An organization that tracks the well-being of Iowa children and families released a report this month that shows Appanoose County has mostly lost and gained very little ground in several areas.
The Child and Family Policy Center recently released Iowa Kids Count, a report highlighting trends in the well-being of Iowa children in 2012.
The report states Iowa children as a whole have made gains in health and education in 2012 despite stagnate family economic conditions. Iowa children made improvements in other areas since 2000 “despite the economic situation that their families continue to face,” according to the report’s summary page.
“It is very encouraging that the health and educational status of Iowa children have shown improvements during the past decade,” Michael Crawford, Child and Family Policy Center senior associate and author of the report, said. “This is especially true the last few years with many families struggling financially. It is extremely important that the critical health and education programs supported by the state are continued as families work to strengthen their economic standing.”
The report states Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program enrollment percentage tripled since 2000 while the unemployment rate more than doubled and the child poverty rate and students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches saw substantial increases since 2000.
The report lists 20 different indicators ranging from health and education to a variety of topics covering child and family well-being by county with most outcomes based on the years 2000 to 2012.
How has Appanoose County done in the 20 categories the report looked at from those years? It’s a mixed bag, but mostly not that promising.
In a lot of the categories, the statistics for Appanoose County increased almost solely because the sample number decreased.
Child abuse and neglect increased by more than 10 percent. However, the county’s child population dropped dramatically, going from 3,255 in the year 2000 to 2,799 in the year 2012. Yet, the number of children confirmed abused or neglected decreased by three, from 64 in the year 2000 to 61 in the year 2012.