Early school leaving in Spain: a longitudinal analysis by gender

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Martín Martín-González Universidad Europea de Canarias, Spain

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Sara M. González-Betancor Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

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Carmen Pérez-Esparrells Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and UAM-UC3M Research Institute for Higher Education and Science (INAECU), Spain

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Spain is one of the eight EU-27 countries that failed to reduce early school leaving (ESL) below 10% in 2020, and now faces the challenge of achieving a rate below 9% by 2030. The determinants of this phenomenon are usually studied using cross-sectional data at the micro level and without differentiation by gender. In this study, we analyse it for the first time for Spain using panel data (between 2002 and 2020), taking into account the high regional inequalities at the macroeconomic level and the masculinisation of the phenomenon. The results show a positive relationship between ESL and socio-economic variables such as the adolescent fertility rate, immigration, unemployment or the weight of the industrial and construction sectors in the regional economy, with significant gender differences that invite us to discuss educational policies. Surprisingly, youth unemployment has only small but significant impact on female ESL.

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Martín Martín-González Universidad Europea de Canarias, Spain

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Sara M. González-Betancor Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain

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Carmen Pérez-Esparrells Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and UAM-UC3M Research Institute for Higher Education and Science (INAECU), Spain

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