Children In Brazil: health, education and work

Type Report
Title Children In Brazil: health, education and work
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2005
In Brazil, even though school participation is compulsory for children between 7 to 14 years old, some of them are not enrolled in the education system. One of the main reasons is their participation to the work market that may have an impact on their health. Moreover, child's school attendance in public schools usually insures a meal to child but for children working, they have to accumulate two journeys: school and job. So, child's health could be explained by both, school attendance and work market participation. In addition, problems related to school attendance and school progress could be related to child work or his health. Therefore, we cannot explore determinants of one of these components school attendance, health and child work without studying their interactions. In this paper, we use the database Living Standards Measurement Study Survey 1996/1997 (Pesquisa de Padrões de Vida - PPV) to look at this interactions. It appears that child's labor and school attendance have a very strong correlation. School attendance has a negative impact in child's probability to participate in labor market. For instance, child ´s labor market affects negatively child ´s probability to evaluate his health as good and excellent. We also note that school attendance does not have a significant impact in child ´s health evaluation. The main conclusion of our article is that the development of human capital should consider together health and education. A policy focusing only in education, as incentives to go to school, does not seem to be sufficient to improve child's health. Also, government should also consider the population at risk, as children from poor families, living in worse conditions and obliged to work.

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