Early-Years Multi-Grade Classes and Pupil Attainment
39 Pages Posted: 4 Sep 2021 Last revised: 19 May 2022
We study the effect of exposure to older, more experienced classroom peers resulting from the widespread use of multi-grade classes in Scottish primary schools. For identification, we exploit that a class-planning algorithm quasi-randomly assigns groups of pupils to multi-grade classes. We find that school-starters benefit from exposure to second-graders in measures of numeracy and literacy. We find no evidence that these gains are driven by smaller class sizes or more parental input. While short-lived, these benefits accrue independent of socioeconomic background, to boys and girls alike, and do not come at the expense of older peers from the preceding cohort.
Keywords: multi-grade classes, peer effects, class-size, cognitive skills
JEL Classification: C36, H52, I21, I26, I28, J24
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation