Wisconsin kids rank 13th in the country in overall well-being

New study shows minorities face some of the nation's greatest racial disparities

Wisconsin children rank 13th in the nation in overall well-being, according to a new national study, but minority children in the state don’t fare as well.

The new numbers were released Tuesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation in connect with the release of the latest Kids Count Data Book.

The numbers show minority children face some of the greatest racial disparities in the nation. For example, the study shows that white students rank first nationally for the “graduated on time” indicator, black students rank 49 th.

“Wisconsin has a lot of work to do to improve outcomes for children of color,” said Ken Taylor, executive director of the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families (WCCF). “African-American, Latino, and Native American children are facing greater barriers to success. Those barriers include high poverty rates, lack of reading and math proficiency, and low graduation rates.”

The study also said that white teens are six times more likely to be proficient in eighth grade math than black students. The numbers also show one in five children in Wisconsin live in poverty, but increases to one in three Latino children and one in two black children.

According to Race for Results, a report released by WCCF in 2014, the overall well-being of Wisconsin’s African American children is the worst in the nation. The report found large disparities between Wisconsin’s white children and their non-white peers.

Taylor said racial disparities must be addressed in Wisconsin. Taylor said state and local governments need to work other groups to begin to work together to address systemic racism and the inequities kids of color face.