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Effects of parental health shocks on children's school achievements: A register-based population study

Maiken Skovrider Aaskoven, Trine Kjær and Dorte Gyrd-Hansen

Journal of Health Economics, 2022, vol. 81, issue C

Abstract: This paper studies how a severe parental health shock affects children's school achievements using a rich longitudinal dataset of Danish children. We use coarsened exact matching to control for potential endogeneity between parental health and children's school outcomes and employ cancer specific survival rates to measure the size of the health shock. We find robust negative (albeit small) effects of a parental health shock on children's basic school grades as well as their likelihood of starting and finishing secondary education, especially for poor prognosis cancers. We observe different outcomes across children's gender and age and gender of the ill parent, but no effects of family-related resilience factors such as parental education level. The effects appear to be driven by non-pecuniary costs rather than by pecuniary costs. Moreover, we find that the negative effects on school performance increase in the size of the health shock for both survivors and non-survivors.

Keywords: Health shocks; Parental investments; Children's education; Denmark (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I14 I21 O15 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jhealeco.2021.102573

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