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April 2002Vol. 3, No. 3America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2001 Report Released

The fifth annual report America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2001 finds significant gains in key indicators of the well-being of America's children such as a declining child poverty rate and record-low number of adolescent births. The Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics, which includes 20 Federal agencies, compiled the report that updates information from last year. In order to provide more comprehensive and consistent information on the condition and progress of America's children, Forum agencies are working to close data gaps, particularly gaps related to children with disabilities, the role of fathers in children's lives, and the measurement of positive behaviors associated with improved child development.

Other highlights of the report include the following:

  • The percentage of children living in households with at least one parent employed full time rose
  • More children had health insurance
  • Adolescent death rate reached an all-time low
  • The percentage of 10th and 12th grade students who smoke decreased.

The report also includes two special features regarding asthma and employment while in school, and a new indicator on advanced academic courses that provide further insight into the well-being of the nation's children:

  • Asthma—the percentage of children diagnosed with asthma is increasing; possible causes could be the result of better diagnosis, changes in environment, air quality, and access to preventive health care among other factors
  • Employment while in school—the report finds that having a job while in school is more prevalent among older high school students, and it is common among younger students as well
  • Advanced courses—the report finds many students are taking advanced courses in areas including math (40 percent), science (60 percent), English (20 percent), and foreign languages (13 percent).

The website has the report in HTML and PDF formats at