Child labor and learning
Emerson, Patrick M.
Ponczek, Vladimir Pinheiro
Souza, André Portela Fernandes de
This paper investigates the impact of working while in school on learning outcomes through the use of a unique micro panel dataset of Brazilian students. The potential endogeneity is addressed through the use of di erence-in-di erence and instrumental variable estimators. A negative e ect of working on learning outcomes in both math and Portuguese is found. The e ects of child work range from 3% to 8% of a standard deviation decline in test score which represents a loss of about a quarter to a half of a year of learning on average. We also explore the minimum legal age to entry in the labor market to induce an exogenous variation in child labor status. The results reinforce the detrimental e ects of child labor on learning. Additionally, it is found that this e ect is likely due to the interference of work with the time kids can devote to school and school work.