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Explanations of Terms and Data Sources

Above Low Income
Families and children are defined as above low income if the family income is at or above twice the federal poverty threshold (see Poor).
American Indian
Children whose parent reported their race as American Indian or Alaska Native and their ethnicity as non-Hispanic. Parents could choose more than one race for their child. Children who were American Indian or Alaska Native and another race were not counted as American Indian.
Asian
Children whose parent reported their race as Asian, Hawaiian/Pacific Islander and their ethnicity as non-Hispanic. Parents could choose more than one race for their child. Children who were Asian and another race were not counted as Asian.
Black
Children whose parents reported their race as black and their ethnicity as non-Hispanic. Parents could choose more than one race for their child. Children who were black and another race were not counted as black.
Child
A child is defined as an individual under the age of 18. Children living independently, living with a spouse, living in group quarters, and children ages 14 and under living with only unrelated adults are excluded from these data.
Family
A family is defined as a group of two or more persons in the same household including at least one dependent child under the age of 18. At least one parent or another adult must live with the child. Households that include children living independently, married children living with a spouse, or children living in group quarters are excluded.
Hispanic
Children whose parents reported their ethnicity as Hispanic, regardless of reported race.
Immigrant
Individual born outside of the United States, Puerto Rico, or an outlying United States territory.
Immigrant parents
For a child to be considered to have immigrant parents, every parent living in the household with the child must be an immigrant. This includes single-parent families and married-parent families.
Low Income
Families and children are defined as low-income if the family income is less than twice the federal poverty threshold (see Poor).
Midwest
Includes Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.
Move
Movement from one house or apartment to another in the last year, regardless of the distance of the move.
Native born
Individual born in the United States, in Puerto Rico, or in an outlying United States territory.
Native-born parents
For a child to be considered to have native-born parents, every parent living in the household with the child must be native born. This includes single-parent families and married-parent families.
Northeast
Includes Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
One immigrant and one native-born parent
One parent in the household is an immigrant and one is native-born. By definition, these families are all married-parent families.
Owner-Occupied Housing
A house that is owned by one of the members of the child's family.
Parent
Among children who do not live with at least one parent, parental characteristics are those of the householder and/or the householder's spouse.
Parental Education
Parental education is the education level of the most highly educated parent living in the household. Parents can either have no high school degree; a high school degree, but no college; or some college or more.
Parental Employment
Parental employment is the employment level of the parent in the household who maintained the highest level of employment in the previous year. Parents can either have no employment in the previous year, part-year or part-time employment, or full-time, year-round employment. Part-year or part-time employment is defined as either working less than 50 weeks in the previous year or less than 35 hours per week. Full-time, year-round employment is defined as working at least 50 weeks in the previous year and 35 hours or more per week for more than half the year.
Parental Marital Status
Married-parent families include step-parent families, as well as families with two biological/adoptive parents. Single parent families include only families with one unmarried parent in the household.
Parental Presence
Parental presence is defined by the presence of parents living with children in households. Children can either live in families where at least one parent is present or where no parent is present (for example, foster children, children being raised by grandparents).
Poor
Families and children are defined as poor if family income is below the federal poverty threshold. The federal poverty level for a family of four with two children was $22,350 in 2011, $22,050 in 2010, and $22,050 in 2009.
Race/Ethnicity
Parents could report children’s race as one or more of the following: “White,” “Black,” “American Indian or Alaska Native,” or “Asian and/or Hawaiian/Pacific Islander.” In a separate question, parents could report whether their children were of Hispanic ethnicity. For the data reported on the NCCP web site, children who were reported to be of Hispanic ethnicity were categorized as Hispanic, regardless of their reported race. Children who were reported to be of more than one race were not included in the “White,” “Black,” “Asian,” or “American Indian” categories.
Rented Housing
A house that is not owned by any member of the child's family.
Rural
An area that is not in a metropolitan statistical area (MSA), as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau.
South
Includes Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Suburban
Areas contained in a metropolitan statistical area (MSA), excluding central cities. An MSA is defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as a group of communities that are socially and economically integrated with an adjacent urbanized area. The urbanized area is defined as the central city, while the surrounding areas are defined as the suburbs.
Urban
Areas contained in a metropolitan area, which is defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as a group of communities that are socially and economically integrated with an adjacent urbanized area.
West
Includes Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
White
Children whose parents reported their race as white and their ethnicity as non-Hispanic. Parents could choose more than one race for their child. Children who were white and another race were not counted as white.
Young Child
A young child is defined as an individual under the age of 6. Children living in group quarters and children living with only unrelated adults are excluded from these data.

Data Source

National data were calculated from the 2011 American Community Survey, representing information from 2011. State data were calculated from the 2009-2011 American Community Survey, representing information from the years 2009 to 2011.