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Atlanta sputters on new list of ‘Best & Worst Places to Raise a Family’

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Does 124th place of 150 cities seem justified?

Atlantans enjoying a rare moment of familial joy during a recent Trees Atlanta Beltline Family Walking Tour.
Atlantans enjoying a rare moment of familial joy during a recent Trees Atlanta Beltline Family Walking Tour.

With a damaging cheating scandal in the rearview, and the advent of new parks and several miles of Beltline wonderland to explore, most childbearing Atlantans would say the city is an agreeable place to be a kid these days.

But a new, nationwide analysis by the consumer advisers at WalletHub says, basically, “Not so fast!”

A team of WalletHub data-crunchers set out to determine 2017’s “Best & Worst Places to Raise a Family” by comparing America’s 150 most populated cities across 41 key metrics.

The methodology included data from disparate places, such as the FBI, U.S. Census Bureau, The Trust for Public Land, and even the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Topics ranged from housing affordability to school-system quality (this was given huge weight, obviously) to share of families with young kids and violent crime rate per capita. Ancillary categories such as Bike Score and “ideal weather” were accounted for, too.

The findings apply to the city proper—and not metro Atlanta at large.

Atlanta scored extremely low in the Health and Safety (No. 141) and Socio-Economic categories (135), while Education and Childcare wasn’t exactly sterling either (119). In terms of affordability, the city ranked middle-of-the-pack at No. 86.

On the bright side, Atlanta’s “Family Fun Rank” was phenomenal at No. 17. Yippee!

The only major cities to crack the overall top 10 were Seattle (No. 4) and Minneapolis (6).

Source: WalletHub

In the neighborhood of municipal family-friendliness, these are Atlanta’s counterparts, per the study:


In another, Peach State-specific study by WalletHub last year, Atlanta’s performance was perhaps even more dismal. Its family-friendliness, per WalletHub, was sandwiched between Fairburn and Carrollton, ranking 77th on the “Best Places to Raise a Family in Georgia” study.

Maybe Atlanta’s timeworn slogan should be adjusted: “The City Too Busy to Score High on Internet Rankings.”