To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the findings of Adoption UK’s Adoption Barometer Report 2022 on the proportion of 16 to 25 year olds who were not in education, employment, or training at the end of 2021; and what plans he has to increase the impact of the Pupil Premium Plus funding on the outcomes of previously looked after children.
At the end of 2021, 10.5% of 16 to 24-year-olds were not in education, employment or training (NEET). This is the lowest percentage on record. Local authorities have a statutory duty to identify and support young people who are NEET. Under the September Guarantee, all 16 and 17-year-olds are entitled to an offer of a suitable place in education or training, regardless of qualifications gained.
A range of provision is available for young people aged 16 to 24 to equip them with the skills and experience they need to progress. The government’s Plan for Jobs includes a range of joined-up support to young people to help minimise time spent NEET, such as Youth Hubs and traineeships. These prepare young people for apprenticeships and work. Additionally, supported internships, which offer tailored support for young people with special education needs and disabilities.
Previously looked-after children attract pupil premium plus funding, or £2,410 per child per year in 2022/23, which is managed by the child’s school. The ‘Using Pupil Premium’ guidance supports school leaders to use their funding effectively and explains that schools must ensure they consider the specific needs of previously looked-after children. There is also statutory guidance for designated teachers that includes information on both the use and management of the funding. The guidance is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/designated-teacher-for-looked-after-children.