KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Tennessee ranks in the bottom half of child well-being nationally according to newly released data from Annie E. Casey Foundation. In 2021, the state ranked 36th, the same as in 2019, despite the overall rank dropping to 39th in 2020.
The foundation looks across all 50 states to see how families have fared between the Great Recessions and the COVID-19 crisis and compiled their data into the 2021 Kids Count Data Book. The Data Book uses 16 indicators measuring four domains — economic well-being, education, health, and family and community context — to assess child well-being.
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In 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, 23% of adults in Tennessee with children in the household had little to no confidence in their ability to pay their next mortgage or rent payment. In March 2021, this had fallen to 13%, show an improvement. However, 26% of Black Tennesseans reported a lack of confidence in paying rent or mortgage that month.
Nearly one in four adults in Tennessee with children in the household reported feeling depressed or helpless in 2021, a number that remained unchanged since 2020.
Tennessee did see improvement in access to the internet and digital devices for schooling. In 2020, more than one in five children did not have access. By 2021 that number has been reduced to 13%.
Find the full report, here.