24/7 Wall St. has created a list of worst cities in the US to raise children. Using data from the US Census Bureau and the FBI, they created an index of four measures: preschool enrolment, high school graduation, property crime, and access to places for physical activity. The published list identifies 25 cities that do not have good scores according to their criteria.
While the index is a good measure, it’s important to know that they do not tell the whole story. There are many other indicators of how good a city is for raising children. Depending on the parents’ values, they may find that some of these cities are actually good for raising their kids. The four chosen factors give a general picture, and it’s up to parents to decide what to do with that information.
Parenting itself is hard enough – residents of these cities have it even harder. https://t.co/CjgdXjcqR0— USA TODAY Money (@USATODAYmoney) August 10, 2019
At the top of the list is Fairbanks, Alaska. Its preschool enrolment rate is 29.6% and has a high school graduation rate of 69.6%, both in the lowest 10% of scores. Property crime rate there is 4,664 crimes per 100,000 people, putting it in the highest 10% of scores in that category. Its access to areas for exercise comes to 75.4%.Coming in second and third place are both cities in New Mexico: Farmington and Albuquerque. The former has an access rate of 55% (the lowest 10%) for areas for exercise, and the latter has a property crime rate of 5,499 crimes per 100,000 people.
At the bottom of the list is Visalia-Porterville, California. Its preschool enrolment rate is quite low (25.9%), but it has a high school graduation rate of 86.1%. This shows that some cities may score in the lowest percentile for some factors, but they’re able to do better on other aspects of the index. A city being on this list doesn’t automatically mean you’re a bad parent for raising your kids there.
While it’s important to consider these factors when choosing a place to raise your kids, it’s also important to realize that not everyone has the choice to relocate. Good parents across the country are doing their best to give their children the lives they deserve, no matter which city they’re raising them in.