Hello and "Shalom"!

I've got a question for anyone here who's familiar with the situation: I'm a non-Jew, but in a current WIP I've been slowly going back over (it's been on the backburner a while), I've got a Jewish teenager. He hasn't grown up in a particularly religious area, but he and his family are devout enough. They celebrate Shabbat, they attend religious gatherings often enough, etc. His father's at least nominally involved in their religious community. My teen guy's one of the main characters. He has to make an important decision along with other friends of his, and I really want his decision to reflect his faith or at least his knowledge of the scriptures of his faith.

So here's my question: my character's 17 years old. Is it common for a 17 year old guy to have an extensive knowledge of any holy works in the Jewish faith? I guess I'm trying to ask if getting teens to pursue diligent religious study in Anytown USA is really encouraged by the majority of Jewish leaders.

I know every teen will be different, every synagogue will be different, and that there's no one answer for everyone, but if anyone has any memories or inside stories about their own communities, I'd appreciate it! I just mostly don't want a Jewish teenager reading it and either rolling his/her eyes, or falling over laughing, or worse, dropping the story in disgust, or something.

Thanks.