Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Release: Single Parent Households with Children
The single-parent household rate is calculated as the sum of male and female single-parent households with their own children who are younger than 18-years of age divided by total households with their own children who are younger than 18-years of age (ACS 5-year variables S1101_C03_005E, S1101_C04_005E, and S1101_C01_005E respectively from table S1101).
Multiyear estimates from the American Community Survey (ACS) are "period" estimates derived from a data sample collected over a period of time, as opposed to "point-in-time" estimates such as those from past decennial censuses. ACS 5-year estimate includes data collected over a 60-month period. The date of the data is the end of the 5-year period. For example, a value dated 2014 represents data from 2010 to 2014. However, they do not describe any specific day, month, or year within that time period.
Multiyear estimates require some considerations that single-year estimates do not. For example, multiyear estimates released in consecutive years consist mostly of overlapping years and shared data. The 2010-2014 ACS 5-year estimates share sample data from 2011 through 2014 with the 2011-2015 ACS 5-year estimates. Because of this overlap, users should use extreme caution in making comparisons with consecutive years of multiyear estimates.
Please see "Section 3: Understanding and Using ACS Single-Year and Multiyear Estimates" on publication page 13 (file page 19) of the 2018 ACS General Handbook for a more thorough clarification.
U.S. Census Bureau, Single-Parent Households with Children as a Percentage of Households with Children (5-year estimate) in Middlesex County, MA [S1101SPHOUSE025017], retrieved from FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/S1101SPHOUSE025017, September 24, 2022.