“Kids Count” report ranks Mid-South states low in child well-being

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STARKVILLE, Miss. — An annual report again rates Mississippi as 48th in child well-being, with little change from last year.

The Kids Count analysis released Monday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation focuses on economic, education, health, family and community trends for children over a roughly seven-year period ending in 2017.

Mississippi still struggles with 27% of children living in poverty and nearly a quarter living in neighborhoods surrounded by other poor people.

Tennessee ranks 36th overall for children’s well-being, one place lower than last year. The state’s ranking was negatively affected by an increase in deaths by suicide and homicide.

Arkansas 40th among the 50 states, an improvement from 41st a year ago. The current ranking is based on data from 2017 as compared to 2010.

The state showed improvement with lower percentages of children in poverty; the teen birth rate; and the number of children living in single parent families, and an increase in the percentage of children who have health insurance.

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