Iowa ranks number-four in the nation for the wellbeing of children in the latest survey from the Kids Count project. That’s a rise of one notch for Iowa, which ranked fifth in the U.S. last year. Study co-author Laura Beavers says Iowa saw improvements in nine of the ten categories. She say Iowa led the nation in two categories: percent of teens not attending school and not working — only four-percent in Iowa, the lowest in the country — and in the percent of children in families with no parent having full-time employment with 18-percent. Beavers says Iowa did exceptionally well in many categories, including: teen birth rates, children in poverty and percent of single-parent families.Iowa saw no improvement in the category of low birthweight babies, with six-point-four percent, though she says many other states saw numbers worsen in that area, while Iowa stayed the same. Beavers says Iowa has room for more improvement in one particular category — that of child death rates. They looked at the number of children between ages one and 14 who died. Iowa ranked 29th in the nation with 23 deaths per every 100-thousand children. Iowa saw improvement in the category but this was Iowa’s worst showing of the ten indicators. Minnesota ranked first on the Kids Count survey. Mississippi was 50th. For full details, surf to “www.kidscount.org”.
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