Report Card on Louisville’s Youth Released

First issued in 2008, the Youth Report Card is a publication of the Alliance for Youth, a coalition advocating for policies and programs that positively impact outcomes for Louisville’s young people, preschool to 24 years. The 2015 Report Card highlights indicators of readiness for college, work and life at five stages of life: early childhood, elementary age, middle school, high school and young adults. 

Data include high school graduation rates, substance use rates, employment rates and self-reported indicators of safety and well-being.

Read the complete Report Card

Brookings Report: Unemployment Among Louisville’s Young Adults

“An increasingly diverse younger generation will make up a growing share of the workforce. Improving the educational and employment outcomes of blacks and Hispanics is critical to maintaining a skilled and competitive labor force”.

A report issued July 2015 by the Brookings Institute outlines the employment status of young adults in Louisville and Chicago, calling attention to the increasingly urgent need to address the skills gaps for the emerging workforce.  Partnerships between employers, educators, and community organizations that build strong pathways for Louisville’s young people could address the skills gap. Read the report…

Innovative Partnerships Build Pathways to Careers

New Publication: Creating Pathways to Employment for Opportunity Youth: The Role of Industry Partnerships in Preparing Low-Income Youth and Young Adults for Careers in High-Demand Industries (June 2015). Read the publication…

In response to employers’ call for more skilled workers and an alarming number of under-skilled youth and young adults, The National Fund for Workforce Solutions and Jobs for the Future, developed the Youth/Industry Partnership Initiative. Through this initiative, six local collaboratives were funded to test new models for training “opportunity youth” for high wage career pathways. This new report describes the collaborations between training providers, employers, and community organizations in this initiative.


KY Youth Advocates Highlight Disconnected Youth

The number of disconnected youth ages 16-24 in Kentucky  jumped 49 percent from 2000 to 2011. In Louisville, 14.0 percent of youth ages 16-24 are disconnected from education and employment. Data by counties and Congressional Districts further illustrate Kentucky is falling behind the nation in preparing young people for adulthood. “The lack of education, opportunity, and connection to school or work places youth at risk of long-term instability, leaves our 21st century economy without skilled employees, and increases spending on safety net programs.”

The Kentucky Youth Advocates is bringing attention to these data, their implications and recommended actions as described in recent national publications, Youth and Work: Restoring Teen and Young Adults Connections to Opportunity and Zeroing In on Place and Race: Youth Disconnection in America’s Cities.

While the issues are complex, communities can act to reconnect 16 to 24 year olds who are not working and not in school. “We need to connect isolated, opportunity-scarce communities back into the wider society and create meaningful opportunities within them. Macro policy implications range from dispersing high concentrations of poverty by changing zoning laws and building low-income housing in mixed-income neighborhoods, to redesigning public support programs and services toward two-generation approaches that address the education and employment needs of parents while helping children thrive.”

Read the complete blog from KYA here

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Louisville’s Disconnected Youth and Young Adults

21,750 of all 16 to 24 year olds in Louisville/Jefferson Co, nearly one in seven, are neither working nor going to school, according to a report released last month by Measure of America.

The causes consequences can be complex and long-standing for individuals and the community-at-large. “Disconnected youth are cut off from the people, institutions, and experiences that would otherwise help them develop the knowledge, skills, maturity, and sense of purpose required to live rewarding lives as adults.”

Focusing attention on the increased rates of disconnection for black and Latino youth, particularly for those living in highly-segregated neighborhoods, the report states communities must turn their attention to the root causes, not the symptoms, of disconnection.

“Knitting disconnected, opportunity-scarce communities into the fabric of our wider society and creating meaningful pathways within them is the answer to youth disconnection.”

Kristen Lewis, Co-Author of “Zeroing In On Race and Place: Youth Disconnection in American Cities”

For more information on the Louisville’s disconnected youth …

Employment and Education Outcomes of Foster Care Youth

Of 19 year old respondents currently or formally in foster care:

  • One-third (34%) reported being employed either full-time (24%) or part-time (12%);
  • Forty-four percent reported receiving at least one form of financial assistance (other than public assistance) including Social Security (14%), educational aid (24%), or some other form of financial support (15%);
  • 70% were attending school compared to 47% of youth who were no longer in care at age 19 (Note: completing secondary or post-secondary education is one of the reasons youth are able to remain in foster care after age 18).

Source: 2013 Issue Brief National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD)

The US Department of Health and Human Services, Children’s Bureau requires states to conduct annual surveys of foster youth receiving independent living services through the John H. Chafee Foster Care Independence Program. This report is a summary of national level data on the outcomes of 19 year olds who responded to the survey from Oct 2012 to Sept 2013.

Number of Youth and Young Adults in Louisville

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the total population in 2013 for Jefferson County, Kentucky was 756,832. Approximately 105,529 are between the ages of 14 and 24 years. This chart displays the estimated populations for two age groups and genders.


Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division, Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Selected Age Groups by Sex for the United States, States, Counties: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2013. Release Date: June 2014

Free and Reduced Lunch in High Schools

The number of students in JCPS comprehensive high schools receiving Free or Reduced Lunch increased every school year from 2005-2006 (43.7%) to 2012-2013 (54.0%).

  • Of the 26,575 high school students enrolled in JCPS comprehensive high schools 2012-12, 16,742 qualify for Free and Reduced Lunches.
  • The District total for these high schools was 43.7% (2005-06), 44.6% (2006-07), 46.4% (2007-08), 47.0% (2008-09), 50.9% (2009-10), 52.2% (2010-11), 52.9% (2011-12), 54% (2012-13).
  • Only one high school (Atherton) experienced a decrease (-9.9%) in the percentage of students qualifying.
  • The highest percent increase was at Seneca (28% increase from 05-06 to 12-13).
  • The comprehensive schools with the highest percentage of qualifying students in 2012-12 were Central (83.1%), Iroquois (87.0%), The Academy @ Shawnee (81.1%), Western (80.5%), and Valley Traditional (77.4%).

These data do not include all public high schools in this district or non-public schools.

Source: Jefferson County Public Schools Data Book

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