Magazine article Public Finance

Youth Aspirations to Form Core of Government Social Policy

Magazine article Public Finance

Youth Aspirations to Form Core of Government Social Policy

Article excerpt

Refocusing public services to raise the aspirations of young people in deprived communities will form a major part of government social policy in 2009, according to the Cabinet Office.

An analysis of evidence and social policy carried out by the Cabinet Offices Social Exclusion Task Force was published on December 16. It will be used to create policy recommendations in a social mobility white paper to be published in 2009.

Aspirations and attainment in deprived communities, produced with the Department for Children, Schools and Families and the Department for Communities and Local Government, identified community characteristics' associated with low aspirations. It said 11-14 years was a crucial age, during which 'young people form solid aspirations that inform their future life choices and outcomes'.

The report said parents were the most important influence on children in this respect, but that young people and their parents were also influenced by those around them and places where they live.

White boys had the lowest educational aspirations, and attainment among this group was rising more slowly than in most other ethnic groups, the report said. "Many young people wanted to follow the life and career choices of the people around them. …

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