Study ranks Oklahoma 46th in the nation for child well-being

KOKH - June 12, 2024 5:48 am

The 2024 KIDS COUNT study was released on Monday, which showed alarming results for Oklahoma. Our state ranked 46th in the nation for child-well being, the same score as last year.

The study ranks every state in the nation in terms of health, education, economics and other indicators of childhood outcomes.

Majority of the categories it showed Oklahoma failing in.

“This kids count ranking is a clear indicator that we are not doing what is working and we’ve got to turn things around,” Joe Dorman, the CEO of the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy said. “Across the spectrum we failed children in this Oklahoma legislative session that just finished.”

Oklahoma ranked 39th in economic well-being, an area Dorman said could have been addressed by the legislature.

“There was legislation, HB4147, that would have provided a business tax credit to employers to provide daycare centers for their employees,” Dorman said “That would have gone a long way to curb the crisis that we’re seeing in the state with access to child care.”

While we ranked 45th in health, there is one particular metric Dorman is hopeful about.

“One category I was very happy to see was the improvement in access for health insurance for children. Oklahoma took a nice jump in that and OICA is working with legal aid services to provide outreach to schools to send home information to families to get the kids signed up for heath insurance,” he said.

The lowest of all our rankings was in education, which fell behind every state except New Mexico.

“We stayed 49th in education, but the numbers were far worse than what we saw in the last year surveyed,” Dorman said.

According to the study, 76% of 4th graders are not proficient in reading and 84% of 8th graders re not proficient in math.

To read the entire study, click here.



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