The 2020 California Children’s Report Card– the whole child report on children’s health, education and well-being in our state – is available now. This year’s Report Card grades California on 31 key children’s issues – and includes new sections on Family Supports, Adolescents & Transition Age Youth and Connected Cradle-to-Career. It also shines a spotlight on the impact racism, poverty and immigration threats have on our kids.
Despite recent progress, this year’s grades show the urgent need to create large-scale improvements to ensure every child has the quality supports and services they need to reach their full potential. As a state, California is a leader in so many areas, like protecting vulnerable communities from harmful federal policies, ensuring equal rights for all Californians and staying firm on environmental standards, but on too many issues affecting kids we rank near the bottom of the country.
There are a few bright spots, like children’s health insurance (A) and paid family leave (B-), showing that California can make large-scale improvements for children and families when our state’s leaders put kids first and focus on a particular goal, and we commend these efforts. But, in most areas, from mental health (D) and child care (D+) to caring professionals in schools (F), we must do much better. Each section within the Report Card contains policy recommendations that together constitute a Pro-Kid whole-child agenda. Now is the time for California to be a leader on kids’ issues and ensure that every child in our state has access to the full range of quality supports that they need to grow up healthy, learn and succeed.