Using the ACS to Document Child Well-Being

Bill O'Hare, Annie E. Casey Foundation

For nearly 20 years the Annie E. Casey Foundation has produce a data-based report showing several state-level measures of child well-being. The report is called KIDS COUNT, and it has been produced and widely disseminated each year since 1990. With the emergence of the Census 2000 Supplementary Survey and the American Community Survey (ACS), the KIDS COUNT project has introduced measures from that data source into the report. This paper will document the use of ACS into the KIDS COUNT report and will present several issues that needed to be addressed in using the ACS in KIDS COUNT. These issues include issues of statistical science as well as issues of communication. The issues include the comparability of data over time, the exclusion of group quarters data in 2005 ACS, and analysis of trends over time, as well as an assessment of how heavily we should rely on one source for data.

Presented in Session 186: Using the ACS in Applied Demography