'Disconnected Youth' Numbers Rise in Kentucky

Dec 3, 2012

Almost 110,000 teens and young adults in Kentucky are not enrolled in school and are not employed, even part-time, according to a new Kids Count report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation.  Nationwide, the number reaches nearly 6.5 million. In Kentucky between 2000 and 2011 the number of 16-19 year-olds not in school and not employed rose by 3 percent, but the number of idle young adults ages 20-24 climbed by a whopping 88 percent. Both rates exceed the national rate. (Getty Images)

The Kids Count report, "Youth and Work: Restoring Teen and Young Adult Connections to Opportunity," termed these 16- to 24-year-olds "disconnected." It found that they face many obstacles on their path to securing a stable financial future. For starters, many haven't finished high school and are competing with older Americans for the few entry-level jobs. In addition, they lack skills for higher-paying jobs. Many are poor and have attended under-performing schools. The report explains that, as such, this group can present a significant cost to taxpayers. (Read more) View the report here.