Changing Demographics Brief FINAL
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Today, the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy is proud to release our latest Kids Count Issue Brief on Oklahoma’s Changing Demographics:  A Catalyst for a Pro-Growth Oklahoma.  The purpose of the issue brief is to provide a picture of the state’s population as compared to a decade ago, and how the population changes can be leveraged as a resource for economic growth. In particular, the report focuses on the changing demographics related to the children of immigrant families, and the potential those changes hold for Oklahoma’s future workforce and economy.

The report, written by OICA’s Director of Youth Initiatives, Sharon Rodine, indicates a major increase in the number of Hispanic students enrolled in Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Lawton and Guymon Public schools as well as a snapshot of the increases statewide to other races including American Indian, African American, Asian and children of two or more races.


Key findings from the issue brief include these changes to the demographics of Oklahoma’s child population since 2000:

  • A six percent increase (almost double) in the number of Hispanic children statewide.

  • A 12 percent decrease in the number of non-Hispanic white children.

  • 14 Oklahoma counties (almost 20%) saw more than 100 percent growth in Hispanic population overall.

  • Oklahoma children in immigrant families are more likely than children in native-born parent families to live in two-parent households (84% to 70%).

  • More than four out of every five (86%) children in immigrant families are U.S. citizens.

With the notable exception of the migration of Oklahomans to California during the Dust Bowl years in the 1930’s, the story of Oklahoma has been a story of people coming to the state. Whether their journey to Oklahoma was the harsh and tragic Trail of Tears, or the Land Run with its promise of a homestead and a new start, the people who came to Oklahoma over the generations worked hard to build the state and create a better future for themselves, their children, and their families.  Today, that same spirit of hard work and hope of creating a better future continues to be Oklahoma’s story for economic growth and prosperity.

This legislative session we can be strong voices for Oklahoma’s future by fighting for policies that directly impact the changing demographics of Oklahoma’s children and families by asking Oklahoma lawmakers to;

  • Invest in education reforms that aim to put children on a path to reading at grade level by the third grade and graduating high school on time.

  •  Protect The Oklahoma Child Care Tax Credit to promote work and ensure these working parents are sending their children to quality child care facilities that help with early learning.

  • Save early intervention home visit initiatives that give low income parents the tools to give their child a healthy start and show up to school ready to learn. 

Changing Demographics fast facts-FINAL
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Please join us in being strong voices for Oklahoma’s future this legislative session by sharing this blog post with your family and friends.  Be sure to download the brief and when you are visiting the state capitol, feel free to download this one-page overview of the report and share it with your local lawmaker.  Together we can make a difference for the children and families that make up the changing demographics of our state.

Click here, to enter our newsroom to download a copy of the official press release on the releasing of the changing demographics report.