Private schooling succeeds in Pakistan

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My colleague Jishnu Das sends word of two new World Bank policy papers he's coauthored on public and private schools in Pakistan. I'm pleased to see that their results mirror similar work from India (by researchers James Tooley and Pauline Dixon). The authors find that, contrary to perceptions, the average private school is cheap and heavily used even among the poor.

  1. "A dime a day: the possibilities and limits of private schooling in Pakistan" discusses the rapid increase of private schools and the economics of their operations. The average fee of a rural private school in Pakistan is, you guessed it, less than a dime a day.
  2. "Learning levels and gaps in Pakistan" reports on achievement tests of over 14,000 children in 800 rural public and private schools. In the first large-scale testing exercise in rural private schools in Pakistan, results show that the learning gap between rich and poor is dwarved by that between public and private schools.

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