Age at Parental Separation and Children’s School Grades

Siddartha Aradhya , Lund University
Juho Härkönen, European University Institute

We analyze how children’s age at parental separation affects their school grades at 9th grade using sibling fixed effects models on Swedish population register data. Our main result is that parental separation close in time to the age at which the grade point averages are measured has a clearly more negaative influence on grades that separations taking place at younger ages. The effect of parents separating during the 9th grade is -0.15 standard deviations compared to a parental separation during the child’s first year of life. We also find that our results are sensitive to measurement error in parental separation; some registered address changes can be misclassified as parental separations, which leads to underestimation of the age-at-separation gradient. We discuss these findings in light of theories of parental separation effects and previous research.

See paper

 Presented in Session 106. Consequences of Union Dissolution