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The Wages of Fear: White US Population Continues to Drop

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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, according to a Brookings Institution analysis of census data released Monday.

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, according to William H. Frey, a demographer at Brookings. That was up from six states in 2000.

“We are on our way to having a majority of minority students in U.S. schools,” Mr. Frey said.

Nationally, whites accounted for 58.8 percent of all school enrollment in 2009, Mr. Frey said, citing the new data, which measured enrollment from preschool to graduate school as of October 2009. That was down from 64.6 percent in 2000, a decline that came with falling birthrates as the white population aged.



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