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Local Authority > School Evaluation & Improvement > Improvement Services > 14-19/25 > Raising Participation

Raising Participation

Raising Participation

From September 2015 all young people will be required to engage in education or training until they are 18 years old - not the school leaving age.

The purpose of raising the participation age is to provide every young person with time to develop the skills required for a successful career and working life. To find the best way for them to learn and develop their skills contact the school’s careers staff or Connexions Adviser.

There are many ways to access learning and training. They may choose a further education college, school 6th form or work based training provider. They all offer different types of qualifications, such as practical qualifications, life and work skills, foundation learning as well as a range of GCSEs, AS and A levels. Or they may prefer to gain qualifications while training with an employer.

From this summer all young people will be required to participate in education or training until the end of the academic year in which they turn 17, and from summer 2015 onwards until their 18th birthday. Participating in education or training brings benefits for young people, and also for the economy and wider society.

The Education and Skills Act 2008 legislated to raise the age of compulsory participation in education or training to the end of the academic year in which young people turn 17 in 2013 and to their 18th birthday in 2015, helping to ensure that every young person has the opportunity to gain skills and qualifications that enable them to progress to higher education, work and adult life.  The attached factsheets from the Department for Education provide more details.

Raising Participation Age: not just stying on at school but looking at all the options

Press release – RPA local search (PDF 21.8 KB)

Raising participation age leaflet (PDF 235 KB)

Duty to Secure Independent and Impartial Careers

Guidance for Young People in Schools:


Choosewalsall.com the Walsall on-line area prospectus that supports successful progression. 

Schools have been given key responsibilities in relation to careers guidance for young people and have a role to play in supporting their pupils to make well informed and realistic decisions by providing access to impartial and independent information and guidance about the range of education and training options that are most likely to help young people achieve their ambitions. This information will become increasingly important as young people will be required to participate in education or training until the end of the academic year in which they turn 17 from 2013, and to their 18th birthday from 2015.

The Education Act 2011 places schools under a duty to secure access to independent and impartial careers guidance for their pupils from September 2012. While complying with the requirement to secure careers guidance from an external source, schools will be free to make arrangements for careers guidance that fit the needs and circumstances of their pupils, and will be expected to work, as appropriate, in partnership with external and expert providers.

The Walsall on-line area prospectus – choosewalsall.com provides a single directory of this information available to all young people and is now hosted by UCAS. UCAS Progress is developing an effective, efficient and sustainable suite of tools in consultation with local authorities, providers and young people, and is designed to meet the current and evolving needs of young people and the education sector as a whole through:

  • providing a single online directory creating greater awareness of your institution and courses for current and prospective parents and students, with links to your website.
  • increasing understanding of progression options through rich media sources whilst supporting the provision of impartial IAG (Information Advice & Guidance).
  • utilising a variety of tools such as YouTube and Flickr to engage and better inform young people, which will ultimately support their decision process and increase retention rates.
  • assisting in the achievement of the Raising of the Participation Age (RPA), September Guarantee and NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) prevention.
  • providing XCRI compliant bulk course management tools help minimise errors and offer time savings
  • ‘favouriting’ courses and providers to enable young people to re-access information and share thinking and plans with IAG (information, advice and guidance) professionals, learning mentors and parents/guardians.

Choosewalsall.com received 38,657 course hits for the academic year 2010-2011 specifically for 16-19 year olds and so is clearly a valuable source of information used by young people in Walsall and essential for all providers, so that we have an up to date and accurate profile to ensure that they are able to compete in this very competitive employment market.

To support this please confirm who should be the contact for area prospectus in your institution so that information can be passed on to them and so that we can plan to meet any training needs identified.

Kerry Wootton
Raising Participation Adviser
Tel. 01922 686243
Mob: 07908211432