School Climate & Safety Report Roundup

Child Poverty

“Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the U.S.: 2016"
By Sarah D. Sparks — September 19, 2017 1 min read

Eighteen percent of U.S. children younger than 18 live in poverty—nearly a decade low—new data from the U.S. Census Bureau show, and federal supports for low-income families and children make a big difference.

The data, based on the Census’ annual Current Population Survey for 2016, show the official child-poverty rate declining from a high of 22 percent in 2010, during the worst of the global economic downturn.

Poverty overall also decreased from that time, from 15.1 percent of all Americans in 2010 to 12.7 percent in 2006. Child poverty has not been so low since 2007.

The Census Bureau also released a “supplemental poverty measure,” which takes into account families’ medical and other critical expenses, as well as supports from federal welfare programs such as Social Security and school meals.

Based on that measure, child poverty is even lower, 15.1 percent, down 3 percentage points since the Census began incorporating and tracking the supplemental measure in 2013.

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A version of this article appeared in the September 20, 2017 edition of Education Week as Child Poverty

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