Press release

NEET figures continue to beat records as more young people enter education, employment and training

Statistics show that 16 to 24 year olds not in education, employment or training have fallen to record low levels compared to last year.

The proportion of 16 to 24 year olds not in education, employment or training (NEET) in England between July and September has fallen compared to the same period last year, official figures reveal today (19 November 2015).

The figures show falls across all age groups with the proportion of 16 to 24 year olds NEET down 1.6 percentage points (-103,000) compared to the same quarter last year.

Today’s figures also show that the number of 19 to 24 year olds NEET who were unemployed for more than 6 months fell by 62,000.

Business Secretary Sajid Javid welcomed the news while meeting young people at the annual Skills Show in Birmingham.

Sajid Javid said:

We are committed to helping all our young people gain the skills they need to fulfil their potential and have a successful career. Today’s figures show, once again, the excellent progress that is being made. We want to build on this good news so that more young people get the opportunity in life they deserve.

NEET figures have fallen to record low levels and the government is dedicated to continuing the progress by creating 3 million more apprenticeships by the end of this Parliament and establishing more professional and technical education opportunities. Figures published earlier this week show that there are more people doing an apprenticeship than ever before with 871,800 in the 2014 to 2015 academic year.

The Business Secretary today met young people from across the country gaining the skills they need for a successful career at the Skills Show in Birmingham. The skills and career event is the largest in the UK and attracts 75,000 visitors over its annual 3 day run. It brings employers and young people together to provide expert advice and hands-on experience to inspire them in their career choices.

The show provides a wide range of career options from engineering to creative arts, and has had a positive impact. 83% of those who attended said they were inspired to seek work experience or placements.

Notes to editors

  1. Today’s figures are available to view at NEET statistics quarterly brief: July to September 2015
  2. The figures show that the proportion of:
    • 16 to 18-year-olds who were NEET had fallen by 0.3 percentage points to 10.2%, a fall of 11,000 to the lowest July to September rate since consistent records began in 2000
    • 16 to 24-year-olds who were NEET had fallen by 1.6 percentage points to 13.8%, down 103,000 and at its lowest July to September rate since consistent records began in 2000
    • 19 to 24-year-olds who were NEET had fallen by 2.3 percentage points to 15.4%, down 92,000 to the lowest July to September rate since consistent records began in 2000
  3. The government has undertaken a number of reforms since 2010 to engage young people over the age of 16, including:
    • raising the age of participation in education or training to 18
    • improving the quality of technical and professional education so that it is increasingly seen as a proper alternative route
    • ensuring minimum standards for apprenticeships and announcing legal protection to put them on an equal footing with degrees
    • introducing degree level apprenticeships to offer in-work training with university-class qualifications
    • introducing traineeships for 16 to 24 year olds to provide them with the skills and experience they need to get apprenticeships and sustainable employment