Providing academic opportunities to vulnerable adolescents: a randomized evaluation of privately managed tuition-free middle schools in Uruguay

Produced by: 
Universidad de Montevideo
Available from: 
April 2019
Paper author(s): 
Ana Balsa
Alejandro Cid
Ana Laura Zardo
Education - Health

We conducted a randomized evaluation of three privately managed middle schools in Uruguay aimed at providing education opportunities to adolescents from low income socioeconomic status. At 3-year follow-up, treatment students fare better in terms of academic promotion and school retention. Students in treatment schools, present also better mental health, as represented by lower rates of internalizing behaviors and social problems than students in the control group. In addition to tutoring and other learning strategies reported in previous qualitative analyses of these schools, our findings suggest that a culture of high expectations, a caring and disciplined school climate, and parental involvement in the school could account for some of the observed differences in academic trajectories and mental health.


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