Since 1989, the Commonwealth has conducted a survey of school students in the 6th, 8th, 10th and 12th grades to learn about their behavior, attitudes and knowledge concerning alcohol, tobacco, other drugs and violence. The ‘Pennsylvania Youth Survey,’ or PAYS, is sponsored and conducted every two years by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency.
The data gathered in PAYS serve two primary needs. First, the results provide school administrators, state agency directors, legislators and others with critical information concerning the changes in patterns of the use and abuse of these harmful substances and behaviors. Second, the survey assesses risk factors that are related to these behaviors and the protective factors that help guard against them. This information allows community leaders to direct prevention resources to areas where they are likely to have the greatest impact.
For a brief history on how the youth survey was developed, please visit the individual pages below by year, starting with 1989. For information about the upcoming survey, see the 2013 page.
Communities That Care - Risk and Protective Factors Scale Construction Summary
Research on the PAYS
Effects of the CTC Model in Pennsylvania on Change in Youth Risk and Problem Behaviors
CTC Impact in Pennsylvania: Findings from the 2001 and 2003 Pennsylvania Youth Survey