Wilder unveils youth and children data

Consider these items:

One out of every three black children in Minnesota has at least one foreign-born parent.

About 85 percent of Minnesota’s 6th grade girls will tell you they know an adult in their community, other than their parents, who cares about them. But for 12th graders, that percentage drops to 68 percent. The numbers are lower for boys.

For both boys and girls, the likelihood they are engaged in outside-school activities like sports, the arts and community service peaks in the 9th grade and then declines.

You can find these facts and many more in a new presentation of data that Wilder Research unveiled today. Check it out at Wilder’s Minnesota Compass site.

It’s the latest addition to Wilder’s trove of data from a huge variety of sources — demographic, health, public safety, education, environmental, transportation data and more. The new youth and children section started with a request from the McKnight Foundation several years ago when it became clear that there were a limited number of studies of kids and their out-of-school lives.

A lot of the data comes from the tri-ennial Minnesota Student Survey the Department of Education takes. You can find the reports at the Department of Education, but Wilder has developed the knack for making the data easy to grasp, to break down to the county level and to combine with information from other sources.

By themselves these factoids might be curious and interesting, but the hope is that agencies and non-profits working with young people can use the data to fine tune their activities, find the right targets and make the connections between data and real people.

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