Hispanic, Asian populations still growing in Stanislaus County

jnsbranti@modbee.comJune 15, 2013 

— The U.S. Census Bureau’s latest population estimates show Stanislaus County’s Hispanic and Asian populations continue to grow, while the number of white and black residents decline.

Stanislaus’ population overall edged up just 1.2percent in 2012 compared with 2010. Hispanics made up most of that two-year increase, and they now account for about 43percent of the county’s nearly 522,000 residents.

The Hispanic population has been on a steady climb for decades. They made up about 22percent of county residents in 1990, rose to about 32percent in 2000 and to about 42percent in 2010.

Asian residents have increased in number, and in 2012 they made up more than 5percent of the population. Whites were 45.6percent, blacks were 2.5percent and the rest were a mix of racial groups.

The other notable population shift revealed in the latest census count was the declining number of children in Stanislaus County and throughout most of California and the United States as a whole.

The number of county residents under 18 declined by nearly 1,600 from 2010 to 2012. That 1.1percent decline was about twice as much as the decline of children nationwide and statewide.

But it is not something Stanislaus County school officials say they are worried about.

“Birth rates have been down, and that’s been on our radar. We’ve talked about it,” said Don Gatti, assistant superintendent at the county Office of Education.

Gatti said the impact of that decline varies across Stanislaus’ 26 school districts. He said enrollments have been increasing in Ceres and Turlock, falling in Salida and Riverbank, and fairly stable elsewhere.

Countywide, the number of high-school-age teens in 2012 was 1,027 fewer than what it was in 2010, a 3percent drop. The number of children under 5 fell by nearly 1percent, while the number of those in grade school dipped only slightly.

Bee staff writer J.N. Sbranti can be reached at jnsbranti@modbee.com or (209)578-2196.

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