Young people not in Education, Employment or Training : evidence from the Education Maintenance Allowance Pilots Database

The Department for Education and Skills (DfES) has commissioned further analysis of young people who become NEET (not in education, employment or training) after leaving compulsory education. This report examines quantitative data collected as part of the evaluation of the Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA), covering two cohorts of young people who completed compulsory education (Year 11) in summers 1999 and 2000. Random samples of young people from each cohort were interviewed in ten of the original EMA pilot areas and 11 control areas. The report comprises two parts: Part A uses data from the two cohorts of young people included in the first wave of interviews which were conducted face-to-face with young people and parents in 1999 for Cohort 1 and in 2000 for Cohort 2. The data include young people in both pilot and control areas, containing about 21,500 cases (unweighted) in total. Young people were interviewed in their first year following compulsory schooling and were either 16 year or 17 years of age at the time of interview. This part of the report explores attitudes and aspirations of parents of young people and of young people themselves. It also considers the level of support which parents gave to their children in their Year 11 decision making. The final section examines the extent to which young people and their parents were in agreement about aspirations and their attitudes to education, work and training. Part B exploits the longitudinal nature of the dataset by examining data from the two cohorts of young people in pilot and control areas who participated in all three survey interviews, which were conducted when the young person was approximately 16, 17 and 18 years of age. The sample size in Part B is approximately 11,700 (unweighted). This part of the report examines young people’s destinations at age 16, 17 and 18. It then considers the composition of the NEET group at ages 17 and 18, specifically considering inflows to the group. In the final section, the focus is on outflows from the NEET group, exploring young people’s destinations at age 17 and 18 by their socio-economic classification, Year 11 qualifications, gender and level of parental involvement in Year 11 decision making.