The paper "Social Indicators of Children's Well-Being in Indiana" is a good example of an essay on social science. I have chosen Indiana, known as Americas Heartland, as a representative because it's middle of the road status geographically, socially, and politically. This is reflected in its nearly medium position in the ranking of states by poverty, infant birth weight, and per-pupil educational expenses (Children in Indiana 1). However, Indiana ranks in the bottom 30 percent in regards to mothers who received prenatal care as well as infant mortality (Children in Indiana 1).
In both of these categories, it ranked 34 out of 50, and there is some statistical indication that these two factors are related. In May of 2008, the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration refused to adopt a policy that would have expanded pregnant women's access to prenatal care. The policy would have granted "immediate, temporary health coverage through Medicaid to pregnant women in households earning less than twice the federal poverty level, or $28,000 for a family of two" (Indiana Medicaid Agency Refuses). Indiana has one of the highest rates of infant mortality and in 2004 the rate was "eight deaths per 1,000 live births, compared with a national rate of 6.8 deaths per 1,000 live births" (Indiana Medicaid Agency Refuses).
It is common sense that prenatal care has a significant impact on the health of the child at birth. Yet, Indiana has lagged behind the US in its willingness to cover pregnant women under the Medicaid Program. Indiana's lack of commitment to children's health reflects a conservative economic philosophy, which also extends to education. In Indiana, fourth-grade school children are below the national average in both reading and math, and over 70 percent of the 3 and 4-year-olds in poverty are not enrolled in pre-school (Children in Indiana 2).
In contrast to many other states, Indiana's policies fail to reflect the latest research in child development. Though Indiana has a substantial budget surplus, the state fails to support their children with the financial support required to give them a healthy and well-educated start to life (Greninger).