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Paolo Rungo
''The impact of child health status on learning ability and school entrance age''
( 2008, Vol. 9 No.28 )
A growing number of papers demonstrate that child health/nutritional status is likely to affect learning ability. Provided that both cognitive development and the capacity to respond to educational stimuli also depend on age, parents might rationally choose to postpone school entrance age of unhealthy children in order to increase their probability of success at school. This note explores this channel of influence, through which a child initial health stock affects school entrance age. To this end, a simple theoretical model is presented here in order to offer a rationale for school postponement, and new empirical evidence is provided for supporting the main conclusion. The empirical analysis carried out, which uses data from a Brazilian household survey, shows that improved health has a negative impact on entrance age. In other words, it is shown that healthier children enter the school earlier.
Keywords: Child health status
JEL: I1 - Health: General
I2 - Education: General
Manuscript Received : Oct 15 2008 Manuscript Accepted : Oct 16 2008

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