The Raising of the Participation Age means that all young people will continue in education or training to 17 from 2013 and to 18 from 2015. This will be the first time in nearly forty years that the education leaving age has been raised.
The plan brings together key commitments from recent Departmental reports and strategies and signals the next steps required in preparing for successful delivery of full participation.
There is a lot to be done over the next four years. Boosted by the impetus of the September Guarantee, many local authorities and their partners have already driven up participation rates. The DCSF will shortly be publishing their strategy to increase the proportion of 16-24 year olds in education, employment or training to continue the immediate focus on this.
The current economic picture makes it imperative to link local NEET strategies with an understanding of the group of young people in employment without accredited training. And local areas working with schools also need to improve the experiences of the young people in secondary schools now – in Years 7 and 8 – who will be the first to be affected by raising the leaving age.
The Plan is available at: www.dcsf.gov.uk/14-19/rpa