Participation in the Unemployment Insurance Program and Childhood Achievement
Colleen M. Heflin, University of Missouri, Columbia
Sharon Kukla-Acevedo, Central Michigan University
Despite evidence linking parental unemployment spells and negative child outcomes, there is very little research that explores how participation in the Unemployment Insurance Program (UI) could buffer these effects. Using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 79 (NLSY79) and Children of the NLSY79 data, we estimate a series of fixed effects and instrumental variables models to estimate the relationship between UI participation and the Peabody Individual Achievement Test (math and reading comprehension). Once we control for the non-random selection process into UI participation, our results suggest a positive, albeit, tenuous relationship between UI participation and PIAT math scores. None of the models suggests a negative influence of UI participation on child outcomes.