poverty

Eric Westervelt of the NPR Ed team is guest-hosting for the next few weeks on Here & Now, the midday news program from NPR and WBUR.

Now that President Obama has signed the new Every Student Succeeds Act, or ESSA, a big question for many educators is: Will the changes help the populations most in need of better schools: students of color, students with disabilities and low-income students?

A decades-long decline in the death rate of middle-aged white Americans has reversed in recent years, according to a surprising new analysis released Monday.

The cause of the reversal remains unclear. Researchers speculate it might be the result of the bad economy fueling a rise in suicides, plus overdoses from prescription painkillers and illegal drugs like heroin, and alcohol abuse.

The wealth gap in America manifests itself not just in our pocketbooks but also in our bellies: The poor are eating less nutritious food than everyone else.

So concludes a new review of 25 studies published between 2003 and 2014 that looked at the food spending and quality of diets of participants in SNAP, the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as food stamps.

Jasmin Merdan, 123rf Stock Photo

A new report shows poverty is the main obstacle facing Kentucky children.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2015 Kids Count Report shows one in four Kentucky children live in poverty, which affects their health, education, and overall well-being.  

So what does it mean to be hungry?

That's a question that occurred to us as we read some encouraging news: The world isn't as hungry as it used to be.

A U.N. report has noted that 795 million people were hungry in the year 2014. That's a mind-boggling number. But in fact it's 200 million lower than the estimated 1 billion hungry people in 1990.

The improvement is especially impressive because the world population has gone up by around 2 billion since the '90s.

University of Kentucky/Facebook

The University of Kentucky has been selected to head the first federal Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center. The program aims to reduce child food insecurity in states with high poverty. 

In this country, all children are supposed to have a shot at success — a chance to jump "from rags to riches" in one generation.

Even if riches remain out of reach, then the belief has been that every hard-working American should be able to go from poverty to the middle class.

On Tuesday, a book and a separate study are being released — both turning up evidence that the one-generation leap is getting harder to accomplish in an economy so tied to education, technological know-how and networking.

Kentucky is the 47th healthiest state in the U.S., according to a United Health Foundation report released Thursday.

The state's low marks were attributed to a high prevalence of smoking, a high percentage of childhood poverty and a high rate of preventable hospitalizations, the report said.

Mississippi ranked 50th, followed by Arkansas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. Hawaii topped the list as the healthiest state in the country. Indiana ranked 37th.

Whitney Jones / WKMS

Updated 10/29/14 12:18 p.m.

Fulton is one of the poorest communities in western Kentucky. There's a lack of industry and its population has decreased by almost a third in the last ten years. 

Of the families that are left poverty is rampant. This story follows an unemployed single mom and explains the challenges facing the people trying to help bring families out of poverty in Fulton. 

As the Kentucky House of Representatives election race heats up, second district incumbent Richard Heath (R) and challenger Jesse Wright (D) visited WKMS for a political forum.

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