Targeted Remedial Education for Under-Performing Teenagers: Costs and Benefits
45 Pages Posted: 4 Jul 2004 Last revised: 11 Aug 2004
Date Written: June 2004
There is renewed interest in ways to enhance secondary education, especially among disadvantaged students. This study evaluates the short-term effects of a remedial-education program that provided additional instruction to under-performing high-school students in Israel. The program targeted 10th twelfth graders who needed additional help to pass the matriculation exams. Using a comparison group of schools that enrolled in the program later and implementing a differences-in-differences estimation strategy, we found that the program raised the school mean matriculation rate by 3.3 percentage points. This gain reflects mainly an effect on targeted participants and the absence of externalities on their untreated peers. The program was found to be less cost-effective than two alternative interventions based on incentives for teachers and students.
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