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High School Enrollment, Minimum Wages and Education Spending

Stuart Landon ()

Canadian Public Policy, 1997, vol. 23, issue 2, 141-163

Abstract: The impact on high school enrollment of minimum wages and different types of education spending is examined empirically using Canadian provincial-level data. Increases in the minimum wage are shown to have a significant negative effect on the enrollment rates of 16- and 17-year-old males and 17-year-old females. The empirical estimates imply that a 50 cent increase in the hourly minimum wage causes a 0.7 percentage point fall in the percent of 16- and 17-year-olds enrolled in school (a decline that, in Ontario, would amount to more than 1,700 students). The results also indicate that lower student-teacher ratios, better paid teachers, more administrative spending, increased spending on instructional supplies, and increases in other school board operating expenditures do not have a systematic effect on enrollment rates.

Date: 1997
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