The 2010 Kids Count report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation ranks Kentucky 40th overall in child well-being, up one from our ranking of 41st in 2009.
Breaking that down, Kentucky moved up on five of the ten indicators used for the report, now ranking:
- 23rd on infant mortality (improved from to 36th in the previous edition).
- 25th on teens who are not in school and have not graduated from high school (improved from 36th).
- 40th on teen births (improved from 42nd).
- 43rd on children in poverty (improved from 45th).
- 29th on children in single-parent families (improved from 31st).
Kentucky moved down on the other five, now placing:
- 34th on teen death rate (dropping from 32nd).
- 43rd on low-birth weight babies (dropping from 39th).
- 48th on children in families where no parent has full-time, year-round work (dropping from 44th).
- 39th on teens not attending school and not working (dropping from 31st).
- 36th on child deaths (dropping from 26th).
Our children continue to face especially severe challenges, and our schools continue to deliver better performance than the demographers might expect. For the long run, that rising performance is our best strategy for replacing the challenges with success stories--especially if we can accelerate the improvement using our new standards and strategies.