United States Census Bureau. “QuickFacts: Hamilton County, Tennessee; Chattanooga, Tennessee. “2017-2021. https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/hamiltoncountytennessee,chattanoogacitytennessee/INC110221
Statistics on population, housing, computer and Internet use, education, economy, income and poverty, transportation, and businesses.
Child Care and Early Childhood Education
Early Matters Chattanooga. “2025 Early Childhood Action Plan.”
In 2021, Chattanooga 2.0 and its early childhood action teams joined Bright Start TN initiated by Tennesseans for Quality Early Education. This statewide network connects communities across Tennessee to collaboratively design, implement and scale high-quality early care and education (ECE) systems locally, while informing and advocating for supportive state policies. This three-year action plan to support early childhood needs identifies strengths, barriers, and gaps. The report proposes collaborative solutions and a commitment to continuous assessment, with the technical support TQEE, of what works for Hamilton County families in achieving equitable access to quality early childhood programs and services.
Early Matters Chattanooga. “Chattanooga-Hamilton County Child Needs Assessment Report.” 2021. https://chatt2.org/earlymatters/
Early Matters Chattanooga, one of seven Chattanooga 2.0 Action teams, is a coalition of over 20 child-and family-serving organizations The Access to Quality Child Care, which issued this assessment, is one of three workgroups of Early Matters Chattanooga. This early childhood needs assessment is one tool Early Matters is using to formulate a Strategic Plan and theory of change toward achieving equitable access to early childhood programs and services. The needs assessment process included quantitative analysis of available early childhood data and qualitative analysis through both a series of interviews with parents, families, early care and education providers, community leaders, and a photovoice project with parents and providers. The report provides the key findings from the assessment process and includes recommendations for the Chattanooga-Hamilton County early childhood system.
Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth. Tennessee Kids Count Publications.
The Tennessee Kids Count Profile is taken from the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s KIDS Count National Data Book. Kids Count: The State of the Child in Tennessee is an annual data book that tracks the status of children by analyzing state level statistical indicators of child well-being using social, educational, economic, and health data. Data sheets covering economic well-being, education, family and community context, and health are available.
County Profiles of Child Well-Being in Tennessee
This profile from the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth ranks Hamilton County 41st among Tennessee counties in child well-being. The county’s strongest area was Health, ranking 29th statewide. Demographic data is broken down by Economic Well-Being, Education, Health, and Family & Community. The profile finds Hamilton County’s strongest indicator is in the percentage of children living below the federal poverty line, where the county ranks 16th. The county is also strong in the number of children who were victims of abuse or neglect at 8.5 per 1,000. The county’s biggest challenge is in the percent of households in the county experiencing a severe housing cost burden, where it ranks 86th.
Community Assessments & Reports
The goal of this multimedia series created by the Enterprise Center in cooperation with the City of Chattanooga is to build community and increase significant engagement by explaining how local government works and how certain issues impact the community, exploring the community’s greatest challenges and possible solutions, and highlighting people and places that make Chattanooga unique.
2023 Community Needs Assessment and Recommendations: United Way of Greater Chattanooga
In Fall 2022, UWGC contracted with local researchers to develop a comprehensive needs assessment of its six-county service region. The results will form the foundation of UWGC’s new strategic plan focused on children in financial hardship and will guide their community investment and grantmaking,
nonprofit capacity building, community partnerships, and other critical efforts in the coming years.
“Chattanooga 2.0. Forward Together: 2021 Report to the Community.“
This progress reports on the impacts Chattanooga 2.0 made on early childhood education and literacy for all students. The report identifies addressing future challenges and opportunities in school readiness and success for young children, career and college readiness, and post-secondary completion.
North Georgia Community Action. “Community Needs Assessment. FY 2018-2020.”
The assessment found that the primary cause of poverty in the region was a lack of adequate living-wage employment opportunities. The assessment identifies priority needs, family needs, and community needs. Key family needs identified were unemployment and underemployment, lack of access to transportation, lack of education and skills to obtain employment, lack of personal financial management skills, and drug addiction. Key community needs identified include lack of living wage employment opportunities, lack of safe and affordable housing, lack of adequate support systems, and lack of affordable child care options.
Southeast Tennessee Human Resource Agency. “Community Needs Assessment FY 2022.”
SETHRA conducted a comprehensive needs assessment between July 2021 and June 2022.
Needs assessment surveys were distributed to a random selection of agency participants, local Community Advisory Boards and Health Council meetings, and at the SETHRA Governing Board meetings. During the FY21 funding cycle, the agency saw an increase in CSBG eligible households identifying as homeless. Reported causes of homelessness were an income earning spouse or partner leaving the household, recent release from jail/prison, the family is “couch surfing,” or recently moving into the service area with no plan before arriving. The agency also saw an increased need for alternative work hours for childcare. The assessment identifies priority needs, family needs, community needs, and agency needs.
Hamilton County Family Justice Center. “Community Domestic Violence Needs Assessment.”
The document linked is raw data collected by the Hamilton County Family Justice Center. A summary report is forthcoming and will be linked when available. Participants include representatives of law enforcement, state and local government, social service and faith-based organizations, and parent/family support groups.
Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce Stats & Demographics
This excellent collection of information on businesses, economic indicators, and labor includes complete demographic comparison reports for Downtown, Eastgate, Hamilton Place, and Northgate.
This executive summary of Chattanooga Climbs, the 5-year economic and talent plan for Chattanooga and Hamilton County, outlines economic development goals and creative strategies and tactics to achieve them. The full plan includes calls to action, timeframes for execution, lead implementation organizations, and metrics for measuring success.
Hamilton County Community and Economic Development Department
The Community and Economic Development Department supports and promotes a variety of Hamilton County initiatives by coordinating grant funding opportunities, application submittals and grants management. Areas of grant oversight include grant research, technical assistance, grant monitoring, fiscal reimbursements, and regulatory compliance. The site includes a current listing of grants managed by the department and summaries of all county projects.
Southeast Tennessee Development
SET provides workforce services to job seekers as well as business and industry. Along with a business-led workforce Investment Board, SET operates and staffs career centers in the Chattanooga-area region. American Job Centers serve 10 counties with offices in Chattanooga, Athens, Cleveland, Dayton, Kimball, and Tracy City. Services offered include career and training services for adults, dislocated workers and youth, and Adult Education and Literacy Act programs that lead to attainment of a high school equivalency diploma, basic skills upgrades or English language acquisition, job search assistance, job referral and placement, services for employers, and programs providing employment and training for individuals with disability.
Urban League of Greater Chattanooga. “Hamilton County 2021 State of Black-Owned Business Needs Assessment.”
Four noteworthy findings emerged from this assessment. Most Black-owned businesses are initially self-funded and, when pursuing growth, push the limits of their capacity before considering other funding options. Gender shapes perceptions and experience. Black woman-owned businesses reported that finding time to dedicate to strategic planning and to balance their businesses with other work as a “high impact” challenge. Black-owned businesses seek access to new markets and access to networks. Interviewees express high interest in government contracts and expansion to markets beyond the region as avenues to scale, hire and find greater economic stability, but they report limitations to their readiness to pursue these strategies, including low awareness of how to find or respond to government opportunities. Respondents identified sales, marketing, and accounting as top priority areas for technical assistance, and expressed high interest in free business coaching, mentoring, and online training.
Tennessee Department of Education Report Card: Hamilton County
The 2021-2022 report card presents demographic data about enrolled students and scores for district performance indicators, such as achievement, growth, and graduation rate. The site also includes district-wide performance level statistics based on TCAP scores. Statistical data is broken down by both grade levels and subject areas.
TN SCORE – K-12 By the Numbers
SCORE compiles a snapshot of key indicators of student success by analyzing data from Tennessee’s public K-12 school districts. The key performance indicators analyzed are 3rd grade language arts, 7th grade math, ACT composite of 21+, and College-Going.
2023 Hamilton County Education Higher Education Profile
The statistical snapshot compares the county’s high school graduation rate, college attendance rate, first-time freshman TELS recipient rate, and ACT scores to statewide numbers. The profile includes information about education grant programs in Hamilton County, comparative statistics on educational attainment of ages 25-64 and socioeconomics, and numbers on Tennessee student assistant awards and lottery scholarship recipients.
Higher Education Fact Book
The annual report compiled by the Tennessee Higher Education Commission reports on student preparation, such as admission rates, freshman class profiles, and learning support placement and success rates, by subject area; student participation, such as college-going rates, overall enrollment, and enrollment by critical student subpopulations; student progression, such as end-of-term enrollment counts, freshman-to-sophomore retention rates, and the number of students passing credit hour benchmarks under the higher education funding formula; student success and completion, such as retention and graduation rates, time to degree, credentials awarded, and credentials awarded per one hundred (100) full-time equivalent enrolled students; workforce participation, such as job placement rates, and licensure passage rates; academic trends, such as student engagement survey results, changes to the academic program inventory, low-producing academic programs, the number and percentage of accredited programs, and the percentage of lower division instructional courses taught by full-time faculty, part-time faculty, and graduate assistants; financing trends, such as state appropriation levels and net tuition revenues, state and other revenue per student, and state and other revenue per awarded credential; and affordability trends, such as in-state and out-of-state tuition rates, aggregate debt and student default rates, and costs of attendance. Though not Hamilton County specific, there is data for higher education institutions in the county.
2022 Tennessee College Going Report
This year’s college-going rate report from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission focuses on the class of 2022. College-going rate indicates the portion of public high school graduates who seamlessly enroll in postsecondary education. College for the class of 2022 is one and a half percentage points over the class of 2021, for a statewide college-going rate of 54.3%, representing the largest statewide increase since the implementation of Tennessee Promise. College going increased across all race and gender pairs, but these increases are not evenly distributed. African American students of both genders, Hispanic/Latino females, and White males saw growth in college-going rates above the statewide growth of one and a half percentage points. Growth for White females, Hispanic/Latino males, and students of either gender in the “Other” race category was smaller than the statewide growth. Pronounced growth for traditionally underrepresented student groups shows progress toward closing the equity gaps in college going in Tennessee. The report examines a college-going rate for students who were found to be verified participants in the Dual Enrollment Grant, a state scholarship that funds high school students taking college-level coursework while enrolled in high school. Students who participated in the Dual Enrollment Grant at any point in their high school career were found to have consistently higher college-going rates than their full high school graduating cohort. The proportion of the class of 2022 enrolling at Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology (TCATs) and at the Locally Governed Institutions (LGIs) increased compared to the previous class. The report includes a new section analyzing the labor market outcomes of high school graduates in the class of 2021. The analysis finds a small portion of class of 2021 graduates in the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) data. For students found in the UI data, those who were earning high wages had a lower college-going rate than the cohort average, suggesting that some students traded off education for work.
Tennessee Board of Regents Data Dashboard and College Profiles
Tennessee Data Dashboard provides interactive and visual information on Community Colleges and Technical Colleges of Applied Technology on various student data broken down into such categories as general enrollment, enrollment by student types, student success, and awards.
Hamilton County Schools Esser 3.0 Needs Assessment
In response to COVID-19, Congress passed the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund under the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021 enacted on March 11, 2021. Hamilton County Schools was granted $91 million as part of the third relief package known as ESSER 3.0 or ARPA. ESSER funds are provided to state educational agencies and school districts to help address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the nation’s students. Hamilton County Schools developed a plan to use ESSER 3.0 funds after reviewing the feedback provided by the community. The district strives to be transparent in the development of the required ESSER plans and budget.
2021-2022 Hamilton County Schools State Testing Data
Student proficiency and growth data for 2021-2022 school year from the Tennessee Department of Education.
County Health Rankings & Roadmaps—Hamilton County
Hamilton County is ranked 17th among Tennessee counties. The county snapshot includes statistical data organized into such categories as quality of life, health behaviors, clinical care, social and economic factors, and physical environment.
The data in the report is intended to provide a general insight into the current state of crime areas served by the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office and the Chattanooga Police Department. In Substance Misuse and Overdose Trends, Fentanyl was listed as the cause of death in 73% of the total number of suspected drug-related deaths in Hamilton County in 2022, compared to 71% in 2021. The report also includes statistics on homelessness and health.
Chattanooga-Hamilton County Health Department Community Health Services, Office of Assessment and Planning. “2019 Picture of Health for Hamilton County.”
This collection of health status indicators provides a broad overview of the health of Hamilton County residents. It is a resource for local community members and community-based organizations to use for planning to improve population health. The data in the report is compiled from a variety of public sources. It presents, where available, comparable data for Tennessee and the United States.
Chattanooga-Hamilton County Hospital Authority. “2020 Community Health Needs Assessment.”
Based on the entire CHNA process—research, community input, and guidance from the CHNA committee—Erlanger identified four priorities that the health system is committed to pursue over three years: expand access to behavioral health care, expand access to primary care and specialty case, especially in rural communities, care coordination to improve patient care and outcomes, and engage in community partnerships with potential educational partners to evaluate opportunities for increased community health literacy education.
CHI Memorial. “Community Health Needs Assessment.” May 2022.
The CHNA identifies and prioritizes significant health needs of the community served by CHI Memorial Hospital Chattanooga, CHI Memorial Hospital Hixson and CHI Memorial Hospital Georgia. The priorities identified in the report help to guide the hospitals’ community health improvement programs and community benefit activities, as well as their collaborative efforts with other organizations that share a mission to improve health. Five counties are the primary focus of the CHNA due to the service area of CHI Memorial. Used as the study area, Hamilton, Bradley, Catoosa, Dade and Walker Counties provided 81% of July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021, inpatient discharges. The community includes medically underserved, low-income and minority populations who live in the geographic areas from which CHI Memorial draws their patients.
Hamilton County Department of Health. “Community Data Sources.” 2023.
The Office of Community Assessment and Planning conducts ongoing community health data collection and analysis to understand and monitor the health status and health needs of residents of Hamilton County. In addition, Community Assessment and Planning is responsible for identifying resources, strategies and evidence-based health plans that can be used to address those needs. This collection of resources includes Hamilton County community healthy assessments, risk behavior survey data on adults and youth, and numerous links to local, state, and national data sources.
Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation. “2021 Community Health Needs Assessment.”
This assessment identifies several opportunities for improvement: transportation assistance to health services, more access to rehabilitation services, quality of health care and caregiving, more employment opportunities for people with disabilities, better dissemination of information about abut resources, such as support groups and condition-specific educational materials, and comprehensive inpatient care that includes instruction to patients and families on navigating a life with disability and continuing outpatient treatment to build on the progress being made.
Chattanooga-Hamilton County Regional Planning Agency. “Chattanooga Housing Study.” 2012 (Rev. July 2013).
Key findings of this year-long study reveal that the decline of family net worth and incomes significantly impacted the financial capacity of households to obtain affordable housing. While detached single-family homes continue to be Chattanooga’s primary housing, there is an increasing demand for apartments and smaller housing units located in communities with more convenient access to daily needs. Chattanooga has a dwindling supply of undeveloped subdivision lots but has a significant number of vacant lots scattered throughout the city in neighborhoods that will require revitalization intervention to make them attractive for redevelopment. Current city codes impact housing affordability. Housing affordability affects all income levels but is most acute among low-income citizens. In Chattanooga, 77% of households with incomes less than $15,000 and 51% of households with income of $15,000 - $29,999 spend 30% or more of their monthly income on housing. The report lists a variety of recommendations to address the housing gaps identified in the study.
The Chattanooga-Hamilton County/North Georgia Transportation Planning Organization. “2050 Regional Transportation Plan.”
The dashboard allows visitors to explore funded projects included in the 2050 RTP by funding tier (Tier 1 (2027-2030), Tier 2 (2031-2040), and Tier 3 (2041-2050) and programmatic Set-Asides that are to be funded as project sponsors become ready to initiate them.