Educational Gaps among Chinese Students

Rural residents in China today face at least two key decisions: a) where to live and work; and b) where to send their children to school. In this paper we study the second decision: should a rural parent send their child to a public rural school or have him or her attend a private migrant school in the city. While there is an existing literature on the impact of this decision on student academic performance, one of the main shortcomings of current studies is that the data that are used to analyze this issue are not fully comparable. To fill the gap, we collected data on the educational performance of both migrant students who were born in and come from specific source communities (prefecture) in rural China and students who are in rural public schools in the same source communities. Specifically, the dataset facilitates our effort to measure and identity the academic gap between the students in private migrant schools in Shanghai and Suzhou and those in the public rural schools in Anhui. We also seek to identify different sources of the gap, including selection effects and observable school quality effects. According to the results of the analysis, there is a large gap. Students in public rural schools outperform students in private migrant schools by more than one standard deviation (SD). We found that selection effects only account for a small part of this gap. Both school facility effects and teacher effects explain the achievement gap of the students from the two types of schools, although these effects occur in opposite directions. For more information on Educational Gaps among Chinese Students check out:

Attachment: The Education Gap of China s Migrant Children and Rural Counterparts

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