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Bar graph: Children by Age and Location Bar graph: Children by Poverty Level and Location Bar graph: Children by Race/Ethnicity/Language and Location

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Characteristics of Urban and Rural Children

The demographic makeup of the population of children in small and large rural areas differs from that of urban children. While the age distribution is similar across the three geographic categories, rural children were more likely to be White and more likely to have low family incomes.

In each geographic category, about one-third of children were 0 to 5 years old, one-third were 6 to 11, and one-third were 12 to 17.

Among urban children, 53.0 percent were White, compared to 67.1 percent of children in large rural areas and 73.8 percent of those in small rural areas. Children in urban areas were more likely to be Black (15.3 percent of urban children, compared to fewer than 10 percent of rural children) and Hispanic (22.3 percent of urban children, compared to 15.5 percent of children in large rural areas and 9.4 percent of children in small rural areas). American Indian/Alaska Native children were more likely to reside in small rural areas, where they represent 3.3 percent of the population.

Children in rural areas were more likely than urban children to be poor. Nearly one-quarter of children in both small and large rural areas had household incomes below the Federal poverty level (FPL), compared to 17.4 percent of urban children. In contrast, nearly one-third of urban children had household incomes of 400 percent of the FPL or more, compared to 17.3 percent of children in large rural areas and 14.1 percent of those in small rural areas.

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