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The Long-Term Effects of Universal Preschool in Boston

Guthrie Gray-Lobe, Parag Pathak and Christopher Walters

No 28756, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: We use admissions lotteries to estimate the effects of large-scale public preschool in Boston on college-going, college preparation, standardized test scores, and behavioral outcomes. Preschool enrollment boosts college attendance, as well as SAT test-taking and high school graduation. Preschool also decreases several disciplinary measures including juvenile incarceration, but has no detectable impact on state achievement test scores. An analysis of subgroups shows that effects on college enrollment, SAT-taking, and disciplinary outcomes are larger for boys than for girls. Our findings illustrate possibilities for large-scale modern, public preschool and highlight the importance of measuring long-term and non-test score outcomes in evaluating the effectiveness of education programs.

JEL-codes: I20 I21 I24 I28 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021-05
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