Parent/Caregiver Incarceration

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Number of Total Hispanic/Latino All Grades Students Reporting a Parent or Guardian is Currently or Ever Has Been in Prison, 1995 - 2022: by Region


About the Indicator:

Note: 5th graders were asked this question in 2013, but not in 2016.

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are stressful or traumatic experiences, including abuse, neglect and a range of household dysfunction. ACEs put individuals at risk for a number of negative outcomes across the lifespan, including: alcohol, tobacco and other drug use; anxiety; hopelessness; depression; and suicidal ideation and attempts.

One ACE measured by the Minnesota Student Survey is parent or caregiver incarceration. Students were asked if any of their parents or guardians had ever been in jail or prison. Compared to students who do not have a parent or caregiver who is or ever has been in jail or prison, those who do are more likely to report past month use of marijuana (22.3% vs 7.7%), alcohol (29.4% vs 14.3%), and tobacco (23.5% vs 8.8%).
For more information on ACEs, see the 2017 ACEs and Substance Use SUMN Fact Sheet.

For a concise explanation of the effects of parental incarceration on students, see the infographic "Academic Outcomes Among Youth with Incarcerated Parents in Minnesota."

Data Source: Minnesota Student Survey (MSS)

Description: The MSS is a confidential and anonymous self-administered survey given to students attending Minnesota public, charter and tribal schools. From 1995 to 2010, the survey was administered to students in 6th, 9th, and 12th grades. New in 2013, the survey was administered to students in 5th, 8th, 9th, and 11th grades. Trend data are now only available for 9th graders, and only for survey questions that did not change. Most schools elect to participate in the survey; in 2013, this included 84% of public schools in Minnesota.

Although the data are not presented here, the survey is also administered to area learning centers, juvenile correction facilities and private schools electing to participate.

Sponsored by: Minnesota Department of Education

Geographic Level: State, Region, and County

Aggregated data at the state and county level do not reveal disparities that may exist within a given geographic area.

Frequency: Data collected and reported every three years

Characteristics: The results of the MSS are also available at a county level. Data Privacy requirements mandate that data is presented in a manner such that no individual student can be identified through the presentation of the results. As part of the Data Privacy practices, the results are also presented in a manner that no individual school district could be identified through the results. Therefore, for counties that have only one school district, the results are not presented. Results are also withheld for counties in which the minimum number for student participation was not met.

The MSS is a “census” of schools, not a sample. The school districts get their own data. Fifth-graders were not asked all substance use questions. Some school districts do not participate, and student participation within the school district can vary widely. These data are self-reported.