Massachusetts Ranked 2nd in Nation for Child Well-Being
Massachusetts Ranked 2nd in Nation for Child Well-Being. Children in Massachusetts lead the nation in educational achievement and also rank highly in health measures, but more than one in seven live in poverty, according to the 2016 KIDS COUNT® Data Book from the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The annual report measures child well-being state-by-state across four categories: health, education, economic well-being and family and community.
The Data Book tracks reading proficiency in fourth grade and math in eighth grade. Massachusetts students lead the nation in both measures, with 50 percent of our students proficient in reading and 51 percent in math. But while the data show that Massachusetts leads the nation, the report also shows that half of our students are not achieving these goals. There are similar mixed messages for other education measures: 12 percent of our students do not graduate high school on time – that’s too many, but down from 18 percent in 2008.
While Massachusetts ranks at the top in educational attainment and near the top in child health, on measures of family economic well-being it ranks 11th. Raising the incomes of low and middle income families remains an important challenge for our Commonwealth.