Gender Gaps in Schooling in Rural Guatemala

Kathryn M. Yount, Emory University
John Hoddinott, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
John A. Maluccio, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Alexis Murphy, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Usha Ramakrishnan, Emory University

The completion of schooling enhances personal earnings, health and nutrition, labor productivity, and child-care practices. Still, nearly two thirds of the roughly 130 million children in poor countries who do not receive primary schooling are girls. Although gender gaps in schooling have diminished or reversed in most of Latin America, Guatemala is a notable exception. In this paper, we make use of repeated village censuses (n = 5,306) in four rural Guatemalan villages to describe trends in the schooling achievements of young males and females between 1975 and 2002. We then examine the individual, family, and especially village-level determinants of schooling achievements by children in these villages during 1975–2002, and assess whether these determinants vary for boys and girls. Finally, we assess whether the effects of these determinants change over time, and whether they offer a satisfactory explanation for the size and trends in gender gaps in schooling.

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Presented in Session 168: Gender Differentials in Schooling and Occupations