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    Kids Count is out with its annual report on the health, education and safety of children in Rhode Island.

    The report shows there are close to a quarter million children in the state. Nineteen percent live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level.

    The good news, says Kids Count director Elizabeth Burke Bryant, is that they’re healthier than they once were.


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    Kids Count is out with its annual report on the health, education and safety of children in Rhode Island.

    The report shows there are close to a quarter million children in the state. Nineteen percent live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level.

    The good news, says Kids Count director Elizabeth Burke Bryant, is that they’re healthier than they once were.


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    Kids Count is out with its annual report on the health, education and safety of children in Rhode Island. The report shows there are close to a quarter million children in the state. Nineteen percent live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level. The good news, says Kids Count director Elizabeth Burke Bryant, is that they’re healthier than they once were. "We are seeing real outcomes as a result of our investments in children’s health," Burke Bryant says. "We’ve been on that issue almost 20 years now through the RIte Care program, and everything from our infant indicators of infant health all the way through the age of 18 we’re showing great progress." Burke says she continues to have concerns about education. The high school graduation rate remains flat at 77 percent. And test scores are highest in the fourth grade, but drop in the eighth and eleventh grades.

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    Kids Count is out with its annual report on the health, education and safety of children in Rhode Island. The report shows there are close to a quarter million children in the state. Nineteen percent live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level. The good news, says Kids Count director Elizabeth Burke Bryant, is that they’re healthier than they once were. "We are seeing real outcomes as a result of our investments in children’s health," said Bryant. We’ve been on that issue almost 20 years now through the Rite Care program, and everything from our infant indicators of infant health all the way through the age of 18 we’re showing great progress." Burke says she continues to have concerns about education. The high school graduation rate remains flat at 77 percent. And test scores are highest in the fourth grade, but drop in the eighth and eleventh grades.

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    Children are becoming more diverse in Rhode Island, but the number of babies born in withdrawal from opioids continues to grow. Those are just some of the statistics in this year’s Kids Count fact book , which comes out Monday. Rhode Island Public Radio’s Elisabeth Harrison spoke with Rhode Island Kids Count Executive Director Elizabeth Burke Bryant about several of the highlights in the report. While the percentage of employed parents has increased since last year, the fact book found child poverty rates remain steady. Burke Bryant sees a delayed impact from the improving economy. “One in five children is still living in poverty in Rhode Island,” said Burke Bryant. “That represents 41,000 of our children living in families with income of around $19,000 for a family of three. That is far too many.” The fact book also points to a higher percentage of low income families living in cities, and children of color are more likely to experience poverty. In a concerning statistic for those in

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    Just two decades ago, the vast majority of Rhode Island children had elevated levels of lead in their blood when they were tested at the start of Kindergarten. Today, the percentage has dropped into the single digits, according to Rhode Island Kids Count Executive Director Elizabeth Burke Bryant, whose organization started tracking blood lead statistics in the mid-1990s. "Back in 1995, there were 71 percent of children in the state with elevated blood lead levels," Burke Bryant told RIPR's Elisabeth Harrison. "And over the past 20 years that has declined statewide to about 5.3 percent." Burke Bryant says the core cities of Providence, Central Falls, Pawtucket and Woonsocket have more children with elevated lead levels, but only by a couple of percentage points. This year's Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook found a one-year increase in children with significant lead poisoning in the Ocean State. While the increase is concerning, Burke Bryant says the overall numbers are heading in the

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    The most comprehensive collection of statistics about the health and well-being of Rhode Island’s children comes out today from Rhode Island Kids Count. Overall,kids have made some promising gains in health and education, but the agency says progress is still needed on several fronts.

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    Five years ago, 11 out of every 1,000 children in the state had at least one parent in jail. Today that number is closer to 13, according to a new report from the nonprofit advocacy group Rhode Island Kids Count.