Statistics Iceland publishes official statistics focused on children’s societal status. This publication is a summary of information of which some have been published before but also contains new statistics, such as employment statistics for children, which show that a quarter of children in Iceland had a paid job in 2017. Child statistics are now available in one place at the Statistics Iceland webpage. The project is in cooperation with the Ombudsman for Children in Iceland.
A quarter of all children have a paid job
In the year 2017, the number of children having a paid job was 19,804 (24.8%), thereof 24.6% of all boys and 25.0% of all girls. However, the total number of employed children on the Icelandic labor market has decreased considerably since 2007, when the number was 23,808 (30.0%).
Fewer children injured in traffic accidentsBetween 2000 and 2017, the number of children injured in traffic accidents decreased by 35% or from 357 in the year 2000 to 232 in the year 2017. During this time period, the number of children injured in traffic accidents was lowest in 2014 or 198, but highest in 2002 or 381.
For the last two decades, the yearly number of children born has ranged from 4,034 to 5,026. The average birthweight was 3,631 grams for the time period of 1998 to 2017, with trend analysis showing a decrease in average yearly birthweight over the time period.
401 child in foster care in 2016
In the year 2007, child protective services intervention included 3,852 children, or 4.2% of all children aged 18 and younger. In the year 2016, this proportion had increased to 6.2% of all children 18 years and younger, an increase by 5,260.
Over the same time period, the number of children in foster care increased. In the year 2005 there were 349 (0.4%) children in foster care, 179 boys and 170 girls. In contrast, the number of children in foster care was 401 (0.5%), thereof 211 boys and 191 girls.
An increase in child immigration
In the year 2018, the number of children living in Iceland was 80,383, thereof 41,060 boys and 39,323 girls.
In the year 2017, the number of immigrant children was 2,453, thereof 1,267 boys and 1,186 girls. From 1998 to 2009 the number of immigrant children increased by 18%. The increase was largest between 2007 and 2008, or 31%. Between 2010 and 2013 the number of immigrant children decreased, before increasing again by 10% from 2016 to 2017.
In the year 2017 the number of girls who immigrated to Iceland was 797, while the number of girls who emigrated from the country was 434. At the same time, 850 boys immigrated to Iceland, while 497 emigrated from the country.
12.6% of preschoolers with a foreign first language
In the year 2016, the number of children attending preschool in Iceland was 19,090, thereof 9,739 boys and 9,351 girls. In the same year students attending elementary school were 44,527, thereof 22,789 boys and 21,738 girls. Among preschoolers, 12.6% spoke a foreign first language while 9.3% of elementary school students spoke a foreign first language. In comparison, 3.8% of preschoolers and 1.8% of elementary school students spoke a foreign language in the year of 1998.
The largest groups of children in pre- and elementary schools in the year 2016 spoke Polish as a first language. Of 2,410 preschoolers with a foreign first language 38.7% spoke Polish and of 4,148 elementary students 35.4% spoke Polish as a first language.
176 children applied for international protection in Iceland in 2017
The total number of children applying for international protection in the year 2017 was 176. Over the time period 1998 to 2017, the highest number of children applying for international protection was 271 in 2016. The majority of children (122 of 176) applying for international protection in 2017 in Iceland, had citizenship from four countries; 38 from Georgia, 36 from Albania, 27 from Iraq and 21 from Macedonia.