Getting the Best Teachers Where They Are Needed Most

Policymakers, parents, and school administrators all want to ensure that students are taught by the best possible teachers, and for good reason. Research has shown that teacher quality is one of the best indicators of student achievement (Kini and Podolsky, 2016). While everyone can agree on the importance of ensuring that students are taught by […]

Brief: Rural Areas Hit Hard by Senate Health Plan

The U.S. Senate’s health care bill would be devastating to rural Arkansas – not just to the health of its citizens but to its economy, as well. Research on the House-passed Affordable Care Act (ACA) replacement showed that it could result in 42 percent of Arkansas Medicaid enrollees younger than 65 being dropped from coverage. […]

Kids at the Capitol 2017

Each legislative session brings its own bag of mixed goods, and the Regular Session of the 91st General Assembly was no different. While we were concerned about the constant push for legislation that punishes poor people, there were definitely some wins for families this year. The session began with an aggressive push by Governor Asa […]

Talk, Read, Sing: Helping our Littlest Learners Become School-Ready

In partnership with the Arkansas Campaign for Grade-Level Reading and the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, today we’re releasing a new policy brief on the importance of talking, reading, and singing with children from birth. More than half of Arkansas children start kindergarten unprepared, lagging behind their peers in critical language, math, and social-emotional skills. Research shows that simple, […]

What About the Children? How ACA Repeal Will Affect Kids

It’s not just about coverage for adults. As Congress continues the debate about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and a replacement plan, a lot hangs in the balance for children, too. According to the Urban Institute, repealing the ACA will double the number of uninsured kids. In Arkansas, this means that at least 34,000 kids would […]

2016 Annual Report

What a year 2016 was for AACF! We had not one, but three legislative sessions during the first half of 2016, including the regular fiscal session and two special sessions on health care reform and funding for highways and roads. AACF staff worked diligently to ensure the voices of all children and families were heard […]

AR Child Poverty: Policy to Change Lives, Build Stronger Communities

With the Regular Session of the 91st General Assembly coming up in just weeks, it’s time to shine a spotlight on the critical issue of child poverty in Arkansas and what we can do to improve the lives of hardworking families and build stronger communities. AACF’s newest report, Child Poverty in Arkansas, details the consequences of […]

Clearing the Hurdles: Kids’ Health Coverage in 2016

The annual Finish Line report provides a look at the status of health coverage for Arkansas children and their families. The report unveils key data on the progress we’ve made over the years and recommends additional solutions to ensure every child in Arkansas has a healthy start. Since the inception of ARKids First in 1997, we’ve made […]

From Good to Great in Arkansas: Marvell-Elaine and Prescott

In 2013, southern Arkansas communities Marvell-Elaine and Prescott began working to improve educational outcomes for their children. Both communities were already good places for kids, but they wanted to be great places where all children would thrive, especially in their educational endeavors. That same year, officials from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) came to Arkansas and […]