The Annie E. Casey Foundation released its annual National KIDS COUNT Data Book on July 21, 2015.
Minnesota ranked as the #1 state for child well-being. Still, stark disparities persist in the state for American Indian children and children of color. Children’s Defense Fund-Minnesota convened a press conference with Governor Mark Dayton to celebrate the strides that propelled the state to number one while acknowledging the need for further investment and policy changes to ensure all children can thrive.
The Data Book examines overall child well-being, and bases its state rankings on 16 indicators in four categories: economic well-being, education, health, and family and community.
This year, Minnesota ranked 5th in economic well-being, 2nd in health, 6th in education, and 4th in family and community. Overall, Minnesota ranked 1st in the nation in child well-being. Despite Minnesota’s high rankings in this year’s study, when the data is examined by race and ethnicity, it is evident that children of color and American Indian children in Minnesota experience greater barriers to success including being more likely to live in economically insecure families and neighborhoods, less likely to attend preschool, meet reading and math standards, and graduate on time. The changing demographics highlighted in the Data Book illustrate the urgent need to address disparities in economic, health and education outcomes that threaten the state’s future workforce.
2015 National KIDS COUNT Data Book