Access to Preprimary Education and Progression in Primary School: Evidence from Rural Guatemala
Dec 2012
Evidence on the impacts of a large-scale expansion in public preprimary education is limited and mostly circumscribed to high and middle-income countries. This paper estimates the effects of such an expansion on progression in primary school in rural communities of Guatemala. Combining administrative and population census data in a difference-in-difference framework, the paper examines a large-scale construction program that increased the number of preprimaries from around 5,300 to 11,500 between 1998 and 2005. The results indicate that the program increased by 2. 1 percentage points the fraction of students that progress adequately and attend sixth grade by age 12. These positive effects are heavily concentrated among girls.