Family Structure, Household Resources and High School Enrollment: China 2000

Juhua Yang, Renmin University of China

Using the 0.95% data of China’s 2000 Census, this paper investigates the relationship between family structure, household resources and high school enrollment among adolescents ages 17-18. Analytic results show that: (1) children from two-parent families but living with only the mother due to father’s migration are mostly advantaged in school enrollment; and (2) compared with children with two parents, those of divorced families, stepfamilies, widowed families and no-parent families all have a lower likelihood of school enrollment, particularly so for children of father-only families. These findings reflect that family structure remains an important determinant of adolescents’ education beyond the compulsory level, and the person with whom the children co-reside affects their education. Such findings are partly inconsistent with those of relevant studies in developed and developing settings. The disadvantages faced by children of father-only families are likely to have detrimental and long-term consequences for them in particular and for society in general.

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Presented in Session 71: International Perspectives on Family Structure and Children’s Education