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Ready Youth Learning Cohort Open for Application

The Ready by 21 National Partnership is seeking communities to join the second Ready Youth Learning Cohort. The Ready Youth Learning Cohort communities will receive a suite of tools and technical assistance using the enhanced Gallup Student Poll, a powerful measure of youth voice, to ignite conversations that drive solutions.
Information Update
August 2, 2013

Imagine…your community having comprehensive data to show whether or not young people are on the path to success.

Then imagine that data getting into the hands of people prepared to do something about it.

Getting children and youth ready for the future requires tackling all aspects of their well-being, from health and safety to social and emotional connections to academic success. Schools are awash in data – graduation rates, attendance and course completion metrics. Communities can access abundant data from public systems tracking risky behaviors – juvenile delinquency, teen pregnancy, substance abuse. Unfortunately, to know if young people are truly ready for the future, this data is not enough.

Now, by asking young people themselves, community leaders can measure:

  • Young people’s ideas and energy for the future.
  • Their involvement in and enthusiasm for school.
  • How they think about and experience their lives.

These simple pieces of information are better than almost any other measure – including GPA and standardized test scores – at predicting whether or not young people will be successful in college, work and life. Ready Youth helps communities combines this new data with other data sets and proven stakeholder engagement strategies to help leaders find and fill the readiness gaps that prevent their young people from succeeding.

What is Ready Youth?


Ready Youth is a campaign that starts with a new kind of data, then uses that information to help communities catalyze solutions. The process begins with a powerful measure of youth voice: the Gallup Student Poll, which each year measures the hope, engagement and well-being of several hundred thousand young people. Rather than letting this valuable data sit on the shelf, Ready Youth uses it to ignite conversations – conversations that drive solutions. Ready Youth engages a wide array of community members in conversations to address areas of need, then generates strategies and recommendations for making immediate improvements.

School districts that use the Gallup Student Poll receive an online scorecard showing their data by school and grade. Through the Forum for Youth Investment’s partnership with Gallup, communities that participate in Ready Youth also receive a data table with the community-wide results by students’ zip code, gender, age, race/ethnicity and living arrangement. This reduces the risk of unproductive comparisons between schools, and allows for better comparisons with other youth and community data.

The Forum also works with Ready Youth communities to combine poll findings with other existing data on children and youth, such as delinquency, employment and poverty rates. The result: a customized picture of a community’s young people. Leaders can see and analyze previously unconnected data in new ways, allowing them to take stock of how youth are doing in various aspects of their lives, and how they perceive themselves and their place in the community.

The Ready Youth Learning Cohort


In the 2013-14 school year, the Forum is recruiting up to 20 communities into a Ready Youth Learning Cohort. These communities will receive the Poll data sorted by zip code, race/ethnicity and other demographics. Communities will also receive planning and technical assistance supports including monthly webinars and/or cohort calls; guidance on data analysis and comparisons; sample agendas and presentation materials for community conversations; and up to five hours of individual coaching calls. As schedules and funds allow, select communities will also receive site visits and/or on-site facilitation support.

Review the outreach letter describing the Learning Cohort.

Commitments and Cost

Participating communities must secure schools’ participation in the October 2013 administration of Gallup Student Poll, and have staff identified (including from at least one non-school partner) who will (co-)lead community conversations around the data. A $6,000 fee per community covers data enhancements and technical assistance supports. Review a timeline of key dates and considerations.

To Learn More and Apply


1- Read the overview.

2- Watch a recording of our recent informational webinar.  The presentation slides are also available.

3- Complete the application form.

Questions? Contact Ian Faigley, Senior Manager of External Affairs with the Forum for Youth Investment, at

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