Family Change in Latin America: Schooling and Labor Market Implications for Children and Women

  • Changing family formation and childbearing patterns in Latin America and the Caribbean are integral components of the region's social stratification systems.


  • Children and adolescents in the region experience a diverse range of family situations due to factors such as early childbearing, spousal separation, and relatively high rates of single motherhood.


  • Children in non-nuclear households tend to have poorer school attendance and progress outcomes compared to those living with married parents. This negative association is particularly pronounced in rural areas and when the mother is absent.


  • Single women, especially those co-residing with their children, are more likely to participate in the labor market compared to married women. Women in cohabiting unions exhibit similar rates of labor force participation as married women.


  • It is essential to direct additional research efforts and policy support towards non-standard family arrangements (i.e., non-marital/non-nuclear) to prevent the widening of inequality across generations.

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