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Report highlights connection between education and child welfare in Tenn.

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP/WMOT) — A new report that evaluates the welfare of children in Tennessee focuses on the connection between the state’s poorest children and the amount of education their parents receive.

The report released Wednesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation's Kids Count project notes that four out of five poor children in Tennessee live in homes where no one has a college degree.

Linda O’Neal heads the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth. She says one of the best ways to help children is to help their parents get more education.

“We know that when we invest in children and families we really provide opportunities to strengthen future prosperity of the state as they have the skills they need – cognitive and emotional skills they need for children to succeed in school and for families to provide a stable financial situation for their children.”

O’Neal applauds Governor Haslam’s Tennessee Promise initiative that provides two years of free community college. The report recommends additional policies that link community colleges, job training, and employment programs, along with access to health benefits and child care.