Kentucky Improves in Some Categories, Still Falls Short in Latest Kids Count Survey

Jul 25, 2012

A new report shows one in four Kentucky children lives in poverty, with their numbers growing since 2005. The latest Kids Count report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation ranks Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana in the bottom half of states for overall child well-being.

The report defines poverty as a family of two adults and two children living on $22,000 or less. The number of Kentucky children fitting that category increased by 18% between 2005 and 2010, mirroring a national trend.

The Bluegrass State was ranked 35th in the nation for overall child well-being. Tennessee was ranked 36th, and Indiana was 31st.

The study looks at several factors to assess how each state’s children are faring, including economic well-being, education, and health. Kentucky managed to improve in some categories, such as health. The number of Kentucky children without health insurance decreased from 7% to 6%, and more 4th graders are now considered proficient in reading than they were in 2005.

Still, many parts of the latest Kids County survey portray a worsening situation for young people in the commonwealth. 

The number of Kentucky children living in high-poverty areas increased to 13% from 11%. And 69% of 8th graders are not considered proficient in math.

To see how the 2012 Kids County survey ranked each state in each category, you can click on this link: