Spotlight on 16-year-olds as NEETs rise and level 2 apprenticeships fall
Figures released by the Department for Education (DfE) show that the proportion of 16-year-olds that are NEET has risen (0.7 percentage points to 3.9 per cent) for the first time since the end of 2011.
Billy Camden from FE Week states this is “the first increase in this group since the government’s Raising of the Participation Age policy came into force – which means that all young people must continue in education or training to 17 from 2013 and to 18 from 2015. The rise would appear to be directly related to the number of 16-year-olds participating in level two apprenticeships.
There were two per cent fewer 16-year-olds overall in England, but the fall in apprenticeship participation was far greater at nearly 12 per cent, from 23,700 to 20,900, of which it was an 18 per cent fall at level two (from 18,100 to 14,900).”
Overall participation by 16-18 year olds in full-time education has remained relatively stable in the last year, decreasing slightly by 0.2 ppts to 70.9%. There was a slight decrease in full-time education at age 16, down 0.2 ppts to 87.0%, and a larger decrease at age 18, down 0.4 ppts to 49.6%. At age 17 however, participation in full-time education increased, up 0.3 ppts to 77.3%.
To access the Department for Education main report which include graphs and statistics:
Participation by 16-18 year olds on apprenticeships fell by 0.3 ppts to 6.4% in the last year. The largest fall was at age 16, down 0.4 ppts to 3.5% when compared to 2016. At age 17 participation on apprenticeships was down 0.3 ppts to 6.8% and at age 18 remained relatively stable with a fall of 0.2 ppts to 8.6%.
- Participation on intermediate apprenticeships (level 2) decreased by 0.4 ppts to 3.8%.
- The proportion of 16- 18 year olds participating on advanced/higher apprenticeships (level 3 or above) remained relatively stable, increasing slightly by 0.1 ppts to 2.6%. Similar trends were seen at individual ages.
Overall, the proportion of 16-18 year olds in education and apprenticeships fell by 0.3 ppts to 81.0% in 2017. At age 16 the proportion remained relatively stable, decreasing by 0.2 ppts to 93.6%. At age 17 participation increased by 0.3 ppts to 87.5%, the highest rate since consistent records began. The proportion of 18 year olds in education and apprenticeships fell by 0.7 ppts to 62.8% in 2017.
At age 18, there was a considerable increase in 2017 in the proportion of 18 year olds not in education and training (NET), up 1.3 ppts to 28.8%. However, this was off-set by an increase in the employment rate for the NET group of 1.4 ppts to 65.2%, meaning that the NEET rate at age 18 remained unchanged at 10.0%. 10 Overall, the 16-18 NEET rate has been on a downward trend since 2008, and has remained stable at 6.3% between 2016 and 2017, the lowest level since consistent records began in 1994.
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