Growing Up Latino in America Today

Posted July 21, 2015
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
Blog growinguplatinotoday 2015

The 2015 KIDS COUNT Data Book is out, and it reveals some sober­ing facts-of-life about grow­ing up Lati­no in the Unit­ed States. 

The cut-to-the-chase mes­sage? The gap between America’s eco­nom­i­cal­ly secure and finan­cial­ly frag­ile fam­i­lies is widen­ing — and Lati­nos are falling, at a dis­pro­por­tion­ate rate, on the harsh­er side of this divide. 
Here’s what the 2015 KIDS COUNT Data Book tells us about Lati­no chil­dren today: 

  • 42% live in sin­gle-par­ent families. 
  • 24% live in high-pover­ty areas. 
  • 35% — more than any oth­er racial or eth­nic group — live in a house­hold head­ed by some­one with­out a high-school diploma. 
  • 37% live in a house­hold where no par­ent has a year-round, full-time job. 
  • 47% live in house­holds with a high hous­ing cost burden. 
  • 63% of 3- and 4‑year-olds do not par­tic­i­pate in pre‑K programs. 
  • 12% lack health insurance. 
  • More than 80% fail to read at a pro­fi­cient lev­el in 4th grade. 
  • Near­ly 80% fail to score pro­fi­cient in math in 8th grade. 

The 2015 KIDS COUNT Data Book also iden­ti­fies some areas of real gains for the Lati­no com­mu­ni­ty. These include: 

  • Unem­ploy­ment rates that have near­ly bounced back to pre-reces­sion levels.
  • The low­est birth rate — 42 births for every 1,000 teen girls — ever record­ed for Lati­no teens. 
  • A 6‑percentage point improve­ment in math scores among 8th graders. 
  • Low­er death rates for both teens and chil­dren rel­a­tive to nation­al averages. 
  • More chil­dren born at a healthy weight rel­a­tive to oth­er racial and eth­nic groups. 

Head to the 2015 KIDS COUNT Data Book for an even big­ger-pic­ture view of what it’s like to be a Lati­no kid in Amer­i­ca today. 

See a break­down of pover­ty rates by race and His­pan­ic-ori­gin.

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