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Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg backs innovative NEET programme

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Nick Clegg: "By funding schemes like this, we can see what works and help even more young people in future."

The Deputy Prime Minister today backed the expansion of a programme to significantly reduce the chances of disadvantaged young people from becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training).

ThinkForward intervenes early to give struggling students the skills, characteristics and contacts they’ll need to make a successful move from education into work. Developed by the Private Equity Foundation, ThinkForward now intends to build on a successful pilot and reduce the number of NEET young people in the Shoreditch area of London, which has a child poverty rate of 75 per cent, by 50 per cent by 2016.

The future aim is to roll-out the programme to all schools with high levels of disadvantage or low-achieving young people.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg this morning visited a school in East London to hear first hand how a group of 15-year-olds are benefitting from the programme.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:

These are impressive results showing how helping young people early on can change the course of their lives from being out of work or training to being on track for a great career. For too many young people, opportunities are out of reach and their chances are hampered for reasons as simple as the street they’re growing up on. Employers, communities and voluntary organisations all have a part to play in narrowing this gap. ThinkForward is showing just what can be done and I congratulate it on the work it’s achieved so far.

The scheme goes hand in hand with the Government’s efforts to reduce the number of NEETs through the Youth Contract. By funding schemes like this, we can see what works and help even more young people in future.

Read the full press release on the Private Equity Foundation website.