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The Effect of Pre-Primary Education on Primary School Performance

Monday, February 6, 2006
12:30 - 2:00pm
Room MC8-W150

Sponsor: Thematic Group on Poverty Impact Analysis, Monitoring and Evaluation
Presenter: Paul Gertler, Chief Economist, HDNVP
Chair: Ariel Fiszbein, DECVP

Understanding the returns to investing in universal pre-primary is especially important for the large number of developing countries who have not yet implemented preprimary, but are expanding secondary education. In the paper that will be presented at this seminar, we shed some light on this debate by investigating the effect of a large expansion of universal pre-primary school on subsequent primary school performance in Argentina. We estimate that one year of preprimary school increase average third grade test scores by 8 percent and a quarter of a standard deviation. We also find that pre-primary school attendance positively affects student’s self-control in the third grade as measured by attention, class participation, and discipline.

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