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DIE 01/15 El impacto de la expansión de la educación preescolar en Uruguay; un análisis en base al enfoque de igualdad de oportunidades

ISSNISSN/ISBN: 2301-1963
AutorAuthor/s: Mullin, Gastón; Vairo, Maren
Nº of PagesNº of Pages: 65
In this paper we assess on the impact of the expansion of public preschool education supply carried out in Uruguay during 1996-2000 on subsequent educational performance. The impact of the expansion of preschool education on the probability of lag and dropout in secondary education are analyzed using an alternative to the traditional differences-indifferences methodology that allows us to exploit the heterogeneity in treatment intensity recorded for each region and cohort affected by the program. We find that the expansion of groups managed to reduce the probability of both lag and drop out in highschool, especially when we consider the expansion aimed at 4 year-olds, who faced the largest increase in coverage during the period.

Moreover, we identify the circumstances that affect the opportunities available to individuals when it comes to achieving a certain educational result, while studying the program's impact on inequality of opportunity. We find that it would be necessary to redistribute 5 to 15% of the opportunities associated with drop out and lag respectively to ensure full equality of opportunity. Comparing these results with those obtained in a counterfactual situation in which the expansion of preschool groups had not existed, it is concluded that the increase in supply contributed to reducing inequality of educational opportunity in a comparable magnitude to that obtained if income of all households in the sample was equalized.
 
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