The Role of Migration and Single Motherhood in Upper Secondary Education in Mexico


  • This article was edited by Jay Teachman.

Office of Population Research, Princeton University, Wallace Hall, Princeton, NJ 08544 (


We investigated the link between migration, family structure, and the risk of dropping out of upper secondary school in Mexico. Using two waves of the Mexican Family Life Survey, which includes 1,080 upper secondary students, we longitudinally modeled the role of family structure in the subsequent risk of dropping out, focusing on the role of migration in single motherhood. We found that children living without a father because of international migration or divorce or separation are at a greater risk relative to children in 2-parent households. Economic characteristics of the household provide a partial explanation for children living in single-mother households because of divorce or separation but do not explain the greater risk of dropping out for children with fathers in the United States.