The Effect of School Breakfast on Student Behavior: An Evaluation of Breakfast After the Bell

38 Pages Posted: 18 Mar 2021

See all articles by Andres Cuadros-Meñaca

Andres Cuadros-Meñaca

University of Arkansas

Michael R. Thomsen

University of Arkansas

Rodolfo M. Nayga Jr

University of Arkansas

Date Written: March 17, 2021

Abstract

Delivering breakfast after the bell (BAB) is one way to increase participation in the National School Breakfast Program. Anecdotal evidence indicates that behavior improves after schools adopt BAB. We analyze a sample of nearly 30,000 pre-teen to early-adolescent schoolchildren in Arkansas who were cited for one or more disciplinary infractions. Using a difference-indifferences strategy, we find that the incidence of infractions drops markedly after schools adopt BAB. The impact of BAB adoption was most pronounced among lower-income students and girls. The potential for behavioral improvements is an important dimension that should be considered in a school’s decision to adopt BAB.

Keywords: Breakfast, Student Behavior

JEL Classification: I28, H52

Suggested Citation

Cuadros-Meñaca, Andres and Thomsen, Michael R. and Nayga Jr, Rodolfo M., The Effect of School Breakfast on Student Behavior: An Evaluation of Breakfast After the Bell (March 17, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3806620 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3806620

Andres Cuadros-Meñaca (Contact Author)

University of Arkansas ( email )

United States

Michael R. Thomsen

University of Arkansas ( email )

Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States

Rodolfo M. Nayga Jr

University of Arkansas

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