Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Whites continued to decline as a share of the American population in 2009, and they now represent less than half of all 3-year-olds

The country’s young population is more diverse than ever, with whites now in the minority in nursery schools, preschools and kindergartens in eight states — Arizona, California, Florida, Hawaii, Mississippi, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas — and the District of Columbia. Nationally, whites accounted for 58.8% of all school enrollment in 2009, according to new data, which measured enrollment from preschool to graduate school as of October 2009. That was down from 64.6% in 2000, a decline that came with falling birthrates as the white population aged. Population growth has come instead from Hispanics, blacks and Asians, whose children represent ever larger shares of the school population. Twenty-three percent of children in kindergarten were Hispanic in 2009, up from 18% in 2000 and 10% in 1989. Hispanics now account for nearly a fifth of all enrollment from nursery school through college.

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