Abstract: In this paper, a randomized intervention was used to provide school age children with three hours of after school care in order to explore the causal effects of adult supervision on children’s academic outcomes. It was found that there is a positive effect on grades when the after-school program replaces non-parental care, increasing the average GPA and the probability of having a GPA above the median in around 9 percentage points (pp). If the student was alone in the after-school hours at baseline, this value increases to 13 pp. This evidence suggests that the impact of the program is determined by the nature of the alternative care available to them. We find that the program quality, the activities developed, and the characteristics of the personnel do not affect the program effect. We also find no impact on mother’s labor force outcomes for the group of students where improvement was observed. These results are consistent with the program working through the provision of adult supervision, instead of through the type of care or an income effect.
Keywords: Childcare; randomized control trial; after-school programs.
JEL: J13, I25