The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2018 Kids Count data book has just been released and continues to paint a concerning picture for California’s children – beginning with the foreword. In the run-up to the 2020 Census, the report lays out the challenges for the Census that result in significant undercounts of young children, particularly low-income children of color, and what the effects are for programs designed to serve them and their families. By their count, more than 750,000 Californian children under 5 live in “hard to count” census tracts, putting at risk their share of more than $800 billion in Federal spending that is directed based on Census data. 

The state level data for California is also cause for concern. They rank California 36th overall: 45th for economic well-being, 36th for education, 41st for family and community and – the lone bright spot – 9th for health. The state’s percentage of children ages three and four not in school has remained at just over 50% for the last decade at approximately 500,000. One in eight American preschool aged children without preschool lives in California. The full report is available at http://www.aecf.org/resourc…/2018-kids-count-data-book/while the data sheet for California is at http://www.aecf.org/m/databook/2018KC_profiles_CA.pdf