Learning and Educational Achievement in Punjab Schools (LEAPS) - 2004
Whether one is in favor of private education or not, it is here to stay and there is a critical need to understand this new environment. Unfortunately, little is known about the private sector and what its growth implies for the provision of education. There are important questions we need to answer before engaging in productive debate about how education can be best provided in the Pakistani context. For instance:
a. Where are private schools setting up? Are they only being established in urban areas and only for the elite?
b. What is the quality of education in private sector schools? How does it compare to public schools?
c. Are the poor being left out? Is the private sector creating two classes of people in Pakistan—those who can afford private education and those who cannot?
d. What is the effect of private schools on government schools?
Public Release Version 1.0
Rural Punjab, Pakistan
Unit of analysis
How much a child learns depends on teachers, parents and the child herself. How these three coordinate and work together also depends on the head-teacher and the educational institutes that support the delivery of education. Our research strategy reflects this belief. We survey both schools and households and test children to assess how much they are learning. Here is a brief overview of the survey structure:
a. Teachers: Rosters with basic information for all teachers in the schools and detailed interviews with the class-teachers of the children tested.
b. Head-teachers: A detailed questionnaire with the head-teacher with basic information about his/her background and teaching experience.
c. Schools: We also collected information on schools, the children who come, the fees charged (private schools) and their current needs.
d. Children: For a random sample of 10 children from those tested the survey collects basic information on their households (parental education, assets and brothers and sisters), how far they travel to get to school, and their height and weight.
e. Households: We complete household surveys for 16 households in every village, with information on what parents know and what parents do with regard to their children’s education. In addition, these surveys contain the basic information on expenditures, assets, education and health that will allow us to look at the relationship between these factors and educational performance. For instance, when the mother is sick, does the child perform worse in school?
Producers and sponsors
Tahir Andrabi (Pomona College), Jishnu Das and Tara Viswanath (World Bank), Asim Ijaz Khwaja and Tristan Zajonc (Harvard University)
The sample comprises 112 villages in 3 districts of Punjab-Attock, Faisalabad and Rahim Yar Khan. The districts represent an accepted stratification of the province into North (Attock), Central (Faisalabad) and South (Rahim Yar Khan). The 112 villages in these districts were chosen randomly from the list of all villages with an existing private school. This allows us to look at differences between private and public schools in the same village. Although these villages are thus bigger and richer than average villages in these districts, we believe this is a forward-looking strategy and the insights earned here will soon be applicable to a significant fraction of all villages in the country.
Deviations from sample design
The attrition has been remarkably small, averaging 3-4 percent in each year.
Dates of collection
Data collection supervision
Tracking Children: In 2004 we tested 12,000 children in 838 public and private schools in Grade 3 and re-tested them in Grades 4 (2005) and 5 (2006). In 2006, we also included Grade 3 children, increasing the total number of children tested to
25,000. These children all need to be tracked through the year to find out where they are the next year. The table below shows for instance, the status of child-tracking as they moved from Grade 3 to Grade 4. In the transition children could (a) drop-out (b) remain in the same school and be promoted; (c) remain in the same school and not be promoted; (d) switch schools within the village and be promoted (in which case they would be tested in another school) and be promoted; (e) switch to schools within the village and not be promoted and (f) switch to schools outside the village or leave the village all together. Although close to 1800 children out of 12,000 were no longer in the same class-school combination that they would have been if they did not switch schools and were promoted, we were able to determine the status of all except 500. In one previous study, authors could track only 10 percent of the children compared to our rate of above 95 percent.
Surveying Households: We have now created a longitudinal dataset of 1800 households across the 3 years, and in each of the years there are close to 750 children on whom we also have information on learning from the school testing exercise. This is the first database in low-income countries that combines detailed household information (including consumption aggregates) with school-level inputs and learning.
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Disclaimer and copyrights
To the best of our knowledge and ability, the data has been purged of identifying variables and errors of coding.
The user of the data acknowledges that the original collector of the data, the authorized distributor of the data, and the relevant funding agency bear no responsibility for use of the data or for interpretations or inferences based upon such uses.