"Human Capital Spillovers in Families: Do Parents Learn from or Lean on Their Children?"
Publication type: Working paper
I develop a model in which a child's acquisition of a given form of human capital incentivizes adults in his household to either learn from him (if children act as teachers then adults' cost of learning the skill falls) or lean on him (if children's human capital substitutes for that of adults in household production then adults' benefit of learning the skill falls). Using variation in compliance with a 1998 English-immersion mandate in California public schools, I find that English instruction improved the English skills of immigrant children but discouraged adults living with them from acquiring the language. Whether family members learn from or lean on each other has implications for the externalities associated with education policies.
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