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Adolescent Health

AH-I increase the proportion of adolescents who have had a wellness check-up in the past 12 months

This target is already achievable because from the year 2013-2016, the set target of 75.6 by 2020 has been achieved and bypassed considerably with 2016 recording 80.4.

AH-2 Increase the proportion of adolescents who participate in extracurricular and/or out-of-school activities (per cent 12-17years)

This is achievable as far as 2012; data shows 82.7 of the desired 90.6 in the target. The state is able to meet the target in 2020 comfortably as comparisons show that the proportions keep increasing.

AH-3.1 Increase the proportion of adolescents who have an adult in their lives with whom they can talk about serious problems (12-17 years)

The target set for 2020 is 83.2. In 2016, the proportion stood at 80.1. This target is achievable.

AH-3.2 Increase the proportion of parents who attend events and activities in which their adolescents participat- Adolescent Health

The set target was 90.3 and between the years 2007 to 2012, the percentage only increased by 0.5. The last recorded was 82.6 and if the increase is as slow as between 2007 and 2012, this target may not be met unless other intervention methods are introduced. Parents seem to be too busy for their children and attending their adolescent events is not a top priority like going to work.

AH-4.1 Increase the proportion of adolescents in foster care who exhibit positive early indicators of readiness for transition to adulthood.

The 2020 target is 47.1. The 2014 achievement was 45.6 and improvement of 3.2 from 2011. This target is achievable.

AH-5.1 Increase the proportion of students who graduate with a regular diploma 4 years after starting 9th grade-adolescent Health

The 2020 target is 87.1. This target is achievable because it has been rising with a steady 1 index since 2010 to the year 2014.

AH-5.2 Increase the proportion of students who are served under the individuals with Disabilities Education Act who graduate high school with a diploma

This target was already achieved in 2012. The new target needs to be set higher to improve the chances of children that are abled differently.

AH-5.3.1 Increase the proportion of 4th grade students whose reading skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade

The 2020 target is 36.3 and in 2013 it was 35.2 so by 2020 the target will have been met and by passed.

AH-5.3.2 Increase the proportion of 8th grade students whose reading skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade

The target was already achieved by the year 2013. 8th grade students seem to be taking their education seriously.

AH-5.3.3 Increase the proportion of 12th grade students whose reading skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade-adolescent Health

The set target is 38.9 and by 2013 it was already at 37.6. The education sector is surely doing something right because they are meeting their targets before time.

AH-5.4.1ncrease the proportion of 4th grade students whose mathematics skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade

At 2013, statistics revealed it was already at 41.8, the set target is achievable because it stands at 43.0

AH-5.4.2 1ncrease the proportion of 8th grade students whose mathematics skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade-adolescent Health

The set target will have been achieved before the year 2020.

AH- 5.4.3 Increase the proportion of 12th grade students whose mathematics skills are at or above the proficient achievement level for their grade

The target was 25.3 and it was met as early as 2009. I am however concerned at how low the target is set for 12th grade.

AH-5.5 Increase the proportion of adolescents who consider their school work to be meaningful and important

The 2020 target was set at 29.0 and has been fluctuating between 27 and 30 meaning that sometimes it has been achieved and sometimes it wasn’t achieved. It is possible to meet it in 2020 by encouraging adolescents to be more serious with homework and placing tight rules to ensure that they do their homework.

AH-5.6 Decrease school absenteeism among adolescents due to illness or injury

The target was 3.6 and was by passed meaning that more adolescents are attending school and not suffering more than 11 days of missed school because of an injury.

AH-6 Increase the number of schools with a school breakfast program

The set target was 75.5 and has been achieved since 2014. This is excellent because sometimes all kids don’t get enough to eat at home which may interfere with their learning.

AH- 7Reduce the proportion of adolescents who have been offered, sold, or given an illegal drug on school property

The target was 20.4 and was achieved in 2009 with no decline. This is encouraging because if they are offered illegal drugs at school it means that fellow students are the traffickers. It also means that more adolescents would feel the pressure to try out the drug because of peer pressure. The statistics are encouraging because at least at school, their risk for drug abuse is minimised.

AH-8 Increase the proportion of adolescents whose parents consider them to be safe at school-adolescent Health

The set target of 2020 is 95.0. In 2007 it was86.4 and in 2012 it was 90.9. By 2020 it will be achieved which is a good thing because parents worry about their kids all the time. In light with the recent school shootings, parents worried even more. Knowing that the government is working towards improving the situation helps ease the minds of parents.

AH-9 Increase the proportion of middle and high school that prohibit harassment based on a student’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

The target was achieved in 2016 which is a big help especially because sexual orientation in the present day is not just male or female. All students need to feel accepted regardless of their sexual orientation. Adolescents are in the stage where they are exploring their sexuality and need to feel comfortable doing so in order to feel comfortable in school.

AH-10 Reduce the proportion of public schools with a serious violent incident

As early as 2007, the target had been met which is a fresh breath of air. However, the recent school shootings might affect this target if nothing is done to salvage the situation.

AH-11.1 Reduce the rate of minor and young adult perpetration of violent crimes

The set target was 399.6 in 2008 and 2009, the target was met. However, it has been on the decline since 2010 and I am afraid that this target will not be met in 2018 if the trend goes on.

AH-11.2 Reduce the rate of minor and young adult perpetration of serious property crimes

The set target was 1374.0 and was met and exceeded in the year 2009 but has been on the decline since 2010. If this trend continues, the set target will not be met in 2020 and more youth will find themselves in the wrong side of the law.

AH-11.3 Decrease the proportion of secondary school students who report the presence of youth gangs at school during the school year-adolescent Health

The set target was 10.4 and was met in 2013 this indicates a decline in students participating in gangs to bully other students which is a good trend because in the past gangs were so terrifying that students skipped school out of fear.

AH 11.4 reduce the rate of adolescent and young adult victimization from crimes of violence

The set target was met in 2013 which is helpful because victimisation leads to the loss of self-esteem and confidence affecting the victims performance

General comment-adolescent Health

The targets set for 2020 will mostly be met with a few exceptions. The school systems and handlers of adolescents are doing a superb job at getting adolescents to do better especially within the school environment. This is important because today’s generation is tomorrow’s future and knowing that their behaviour is improving is encouragement that our future generation is safe. For the next set of targets, the government should set even higher standards and aim at achieving even better results. Adolescents are always at a tough age to deal with because they are discovering who they are and coping with the bits of responsibilities given to them. They are at risk of making bad choices and need effective timely guidance.