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Long-Term Consequences of Secondary School Vouchers: Evidence from Administrative Records in Colombia

35 Pages Posted: 16 Sep 2004  

Joshua D. Angrist

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Eric Bettinger

Case Western Reserve University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Michael Kremer

Harvard University - Department of Economics; Brookings Institution; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Center for Global Development; Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Date Written: August 2004

Abstract

Colombia's PACES program provided over 125,000 poor children with vouchers that covered half the cost of private secondary school. The vouchers were renewable annually conditional on adequate academic progress. Since many vouchers were assigned by lottery, program effects can reliably be assessed by comparing lottery winners and losers. Estimates using administrative records suggest the PACES program increased secondary school completion rates by 15-20 percent. Correcting for the greater percentage of lottery winners taking college admissions tests, the program increased test scores by two-tenths of a standard deviation in the distribution of potential test scores. Boys, who have lower scores than girls in this population, show larger test score gains, especially in math.

Suggested Citation

Angrist, Joshua D. and Bettinger, Eric and Kremer, Michael, Long-Term Consequences of Secondary School Vouchers: Evidence from Administrative Records in Colombia (August 2004). NBER Working Paper No. w10713. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=583710

Joshua Angrist (Contact Author)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Economics ( email )

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Eric Bettinger

Case Western Reserve University - Department of Economics ( email )

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Michael R. Kremer

Harvard University - Department of Economics ( email )

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Brookings Institution

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National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Center for Global Development

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Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

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