, Volume 50, Issue 3, pp 955–961 | Cite as

Nontraditional Families and Childhood Progress Through School: A Comment on Rosenfeld

  • Douglas W. AllenEmail author
  • Catherine Pakaluk
  • Joseph Price


We reexamine Rosenfeld’s (2010) study on the association between child outcomes and same-sex family structure. Using the same data set, we replicate and generalize Rosenfeld’s findings and show that the implications of his study are different when using either alternative comparison groups or alternative sample restrictions. Compared with traditional married households, we find that children being raised by same-sex couples are 35 % less likely to make normal progress through school; this difference is statistically significant at the 1 % level.


School progress Gay and lesbian families 


  1. Cáceres-Delpiano, J. (2006). The impacts of family size on investment in child quality. Journal of Human Resources, 41, 738–754.Google Scholar
  2. Conley, D., & Glauber, R. (2006). Parental educational investment and children’s academic risk estimates of the impact of sibship size and birth order from exogenous variation in fertility. Journal of Human Resources, 46, 722–737.Google Scholar
  3. Eide, E., & Showalter, M. (2001). The effect of grade retention on educational and labor market outcomes. Economics of Education Review, 20, 563–576.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Rosenfeld, M. (2010). Nontraditional families and childhood progress through school. Demography, 47, 755–775.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Population Association of America 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas W. Allen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Catherine Pakaluk
    • 2
  • Joseph Price
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of EconomicsSimon Fraser UniversityBurnabyCanada
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsAve Maria UniversityAve MariaUSA
  3. 3.Department of EconomicsBrigham Young UniversityProvoUSA

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