Somerville is known to be a young city. The Young Somerville Advisory Group, for instance, .
When it comes to kids, however, most homes in Somerville don't have them. In fact, Somerville is on the low end, regionally, when it comes to the percentage of households with school-aged children.
Almost everybody says they love children, but in many communities that tunes changes when topics like development and schools come into play. Some towns and cities in the Boston region scrutinize real estate developments closely out of concern they could expand their school populations, straining budgets. Neighbors sometimes worry about noise.
In Somerville, the situation is a little different. There's some concern that families move out of the city when their children begin schooling in earnest, which some think isn't healthy for the community and school system.
At a ResiStat community meeting on Monday, Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone addressed that issue, saying school enrollment is rising and pointing to birth rates in the city. City anaylists, according to a handout from Monday's meeting, say births are at their highest level in Somerville since 1977 and that while births have fallen across Massachusetts since 1995, they've risen in Somerville by 21 percent.
Still, when it comes to the percentage of households with school-aged kids, Somerville ranks among places like Cambridge and the South End, which are on the low end of the spectrum. In Somerville, 15.8 percent of households have children under 18. That number is also 15.8 percent in Cambridge and 14.6 percent in the South End.
Of the communities we looked at in the Somerville area, only the Back Bay and Beacon Hill have fewer percentages of children: In both those Boston neighborhoods, only 6.9 percent of households have children 18 and under.
Below is a chart comparing the percentage of households with kids under 18 in communities in Boston and across the region. The statewide average is 28.3 percent, and Boston comes in at 20.4 percent. Some communities have much higher percentages of kids at home. Winchester is 40.5 percent, and Chealse is 35.2 percent, for instance.
The numbers were provided by the 2010 U.S. Census, except for the Boston neighborhood breakdowns, which were determined using the City of Boston's myNeighborhood Viewer tool, and represent approximations for each community.Community Percentages of households with kids under 18 Arlington 26.9% Boston 20.4% *Charlestown 19.7% *Back Bay 6.6% *Beacon Hill 6.9% *South End 14.6% Cambridge 15.8% Chelsea 35.2% Everett 31.4% Lynnfield 35.2% Malden 26.7% Medford 22.3% Melrose 28.4% Reading 34.4% Revere 26.5% Saugus 25.4% Somerville 15.8% Stoneham 24.7% Wakefield 28.3% Winchester 40.5% Winthrop No data available Woburn 25.8%