California's Kids: A New Report

An annual report that tracks child well being in the US finds California ranks 36th overall for child well being. The 2018 KIDS COUNT Data Book measures education, health, family and community, and economic well being of families.

Kids in California are struggling the most in the economic well being of their family,” said Laura Speer theAssociate Director for Policy Reform and Advocacy with the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

In economic well being, California ranks 45th out of 50 states. The housing market is one determining factor in the state’s position. 

Fourty-four percent of children in California live in a household where housing costs are too high,” said Speer adding that 20 percent of children are living in poverty in the state.

California also lacks in some areasofeducation.

"Seventyone percent of California 8th graders are not proficient in math.” 

The state is doing well in the health domain with “only three percent of California’s kids lacking health insurance coverage. And, it was nine percent in 2010,” explained Speer. 

In this year’s Data Book, the Foundation noted thatabout 4.5 million young children live in neighborhoods where there’s a high risk of missing kids in the count. The worry is the 2020 census and even more kids missed in the national count. It could mean a reduction in funding for programs that serve children of color, low-income children and children in immigrant families. Speer said there could be an under count of about 1 million children under five in the 2020 census. 

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