Making the grade: Education, the labour market and young people

Peter Dolton, Gerry Makepeace, Sandra Hutton and Rick Audas

The decisions young people make when they first become eligible to leave school are crucial to their long-term prospects, according to this new study in the Work and Opportunity series.

Those who stay on in education or quickly get work tend to move smoothly into independent adulthood.

But those leaving school at 16 without work or to join government training programmes have difficulty breaking the cycle of insecure employment, unemployment and government training initiatives. The study examines data on over 100,000 young people, collected between 1984 and 1994. It looks in particular at: performance at school; labour market outcomes; the impact of economic conditions, both locally and nationally; truancy and attitudes to school; and achieving adult independence.