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We are pleased to share with you the most recent PREAL Working Paper “What Can Latin America Learn from Rigorous Impact Evaluations of Education Policies” by Richard J. Murnane and Alejandro J. Ganimian. The paper reviews the lessons from impact evaluations for education policy in Latin America.
First, reducing the costs of going to school and expanding schooling options increase attendance and attainment, but do not consistently increase student achievement. Second, providing information about school quality, developmentally appropriate parenting practices, and the economic returns to schooling affects the actions of parents and the performance of private schools. Third, more or better resources improve student achievement only if they result in changes in children’s daily experiences at school. Finally, well-designed incentives increase teacher effort and student achievement from very low levels, but low-skilled teachers need specific guidance to reach minimally acceptable levels of instruction.