The annual Kids Count Data Book, released this morning by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, finds nearly one in four school-age children—and more than one in four toddlers—lived in poverty in 2011, and the report’s other indicators point to the importance of family supports for these children’s success in school and life.
The data book, which tracks 16 indicators of child well-being in the areas of economic, health, education, and family support, found mixed results in key family-related areas:
• Two in five children lived in families in which their housing cost makes up more than a third of the family budget in 2011, 3 percentage points more than in 2005; and
• 32 percent of children lived with parents who lack steady employment, 5 percentage points more than at the start of the recession in 2008; nearly all states got worse on these two indicators from 2005 to 2011.
• On the plus side, 85 percent of children live in families in which at least one adult has a high school diploma or more education, up 1 percentage point from 2005. Forty states and the District of Columbia saw improvements in parents earning at least a diploma since 2005.
For more detailed looks at the data book’s early childhood indicators, see my colleague Christina Samuels’ coverage over at Early Years.
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A version of this news article first appeared in the Inside School Research blog.