Double Standards in Educational Standards - Are Disadvantaged Students Being Graded More Leniently?

29 Pages Posted: 27 Mar 2007 Last revised: 26 Aug 2008

See all articles by Oliver Himmler

Oliver Himmler

University of Goettingen (Göttingen)

Robert Schwager

Center for European Economic Research (ZEW); University of Magdeburg

Date Written: 2007

Abstract

A simple model of decentralised graduation standards is presented. It is shown that a school whose students are disadvantaged on the labour market applies less demanding standards because such students have less incentives to graduate. The model's predictions are tested using Dutch school-level data. Since students in the Netherlands have to participate both in a central and in a school specific examination, we can identify the grading policy of individual schools. We find that schools which harbour greater shares of disadvantaged students tend to set lower standards. This effect is largest in the branch of secondary schooling preparing for university.

Keywords: education, grading, social status, schools, Netherlands

JEL Classification: I21, J15

Suggested Citation

Himmler, Oliver and Schwager, Robert, Double Standards in Educational Standards - Are Disadvantaged Students Being Graded More Leniently? (2007). ZEW - Centre for European Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 07-016, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=975022 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.975022

Oliver Himmler

University of Goettingen (Göttingen) ( email )

Platz der Gottinger Sieben 3
Gottingen, D-37073
Germany

Robert Schwager (Contact Author)

Center for European Economic Research (ZEW) ( email )

P.O. Box 10 34 43
L 7,1 D-68161 Mannheim
Germany
00 49 621 1235160 (Phone)
00 49 621 1235215 (Fax)

University of Magdeburg

Universitätspl. 2
PSF 4120
Magdeburg, D-39106
Germany

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