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Gender and Educational Access among China’s Youth: Evidence from Recent Censuses and Surveys. Emily Hannum, University of Pennsylvania Jennifer Adams, Stanford University Meiyan Wang, Chinese Academy of Social Science. Main sources for this presentation.

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gender and educational access among china s youth evidence from recent censuses and surveys

Gender and Educational Access among China’s Youth: Evidence from Recent Censuses and Surveys

Emily Hannum, University of Pennsylvania

Jennifer Adams, Stanford University

Meiyan Wang, Chinese Academy of Social Science

main sources for this presentation
Main sources for this presentation
  • Hannum, Emily and Jennifer Adams. (2007) “Choices, Hopes, and Expectations: Does Gender Still Shape Access to Basic Education in Rural Northwest China?” In Exclusion, Gender and Education: Case Studies from the Developing World , edited by Maureen Lewis and Marlaine Lockheed. Washington D.C.: Brookings.
  • Hannum, Emily, Jere Behrman, Meiyan Wang, and Jihong Liu. (2007) “Education in the Reform Era.” Forthcoming in China’s Great Economic Transformation, edited by Loren Brandt and Thomas Rawski, Cambridge University Press.
  • Hannum, Emily, Meiyan Wang, and Jennifer Adams. (2007). “Urban-Rural Disparities in Access to Primary and Secondary Education under Market Reforms.” Manuscript prepared for One Country, Two Societies? Rural-Urban Inequality in Contemporary China, edited by Martin Whyte (manuscript).
enrollment and attainment among youth in china
Enrollment and attainment among youth in China
  • To what extent does girls’ educational disadvantage persist in China? How do gender gaps compare with (and relate to) other sources of educational inequality?
    • What do large-scale surveys and the most recent census indicate about the nature of gender disparities? Sources: Census (2000), CHNS (1989, 1991,1993, 1997, 2000, 2004)
    • Does gender shape educational persistence and the educational plans of rural children and their parents in one of China’s poorest provinces? Sources: GSCF (2000, 2004)
the gansu survey of children and families gscf
The Gansu Survey of Children and Families (GSCF)
  • Waves in 2000 and 2004 (and 2007-8)
  • Multi-stage cluster sample of 2000 rural children aged 9-12 in the year 2000 (+oldest younger sibling in 2004)
  • Linkable secondary samples of mothers, fathers, teachers, school administrators, and village heads (+local health facility surveys in 2004)
  • Census of primary school teachers and administrators in sample villages (+JHS schools and teachers in 2004 and 2007)
design of the gscf
Design of the GSCF

School & classroom resources

  • Economic resources & infrastructure(finance, materials, facilities)
  • Human capital(teacher & principal characteristics)
  • Social composition & environment(socio-economic composition of peers in schools & classrooms, social cohesion/disruptions)
  • Academic environment(academic press, attitudes & expectations of teachers regarding teaching & learning & the students’ abilities & trajectories)

Children’s outcomes

  • Academic achievement
  • Grade repetition & attainment
  • Engagement with the schooling process
  • Psycho-social & physical health

Family resources

  • Material resources(wealth, expenditures, home physical environment, food security)
  • Human & social capital(family educational attainment & work patterns, family & kinship structure & networks, family interactions & psychological profile)
  • Home environment for learning(parents’ educational aspirations, attitudes & practices, educational materials, time competition)

Community resources

  • Economic resources & infrastructure(income levels & sources, transportation infrastructure, availability of basic health, education & social services, presence of rural enterprises)
  • Socio-cultural composition & environment(educational & occupational composition of the population, cohesion, cultural facilities)
outcomes
Outcomes
  • Enrollment status (2004)
  • Own educational aspirations (among enrolled students, 2004)
  • Mothers’ and fathers’ educational expectations (2004)
strategy for each outcome
Strategy: for each outcome…
  • Main effects models to test for gender differences and identify factors conducive to better outcomes (staying enrolled, high aspirations, high parental expectations)
  • Interaction models to test whether the effects of wealth, performance, teacher quality and classroom experiences differ for boys and girls.
main findings rural gansu analysis
Main Findings, Rural Gansu Analysis
  • The majority of children in rural Gansu who had entered school—girls and boys, wealthy and poor— were still in school at ages 13–16. Boys retained a modest enrollment advantage.
  • Continued enrollment for all children was associated with higher socioeconomic status, math performance, and early high expectations of mothers and teachers.
  • Boys and girls had similar educational aspirations.
  • Parents had higher expectations for boys than for girls, but parents’ average expectations for both girls and boys were higher than the educational outcomes the system is likely to provide. Parents’ expectations varied more by wealth than by gender of the child.
main points compulsory education
Main Points: Compulsory Education
  • A vast majority of urban and rural compulsory age boys and girls in China are now enrolled.
    • 2000 Census: the gender gap is vanishing in urban areas; it is very modest in rural areas and among rural minorities. Rural minorities are at highest risk of non-enrollment.
    • Among the few children who remain locked out of access to compulsory education, the vast majority are rural; minority children and children in western regions are disproportionately represented; and girls are slightly overrepresented.
      • As the pool of children excluded from schooling narrows, the composition of this group is increasingly tilted toward children who face multiple barriers to education.
main points compulsory education cont d
Main Points: Compulsory Education (cont’d)
  • A vast majority of urban and rural compulsory age boys and girls in China are now enrolled.
    • CHNS: Gender gaps in enrollment and years of schooling were closing by the late 1990s.
    • GSCF: In one of China’s poorest communities, girls’ disadvantage in enrollment is small. The educational expectations of girls themselves and of their parents are not a barrier to further advancement.
main points post compulsory education
Main points: post-compulsory education:
  • At secondary ages….
    • 2000 Census: The gender gap in enrollment is nearly gone in urban areas, and quite modest in rural areas (whether for majority or minority populations).
    • There are substantial urban-rural and majority-minority differences in enrollment rates.
    • CHNS: Girls’ disadvantage in enrollment and years of schooling disappeared over the 1990s. By 2004, provisional findings suggest an advantage for girls.
    • GSCF: There is a high stated demand for post-compulsory education among girls, boys, and their parents, even in some of China’s poorest rural communities.
conclusions
Conclusions
  • To what extent does girls’ educational disadvantage persist in China? How do gender gaps compare with (and relate to) other sources of educational inequality?
    • Nationally, gender gaps in access to basic and secondary education are small. Urban-rural gaps, ethnic gaps, and socio-economic gaps are more persistent problems.
      • Small disadvantages for girls, added to disadvantages associated with rural residence and minority status, mean that rural minority girls remain highly vulnerable.
  • Implications
    • Targeting initiatives that focus on expanding access to the most vulnerable groups of children, not just girls, would address remaining pockets of gender-related disparity and address other serious inequalities in Chinese education.
sex ratios in china by age group boys per 100 girls
Sex Ratios in China by Age Group (Boys per 100 Girls)

Sources: Calculated from UN Common Database and China Statistics Yearbooks (Various Years)