Trends in the Well-Being of America's Children and Youth, 2003. For More Information

04/01/2003

This report is intended to provide a broad cross-section of the most relevant trend data in the lives of children and youth in the United States. For those interested in more detailed information, a number of additional resources, both print and electronic, are available. Full citations are provided for all tables and figures as well as for the text. At the end of the document there is also a complete list of all sources used throughout the report. A selection of these resources are listed below, by topic area, to provide the reader with a starting point when searching for additional information in these areas.

Section 1: Population, Family and Neighborhood

U.S. Census Bureau. It is possible to access nearly all Census Bureau publications, such as the Current Population Reports, from the Bureau's web page, www.census.gov. It is also possible to extract data directly from public use census files using the Federal Electronic Research and Review Extraction Tool (FERRET) available at http://ferrett.bls.census.gov. FERRET allows the user to:

  • Create crosstabs;
  • Create frequencies;
  • Create a SAS data set for downloading; and
  • Create an ASCII output file where it is possible to either download the file or transfer the data into a spreadsheet.

Section 2: Economic Security

Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Bureau of Labor Statistics produces a variety of employment data, and can be found on the Web at http://www.bls.gov/.

U.S. Department of Representatives, Committee on Ways and Means. The Green Book is compiled from many sources and it provides program descriptions and historical data on a wide variety of social and economic topics, including Social Security, employment, earnings, welfare, child support, health insurance, the elderly, families with children, poverty, and taxation. It may be found online at http://waysandmeans.house.gov/Documents.asp?section=813.

Section 3: Health Conditions and Health Care

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducts many data collection efforts, including the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS), which monitors health-risk behaviors among youth and young adults. The categories include: 1) tobacco use, alcohol and other drug use; 2) sexual behaviors that contribute to unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases; 3) unhealthful dietary behaviors; and 4) physical inactivity. This information can be accessed via CDC's main web page, located at http://www.cdc.gov/.

National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). The National Center for Health Statistics publishes a number of reports that provide data on the health of children and youth. Some of these include the National Vital Statistics Reports and the Vital and Health Statistics series. These reports and many others are available at the NCHS web site http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/. Additional NCHS data are available through the Census’ FERRET system at http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/datawh/ferret/ferret.htm. Currently, the 1994 Underlying Cause-of-Death File, the 1993 National Health Interview Survey, and the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, NHANES III, are all available via FERRET.

Section 4: Social Development and Behavioral Health

Bureau of Justice Statistics. Detailed information on juvenile offenders can be obtained at the Bureau of Justice Statistics' main web site, located at http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/.

Institute for Social Research. This institute has collected information on the behaviors, attitudes, and values of American secondary school students, college students, and young adults since 1975 in its Monitoring the Future survey. Information and data from this study are available online at http://monitoringthefuture.org/.

Section 5: Education and Achievement

National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). NCES is the primary Federal agency for collecting and analyzing data that are related to education in the United States. Its web site is located at http://nces.ed.gov/ and contains links to its many data collection activities. These surveys include the Common Core of Data (CCD), the Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), the Private School Universe Survey, and the National Household Education Survey (NHES). In addition, NCES collects and reports on the academic performance of the nation’s students. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is NCES’ primary assessment of American elementary and secondary students’ knowledge and skills in a variety of academic subjects.

Additional information can be found in a related report, America’s Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2003, which is available online at http://childstats.gov/americaschildren/

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