Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Census releases annual estimates of poverty and income for counties and school districts

Census Bureau map; for a larger version, click on it or go here.
The Census Bureau has released its latest income and poverty estimates for every county and school district in the United States. The release provides the only single-year income and poverty statistics for all 3,141 counties and 13,245 school districts. The tables and maps provide statistics on the number of people in poverty, the number of children in poverty, and median household income in each county. At the school-district level, estimates are available for the total population and the number of children aged 5 to 17 in poverty.

The South as a whole is struggling, with almost 40 percent of its counties reporting a poverty rate above 20 percent in 2016. The dataset was created to guide allocations of federal education funds for high-poverty school districts, but some other state and local programs also use it to allocate funds and manage programs. The figures also provide a good opportunity for local economic reporting.

The Lexington Herald-Leader used the data to show that Appalachia is still struggling to recover from the Great Recession, with nine of the poorest 30 counties in the U.S. in Eastern Kentucky. Part of the region's problem is the declining coal industry, which has erased more than two-thirds of the coal jobs in Eastern Kentucky since 2011. Road improvement projects, new fiber-optic broadband lines and growth in work-from-home jobs are helping, but "There's not enough jobs," Cale Turner, judge-executive of Owsley County, with the third-highest poverty rate in the nation, told reporter Bill Estep. Here's the Herald-Leader's poverty map; click on it for a larger version.
Herald-Leader graphic; click on the image to enlarge it.


Unknown said...

I have looked at the Census Bureau pages and trying to drill down to county and school district level as the article mentions but all I can find are maps that are essentially graphics but without accompanying data. Do you know where or how I could see the current stats for a particular county and school district?


Al Cross said...

From the last page of the PDF:
The SAIPE main page is located at .
Additional information is available by data release year from 2005 to
2016. For example, annual reports, datasets, maps, figures, and ranking
tables can be downloaded from the SAIPE Web page at:
For questions related to the contents of this document, including the SAIPE program’s estimates and methodology, contact the Small Area Estimates Branch at 301-763-3193 or .

Al Cross said...

Sorry, URLs didn't come through: or