Impacts of Four Title V, Section 510 Abstinence Education Programs. Sample Characteristics


The sample characteristics of youth in each site reflected both the targeting of the programs and the communities in which youth lived (Table III.2). In the two program sites serving middle schoolers, My Choice, My Future! and ReCapturing the Vision, sample youth averaged over 18 years of age by the time of the final follow-up survey. This is considerably older than the two program sites serving upper elementary school youth, FUPTP and Teens in Control, in which sample youth averaged only 15.5 years of age. While the ReCapturing the Vision sample included only girls, reflecting the targeting of the program, the gender mix in the other three sites was fairly close to even. The race/ethnicity of youth in the study samples largely reflected their communities' composition. More than 80 percent of the youth in the My Choice, My Future! sample were white, non-Hispanic, while high proportions of youth in the other three sites were African American or Hispanic.


Table III.2.
Characteristics of the Final Analysis Sample
  My Choice, My Future!
Powhatan, VA
ReCapturing the Vision
Miami, FL
Milwaukee, WI
Teens in Control
Clarksdale, MS
All Four Sites
Age at Final Follow-Up (Mean) 18.5 18.2 15.5 15.6 16.9
Gender (Percent Female) 51 100 62 52 66
Race/Ethnicity (Percent)
   White, non-Hispanic 82 4 2 0 22
   African American, non-Hispanic 11 63 76 87 59
   Hispanic 3 20 7 7 9
   Other 4 13 15 6 9
Baseline Family Situation (Percent)
   Parents married 67 34 26 31 39
   Has a mother figure 98 90 93 97 95
   Has a father figure 94 81 81 92 87
   Unmarried sister got pregnant 2 15 17 15 12
   Sibling dropped out of school 2 7 12 11 8
Sample Size 448 480 414 715 2,057
Source: Wave 1 Survey of Teen Activities and Attitudes (Mathematica Policy Research, Inc., 1999) administered at or near the time youth enrolled in the Title V, Section 510 Abstinence Education Program study sample.

Note: Data shown are weighted means.

Youth in the study sample come from backgrounds that put them at relatively high risk of having sexual intercourse at an early age. With the exception of My Choice, My Future!, one third or fewer of the sample youth in each site reported at baseline having parents who were married. They also reported relatively high rates of life stressors, such as sisters getting pregnant or siblings dropping out of school. Moreover, although almost all youth reported that they had a mother figure (95 percent), only four out of every five youth in the Recapturing the Vision and FUPTP samples reported having a father figure.

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