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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership LSP Executive Board. FROM NEET TO EET 9 th June 2009. Wirral Local Strategic Partnership.

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wirral local strategic partnership
Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Reducing the number of young people aged 16 -18 that are not in education, employment or training (NEET) is a key cross-departmental government priority and Wirral PSA (6.9% by 2010) and LAA target. NEET, as a partnership priority is also reflected in the Children and Young People’s Plan and Integrated Youth Support Strategy.

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

For all those engaged in work with children and young people the rationale for reducing NEET is simple and derives from a determination to help young people to overcome barriers to achievement, be settled, develop their skills through learning and start on a route to a fulfilling and successful adult life. Investigation of the 1970 British Birth Cohort study has shown that being NEET for six months is likely to mean that by the age of twenty one a young man is:

  • more than four times likely to be out of work
  • three times more likely to have depression and mental health issues
  • five times more likely to have a criminal record
  • six times less likely to have any qualifications

(Bridging The Gap : New opportunities for 16-18 year olds not in education, employment or training – Social Exclusion Unit 1999).

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership
  • The Wirral NEET percentage for March 2009 (latest baseline data) is 9.66%
  • NEET percentage by area at end of March 2009 (GMCP data)

This is a reduction in a year on year comparison:

March 2007 10.34%

March 2008 10.29%

March 2009 9.66%

Alongside this ‘in learning rates are at an all time high

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership
  • However the target trajectory for the NEET PSA (6.9% by 2010) is not being met
  • The pace of reduction remains a significant challenge and achievement of the stretch target is unlikely in the current economic climate (fewer employment vacancies available at present than at any corresponding point in the life of the Connexions Partnership)
  • In terms of the age breakdown a significant number of our NEET young people are in the upper age bracket and for March 2009 49% of those NEET are 18 years old
  • A significant proportion are also from vulnerable groups
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

NEET levels reducing but not quickly enough

  • There is a crucial reason for the disparity however and that is the reduction in those in employment:
  • Numbers in work based learning are reducing and locally as choice and volumes has been reduced
  • Employment with training at level 2 has reduced
  • Employment with no training has reduced
  • On the other hand our in learning rates continue to improve and compare very favourably to regional and national performance
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Wards with highest NEET levels providing 44.82% of the borough NEET

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership


Government statistics suggest that only 1% of the NEET cohort remains NEET for the period between ages 16 and 18.

September – March 2009 – 1642 joined the NEET register.

September – March 2009 – 1448 left the NEET register.

Our tracking capacity has improved and is better than regional and national benchmarks so the evidence we have is more accurate and compelling than ever. Currently we have the lowest ever levels of young people not known to the Connexions Service.

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Challenges remaining:

The challenge remains to increase the pace of the reduction in line with the trajectory toward the 2010 PSA target of 6.9% which gives us considerable distance to travel. There are also significant priority groups within the NEET group, including those with LDD, care leavers, young offenders and teen mums for whom opportunities often contract more adversely than for their peers at times of economic pressure.

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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership
  • Risks Identified:
  • Changes in economic impacting on availability of opportunities for the NEET group
  • Lack of positive action by employers which goes beyond engagement and invests in the future workforce early enough by the provision of real apprenticeship opportunities
  • Continuing high drop out and switching rates
  • LSC funding and MOG changes
  • Adult employment rates rising
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Solution focussed approaches:

  • The Borough EET Action Plan is in place which outlines partner responsibilities and contributions to achieving the NEET target
  • The Activity Agreement Pilot continues to bear fruit with clear evaluation demonstrating improved progression rates, increased employability and reduced time spent NEET (on average 60% progressing into EET which is a significant achievement with some of the most marginalised young people).
  • The Wirral Wise Programme, supported by ESF, has commenced, with 3 strands:
      • Learn Wise– preventative actions for young people in KS4
      • Stay Wise – preventative actions for young people in post 16 education and training
      • Work Wise – interventions targeted at young people who are NEET, aimed at progression via placements andwork trials
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Flexible learning opportunities

  • 14-19 Diplomas
  • Foundation Learning tier
  • Flexible start dates – FE response
  • Engaging with employers to secure high quality work experience, work related learning and apprenticeships – the Apprenticeship challenge
  • Volunteering and development opportunities
  • National quality standards for Information Advice and Guidance and local implementation plan
  • On-line 14-19 prospectus – i.choosewirral and common application process
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership


  • The September Guarantee thresholds were met in Wirral, with 94.95% of Year 11 leavers having a recorded offer of a place in Education, Employment or Training and 80.51% of 17 year olds identified for the Guarantee (inc. those young people on one year programmes, those on E2E and those young people who are NEET in April, May and June) having a recorded offer of a place in Education, Employment and Training
  • Targeted action with vulnerable young people and within NEET hotspot areas continues
  • The annual Activity Survey of Year 11 leavers indicates over 90% of the cohort in learning.
  • Teenagers can now receive text alerts for job vacancies for registering for the job scan service via www.connexionslive.com
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Wirral Local Strategic Partnership

Thank You

Howard Cooper

Director of Children’s Services


Sheila Lynch

Assistant Director (Performance) Wirral