2014-15 is the second year of implementation of the Government’s legislation to raise the participation age of young people in education or training (RPA). Young people in the current year 12 (and below) are required to remain in full-time education or work based training until their 18th birthday.
The impact of this change is visible in both national and local statistics. Nationally, in the period Oct-Dec 2014, the 16-18 NEET rate was 7%. This is 0.6% lower the Oct-Dec figure for 2013 and the lowest at this point in the year since comparable data began. (Source: DfE NEET Quarterly Brief Oct-Dec 2014).
Locally the downward trend is even greater. For the period Oct-Dec 2014 the 16-18 NEET rate was 4.2%, This is 1.2% lower than the 2013 figure of 5.4%. (Source: Careers South West Quarterly Data reports)
The vast majority of young people chose to participate in full time education, at either school or FE college in their post 16 phase. However for the period Oct-Dec 2014, 9.3% of the young people in the year 12-14 age range were in either apprenticeship or a job with accredited training. A further 9.5% were employed but with no accredited training being delivered to them. Work is still an attractive option for a significant number of young people and the challenge is to prepare them well for the world of work (achievement of maths and English qualifications is critical) and make better paid, fully accredited training available to them via the apprenticeships programme.