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The Long Shadow of School Closures: Impacts on Students’ Educational and Labor Market Outcomes

Each year, over a thousand public schools in the US close due to declining enrollments and chronic low performance, displacing hundreds of thousands of students. Using Texas administrative data and empirical strategies that use within-student across-time and within-school across-cohort variation, I explore the impact of school closures on students' educational and labor market outcomes. The findings indicate that experiencing school closures results in disruptions in both test scores and behavior. While the drop in test scores is recovered within three years, behavioral issues persist. This study further finds decreases in post-secondary education attainment, employment, and earnings at ages 25–27. These impacts are particularly pronounced among students in secondary education, Hispanic students, and those from originally low-performing schools and economically disadvantaged families.

Keywords
school closure, demographic shift, low-performing school, student mobility, human capital development, long-run effect
Education level
Document Object Identifier (DOI)
10.26300/ax4m-3z14

EdWorkingPaper suggested citation:

Kim, Jeonghyeok. (). The Long Shadow of School Closures: Impacts on Students’ Educational and Labor Market Outcomes. (EdWorkingPaper: 24-963). Retrieved from Annenberg Institute at Brown University: https://doi.org/10.26300/ax4m-3z14

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