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Census shows more than half of Detroit children live in poverty

Almost 54 percent of the children in Detroit are living in poverty, new U.S. Census data shows, and cuts to education may make matters worse.

The Detroit News reports:

In Michigan, the poverty rate among college grads is 4.3 percent, well below the 11 percent for those with some college and just a fraction of the 15 percent for high school grads.

Yet funding for higher education also was cut, potentially slowing the rise in the percentage of residents with a college degree; 25.2 percent of adults over 25 have a college degree, well below the 28.2 percent nationally.

“There’s been no wage growth and more importantly, there’s not expected to be any wage growth over the next five years,“ National Poverty Center director and University of Michigan professor Sheldon Danziger told the News.

Michigan should give kids a better shot at being able to earn a living by finding ways to help people afford to go to college, he said.

One option could be a privately-funded program to give all public high school students a free college education.

In 2009 state lawmakers eliminated the Michigan Promise scholarship which offered high school seniors up to $4,000 for doing well on state standardized testing. The program cancellation went into effect mid-semester and affected nearly 100,000 students.

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