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Longer school schedules, childcare and the quality of mothers’ employment: Evidence from School Reform in Chile

Matias Berthelon Author-Name: Diana Kruger Author-Name: Catalina Lauer Author-Name: Luca Tiberti Author-Name: Carlos Zamora
Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Luca Tiberti () and Matias E. Berthelon

Working Papers PMMA from PEP-PMMA

Abstract: Ample empirical evidence has shown that access to childcare for preschool children increases mothers’ labor-force participation and employment. By estimating the causal effect of a school schedule reform in Chile, we investigated whether increased childcare for primary school children improved the quality of the jobs that mothers found. Combining plausibly exogenous temporal and spatial variations in school schedules with a panel of mothers’ employment between 2002 and 2015, we estimated a fixed-effects model that controlled for unobserved heterogeneity. We found a positive effect of access to full-day schools on several measures of the quality of mothers’ jobs, which were correlated to working full-time. We also found small, positive effects on the quality of fathers’ jobs. Our evidence suggests that the mechanism driving the effect was the effect of the reform’s implicit subsidy to the cost of childcare on the opportunity cost of mothers’ time. We also found that less-educated mothers benefited most from the reform. Childcare can increase household welfare by improving parents’ jobs and, thus, can play a role in reducing inequality.

Keywords: Employment quality; job quality; women’s labor-force participation; women’s labor supply; full-day schooling; childcare; education reform; Chile (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H41 H52 I25 I28 J13 J16 J18 J22 O15 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dem, nep-lam and nep-ure
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Handle: RePEc:lvl:pmmacr:2020-07