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DC Action for Children is a nonprofit, nonpartisan child and youth advocacy organization dedicated to using research, data, and a lens toward race equity to break down barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential.

DC Action is the home of DC KIDS COUNT, the primary source for data on conditions and outcomes for kids’ well-being. DC Action's collaborative advocacy campaigns empower young people and all residents to raise their voices to create change.


What's New?


New DC Poverty Data Reveals Great Need Amid Prosperity

Last week we wrote about child poverty in the US, which has not changed significantly since 2010 but has grown over the past 10 years. New Census data released yesterday show that child poverty remains at 30% in DC, despite economic gains citywide and shrinking poverty rates among other age groups.While much of our city has rebounded from the recession...

Federal Budget Cuts Threaten Nutritional Support for Nearly 1,400 Women and Children

To grow up strong, smart and healthy, children need proper nutrition at every stage of their development. Before birth and during the first years of life are especially critical periods. These early years set the foundation for healthy bodies and readiness for learning, as brain architecture develops and children cross important developmental milestones.Ensuring that our youngest citizens are healthy is...

What's in Store for October 4

With only three weeks left until our luncheon benefit on October 4, I have been itching to reveal a few of the surprises we have in store for the big day. Warning: spoiler alert!Launch of the DC KIDS COUNT e-databookAs the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s KIDS COUNT grantee for the District, we are responsible for tracking child well-being indicators in...

US Child Poverty Remains High – Stay Tuned for DC Data

New Census data show that 22% of US children lived in poverty in 2011. Of the 16 million children in poverty, almost half are living in extreme poverty.Nationally, these numbers represent no statistically significant change in the child poverty rate from 2010 to 2011. Preliminary data suggest the same pattern will hold for in DC, where the child poverty rate...

Dear Washington Post: Please show us your data

In “Another sign D.C. school reform works,” the Washington Post editorial board recently asked, “Why is it so hard to accept that children in the District of Columbia are making progress?”We have an answer to that question: Because, actually, they aren’t.Claims from the Post and others aside, the past few years of school reform have not produced improved test scores...

Countdown to the Luncheon

Twenty years ago five women: Diane Bernstein, Marion Guggenheim, Cynthia McGrath, Elizabeth Siegel and Susan Zox Smith had an incredible vision to raise their collective voices on behalf of children and youth. These five amazing and visionary women were drawn together to get involved in helping DC’s children and youth because they knew it was the right thing to do.At...

One City Plan Needs Data Below City Level

DC Mayor Vince Gray released his One City Action Plan last month, setting objectives for the city’s economic development, education and quality of life. The plan zeroes in on data by linking some of these objectives to measurable indicators and by promising a regular report card on progress.One City indicators range from bolstering kindergarten readiness to increasing bike lanes. All...

Evidence Based Advocacy: Why Data Are Important

Data play an extremely important role in my everyday practice as a physician. My choice of antibiotics, medications and therapy are all guided by up-to-date research and data. This practice is called evidence-based medicine. The purpose of evidence-based medicine is to remove subjectivity from the clinical decision making process by applying information gained through studies and scholarly work to medical...

Dive into DC KIDS COUNT Data With Us

Our city’s prosperity rests on the shoulders of our children. They are the next generation teachers, parents and civic leaders. If they don’t succeed, we all have a dimmer future. We like to encourage our children by telling them that they can be anything they aspire to be. Unfortunately, the success of far too many children in DC seems predetermined...

D.C. Students Who Participated in Pre-K Have an Edge in Third Grade

A few weeks ago, I wrote about why third grade is a turning point for student success. According to my research on third grade proficiency for an upcoming DC Action issue brief, experts agree that high-quality early education is a key stepping stone to proficiency by third grade. Now, with the release of the 2011-2012 D.C. Comprehensive Assessment System (DC...

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