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Slice Of Cash For Teenage Careers Help

A successful careers scheme aimed at teenagers in Coventry and Warwickshire has been awarded £6.5m to increase its services.

Connexions has been set up to encourage 13 to 19-year-olds to stay in education and training, and to help them prepare for the transition to work and adult life.

Sixteen partnerships in England have been picked to receive the funding, with the rest of the country gradually becoming involved. Coventry and Warwickshire has been given an increase of £2.5m.

Ursula Russell, Chair of the Careers Service National Association and Chair of Coventry and Warwickshire Connexions pilot said:

"You can't give young people a good service unless you join up. This is a wonderful opportunity to create a network, where the net is so small that no young person falls through.

“The challenge is to come up with completely new models to deliver the service and the new guidance will help partnerships deliver that vision."

David Blunkett, Secretary of State for Education and Employment, said:

"Connexions is designed to improve significantly the advice available to all young people who are considering what to do in later life.

"It will provide an improved universal careers service and will support young people in schools and colleges as they make decisions about their future.

"We are ensuring that Connexions is well funded to get off to the best possible start. All teenagers will have access to Connexions, whether they are at school, in further education, in or out of work.

"There will be extra support for those young people who find it difficult to use the usual sources of advice and have particular needs. All young people who want such support will have access to a Personal Advisor who will assess their individual needs and help them access specialist services.

"These will range from support for homeless young people, to drug treatment provision, and services for those leaving care. We are not prepared to tolerate a lost generation of young people outside education, training or work."

Mr Blunkett added that young people will be involved in designing and planning a service that meets their needs following successful experiments in parts of the country including Coventry.

He said:

"This should help keep young people in education and training. By introducing younger teenagers to Connexions and providing additional support in schools alongside learning mentors, teachers are being increasingly enabled to focus more on teaching rather than being social workers.”
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CWN / Politics / Government / 23 Oct 00

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