Scaling it Down? A Study to Identify how 16+ Young Offenders Across Leicestershire Engage with Education, Training or Employment

Published 17/10/2012
Type Article
Corresponding Authors Victoria Knight, De Montfort University

This paper describes research into the education, training and employment (ETE) status of young offenders in Leicestershire, England. The study uses data collated by the Youth Offending Service (YOS) of over 600 young offenders which includes offending history, sentence outcomes, disposals, gravity scores (seriousness of offences), ASSET scores (for assessing risk and need) and ETE status. The analysis confirms that around 30% -of young offenders aged 16 years or older were likely to be not in education, education, employment or training (NEET). The Youth Justice Board (England and Wales) policy demands that 90% of young offenders should be in ETE (YJB 2006). This study has uncovered a shortfall which has revealed some important continuities in the proportions of young people that disengage in ETE. The analysis outlines that the ways in which actuarial mechanisms like ASSET are currently used is not fully exploiting the potential of these kinds of assessments. Certain features of ASSET can indicate potential risks of NEET and could thus provide practitioners with early indicators to make referrals and seek out meaningful ETE. Leicestershire YOS is currently reviewing the ways in which they target, assist and support this particular cohort in response to this research.