Dr Mary Bousted: Inequality is at the heart of NEET problem

Dr Mary Bousted

MORE than a million 16 to 24-year-olds – around one in six – are considered Neet (not in education, employment or training), according to statistics published by the Department for Education.


Dr Mary Bousted, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL), said: “With the government’s current education policies it is unsurprising that there are 32,000 more 18-24 year olds in England who are not in education, employment or training than two years ago.


“Instead of doing everything possible to ensure that all young people participate and progress in education, the government has reduced access to further education by cutting funding overall and made access to higher education more expensive. It has also made it harder for disadvantaged youngsters to stay in education by scrapping the education maintenance allowance and cutting local authority funding which has left many students struggling to pay their fares to college because they are being denied subsidised transport.


“At the very least the government should speedily right the inequality in free school meals, to give disadvantaged students in sixth form colleges and further education colleges the same rights to one free nutritious meal a day as their counterparts studying at school.”



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