and educational attainment.
JEL Classification: I21, J15
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation