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Tag Archive: kids count data

  1. 2022 KIDS COUNT Data Book Release

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    The 2022 KIDS COUNT Data Book was recently released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, an annually published resource that tracks child well-being nationally as well as state by state and ranks the states accordingly. The report is based on the latest available data for 16 key indicators. Policymakers, researchers, and advocates can continue to use this information to help shape their work and build a stronger future for children, families, and communities.

    View the full 2022 Data Book.

    The 2022 report includes the most recent data from 2020. Due to several challenges in data collection during the pandemic, several years of data needed to be aggregated for stable results. A letter from the Annie E. Casey Foundation President, Lisa Hamilton, highlights the most recent data we have that reflect how parents and families are faring during the pandemic. This letter highlights the 1.5 million children who are struggling to make it through the day.

    Overall, Virginia is ranked 13th in the nation. The data in this year’s report include both pre-pandemic and more recent figures. Here’s where Virginia lands in each domain:

    • Economic well-being: Virginia saw improvements in all four indicators compared to 2008-2012. There are 24,000 fewer children living in poverty and the percentage of children in families with no full-time employment decreased by 8% from 2016-2022. Additionally, the percent of teenagers who are not in school and are unemployed decreased by 29%. However, there are still 242,000 children living below a family income of $26,246 for a family of four.
    • Education: Virginia is in the top 10 at 6th place. The percentage of high school students not graduating on time decreased from 18% to 13% (2010-2011 vs. 2018-2019).
    • Health: Virginia ranks 24th. The percent of children without health insurance, improved from 7% to 5% from 2008-12 to 2016-20. But that is the only indicator to improve during the trend year. Children born with low birth weight, child and teen deaths, as well as child obesity increased.
    • Family and community factors: Virginia ranks 17th place. Teen birth rates dropped from 27 per 1,000 females to 13 per 1,000 females in 2010 to 13% in 2020, and the percent of children living in households where the head of household lacks a high school degree went from 10% to 9%. However, children in single parent households (31%) and children living in high poverty areas (5%) from trend years 2008-2012 to 2016-2020 remain the same.

    The Virginia KIDS COUNT data center includes these indicators and hundreds more at the state and even local level over time. For example, interested in learning more about the percent of children in poverty across Virginia? The Virginia KIDS COUNT data center has data available by locality and race. Learn more.

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  2. The State of Virginia’s Children Data Product

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    Across the Commonwealth, an increasingly diverse population of children, youth, young adults, and families highlights the need for policies that reduce barriers to services and target the unique needs and experiences of people of color, under-resourced communities, and those living in immigrant families. The pandemic has both created and exacerbated long standing inequities and while access to health insurance and other economic supports provided relief for some families, not all families show signs of a recovery.

    The State of Virginia’s Children report highlights some prominent issue areas affecting Virginia’s children, youth, and families. The goal of this report is to define and describe where we are and where we need to go with the most recent data available. Data is necessary for determining the future direction of policies in Virginia. The needs of Virginia’s children can be quite different based on their experiences and identities; this report reveals various disparities and trends that can be used to inform policy objectives that take into account every child, no matter their background.

    This unique product summarizes key trends for children, youth, and families in the areas of demographic growth, economic security and mental health. Each section focuses on major findings and elements of each issue area and provides easy-to-understand data visualizations that are accompanied with summarized headlines that suggest what future policies Virginia’s leaders should emphasize. The Demographics page includes data on population, racial diversity, immigration, and language access. The Economic Security page covers data on poverty, poverty by race, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on employment rates. The Mental Health page consists of data on the prevalence of mental health conditions in children and youth, mental health care by race, and the impact of the pandemic on mental health. Graphics are provided to distinctly illustrate each point.

    This report can be used by individuals, organizations, policy decision-makers, and state agencies to not only get a picture of what is happening currently, but also to compare state and local trends to see where improvements can be made for children in local communities. Each visualization can be shared individually or grouped together to provide information to interested parties.

    Tag Voices for Virginia’s Children in any content shared from this report on social media on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

    Included on the Voices for Virginia’s Children website is a source guide defining indicators and going into additional detail for each topic. If you have any questions or concerns, contact Research Director, Lauren Snellings for additional assistance.

  3. Equity Assessments and Disaggregated Data in Action

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    Recently, the Data and Research team at Voices for Virginia’s Children conducted community equity assessments for two Trauma-Informed Community Networks (TICNs) in Virginia. These Trauma-Informed Community Networks work to identify policies that can be implemented to advance trauma-informed policy and promote a statewide policy agenda. Voices has conducted equity assessments for the Greater Richmond area TICN and the Southwest Virginia TICN (for more information on these TICNs, contact the Greater Richmond TICN, or the Southwest Virginia TICN). The assessments created for these organizations include locality level data that describe health and wellbeing of children, youth, and families at the locality level over time using the KIDS COUNT data across domains like health, access, education, and community wealth. The data in these types of assessments not only educate the public on the health and wellbeing of the communities they serve, but also assist in helping advocates in prioritizing future areas of focus. This assessment describes trends that allow for further investigation into the “why”, and looks to attendees as the experts in their communities to understand the reasons behind the trends.

    Equity assessments are an excellent way to put data into action for communities, especially when the data can be broken down to look closely at sub-populations of children. Disaggregating data geographically, racially, by age group, and economic perspective is vital in discerning how policies can disproportionately impact different communities.

    A typical equity assessment will include both an education component as well as data. All assessments start with a grounding of why data and equity are important and then conclude with a data summary including tailored visualizations by each geography of interest. These assessments can be used for policy advocacy efforts for communities all across Virginia to facilitate policy change in a multitude of different areas related to children and their families.

    The Southwest Virginia Trauma Informed Community Network (TICN) wanted to learn more about children living below the federal poverty line in Southwest Virginia counties. We found that the regional average of children living below the poverty line was 25.8% for Southwest Virginia; However, to see the full picture of child health and well-being, we need this data to be broken down even further. Upon examination, we found that Black children, Hispanic children, and children of two or more races were overrepresented living in poverty in the majority of Southwest Virginia counties. By disaggregating this data by race/ethnicity, as well as by location, the Southwest TICN can get the best picture of what each county needs and can make informed decisions on what is best for all children living in Southwest Virginia.

    If you are interested in an equity assessment or would like to learn more, please contact Lauren Snellings or Kelsey McMahon.

  4. An Update on the Census

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    The 2020 Census has come and passed, but the data and results from the surveys are still being tabulated.

    Last spring and summer, Census officials worked diligently to make sure we counted each and every person living in the United States. Since young children are the most missed demographic group in the Census, Research Director Lauren Snellings served as a trusted voice and advocate as a member of the Complete Count Commission, ensuring that each child in Virginia was counted. An accurate count makes sure that Virginia get its share in funding for government programs like SNAP and WIC, determines where we build new hospitals, schools, and roads, and even informs the boundaries for our legislative districts. 

    Now that collecting the survey data is complete, the Census Bureau is working on processing the data which involves data verification that results in final population numbers being sent to President Biden. After population totals are delivered to the president, the process continues on to demographic data at a smaller geography that is used to inform the redistricting process in the state. 

    If this were a typical decade, we would be on the verge of delivering the first round of redistricting data from the 2020 Census,” said James Whitehorne, Chief of the Redistricting and Voting Rights Data Office. “Our original plan was to deliver the data in state groupings starting February 18, 2021 and finishing by March 31, 2021.

    However this is not a normal decade and the pandemic has significantly delayed timelines. The deadline to get state population counts to the president is now April 30 and the data needed to inform the redistricting process in Virginia — including count of population by race, ethnicity, voting age, housing occupancy status, and group questions population at the census block level — won’t be available until at least September 30.

    Concerns of racial gerrymandering, following the congressional districts drawn from the previous census, has changed the way in which new boundaries will be drawn this time around. On November 3, 2020, Virginia voters approved a constitutional amendment establishing a commission-driven congressional and state legislative redistricting process. This commission is comprised of 16 members, including eight legislators and eight non-legislator members. 

    Due to the delay in getting redistricting data to the commission, it appears that the upcoming General Election this fall will be run on existing boundaries; however, this has still yet to be determined. Groups like the VA Counts Coalition, led by the Virginia Civic Engagement Table, are working hard to hold the redistricting committee accountable and advocate for greater transparency into the process.

    Learn more about the KIDS COUNT Data Center and subscribe to receive data emails.

  5. New KIDS COUNT Data Available: February 2021

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    A new year means new data. The Virginia KIDS COUNT data center has just updated 16 indicators in the areas of demographics, poverty, and economic well-being. See the full list below. We also have new data including child TANF participation and three new indicators by race including children receiving child care subsidies, child SNAP participation, and child TANF participation. 

    • Childhood Poverty below 100% 
    • Childhood Poverty below 200%
    • Childhood Poverty below 100% (1-year estimates)
    • Childhood Poverty below 100% by race
    • Children under 6 with parents in labor force
    • Median income of families with own children in household
    • All Virginia residents in poverty
    • Children living in deep poverty
    • Children in poverty living in deep poverty
    • Child population by race
    • Total Child population
    • Children living in single parent households
    • On-time high school graduation
    • On-time high school graduation by subgroup
    • Children receiving child care subsidies
    • Child SNAP participation

    A few highlights to mention from the 2019 data for children:

    • There are over 1.8 million children living in the commonwealth
    • While the racial demographics of the Commonwealth have become more diverse in the last decade, little change has occurred since 2018. In 2019, the race breakdown of children is:
      • American Indian and Alaskan Native: <0.5%
      • Asian: 6%
      • Black: 20%
      • Hispanic: 14%
      • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: <.5%
      • 2 or more races: 6%
      • White: 53%
    • 71% of children have all available parents in the labor force.
    • 13% of children live below the poverty line. About 1 in 3 or 31% live below 200% of the federal poverty line.
      • American Indian: 3%
      • Asian & Pacific Islander: 6%
      • Black: 26%
      • Hispanic: 18%
      • 2 or more races: 15%
      • White: 8%

    The most recent data highlights minor improvements in economic wellbeing, however, continued worsening inequities among race and ethnic groups. With the demographics of Virginia’s children becoming more diverse, having the most up to date data disaggregated is crucial for policymakers, advocates, and researchers to monitor the progress of health and wellbeing and building a stronger future for all children in the Commonwealth. 

    (*State level estimates are evaluated using 1-year ACS data. Locality level estimated are evaluated using 5-year ACS data, most recently the 2015-2019 estimates).

    To learn more, check out the Virginia KIDS COUNT data center.

  6. NEW REPORT: 10-year Data Snapshot with State-by-State Data from the Annie E. Casey Foundation Shows Kinship Care Has Remained Stagnant

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    Kinship care is increasing nationwide, but Virginia still lags behind. According to the “Keeping Kids in Families:Trends in Placement of Young People in Foster Care in the United States,” a New Data Snapshot released today by the Annie E. Casey Foundation as part of its KIDS COUNT® project Virginia has seen improvements in family-based placements for foster children but lags behind the nation in placing children with relatives. Using data from the child welfare system across all 50 states and D.C. over a 10-year period to look at how placements for young people in foster care have changed, the report finds that in 2017 81 percent of children in Virginia were placed with families, including non-relative foster families and kin compared with 71 percent in 2007. However, the percentage of Virginia foster children placed with relatives is unchanged since 2007 at 7 percent of all foster placements.

    Mirroring the rest of the country, foster placements in Virginia have decreased from group home or “congregate” placements over the last 10 years to family settings. However, in Virginia, these placements are more likely to be in non-relative foster homes than with relatives. Child welfare leaders in Virginia have been successful to reduce placements in congregate care and reduce the number of children coming into foster care. However, Virginia lags behind the nation to provide relative foster placements. Only 7 percent of foster children in Virginia are placed with relatives compared to 32 percent nationwide.

    VIRGINIA PROFILE: KIDS COUNT Data Snapshot “Keeping Children in Families: Trends in Placement of Young People in Foster Care in the United States”
      2007 2017
    Number of children in foster care 7,665 4,795
    Percent in relative placements 7% 7%
    Percent in nonrelative placements 51% 70%
    Percent in group homes or congregate placements 23% 17%

    Source: Child Trends’ analysis of 2007 – 2017 Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System data.

    Being part of a family is a basic human need and essential to well-being, especially for children, teenagers, and young adults who are rapidly developing and transitioning to independence, as documented in the Casey Foundation’s 2015 report, Every Kid Needs a Family. The new data suggest a growing consensus among practitioners and policymakers that young people in the child welfare system should live in families.

    Through the Family First Prevention Services Act, signed into law in 2018, states are empowered to prioritize family placement and high-quality, family-centered settings which produce the best outcomes for young people. The “Keeping Kids in Families” snapshot shows that older youth are less likely to be placed with relatives and more likely to be in group homes. In the 2019 General Assembly session, state policymakers took steps to implement the Family First Prevention Services act by passing legislation to bring Virginia in compliance with federal requirements and to kickstart the movement towards high-quality evidence-based and trauma-informed services for children in foster care and at-risk of entering foster care.

    Voices joins the Casey Foundation in calling on child welfare systems to use the opportunities afforded by Family First Prevention Services Act to shift resources aware from group placements. Virginia should take steps to:

    • Increase available services to stabilize families, including relative caregivers. Through the Family First Prevention Services Act federal reimbursement will be available for support services for children at-risk of coming into foster care and their caregivers. Virginia has taken steps to prioritize the implementation of evidence-based and trauma-informed services by allocating $851,000 during the 2019 General Assembly session to help ramp up these services statewide.
    • Prioritize and remove barriers from recruiting and retaining kin and foster families, especially for older youth and youth of color. Virginia took steps this legislative session by requiring relatives be notified when a relative is coming into care. However, Virginia should ensure that relatives have similar opportunities to receive the same supports as foster families. Currently families that care for children outside of the foster care system, in arrangements known as kinship diversion, do not receive the same financial support or access to mental health and social supports and foster families.
    • In addition to these services, Virginia should expand efforts for kinship navigators to help relative caregivers navigate the child welfare system. The Family First Prevention Services Act provides some additional federal resources to expand kinship navigator programs. Virginia has already started to take advantage of these funds but could adopt these programs statewide.