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Race for Results: Opportunity and Success for All of Our Nation’s Children

Over the past 23 years, the Annie E. Casey Foundation has compiled information on the well-being of our nation’s children. With the intention of initiating a national conversation regarding the startling disparities among racial and ethnic groups, the Annie E. Casey Foundation recently released the Race for Results Index. For the first time ever, this index is based on indicators of success, including reading and math proficiency, high school graduation data, teen birthrates, employment prospects, family income and education levels, and neighborhood poverty levels. The index produces standardized scores ranging from 0 to 1,000, with a higher score indicating a greater likelihood that children in that group were meeting milestones associated with success. Scores are presented for all states and racial groups (where valid information was available) and are based on information collected between 2010 and 2013.

On a national level, African American, American Indian and Latino children face the biggest obstacles. Index scores were 345, 387, and 404 respectively; as compared to 704 (White children) and 776 (Asian/Pacific Islander children). Among African American children, the states scoring the lowest were clustered around the South (e.g., Mississipi, Lousianna, Alabama, Arkansas, South Carolina) and the Midwest (e.g., Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois). However; 91 percent of the nation’s scores were below the median index score of 500, with only four states scoring at or above that average score.

How did the state of Georgia fare in the Race for Results Index? While index scores were just above the national average for African American (362) and Asian/Pacific Islander (791) children, scores were in the bottom ten percent for Latino (score of 368) children and in the bottom fifteen percent for White (score of 664) children. On a national and state level, these scores demonstrate the persisting achievement gap that exists between White and non-White children and should be viewed as a call to action.

As a result, the Annie E. Casey Foundation provided the following recommendations: 1) gather and analyze racial and ethnic data to inform all phases of programs, policies and decision making, 2) use data and impact assessment tools to target investments to yield the greatest impact for children of color, 3) develop and implement promising and evidence-based programs and practices focused on improving outcomes for children and youth of color, and 4) integrate economic inclusion strategies within economic and workforce development efforts.

Access the complete Race for Results report