Working Paper No. 1330

Do Swedish Schools Discriminate against Children with Disabilities?

Published: April 15, 2020Pages: 14Keywords: Schools; Disabilities; DiscriminationJEL-codes: I24; J14; J71

Do Swedish Schools Discriminate against Children with Disabilities? Ali Ahmed, Mats Hammarstedt and Karl Karlsson


We present results from a field experiment in which fictitious parents to children with certain types of disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), make inquires to Swedish schools about admission for their children to the compulsory preschool class.

Our results reveal that Swedish schools discriminated against children with these disabilities and that discrimination is most prevalent in private schools. Private schools discriminated against boys with ADHD and T1DM and against girls with ADHD. Furthermore, public schools discriminated against girls with ADHD.

One potential effect of our results is that children with disabilities are referred to less attractive schools than children with no such medical conditions. These results may have implications for the possibilities for individuals with ADHD and T1DM to succeed in the labor market in the long run.


Reference:

Ahmed, Ali, Mats Hammarstedt and Karl Karlsson (2020), "Do Swedish Schools Discriminate against Children with Disabilities?". IFN Working Paper No. 1330. Stockholm: Research Institute of Industrial Economics.  

Mats Hammarstedt

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Interdisciplinary European Studies

The European Union and the Return of the Nation State

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This book explores the complex and ever-changing relationship between the European Union and its member states. The recent surge in tension in this relationship has been prompted by the actions of some member state governments as they question fundamental EU values and principles and refuse to implement common decisions seemingly on the basis of narrowly defined national interests.

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