Vermont improves to second in the nation
On June 24, Gov. Peter Shumlin applauded the results of the Annie
E. Casey Foundation's 24th annual Kids Count Data
Book, which evaluates childhood wellness in all 50 states.
Vermont has improved its overall ranking in each of the past three
years, and now enjoys the second-best ranking in the nation, up
from third overall in 2012.
"I am extremely proud that Vermont has improved its childhood
wellness ranking for three straight years," said Gov. Shumlin. "We
make our children our number one priority in Vermont. But we can't
be satisfied; Vermont should lead the nation in ensuring that all
children have the opportunity to live healthy, productive
The report analyzed the latest information on child development
and well-being using 16 indicators organized into four categories:
Economic Well-Being, Education, Health, and Family and Community,
each of which Vermont ranked in the top 10. Among the indicators
released Vermont ranked:
3rd overall in education, with improvement in 4th grade
reading proficiency, eighth grade math proficiency, and on-time
3rd overall in family and community, with improvements in teen
births rates, and parental education.
9th overall in economic wellbeing, up from 12th last year.
The Governor noted several actions taken recently that will
continue Vermont's positive progress for children. "We are now the
only state in the nation to provide free school lunch for all
eligible children, so that kids won't have to learn while
hungry. We are expanding pre-kindergarten, flexible learning
for school-aged children, and whole school services," the governor
said. "We are also investing in low-income heating assistance
and other services to help ensure low-income children have the
support they need to be healthy and well-educated. And I have
called for an early childhood education summit this fall that will
yield further improvements in the coming years."
"I am proud of the work our schools, parents and caregivers,
health care providers, and communities have done to support our
children," said Secretary Doug Racine of the Agency of Human
Services. "We focus on improving the lives of Vermont's children
every day at the Agency, and it is gratifying to see Vermont's
outstanding ranking this year in childhood wellness."
The Annie E. Casey Foundation is a private charitable
organization, dedicated, since 1948, to helping build better
futures for disadvantaged children in the United States. The 2013
Data Book is available at: