Which family factors affect children’s development at school?

Diederik Boertien, Centre for Demographic Studies, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Over the last two decades Spanish families have undergone fast-moving changes. There are now fewer children living in the same household as both of their biological parents. Using data from the Population Census of 2011, this article analyses to what point family structure influences children’s school performance and what importance this factor has in comparison with others such as the mother’s educational attainment level and economic resources.
Key points
  • 1
       According to the Population Census of 1991 nearly 90% of children aged under16 lived with both of their parents in the same house. Today, that family structure is no longer as common. Data from the most recent Census indicate that in 2011 around a quarter of children aged 16 were not living in the same household as their biological mother and father.
  • 2
       In recent decades, families with a low level of educational attainment have undergone greater change than those with a higher level. By 2011, nearly 40% of children with a mother without primary education were not living with their biological father, versus 17% of those whose mother had a university qualification.
  • 3
       Children living in single-parent homes have a slightly lower probability of completing Compulsory Secondary Education (ESO) on time.
  • 4
       The influence of family structure is very small in comparison with the effects of the mother’s level of educational attainment and of the differences in economic resources between families.
  • 5
       Given the importance of socioeconomic factors, policies aimed at preventing children from falling behind at school will have higher chances of success if geared towards reducing socioeconomic differences between households.

This graphic indicates what percentage of children born in 1995 did not complete ESO on time in each of the groups shown. In the first group it can be seen that the influence of family structure is only 5%. In contrast, in the second group, it can be seen that depending on housing status, the difference increases by 17%.  Finally, if compared by the mother’s level of education, the difference is even more pronounced, increasing to 29%.

From this perspective, it becomes clear that factors such as the mother’s level of educational attainment are much more important for children’s school performance than the number of parents living with them.

Hide full article

Classification

Author

Diederik Boertien, Centre for Demographic Studies, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Tags

Thematics

Related contents

Infodata

Percentage of the population that took at least one training course related with culture in the last year

How many people participate in complementary training courses linked to culture? In 2015, 5.9% of the Spanish population underwent some training of this type.

Chapter

Una propuesta de renta fiscal universal para España

La propuesta de una renta fiscal universal busca convertir el mínimo vital definido en el IRPF en una auténtica renta garantizada para asegurar a todos los ciudadanos un mínimo nivel de ingresos.

Chapter

Cambio tecnológico y renta básica

El cambio tecnológico parece favorecer un aumento de la polarización salarial y de la desigualdad. En este contexto, la renta básica universal se vislumbra como una medida para compensar a los más desfavorecidos por los cambios en los modos de producción.

Chapter

Los complementos salariales y la garantía de ingresos: posibilidades y límites

¿Se puede garantizar una renta a toda la sociedad asignando algún tipo de complemento a los salarios? Repasamos las principales características de los complementos salariales a partir de distintas experiencias, especialmente anglosajonas.

Chapter

Problemas de incentivos: renta básica universal versus prestación de ingresos mínimos

Análisis comparado de la renta básica y la prestación de ingresos mínimos. Se analizan los efectos de ambas sobre la oferta de trabajo, los costes de financiación o los problemas de englobar estas medidas en el contexto internacional. 


You may also like

Report

Reforzar el bienestar social: del ingreso mínimo a la renta básica

Reforzar el bienestar social: del ingreso mínimo a la renta básica

Social Inclusion

Este informe recoge el análisis sobre la situación social en España y sobre la capacidad de las ayudas y subsidios existentes para garantizar unos ingresos mínimos a todos los ciudadanos, con el objetivo de reducir la pobreza y la desigualdad.

Report

Health

Health

Social Inclusion

This report analyses four challenges relating to health in Spain: improving the population’s health, promoting healthy lifestyle habits, guaranteeing access to healthcare and the viability of services for dependency.

Report

Housing

Housing

Social Inclusion

What social challenges does decent housing represent in Spain? This report analyses three challenges in this field: access, conditions and energy needs.