What are we measuring?
This measure tracks the percentage of children in Fulton County who live below poverty level as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau.  A child is considered to be living in poverty if the child's family has a total income below a threshold value determined by the size of the family and the number of children in the family. For example, the threshold for a family of four made up of two adults and two children under 18 years was $24,339 in 2016.  The threshold for a family with more children is higher while the threshold for two adults with no children is lower.
Why are we measuring it?
Poor children suffer higher incidences of adverse health, developmental, and other outcomes than non-poor children.  Although overt malnutrition and starvation are rare among poor children in the United States, deficits in children’s nutritional status are associated with poverty. Poor children also suffer from emotional and behavioral problems more frequently than do non-poor children.
In addition to having serious consequences for individuals, childhood poverty has wider implications through reduced productivity, lower educational attainment and poor health, all of which exact social and economic costs.  A study by the Center for American Progress suggest that the costs to the U.S. associated with childhood poverty total about $500B per year, or the equivalent of nearly 4 percent of GDP. [1]
How are we doing?
While overall economic conditions have improved considerably since the end of the Great Recession, childhood poverty remains stubbornly persistent. The percentage of children in Fulton County living below poverty saw a decline of about 3 percentage points between 2011 and 2015 but rose in 2016 to 24.3%, however, has declined to 20.1% since 2017.
Among its benchmark counties, Fulton ranked near the middle in 2017, far below Shelby County, Tennessee (30.2%) but at over twice the rate Wake County, North Carolina (12.0%).  Poverty among children in Fulton County is heavily concentrated in south and west Atlanta, where rates are generally over 50%.