by Glenn Mosley
Idaho Public Radio
A new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the 25th edition of Kids Count, has found that Massachusetts is at the top of the list and Mississippi the bottom in four areas concerning the well being of the nation’s children: economic well-being, education, health and family/community.
Idaho ranks 21st overall. Most of the states in the Midwest and Mountain regions ranked in the middle of overall child well-being.
Idaho ranks 20th in economic well-being; 33rd in education; 20th in health; and 11th in family/community.
The report has been published every year since 1990. In the Foreword, the Foundation states, “When we launched the first Data Book 25 years ago, we hoped that it would raise public awareness and build public commitment to invest in solutions to ensure that each and every child has the opportunity to thrive and to reach his or her full potential.”
The report acknowledges that since 1990, enormous changes have taken place in the country in terms of the economy, family, and gender roles. For example, in 1990, 58% of mothers with children under the age of six were employed. That number climbed to 64% in 2013.
Further, the report says that advances in medicine and public health, as well as rising public health care coverage, have reduced child mortality rates and improved the health of children.
The report concludes “If we want to ensure that the next generation is prepared to effectively compete in a global economy…we must act. With the right investments, we can provide all families and children with the opportunity to reach their full potential and, in the process, strengthen both our economy and our nation.”
On the web:
2014 Kids Count Report
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