The Impact of Residential and School Mobility on Neighborhood Characteristics, School Quality, and Educational Outcomes
Stefanie DeLuca, Johns Hopkins University
Angela Estacion, Johns Hopkins University
Research suggests that residential mobility negatively impacts behavioral outcomes and school performance. Findings from residential mobility experiments, where poor families are placed into better neighborhoods via legislative mandate, suggest that moving from disadvantaged neighborhoods to more affluent, safer areas can significantly improve children’s educational outcomes and family life. This suggests that neighborhood and school change can sometimes help, despite initial disruptions in social ties. However, these studies examine data derived from interventions and can’t demonstrate what happens “naturally” when families make the choice to move on their own. Additionally, research that connects residential/school mobility to youth outcomes generally omits information about the areas and schools to which people move. Using NLSY97, we examine the neighborhoods and schools families end up in, what kinds of students make such changes, and whether residential moves and school changes still produce negative effects when the quality of neighborhood and school is accounted for in the processes determining student outcomes.