J-PAL Latin America (Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile): Information Campaign about the Returns to Secondary Education

J-PAL is implementing an RCT to test the effect of informing families about the economic benefits associated with more education on students' decisions to attend and remain in high school. With DIV Stage 2 funding, the Ministry of Education is rolling out these information campaigns in approximately 1,600 schools in the Dominican Republic. The program is designed to develop a scalable, cost-effective means of delivering information on education returns to citizens in the Dominican Republic.

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How does your innovation work?

Drop-out rates between primary and secondary school averaged 12% for Latin America and the Caribbean, 41% for Sub-Saharan Africa, and 29% for South Asia. Evidence from early trials suggest that informing students and families about the income benefits of additional education represents a cost-effective way of reducing drop-out rates, representing in the Domincan Republic an increase of 1.47 additional years of schooling per $100 spent on program implementation.

What is your strategy for expanding use of your innovation?

In partnership with the Ministry of Education of the Dominican Republic, PUC and J-PAL Latin America will develop and test an infromation campaign demonstrating the returns to education, targeting secondary school drop out rates.

Next Steps

Success in this context, rigorously evaluated by randomized control trial, can influence the adoption of similar programs by other developing country governments worldwide.