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Community Development Publications

Opportunity Youth in Texas

Identifying and Reengaging the State’s Disconnected Young People
Opportunity Youth in Texas


For each of the half a million opportunity youth in Texas, there is a young adult with untapped potential. While many local efforts are underway to identify opportunity youth in Texas and reconnect them to school and work, a number of national organizations are leading the way in both research and practice. These organizations include Measure of America, the Aspen Institute’s Opportunity Youth Forum, Jobs for the Future, the National League of Cities, Year Up, 100,000 Opportunities, consulting firm FSG, Equal Measure, the International Youth Foundation and others. Following both local and national examples from this report, Texas has the chance to change the lives of its young people today and prevent more of them from becoming disconnected in the future.

As the research shows, opportunity youth live in all corners of the state and come from all backgrounds. With the right kind of support, these young people can become productive workers and role models for the next generation. This report provides stakeholders with statewide and regional data, insights from the opportunity youth themselves and strategies from existing service providers. Armed with this information, those in a position to make a difference can seek out the opportunity youth in their communities and work hand-in-hand with these young people to build a path toward a brighter future.