Effects of parental morbidity on child school participation in Malawi
Hoeg, Jennifer Marie.
Thesis (M.P.P.)--Georgetown University, 2009.; Includes bibliographical references. Educating children in developing countries has the potential to profoundly and positively affect socio-economic development outcomes by allowing these individuals to attain improved health outcomes, increased wage-earning potential, and to potentially break the cycle of inter-generational poverty. One of the key development concerns impacting educational participation for children is health, with a developing strand of research focused on the effects of parental morbidity and mortality on child educational participation. This study seeks to add to this body of literature by investigating the relationship between adult health status and child educational participation in Sub-Saharan Africa, a region that is faced with particularly low educational attainment and high disease burden. Using data from the Government of Malawi's 2004-2005 Second Integrated Household Survey, this study finds a modest and statistically significant negative relationship between head of household morbidity and child school attendance, and confirms parental education as a primary driver of child school attendance. These findings suggest mutually positively reinforcing benefits to human development investments in health and education. Further investigation of this research question is encouraged, particularly addressing the efficacy of interventions to increase ailing parents' access to health care or palliative care in improving school attendance rates of children.
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