Family Internet access in Aguablanca, Colombia

The Colombian ICFES database gives fascinating insight into the living standard of graduating secondary students all over the country. The data comes from fill in surveys required to apply for the national university entry exam (ICFES), typically at age 17 or 18. It asks about their family’s living standards. Amazingly, it is disaggregated to student level so that I was able to track down the student cohorts I taught myself and compare them to other schools.

Of all graduating classes in the neighbourhood, the one at La Providencia had the highest Internet access rate. Those who do not have internet may mostly live in invasiones, illegal settlements of mainly internal refugees. This is hinted by the striking difference between Colegios Juan Carlos Garzon and San Francisco Javier, neighbours within 300 meters distance. Garzon may cater to invasiones Brisas de Comuneros or invasiones along the Cauca River, both within one kilometre of distance. Small disclaimer: Data is not representative for the whole age group, it only captures those who sit the ICFES in summer, while some schools sit the exam in winter. I estimate that only 60% of the age group sit the exam; some graduate without the exam and some drop out before.

If you are an working in Colombia and interested in the data, please feel free to reach out to me!

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