Disruptive classmates, long-term harm

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Science  31 Aug 2018:
Vol. 361, Issue 6405, pp. 889-890
DOI: 10.1126/science.361.6405.889-c

Exposure to disruptive behavior, like bullying, during primary school can have lifelong effects.


Children who are behaviorally disruptive during primary school can have harmful impacts on their classmates into adulthood. Carrell et al. use data from Florida, USA, to show that a child who experiences domestic violence at home (a well-recognized proxy for that child demonstrating disruptive behavior such as bullying) can lower their classmates' secondary-school math and reading test scores, lower their likelihood of enrolling in college, and reduce earnings in their mid-20s by 3%. Differential exposure to such classmates accounts for roughly 5% of the rich-poor earnings gap in adulthood.

Amer. Econ. Rev. (2018).

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