Youth Life Skills

Academic Assessment (TABE) Dates:

(8:00 A. M. Starting Time/11:30 Ending Time)

2022 Dates

 2023 Dates

August: 3, 4, 8, 17, 24, 31 January: 11, 25
September: 7, 21 February: 8, 22
October: 5, 19 March: 8, 22
November: 9, 16 April: 12, 26
December: 7, 21 May: 3


Youth Life Skills (YLS) was designed to assist in the prevention or discouragement of students leaving high school before they graduate. Youth Life Skills is an alternative to mainstream or traditional classroom structure. Youth Life Skills offers a non-traditional approach to education, focusing on the student as an individual and catching those who have fallen through the cracks. At Youth Life Skills we believe leaving school without a diploma negatively impacts the lives of individuals both their professional and personal. Youth Life Skills primary goal is to prepare students for lifetime achievement by creating an innovative and academically excellent school. Many students and parents choose Youth Life Skills because of the small class sizes, an individualized learning process that equates to positive productive and an environment conducive to each student’s learning style. Youth Life Skills acknowledges the fact that students who attend Youth Life Skills enjoy an individualized high school experience in an environment that offers: 

  • close student-teacher relationship
  • student decision-making
  • diverse curriculum
  • peer guidance & Parental involvement
  • more flexibility in academic scheduling
  • diverse curriculum built around each student’s goals, needs and learning style(s)
  • an environment where students feel engaged, empowered and challenged
  • an environment of mutual respect for every person
  • a certified High School Diploma from their home school
  • Instructional standards designed by the Indiana Department of Education and implemented by certified teachers

General Information:

  • Founded: 1995
  • Licensure: IDOE - State of Indiana
  • Accreditation: NCA CASI (North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement)
  • Professional Development: District support, conferences, seminars and online opportunities.
  • Located: 1200 South Barr Street (Anthis Career Center).
  • Enrollment: Year Round
  • Program Duration: 9 months


Students Admitted:

  • Grades: 9-12
  • School District: FWCS (Fort Wayne Community Schools)


Admission Process:

  • Determine whether Youth Life Skills would be a good fit for your son or daughter.
  • Determine whether your son or daughter is a good fit for Youth Life Skills. (We only accept students who are strongly interested in obtaining their high school diploma or credits leading to their high school diploma).
  • Contact your son or daughter’s high school guidance counselor for required documents (referral form, transcript and any specialized testing - GQE).
  • Schedule a diagnostic test to determine your son or daughter’s academic skill level. (A testing score of 7.0 or higher is preferred). Contact Youth Life Skills to obtain results of testing at (260) 467-6370.
  • Schedule an orientation and start date. (First 30 days are a probationary period to determine the student/program cohesion).



Lania - I started at Youth Life Skills my junior year of high school. Before I attended there, I was never showing up to school and just wanted to be done. I never cared for any kids or teachers at my other schools but once I went to YLS, I enjoyed being there. The teachers treated everyone like adults and their goal was getting us to graduate with good grades. I loved Youth Life Skills. I was able to get all my work done at my own pace and the teachers were always there when I needed help.  They were able to focus more on students because of the smaller number of kids in each class.  While attending YLS, I also got better grades and I had great attendance because I was so motivated to finish my work so I could graduate.  I actually enjoyed going to school. I ended up finishing school early December my senior year two weeks before winter break, and I was able to start my full-time job as a CNA at Parkview a week after finishing school. I felt so much more accomplished because before I knew about YLS I didn’t think I would finish school.  I am extremely happy I had the chance to go to an alternative school that could provide more direct help and support.

Ladell - Youth Life Skills helped me by giving me another chance at success. They gave me enough time to do so. The teachers are great people and love to help the students even when you don’t ask. All you have to do is put forth the effort.  Plus, the work space is pretty much always quiet which makes for a good learning environment.  This helped me focus on my studies and with the time they gave me to complete it, I was able to get all my work finished without worrying or stressing.  YLS gives students a chance to learn and grow on their own time. YLS is a great school for teenagers.

Noah - Last year at YLS, I was able to graduate thanks to all the amazing teachers there. It’s a wonderful program where you get to work at your own pace so you don’t get overwhelmed. If you ever need help with anything, there’s always a staff member that will help you. Thank you for helping get through my senior year. Everyone’s kind words and positive attitude always brought a smile to my face, even if I woke up not feeling very motivated. You guys are all amazing teachers and we, as students, are very lucky to have you. Thank you so very much again!

Anne W. -  Mr. Outlaw, thank you so much for your kindness and your support. You guys were truly a wonderful blessing to my family and especially my son.     

Jentry - I think that this program is great. It’s a good way to get ahead of your work and complete school early. The teachers treat everyone here the same. They help you if you need help. It’s how every other school should be.

Logan - When I first got into YLS it was like a last resort and I was nervous because my school counselor said it was strict attendance and that was a big struggle for me with all my medical problems.  I just didn’t think I would be able to do it. Thankfully all that nervousness and anxiety immediately went away on the first day. This is easily the best school experience I’ve ever attended. Everyone here is super nice and friendly.  I was in a really rough spot in my life before getting in here and every day was just stressful because I didn’t think I’d be able to graduate, but thanks to this program and the wonderful people behind it, I know for sure now that I’m going to graduate. I am so thankful that I was given the opportunity to go here.

Mitchell - I love how the courses are self-paced at Youth Life Skills. When I first came here I thought that this school would be like any other school here to ‘’help me graduate’’ but it totally wasn’t. It is small, very centered around the students, and staffed with caring teachers. I absolutely love it. It’s such a stress reliever to know that my work isn’t going to pile up on me and to know my teachers really do care about me and my personal life. The last thing would be my principal- Mr. Outlaw. That man has the biggest heart in this world. On multiple occasions, he has given me money for lunch because I didn’t have it. So pretty much this is the BEST school I have ever grown to love.

Melanie T. - Youth Life Skills has changed my life completely since 2020.  I have been at YLS for almost a year and a half. I have earned 13 credits and I am now graduating early.  This program has been amazing to me in every way.  The teachers give you the space you need, but are there when you need them. The atmosphere feels more at home than any other school has ever made me feel.  The positivity that this program has brought to my life has made me want to further my education.  I will never forget Youth Life Skills, Mr. Outlaw, and the staff.

Wayne High School - To Marc & YLS Staff, You continue to be a blessing to our students and for that, we are grateful.  We appreciate all that you do.  "You are simply THE BEST!"

Grace - I came to YLS to better my education. I love coming here because the environment is so positive. I love the fact that the teachers are always there to help you when you’re in need of help. The staff is so nice and positive which makes learning a lot more fun.  Mr. Outlaw, our principal, actually associates with students, which I believe helps them too. Most principals don’t really speak to students unless they are in trouble but he talks to you no matter what. I never liked coming to school until I came here. I think this school is a really good and positive environment. I am grateful I am able to be here and have a chance to better myself and my education.

Kayden - My experience at Youth Life Skills was enlightening. At the beginning I wasn’t so sure about the idea of leaving my friends and homeschool but over time I grew to love the new people around me. Everyone from student to teacher has a story/background that defines them into the people they are today, which is great for anyone that feels they can’t find someone that understands them. Marc Outlaw, the principal, is one person who really helped shape my future.  He’s  the one who put me on the right path of success and gratitude. I highly recommend Youth Life Skills to anyone who is ready to get a head start in the real adult world or anyone who just wants to graduate early.

Marc Outlaw
Main Office