Breaking Down the Barriers for Arkansas’s Black Men and Boys: Part I

Across the board, black men and boys in Arkansas encounter significant barriers. They face a higher rate of infant mortality, child poverty, and incarceration than their white peers. They also have lower high-school graduation rates and family income levels. These outcomes are a result of decades of policy decisions that held back and held down black […]

Awaken the Force of Quality Early Childhood Education (infographic)

This May the Fourth, awaken the force … of quality early childhood education in Arkansas. Our little Wookiees’ earliest experiences form the foundation for all of their future learning. During a high-quality early childhood education, they learn to regulate emotions along with their ABC’s, leading them to success in kindergarten and beyond. From kindergarten readiness […]

Clearing Barriers to Success by Redirecting Poverty Funding

It’s no secret that the quality of public-school education is not equal across Arkansas. Similarly, all students do not experience the same types of challenges. This is especially true for students living in poverty. They often face more obstacles to learning and need more resources. Arkansas recognizes this in the way it funds education. As […]

How School Discipline Policies Affect Chronic Absenteeism

Chronic absences add up—and school discipline practices can make the problem better, or worse. Chronic absenteeism is defined as students missing 10 percent or more of the school year for any reason, excused or unexcused, including suspensions. That means missing 18 days of school in Arkansas, or just two days a month. In 2014-15, more […]

2017 Annual Report

The year 2017 was an eventful one for AACF! We celebrated 40 years of working to improve the lives of Arkansas kids and families. AACF observed the occasion in October with our first ever gala, held at Little Rock’s Statehouse Convention Center. During the event, we uplifted outstanding moments in AACF’s four-decade history. We also […]

2018 Voters’ Guide

This November, Arkansas voters will elect candidates to important public offices, including seats in the U.S. Congress and the Arkansas General Assembly. The winners of these elections will be in a unique position to make public policy that will impact the future well-being and success of Arkansas’s children and families. Making children our top priority […]

What Do Our Littlest Learners Need to Be School-Ready?

When do children begin to learn? Believe it or not, school readiness begins in the womb. Decades of research show the first few years of life, including the prenatal months, are the most important for healthy brain development and success in school. Unfortunately, too many of our kids aren’t getting the boost they need for […]

Arkansas Works 2.0: Proposed Changes Will Affect Progress

In our latest brief, health care policy fellow Bruno Showers analyzes proposed changes to Arkansas Works and the troublesome impact they will have on Arkansans, our state budget, and our health care system. Plus, we offer some suggestions to ensure the roll-out of these changes causes minimum health coverage disruptions. Here’s what you really need […]

Getting Children the Early Screenings They Need

Health coverage is one of the most important resources that children need to thrive and grow into healthy adults. Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) ensure that nearly half of Arkansas children — over 400,000 — have access to health care coverage. The important investments made in children’s coverage, at both the federal […]