Immigration, public education spending, and private schooling

JournalSouthern Economic Journal
PublishedOctober 2011

This article examines the impact of immigration on private school enrolment through the mechanism of public education spending. It finds that the immigrant share of population raises private school enrolment across countries by leading to a decrease in the share of public education spending. The decrease is driven by responses to immigrants from culturally similar and developed countries. This suggests that the role of public schools in promoting social cohesion among diverse populations is weighted against other concerns in education funding decisions in places with immigrant populations. The endogeneity of immigrant share is accounted for by using an instrument constructed from gravity model estimates.