Colorado's child poverty rate declining

Posted at 6:34 AM, Mar 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-28 08:34:41-04

Colorado's child poverty rate is declining, but it is still higher than it was in 2000.

The annual KIDS COUNT in Colorado! report found 15 percent of Colorado children are living below the poverty line -- meaning they live in a home where the annual income for a family of four is less than $23,850.

"Colorado’s child poverty rate of 15 percent is still five percentage points higher than in 2000, but has fallen to its pre-recession level for the first time since the economic downturn," according to the report.

The report also found about 100,000 more kids have health insurance now than in 2008, and fewer families are reporting cost as a barrier to accessing prescriptions, dental care and specialist care for their children.

"We’re encouraged by the improvements in well-being for Colorado kids,” said Chris Watney, President and CEO of the Colorado Children’s Campaign.

However, there are many places for improvement. The report found:

  • One in four Colorado children lived in a household in which no parent has secure full-time employment.
  • Colorado is one of the least affordable states for child care, relative to state median income.
  • Only 40 percent of Colorado students in grades 3 through 11 met or exceeded expectations in English language arts, while only 30 percent of students in grades 3 through 8 met or exceeded expectations in math.