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Study Overview

Title:
Information and High School Enrollment: An Experiment in Southern Mexico
Study is 3ie funded:
No
Study ID:
RIDIE-STUDY-ID-527290fe67a74
Initial Registration Date:
10/31/2013
Last Update Date:
12/09/2014
Study Status:
Completed
Change History for Status
Changed On Previous Value
12/09/2014 Ongoing
01/29/2014 In Development
Location(s):
Mexico
Abstract:
In developing countries, attending high school is a family decision. Sadly, many families in Chiapas, Mexico do not know that high schoo is possible for their children. The Reach Program, part of Foundation Escalera, has two parts to encourage high school enrollment. The first is a series of DVDs with interviews with indigenous high school graduates, detailing their journeys into high school and beyond. The second component is a workbook for every student which has exercises on self-esteem, goal setting and assignments corresponding to the videos. Moreover, the workbook includes information on the economic benefits of completing high school along with fact sheets on local high schools, as well as information on existing scholarship programs, discounted student housing and transport, and free practice entrance exams. Escalera will train, monitor and assist teachers as they incorporate these lesson plans. Schools are randomly assigned into one of four groups: i) receive videos and workbooks; ii) videos, workbooks and subsidies which will pay tuition fees for high school; iii) subsidies only; iv) control group. With this RCT we will accurately evaluate the impact of the Reach Program.
Categories:
Education
Additional Keywords:
Education, Information, Mexico
Secondary ID Number(s):

Principal Investigator(s)

Name of First PI:
Zachary Intemann
Affiliation:
Foundation Escalera
Name of Second PI:
Change History for Name of Second PI
Changed On Previous Value
03/04/2014 Andrew Christensen
Affiliation:
Change History for Affiliation
Changed On Previous Value
03/04/2014 Foundation Escalera

Study Sponsor

Name:
Foundation Escalera
Study Sponsor Location:
Mexico

Research Partner

Name of Partner Institution:
Type of Organization:
Location:
Intervention

Intervention Overview

Intervention:
At the beginning of the school year, Escalera will give randomly assigned middle schools a DVD featuring a series of interviews with indigenous high school graduates. Third year students in the same schools will receive workbooks that correspond with the video series that will promote goal setting and self-esteem, as well as provide information on local high schools, scholarships, discounted housing, and practice exams. Secondary, teachers will be trained, monitored, and assisted throughout the process. Though finances maybe the strongest deterrent from high school, despite the DVDs and workbooks, some schools, randomly assigned, will be offered subsidies to pay for high school. To analyze the impact, another group of randomly assigned school will only receive subsidies and another will be the control group.
Private Intervention Details:
To understand whether lack of information or lack of motivation or lack of money has a stronger effect. Half of the schools being treated with school subsidies will receive additional books, in addition to the subsidies, with information regarding all high schools in the area. 28 subsidy school will receive this treatment.
Theory of Change:
Multiple Treatment Arms Evaluated?
Yes

Implementing Agency

Name of Organization:
Foundation Escalera
Type of Organization:
NGO (local)/Community Based Organization/Other civil society organization

Program Funder

Name of Organization:
Foundation Escalera
Type of Organization:
NGO (International)

Intervention Timing

Intervention or Program Started at time of Registration?
No
Start Date:
01/24/2014
Change History for Start Date
Changed On Previous Value
01/29/2014 11/06/2013
End Date:
Evaluation Method

Evaluation Method Overview

Primary (or First) Evaluation Method:
Randomized control trial
Other (not Listed) Method:
Additional Evaluation Method (If Any):
Regression with controls
Other (not Listed) Method:

Method Details

Details of Evaluation Approach:
Schools were randomly assigned into treatment and control groups stratified by distance from San Cristobal de Las Casas, the nearest city. No baseline data will be collected. Mid line data will be collected January-February 2014 to obtain all necessary information on the students, teachers, and schools. Monitoring will be constant to ensure that teachers are applying the lesson plans as expected. In April 2014, schools receiving subsidies will be informed that Escalera will offer to pay for the students’ fees to attend high school. End line data will be collected from the Mexican Secretary for Public Education in September 2014 to observe which students attend high school. With no baseline data, emphasis will be put on the quality of mid line to ensure strength of randomization and accuracy of evaluation. Plan to estimate the impact using probit/logit and matching technique for the first year. After the second year of roll-out an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years.
Change History for Details of Evaluation Approach
Changed On Previous Value
12/12/2013 Schools were randomly assigned into treatment and control groups stratified by distance from San Cristobal de Las Casas, the nearest city, and language spoken in the village. No baseline data will be collected. Mid line data will be collected January-February 2014 to obtain all necessary information on the students, teachers, and schools. Monitoring will be constant to ensure that teachers are applying the lesson plans as expected. In April 2014, schools receiving subsidies will be informed that Escalera will offer to pay for the students’ fees to attend high school. End line data will be collected from the Mexican Secretary for Public Education in September 2014 to observe which students attend high school. With no baseline data, emphasis will be put on the quality of mid line to ensure strength of randomization and accuracy of evaluation. Plan to estimate the impact using probit/logit and matching technique for the first year. After the second year of roll-out an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years.
12/05/2013 Schools were randomly assigned into treatment and control groups based on distance from San Cristobal de Las Casas, the nearest city. No baseline data will be collected. Mid line data will be collected January-February 2014 to obtain all necessary information on the students, teachers, and schools. Monitoring will be constant to ensure that teachers are applying the lesson plans as expected. In April 2014, schools receiving subsidies will be informed that Escalera will offer to pay for the students’ fees to attend high school. End line data will be collected from the Mexican Secretary for Public Education in September 2014 to observe which students attend high school. With no baseline data, emphasis will be put on the quality of mid line to ensure strength of randomization and accuracy of evaluation. Plan to estimate the impact using probit/logit and matching technique for the first year. After the second year of roll-out an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years.
11/27/2013 Schools were randomly assigned into treatment and control groups based on school size and distance from the secondary school to the nearest high school. No baseline data will be collected. Mid line data will be collected January-February 2014 to obtain all necessary information on the students, teachers, and schools. Monitoring will be constant to ensure that teachers are applying the lesson plans as expected. In April 2014, schools receiving subsidies will be informed that Escalera will offer to pay for the students’ fees to attend high school. End line data will be collected from the Mexican Secretary for Public Education in September 2014 to observe which students attend high school. With no baseline data, emphasis will be put on the quality of mid line to ensure strength of randomization and accuracy of evaluation. Plan to estimate the impact using probit/logit and matching technique for the first year. After the second year of roll-out an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years.
Private Details of Evaluation Approach:
We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline. We are hopeful to obtain data from ENLACE, Mexico's standardized test to learn if the program has any impact on children's test score from year to the next. This would be measured using a matching or Differences-in-Differences approach, depending on whether we can obtain individual data or only school level data. We will also use the test scores to measure impacts based on class rank. After the second year of roll-out, an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years if we are able to afford data collection for a second control group.
Change History for Private Details of Evaluation Approach
Changed On Previous Value
12/18/2013 We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline. It maybe a long shot, but we are hopeful to obtain data from ENLACE, Mexico's standardized test to learn if the program has any impact on children's test score from year to the next. This would be measured using a matching or Differences-in-Differences approach, depending on whether we can obtain individual data or only school level data. After the second year of roll-out, an ordered probit will be utilized to evaluate if students attended high school for one year or two years or no years if we are able to afford data collection for a second control group.
12/05/2013 We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline. It maybe a long shot, but we are hopeful to obtain data from ENLACE, Mexico's standardized test to learn if the program has any impact on children's test score from year to the next. This would be measured using a matching or Differences-in-Differences approach, depending on whether we can obtain individual data or only school level data.
11/08/2013 We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline. It maybe a long shot, but we are hopeful to obtain data from ENLACE, Mexico's standardized test to learn if the program has any impact on children's test score from year to the next. This would be measured using a matching approach.
11/08/2013 We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline. It maybe a long shot, but we are hopeful to obtain data from ENLACE, Mexico's standardized test to learn if the program has any impact on children's test score from year to the next. This would be measured using a difference-in-differences approach.
11/04/2013 We are still debating the timing of informing schools about the subsidies. If we are not able to gather data from the Mexican Secretary of Public Education, we will obtain end line data from the high schools themselves. Since the notebooks will include many assignments on issues such as self-esteem and parent involvement. I may transplant some questions from the homework assignments to survey for the control groups. This will likely be used for statistics and for future ideas for the program. It is not known right now how successful this could be with he absence of baseline.
Outcomes (Endpoints):
If the student continues his/her education into high school as a result of Reach Program.
Unit of Analysis:
Individual students
Hypotheses:
Unit of Intervention or Assignment:
Schools
Number of Clusters in Sample:
117
Number of Individuals in Sample:
2500 students
Change History for Number of Individuals in Sample
Changed On Previous Value
03/04/2014 3145
Size of Treatment, Control, or Comparison Subsamples:
Control: 28 schools; Books and Videos Treatment: 28 Schools; Books and Videos and subsidies 32 school; Subsidies only: 29 Schools Control: 28
Change History for Size of Treatment, Control, or Comparison Subsamples
Changed On Previous Value
03/04/2014 Control: 28 schools; Books and Videos Treatment: 28 Schools; Books and Videos and subsidies 29 school; Subsidies only: 30 Schools
12/12/2013 Control: 24 schools; Books and Videos Treatment: 27 Schools; Books and Videos and subsidies 36 school; Subsidies only: 30 Schools

Supplementary Files

Analysis Plan:
Other Documents:
Data

Outcomes Data

Description:
Data will be collected from the secondary school using individual surveys for teachers and students. The student survey will include all necessary individual and household characteristics, and the teacher survey will include information on the school and the community. Using our control group as the counter factual, these individual and community variables will be used to measure the causal effect of the videos and workbooks on children’s high school enrollment.
Data Already Collected?
Yes
Change History for Data Collection Status
Changed On Previous Value
05/05/2014 No
Data Previously Used?
No
Data Access:
Not restricted - access with no requirements or minimal requirements (e.g. web registration)
Data Obtained by the Study Researchers?
Yes
Data Approval Process:
Approval Status:

Treatment Assignment Data

Participation or Assignment Information:
Yes
Description:
Data Obtained by the Study Researchers?
Data Previously Used?
Data Access:
Data Obtained by the Study Researchers?
Data Approval Process:
Approval Status:

Data Analysis

Data Analysis Status:
Yes

Study Materials

Upload Study Materials:

Registration Category

Registration Category:
Non-Prospective, Category 4: Data for measuring impacts have been obtained/collected by the research team and analysis for this evaluation has started
Change History for Registration Category
Changed On Previous Value
05/05/2014 Prospective, Category 1: Data for measuring impacts have not been collected
Completion

Completion Overview

Intervention Completion Date:
07/01/2014
Data Collection Completion Date:
11/12/2014
Unit of Analysis:
Students in their final year of middle school
Clusters in Final Sample:
114 clusters at the school level
Total Observations in Final Sample:
2672 students surveyed, used for the analysis
Size of Treatment, Control, or Comparison Subsamples:
31 schools received REACH materials, 28 schools received subsidies to pay for high school, 28 school received both, and 27 in the control group

Findings

Preliminary Report:
Yes
Preliminary Report URL:
Summary of Findings:
Abstract: In Chiapas, Mexico there is a strong rate of desertion between middle school and high school. Reasons for this problem include language barriers, distance barriers, and lack of economic resources. Foundation Escalera, a small NGO, addresses this issue with its program REACH, a curriculum that promotes students’ self-esteem and self-awareness, and provides them with knowledge on key information about high schools in the region. Telesecundarias were randomly selected to receive the REACH materials, a subsidy that would pay high school registration fees, or both REACH and subsidies. Results from this RCT show that the subsidies and REACH and subsidies treatments increase the probability of high school enrollment most, but students are most likely to go to high school if the teacher applies the entire REACH program in his or her classroom. Coefficients for all three treatments increase when distance to the nearest high school from the child’s home is controlled for. The estimates suggest that there is a need for information, financial aid, and inspiration for sending more children to high school in Chiapas.
Paper:
No
Paper Summary:
Paper Citation:

Data Availability

Data Availability (Primary Data):
Yes--Available now
Date of Data Availability:
Data URL or Contact:
Zachary Intemann; zachary@escalera.org
Access procedure:

Other Materials

Survey:
Yes
Survey Instrument Links or Contact:
Program Files:
Yes
Program Files Links or Contact:
External Link:
External Link Description:
Description of Changes:

Study Stopped

Date:
Reason: