A Look Back at 2018 - Our Publications

For more than 20 years, Rhode Island KIDS COUNT has worked with organizational partners, elected officials, state agency leaders, and community members to develop responsive policies and programs in early learning, the education system from pre-kindergarten through college, health coverage and primary health care, child welfare, juvenile justice, and economic well-being. A core part of our work is producing high-quality publications with the best available data and research. 

As we welcome this brand new year, we wanted to take a moment to highlight our 2018 publications:
Maternal Depression in Rhode Island: Two Generations at Risk

Maternal Depression in Rhode Island: Two Generations at Risk includes information on risk factors for maternal depression, effects of maternal depression on child development, and the importance of screening and treatment. The Issue Brief also includes recommendations on how to best support maternal mental health, healthy transitions into motherhood, and children's healthy development.
2018 Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook
Published annually since 1995, the  Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook is the primary publication of Rhode Island Kids Count. The Factbook provides a statistical portrait of the status of Rhode Island's children and families, incorporating the best available research and data. Information is presented for the state of Rhode Island, each city and town, and an aggregate of the four core cities (cities in which more than 25% of the children live in poverty). The Factbook tracks the progress of 71 indicators, across five areas of child well-being.
Working Parents, Child Care, and Paid Family Leave in Rhode Island

Working Parents, Child Care, and Paid Family Leave in Rhode Island includes data and research on low-income working families as well as provide a deeper analysis of three key policies - child care assistance, paid family leave, and earned sick leave - that promote family economic security and children's development and school readiness. The Issue Brief also includes recommendations on how to improve these policies to best support low-income working parents and their young children in Rhode Island.
Policy Brief: Focus on Integrated Early Care and Education Data

Decades of research show that when children participate in high-quality programs designed to improve early learning and development, they do better in school and in life. In every state, there is a diverse array of programs designed to support the healthy development of young children. These include family home visiting, child care, Early Head Start/Head Start, State Pre-K, Early Intervention, and preschool special education. Programs vary in quality and intensity of services, training and qualifications of staff, and focus of services to improve individual child outcomes and/or family outcomes. For more, please see Focus on Integrated Early Care and Education Data.
2018 Legislative Wrap-Up

The 2018 Legislative Wrap-Up highlights legislative victories for children and summarizes selected laws and budget appropriations in the areas of economic well-being, child care and early childhood education, K-12 education, college access, health, and safety that were considered during the 2018 session of the Rhode Island General Assembly. 

We hope this is a helpful resource as you gear up for the next Legislative Session.
Preparing Students for College and Career: Policies Supporting Student-Centered Learning
Adopting student-centered learning practices can help students develop meaningful relationships with adults inside and outside of school, increase engagement and achievement for students from a variety of backgrounds, and ensure that students graduate from high school with the important skills and strong work habits that are essential for success in college and careers.  Preparing Students for College and Career: Policies Supporting Student-Centered Learning provides an overview of Rhode Island's policies, initiatives, and practices that support student-centered learning as well as perspectives from students about how these policies, initiatives, and practices are playing out in their classrooms.
Early Learning Fact Sheet: Focus on Reducing Chronic Early Absence

During the early elementary school years, children develop important academic and social-emotional skills and approaches to learning that are critical for school success. Students who are chronically absent from school during these early years miss opportunities to learn and develop positive relationships within the school community and are at risk of dropping out of high school. For more, please see Focus on Reducing Chronic Early Absence.
Higher Education and Business Leader Perspectives on Preparing Students for College and Career

This pair of publications presents findings from interviews with Rhode Island higher education and business leaders. The interviews were designed to assess how student-centered learning - learning that is personalized, competency-based, can happen anytime and anywhere, and allows students to take ownership over their own learning - is helping (or could help) prepare students for success in college and careers. 

Fact Sheet Series: Trends in Youth Tobacco Use

Each publication incorporates the best available research and data, and includes information on what communities, schools, and other leaders can do to prevent and reduce youth tobacco use. 

E-cigarettes are devices that allow users to inhale an aerosol which typically contains nicotine, flavorings, and other additives or chemicals. E-cigarettes contain fewer toxic chemicals than regular cigarettes, however, e-cigarettes are not harmless and have been found to contain heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead, diacetyl, which has been linked to lung disease, and other cancer-causing chemicals. E-cigarettes contain nicotine which can lead to addiction and can cause harm to developing adolescent brains. 

Nationally and in Rhode Island, tobacco use rates vary by race, ethnicity, and gender and higher rates of tobacco use are found among youth who experience certain influencing factors. These factors include historic and emerging advertising trends, community acceptance, and social factors and stressors that influence initiation and continuation. 

Rhode Island has a strong history of supporting policies that prevent youth tobacco use. Due to both persistent and emerging trends in youth tobacco use, including e-cigarette use, Rhode Island should continue to enact evidence-based policies, update existing laws, and increase funding for prevention, cessation, and tobacco control programs in order to reduce the number of youths initiating, using, and becoming addicted to tobacco products. Both the state and school districts have unique roles to play to reduce tobacco use and support healthy, smoke-free communities.