Photo by Anna Earl on Unsplash

A new 50-state report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation shows an insufficient response to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis that could be leading nearly a decade’s worth of lost progress in child well-being following the Great Recession.

According to the 2021 Kids County Data Book (KCDB), South Carolina ranks in the bottom half of the nation in all four metrics of child well-being — economic well-being, education, health, and family and community context — and 41st overall.

“South Carolina struggled to make strides in pre-school education, middle school reading comprehension and percentage of children without health insurance, and the pandemic didn’t help make the numbers better,” a publicist statement said Monday.

States with darker coloration performed worse in the Kids Count Data Book study overall

The report also found:

  • 82% of households with children reported that the pandemic had affected their children’s education
  • 64% of renter-occupied households with children and 45% of owner-occupied households with children lacked confidence in their ability to make the next month’s housing payment
  • 15% of children have a parent with no health insurance

“This tumultuous time has shown that South Carolina has to make children and families a priority, even after the pandemic is over,” the statement said.

South Carolina ranked 37th in economic well-being, 44th in education, 46th in health, and 38th in family and community context.

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