The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Education

April 1, 2014

Racial disparity 'a national tragedy'

Report: Minorities have less opportunity for success

ANDERSON — African-American and Latino children in Indiana are far less well positioned to lead successful lives than white and Asian children, according to a report released Tuesday by a private foundation.

The report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation called "Race for Results: Building a Path to Opportunity for All Children," comes amid a period of rapid demographic change that could have serious implications for the country's future prosperity.

Lindsay Brown, president and CEO of the Urban League of Madison County, said on Tuesday that while not entirely shocking, the report's findings are certainly distressing and address issues Anderson's black community leaders have been speaking out on for several years.

He called the disparity "a national tragedy."

A new index created by foundation researchers compares how children are progressing on key milestones across racial and ethnic groups at the national and state level.

Indiana had the eighth-lowest state score (289) in the nation for the overall well-being of black children, according to the report's findings. White children ranked 39th out of all 50 states with score of 648 — 56 points below the national average. The score (394) for Latino children is just 10 points below the national average.

Only Asian and Pacific islander children in Indiana ranked higher than the national average for well-being with a score of 787, according to the report.

"This first-time index shows that many in our next generation, especially kids of color, are off track in many issue areas and in nearly every region of the country," said Patrick McCarthy, president and CEO of the Casey Foundation, in a statement.

He added that the report is a "call to action that requires serious and sustained attention from the private, nonprofit, philanthropic and government sectors to create equitable opportunities for children of color, who will play an increasingly large role in our nation's well-being and prosperity."

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