Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy

No 2006:5: Parental unemployment and children's school performance

Anna Öster ()
Additional contact information
Anna Öster: Konjunkturinstitutet, Postal: Box 3116, 103 62 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: This study investigates the effect of parental unemployment on children’s school performance. We use individual level data for all children completing lower secondary school in Sweden in 1990 directly moving on to three years of upper secondary school. We control for family and individual heterogeneity by means of lower secondary school GPA. The huge variation in Swedish unemployment during the beginning of the 1990s provides an ideal setting for testing the hypothesis that parental unemployment affects children’s school performance. Our results indicate that having an unemployed father has a negative effect on children’s school performance while having an unemployed mother has a positive effect.

Keywords: School performance; unemployment

JEL-codes: E24; I21; J12

29 pages, May 22, 2006

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