Over the last 10 years, the number of students in Connecticut who are considered low-income has increased by eight percentage points. Research shows that low-come children need more support to achieve at the same level as their more affluent peers. In Connecticut, low-income students are defined as students who are eligible for the United States Department of Agriculture’s free and reduced price lunch program. In school year 2016-17, a family of four’s children were eligible for free and reduced price lunch if their family's annual income was $44,955 or less. Today, 193,240 Connecticut students are considered low-income.
The increase in low-income students has not been equal across school districts. Many suburban districts have seen the largest increases in the percentage of students who are low-income. Districts with the largest increases include: Norwalk, West Haven, Norwich, and Torrington.