Living Arrangements of Children 13-16 and School Attendance: Latin America in the Early 1980s

De Vos, Susan
Working paper no. 1996-11


Since research findings for the United States suggest the tantalizing possibility that living arrangements effect a child’s likelihood of school enrollment through differences in such factors as expectations, this study begins to examine whether the same might also be the case in part of Latin America. Considering seven different types of living arrangements, it performs a broad statistical sweep regarding children 13-16 years of age in 10 countries. Half the countries were found to have a modest relationship between living arrangements and school attendance. In general, living in households headed by formally married parents (both simple and complex) enhances a child’s likelihood of attending school, but one is left to question Latin American definitions of marital status.