Download
full day vs half day kindergarten long run effects on test scores n.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Full-day vs half-day kindergarten Long run effects on test scores PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Full-day vs half-day kindergarten Long run effects on test scores

Full-day vs half-day kindergarten Long run effects on test scores

1 Views Download Presentation
Download Presentation

Full-day vs half-day kindergarten Long run effects on test scores

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript

  1. Full-day vs half-day kindergartenLong run effects on test scores Christine Neill & Jean Eid WLU, Economics

  2. Plan of talk • Benefits/costs of full-day kindergarten • How to estimate effects on test scores? • Difference-in-Differences / quasi-experiment methodology • Some data (at the school board level) • Initial results • Little evidence of any effect on Grade 3 test scores

  3. Benefits of full-day kindergarten – government reports • “Premier Dalton McGuinty says full-day kindergarten programs will be available for every child by 2015, and will increase students' chances of completing university, attending post-secondary education and landing a good job.” • http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2010/09/07/toronto-first-day-school.html#ixzz13g20HZjd

  4. Benefits of full-day kindergarten • Parents are better able to work full time • Children learn more, are better prepared for grade 1 and …. • This makes life easier for Grade 1 teachers! • Students perform better • Students learn more quickly • Peer effects?

  5. Costs of full-day kindergarten • Large financial cost to taxpayers • $1.5 billion a year • Does not include marginal cost of public funds • Socialisation, or transition costs of starting full-day kindergarten at a young age • Baker and Milligan – less healthy; more parent-reported temper tantrums

  6. Previous studies • Studies of Perry Pre-school, or ABCDarian, etc, show positive effects of targeted, intensive pre-school programs on grades and later social and economic outcomes of at-risk children • daCosta&Bell (2000; 2001) • Not universal - students in full-day were from inner city low SES schools in Alberta; full day students improved more over the kindergarten year • Herry, Maltais & Thompson (2007) • Full-day kindy in one French ON school board. 1 year pre and post data. Teacher and parent-reports. • De Cicca (2007) • US: slight positive effect on test scores at start of year 1, nothing by end of year 1 (“long term”)

  7. Methodology– less reliable methods • Comparing one cohort of students who went to full-day kindergarten with a group before who went to half-day kindergarten • Something may have changed between the two years • Comparing a group of students who attend a full-day program with another who attend a half-day program • The two groups of students could just be different • There could be non-random selection into the full-day program • Only a problem if selection or differences are unobservable

  8. Methodology – “difference in differences” • So look for a change in policy that affected some students, but not others • “Difference in Differences” study • Control for “fixed effects” at the school or school board level, to deal with unobservable fixed characteristics • Control for “year effects” to deal with unobservable time variation

  9. Basic research plan • How did the switch from half to full-day kindergarten in Ontario’s French language school boards affect EQAO test scores? • We can use English language boards as a control • Mobility between French and English boards is less of a problem than mobility between English language schools • We can look at longer-term outcomes (though we miss very short-term outcomes)

  10. A (very) little background • All French language boards have offered full-day JK and SK programs since around 2001-02 • Varying start dates (we use this in our estimation) • “Educationally … initiated because children in French schools obtained lower grades than students in English schools on the provincial reading, writing, and mathematics exams taken by students in the third and sixth grades.” (Herry, Maltais, Thompson, 2007)

  11. Diff in diff – no effect Policy Change Performance measure English French Time

  12. Diff-in-Diff – +ve effect Policy Change Performance measure French English Time

  13. How do we estimate this? • Simple linear model, no break: • Ybt = a0 + a0Frenchb + b0Timet + ebt • Simple linear model, with break: • Ybt = a0 + a0Frenchb + b0Timet +gPostPolicyt*Frenchb+ ebt • In actuality, use YearsFTKindybtas our key policy variable (mostly 1999-2000; some later) • Add French*time to allow for different pre-trends in French boards (as per graphs) • Standard errors clustered at school board level

  14. The data • Currently: EQAO data at the school board level (72 boards, 60 English and 12 French) • % achieving each level • number of students • %Female/%Male • % Second Language Program • % Special needs • In future: At the individual level • Allows us to examine whether there are ‘heterogeneous treatment effects’ (do kids from low SES or non-French backgrounds benefit more from full-day kindergarten?)

  15. Grade 3 Reading

  16. Grade 3 Writing

  17. Grade 3 Maths

  18. Grade 6 Reading

  19. Grade 6 Writing

  20. Grade 6 Maths

  21. Numerical results Note: Clustered t-statistics in parentheses. ** = significant at 1% level; * significant at 5% level. Interpretation: percentage point increase in % achieving the level for each additional year of full-time kindergarten

  22. Numerical results Note: Clustered t-statistics in parentheses. ** = significant at 1% level; * significant at 5% level. Interpretation: percentage point increase in % achieving the level for each additional year of full-time kindergarten

  23. Concerns • Interpretation of EQAO scores is non-standard • ordered probit model, if use individual data? • Selection • Inadequate controls • Mobility across schools • Typically more than 80% of students had been in the same French board for 3 or more years • Difficult to transfer into the French system from the English system • Heterogeneous treatment effects • Need individual-level data – PEDAL at McMaster

  24. Conclusions so far • French schools closed the gap with English schools at Grade 3 in all three EQAO tests • But this mostly appears due to an upward trend in French schools’ test scores, rather than an obvious break for those who had full-day kindergarten • Some positive effect on mathematics at the provincial standard level? • Not likely that there is anything in the Grade 6 aggregate scores