To enable educators to understand clearly the societal trends that are affecting students and teaching, this document presents a compilation of national data about children. Whenever possible, the data are presented over a time series. The data are divided into two sections: the first covers important changes in the environment and circumstances of childhood in the United States--poverty, family structure and composition, and child abuse are examined with attention to differences by race. The second section covers aspects of children's behavior over time--violence and criminality, substance abuse, sexuality and childbearing, television viewing, and education.
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