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Healthy Youth Survey

Healthy Youth Survey gathers information on student behaviors and risks

Results of the Healthy Youth Survey are used to support our youth and reduce their risks. Every two years, school districts around the state survey students in grades six, eight, ten, and twelve on a wide variety of health topics. The survey is sponsored by the Department of Health, the Family Policy Council, and other state agencies. It asks questions that are related to students' risk of injury, health and alcohol and drug use.

Because the same survey has been administered over time, changes in attitudes and/or patterns of behavior can be observed. Any differences between school or district results and state results may also emerge.

Survey results are used by schools, the district, communities and the state and local health departments to plan and to evaluate programs to support our youth and to reduce their risks.

Survey questions

The Healthy Youth Survey questions come from several well-established surveys from across the nation and in Washington.

Question topics include:

  • Background information (age, gender, grade, race/ethnicity)
  • Feelings about school and community
  • Relationships with parents, friends, and neighbors
  • Nutrition, eating habits, and physical activity
  • Health education
  • Knowledge, attitudes about, and use of tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs
  • Behavior related to safety and feelings about safety
  • Violence-related behavior

Taking the survey

The survey is voluntary and anonymous; students may opt out of taking it. Students can skip questions and stop taking the survey at any time. Students can also excuse themselves by telling their teacher they do not want to take the survey. If students do not want to take the survey, they will be provided with an alternative activity, such as reading or working in the library.

There is no penalty for not taking part in the survey. A student's grades will not be affected.

Privacy and identity protection

Students do not write their names anywhere on the survey. There are no codes or other information to match a completed survey to a particular student. Also, no one from the school will look at the survey answers. Students put completed surveys into an envelope that is sealed before it leaves the classroom. Reports of survey results do not identify students.

Survey Results

If you have any questions about the purpose of the survey or survey procedures, please contact Department of Health, Kevin Beck, 1-877-HYS-7111, or email healthy.youth@doh.wa.gov.

Additional information about the Healthy Youth Survey can be found at www.AskHYS.net.