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Tackling child poverty: third year progress report – Annex A measurement framework

This document contains the measurement framework with the latest data on the drivers of child poverty. The 23 indicators in the Child Poverty Measurement Framework are intended to monitor these drivers of poverty. They form part of a wider monitoring and evaluation strategy.

Tackling child poverty: third year progress report – Annex A measurement framework
Tackling Child Poverty: Third year progress report 2020-21: Annex A

Tackling Child Poverty: Third year progress report 2020-21: Annex A

The drivers of poverty are summarised in the diagram above.

The 23 indicators in the Child Poverty Measurement Framework are intended to monitor these drivers of poverty. They form part of a wider monitoring and evaluation strategy.

This annex sets out the trends over time for each of the Child Poverty Measurement framework indicators. Note that available data at the time of publication precedes COVID-19.

The document specifies which of the four child poverty targets each indicator influences:

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

Driver: Hourly pay

Indicator 1: Hourly pay

Average hourly earnings, in 2019/20 prices, of low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children where at least one adult is in employment (Source: Family Resources Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context)

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

Hourly pay is a direct driver of income from employment, and therefore influences all four targets. Because poverty is measured at the household level, the hourly pay indicator monitors the average hourly pay per household rather than per parent. Earnings for all years are presented in 2019/20 prices, in order to adjust for inflation when looking at trends over time.

Driver: Hours worked

Indicator 2: No paid employment

Percentage of children living in households where no adult is in paid employment (Source: Annual Population Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Hours worked is a direct driver of income from employment, and therefore influences all four targets. Households with no-one in paid employment are at significantly higher risk of being in poverty.

Indicator 3: Hours worked

Average (median) number of hours of paid employment per working-age adult, in low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children where at least one adult is in employment (Source: Family Resources Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Hours worked is a direct driver of income from employment, and therefore influences all four targets. The risk of poverty reduces as the number of hours worked increases.

Driver: Labour market

Indicator 4: Underemployment

Percentage of parents who are in work but would prefer to work more hours for the same rate of pay (Source: Annual Population Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

The number and type of jobs available in the labour market have an impact on parents' hours worked, through the employment opportunities they have access to.

Indicator 5: Under-utilisation of skills

Percentage of employed working age (16-64) parents with degrees who are in low or medium skilled occupations (Source: Annual Population Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

The number and type of jobs available in the labour market have an impact on parents' hourly pay, through the employment opportunities they have access to.

Driver: Skills and qualifications

Indicator 6: Parents' qualifications

Percentage of parents with no or low qualifications (Source: Annual Population Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

People with higher qualifications are much less likely to experience poverty than those with no or lower qualifications. Skills and qualifications affect income from employment in two main ways: the likelihood of getting a job, and how much someone is paid.

Indicator 7: School leavers attainment gap

Percentage points gap between the 20% least deprived Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation ( SIMD) areas and the 20% most deprived areas in the percentage of school leavers who have achieved Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Level 5 or better [1] (Source: Scottish Government attainment statistics)

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

Children growing up in the 20% most deprived areas tend to have lower attainment than those in the 20% least deprived areas – the 'attainment gap'. Policies to close the attainment gap could impact on all four child poverty targets if they lead to an improvement in work prospects for current children who are old enough to become parents before 2030.

Driver: Availability of affordable and accessible childcare

Indicator 8: Childcare affordability

Percentage of households paying for childcare for a child aged between 0 and 11 that say they find it difficult or very difficult to afford childcare [2]. (Source: Scottish Household Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Childcare can be a significant cost for households with children. And a lack of affordable childcare can limit opportunities for paid employment.

Indicator 9: Childcare availability in school holidays

Percentage of children's day care [3] places that are in settings that operate during the school holidays (Source: Care Inspectorate Data)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

A lack of childcare availability during the school holidays can limit opportunities for paid employment.

Indicator 10: Childcare availability outside school hours

Percentage of children's day care places that are in settings that are open before, during and after school hours (Source: Care Inspectorate Data)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

A lack of childcare availability outside school hours can limit opportunities for paid employment.

Driver: Availability of affordable and accessible transport

Indicator 11: Satisfaction with public transport

Percentage of low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children that are very or fairly satisfied with the quality of public transport (Source: Scottish Household Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Low income households are much less likely to have access to a car than high income households. Along with affordability, other aspects of public transport, such as limited frequency and timetable constraints, can make it difficult for people without access to a car to co-ordinate work, childcare and other activities, potentially limiting opportunities for paid employment.

Driver: Housing costs

Indicator 12: Housing affordability

Percentage of income spent on housing by low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children (Source: Family Resources Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context)

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Housing costs are often the largest single cost a household will face, particularly for those on low incomes. All four of the child poverty targets are based on the income that households have left after housing costs have been deducted.

Driver: Other costs of living

Indicator 13: Fuel affordability

Median ratio of fuel running costs to net household income (after housing costs), low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children (Source: Scottish House Condition Survey) [4]

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation
Persistent poverty

Fuel costs are not deducted from income for the purposes of determining whether a household is in income poverty. They do, however, affect the risk of material deprivation, as families spending a greater percentage of their income on fuel will be less likely to afford essential goods and services.

Indicator 14: Food affordability

Percentage of income spent on food and non-alcoholic drinks by low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children (Source: Living Costs and Food Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context)

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty

Food costs are not deducted from income for the purposes of determining whether a household is in income poverty. They do, however, affect the risk of material deprivation, as families spending a greater percentage of their income on food will be less likely to afford essential goods and services.

Driver: Debt

Indicator 15: Unmanageable debt

Percentage of households with children in unmanageable debt [5] (Source: Wealth and Assets Survey)

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Debt repayments are not deducted from income for the purposes of determining whether a household is in income poverty. They do, however, reduce the amount of disposable income that households with children have to spend on goods and services, and therefore increase their risk of material deprivation.

Driver: Enablers

Indicator 16: Access to affordable credit

Percentage of low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children that have used high cost credit [6] in the past 12 months (Source: Scottish Household Survey) [7]

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation√
Persistent poverty

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Access to affordable credit can protect against problem debt and material deprivation. It acts as a buffer against unexpected costs (e.g. replacing a broken washing machine) and fluctuations in income.

Indicator 17: No savings

Percentage of low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children that have no savings (Source: Scottish Household Survey) (figures for all households with children are also provided for context) [8]

Relative poverty
Absolute poverty
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Savings protect against problem debt and material deprivation. They act as a buffer against unexpected costs (e.g. replacing a broken washing machine) and fluctuations in income.

Indicator 18: Internet access

Percentage of low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children that have home internet access (Source: Scottish Household Survey). Figures for all households with children are also provided for context [9].

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Access to the internet allows opportunities to find lower-cost financial products and services, online banking, price comparison sites and online deals. Internet access and digital literacy also increase people's chances of accessing jobs and getting the benefits they are entitled to.

Driver: Reach of benefits

Indicator 19: Targeted reach of benefits

Income from social security going to low income households (bottom three income deciles) with children, as a proportion of income from social security going to all households with children (Source: Family Resources Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Social security payments have a direct impact on poverty by providing or supplementing household income.

Driver: Value of benefits

Indicator 20: Value of out of work benefits

Real terms value (£/per week in 2019 prices) of reserved social security entitlement (Job Seeker's Allowance + Child Tax Credits +Child Benefit) for out-of-work couple households with two children (Source: DWP benefit rates)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Social security payments have a direct impact on poverty by providing or supplementing household income.

Indicator 21: Value of in work benefits

Real terms value (£/per week in 2019 prices) of reserved social security entitlement (Working Tax Credits + Child Tax Credits) for a lone parent working full-time / couple with one working full-time and one not in paid employment, on minimum wage, with two children (Source: DWP benefit rates)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

Social security payments have a direct impact on poverty by providing or supplementing household income.

Indicator 22: Value of school clothing grant

Real terms value of school clothing grant – average value across Scottish local authorities (Source: Local Authority Finance Returns LFR 01)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

School clothing grants count towards the definition of income used by DWP. The value of school clothing grants therefore influences all four targets.

Driver: Benefits take-up

Indicator 23: Take-up of free school meals

Percentage of children registered for Free School Meals (including all primary 1 to primary 3 pupils registered under the universal provision) who took a free school meal on the day of the survey (Source: Healthy Living Survey)

Relative poverty √
Absolute poverty √
Low income + material deprivation √
Persistent poverty √

How this indicator relates to the child poverty targets:

The monetary value of Free School Meals counts towards the definition of income used by Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Take-up of free school meals therefore influences all four targets.


Contact

Email: sjsu@gov.scot