Press release

Number of young people not in work or education in England falls to 10 year low

The number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) in England is at its lowest for a decade.

  • number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) in England is at its lowest for a decade and has fallen by 174,000 since 2010
  • long term economic plan is working as more young people enter work and training
  • government pledges to do more by creating 3 million new apprenticeships

Official figures released today (21 May 2015) show that the proportion of 16 to 24 year olds recorded as NEET in January to March 2015 fell annually and is now at the lowest comparable rate since records began in 2001.

The highest ever recorded proportion of 16 to17 year olds, more than 9 in 10, are now participating in education or training. This trend continues for 19 to 24 year olds who are NEET with the lowest comparable rate in 10 years.

With UK employment at an all-time high of 73.5%, today’s figures further demonstrate that the government’s efforts to get people off benefits and into jobs, apprenticeships and training are working.

Skills Minister Nick Boles said:

These record low rates of young people not in employment, education or training demonstrate that our economic plan is working. No young person should be left without the opportunity of a regular wage and high quality training, that’s why we will create 3 million new apprenticeships over the next 5 years.

The quarterly figures show an overall decrease across the 16 to 24 year old age group compared to the same period in 2014.

Notes to Editors

  1. Read the NEETs statistics at quarterly brief – January to March 2015.
  2. The statistics show that the proportion of:
    • 16 to 24 year olds who were NEET fell by 0.7% points to 12.3%, the lowest comparable proportion since current records began in 2001
    • 19 to 24 year olds who were NEET fell by 1.2% points to 14.7%, a reduction of 47,000
    • 16 to 18 year olds who were NEET increased by 0.3% points to 7.1%, an increase of 6,000, but remained lower than any year before 2014
  3. The government plans to invest £7 billion in 2015 to 2016 to fund education and training places for 16 to 19 year olds.
  4. BIS prioritises young adults with low level skills through its funding arrangements.
  5. BIS funding enabled 748,400 19 to 24 year olds to participate during the 2013 to 2014 academic year.