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									                              Youth Matters

   Analysis of Responses to the Consultation Document


This report has been based on 1045 responses to the consultation document.

As some respondents may have offered a number of options for questions,
total percentages listed under any one question may exceed 100%.
Throughout the report, percentages are expressed as a measure of those
answering each question, not as a measure of all respondents.

The organisational breakdown of respondents was as follows:

Youth Service/Council                              222
Local Authority                                    197
Charities/Voluntary                                112
Other                                               97*
Educational Establishments                          77
Connexions                                          76
Professional working with Young People              73
Volunteer working with Young People                 51
Private Companies/Employers                         26
Health                                              23
Parent/Carer                                        21
Careers/Skills                                      20
Young Person Under 16                               20
Children and YP Strategic Partnership               11
Unions                                              11
Young Person Over 16                                 8

*Those which fell into the ‘other’ category included anonymous, individual and group
responses, museums-arts-libraries, MPs, national institutions and other associations.

The report starts with an overview, followed by a summary analysis of each
question within the consultation.
Respondents generally welcomed the Youth Matters green paper and said it
was a long awaited development on youth policy.

The majority supported the focus on greater integration of services and the
development of youth support teams, as well as co-located services offering a
range of services to young people. Many respondents said the £40 million
capital fund to develop new approaches to strategic investment in youth
facilities was insufficient. They suggested there was very little money
available for youth services at present, and were concerned that the
government expected expansion of services without providing the necessary
funding. Some respondents said there was little emphasis on health in the
document, particularly the expectations of primary care trusts (PCT). They
thought Youth Matters ignored the health service and did not state if the
‘merged funding’ streams included that going to the health service via PCTs.
Many felt the Green Paper appeared to see young people as a homogenous
group, and did not reflect the barriers young people faced through such things
as sexuality, ethnicity, religion, learning difficulties and disabilities, living in
rural or urban communities, those not in education or employment/training
runaways, and homeless young people.

Most respondents did not support the ‘carrot and stick’ approach that was
proposed in the paper, and said it would have no effect on young people who
already had a record of engaging in anti-social behaviour and crime. They felt
sanctions were unworkable, and said the emphasis should be upon positive
reinforcement rather than focusing on the negative. Many felt the green paper
adopted a ‘consumerist’ approach that failed to acknowledge the fundamental
value in young people just gaining life skills and development from being
involved in productive processes. Some respondents suggested that placing
a value on everything, including volunteering would devalue the development
tasks and satisfaction resulting from achieving intrinsic goals. The vast
majority strongly supported the emphasis on the involvement and
engagement of young people in shaping local services. However, many
respondents said there was not enough emphasis in the green paper on those
young people who were most disadvantaged, e.g. disabled young people, in
order for them to participate in shaping local services.

Most respondents, who replied to question 10a, had reservations about the
proposal of an opportunity card. Some noted that the Department for
Education and Skills (DfES) had already called for expressions of interest
from local authorities to pilot the cards, and wondered why they were being
asked to consult on it when clearly decisions had been taken prior to the end
of the consultation period. Many expressed concerns at the cost of
implementing the card nationally. Some had reservations that the opportunity
card was a ‘back door’ introduction to identity cards. Most respondents said
the withdrawal of the opportunity card would be counter productive as a
sanction. The majority of respondents had serious doubts about schools and
colleges being given responsibility for information advice and guidance (IAG)
and felt it would be difficult to maintain independence and impartiality which
was essential. Respondents were concerned that the proposals would split
the IAG service between separately commissioned ‘universal’ and ‘targeted’
services, and said there should be one commission through an integrated IAG
service specification, not two commissions. Many respondents said the
Children’s Trust was the correct place for this responsibility. Some
respondents suggested that Children’s Trusts should be called ‘Children and
Young People’s Trusts’.

Most respondents said it was crucial to set minimum standards, and to
discover ways to demonstrate how meeting these standards would help
schools and colleges to meet key performance indicators. Some thought the
proposed expectations did not cover faith or spiritual values in young people’s
lives. A substantial number of respondents strongly agreed that there should
be quality standards for IAG, and these standards must be impartial,
challenge stereotypes, and measure the quality of intervention and the
outcomes for young people in all areas of their lives. Many felt that existing
standards for careers education and guidance should be built on. Some
respondents said implementing these proposals would end the aspiration of
many people that England would move towards an all age guidance service,
as was the case for Scotland and Wales.

Most respondents welcomed the recognition that parents had a significant
influence in young people’s lives, and said that the support services needed to
engage more with parents. However, some were concerned about
confidentiality, and said that some young people may not wish their parents to
be involved or told information about them.
Q1 a)          What do you think are the most important issues facing
               young people now?

There were 787 responses to this question.

Because of the differences in society and in young people, a wide range of
issues were raised by respondents.

342 (43%) respondents said a major issue was young people being pressured
into getting involved in activities and behaviour they knew was wrong, but felt
they had to conform to so they could be accepted as part of a group. They
suggested that peer acceptance, e.g. possessing the ‘right’ things and
wearing the ‘right’ clothes was also a key issue. This was promoted by
marketing the image of young people as consumers. Bullying was also a
major concern with this group.

337 (43%) said that the most important issue for young people was about
education, and respondents raised the following concerns as examples of

       High expectation to achieve academically

       Young people had no involvement in the curriculum currently taught in

       Imposed control in schools i.e. pupil-teacher relationships, different
        learning styles required for individual young people, exclusions

       Access to further - higher education, and the debt this could create

       The transitional stages in education caused great pressure for young

       The current drive to keep young people in school longer resulted in
        financial dependency on others, and was a problem for low income

317 (40%) thought access to employment, the lack of suitable jobs, poor
quality training, and a lack of good careers advice were important issues for
young people. 303 (39%) respondents felt that today’s culture was to stay in
and watch TV, or play computer games and therefore many young people
suffered from a lack of physical exercise. They said obesity was now more
common, and young people needed access to advice and guidance on issues
such as healthy eating and keeping the body fit and healthy. Sexual health,
such as practising safe sex and teenage pregnancy were also raised as an
issue for young people.
290 (37%) respondents said there was a lack of activities outside of school,
and young people needed access to opportunities to socialise with others,
without the pressures of learning and education. Young people themselves
suggested they needed safe places to go that were inexpensive, and where
they could just ‘chill out’ with friends, or be involved in the activities that they
had decided upon. 280 (36%) suggested the availability and misuse of drugs
was a vital issue for young people, also the fear of ‘drug pushers’ around
schools and on the streets was a concern.

248 (32%) felt that financial considerations were very important to young
people. The issues put forward surrounding this subject were:

      Training allowance was not sufficient to meet needs

      Student debts, university fees, inequality of Education Maintenance

      Cost of living – i.e. housing, paying bills

      Access to benefits – and would volunteering impact on young people’s
       benefit entitlement?

      No money to pay for activities.

245 (31%) thought that one of the most important issues for young people
was family-life relationships. The following were offered as examples:

      Family breakdown – divorce

      Poor parenting which led to poorly developed life skills

      Personal relationships

      Family rejection

      Domestic violence.

234 (30%) felt alcohol abuse, and young people being able to buy alcohol
from shops without identification was a concern. 200 (25%) said young
people had to develop self esteem, confidence and identity so they could fit
into a place in society, and have a voice in their community. It was felt that
they needed to have the opportunities to develop their own powers of
independent critical thinking. 178 (23%) said that the negative portrayal of
young people as being anti-social in the media was a problem because they
were frequently and unfairly misrepresented. 151 (19%) said there was a lack
of access to guidance, advice and support, and many young people were
unaware of how to access the information that was available to them. 147
(19%) felt an issue was the lack of understanding from adults, the need to be
listened to, and have their views taken as seriously as every other member of
the community. 101 (13%) suggested that cultural awareness and citizenship
were issues important to young people.
Q1 b) How are these issues different for younger (13-16) compared to
older (17-19) teenagers?

There were 613 responses to this question.

317 (52%) respondents said that the 17 to 19 age group were affected by life
problems. This group were coming to terms with independent living, and
financially preparing to look after themselves. They were ready to explore
adult issues, and were looking to make the transition into adulthood.
268 (44%) thought the 17 to19 category required the necessary skills and
aptitude for work, and needed extensive support to achieve this.
Respondents stated that this group were more concerned with finding
employment, and accessing opportunities for the training relating to future
employment than the younger group. 231 (38%) said there was little
difference in the issues which affected young people, and that these issues
crossed age ranges. They believed that young people matured at different
stages therefore age ranges were arbitrary. They also mentioned it was more
important to look at the individual young person and the specific issues they
faced at any given time and tailor the delivery to the different ages.

158 (26%) thought that the 13 to 16 year old age range would still be
attending school, and living at home so they were more likely to be influenced
and to receive support from teachers and parents. The 17 to 19 year olds
however, were more alone and isolated, and received less support from
adults. 132 (22%) believed that the 13 to16 age group were more affected by
peer pressure, especially in relation to smoking, drinking and under age sex.
It was suggested this age group wanted to attain more of a sense of
belonging. 130 (21%) suggested the 13 to 16 group of young people were
making choices about their examinations, and felt under pressure to achieve
GCSEs, especially 5 A-C grades.

88 (14%) thought the 13 to 16 category needed good quality work placements
which related to good job opportunities. 81 (13%) said that the older group
could realise that the choices they had made earlier in their education would
not gain them the employment or the career of their choice. This would then
put them under pressure because of the lack of time they had to rectify this.
78 (13%) said that 13 to 16 year olds had to deal with parental and family
pressure, especially when there was a family breakdown such as a divorce or
a new step parent. They felt this group were living at home in a dependency
culture, relying on parents for money and transport. This in turn could result
in pressure because their parents could not afford to pay for them to take part
in activities.

49 (8%) felt that disaffection started in the 13 to16 category because of the
emotional and physical changes these young people went through at this age.
They could be distracted from learning and education by seeing older young
people being involved in experimental behaviour. 42 (7%) said that 13 to16
year olds had more time to sort out their lives and to improve themselves,
and that their choices appeared to be more flexible and liable to change.
34 (6%) thought the 13 to 16 younger age group were not mature enough to
think about their futures, because they were still essentially children.
28 (5%) felt that the 13 to 16 group of young people were easier to change,
and successful intervention at this age could help to avoid risk taking

Q2            Are there issues faced by particular groups of teenagers
              that are not addressed in this document? If so, what are

There were 774 responses to this question.

645 (83%) said yes          45 (6%) said no      84 (11%) were not sure

261 (34%) said the issues young people with special educational needs
(SEN) faced, and those with physical disabilities were not addressed in the
document. Most of these respondents also said that mental health was a
significant issue for today’s young people, and this had also been over looked
in Youth Matters. 225 (29%) thought that the document had insufficient
emphasis on homeless young people, and of the lack of affordable housing to
enable them to make the transition from living with parents and carers to living
independently. 203 (26%) felt there were specific concerns for those young
people who lived in rural areas. It was felt that the green paper did not
recognise the unique issues such as transport and the lack of facilities in rural
areas. 193 (25%) said there were particular issues surrounding racial equality
and black minority ethnic (BME) groups of young people, and how diverse
communities could achieve integration and unity. Some respondents also
suggested that asylum seekers were not addressed in the document.

119 (15%) suggested one of the most excluded and vulnerable groups of
young people not addressed in the draft were lesbian, gay or bi-sexual (LGB)
young people. These groups were seen to need specific support due to a
homophobic and heterosexist society. 103 (13%) said young people who had
caring responsibilities were totally omitted from the green paper.
101 (13%) thought the Youth Matters paper missed the opportunity to fully
investigate the issues of young people who were in care or the aftermath of
leaving care.

97 (13%) felt that the issue of skills and enterprise was weak in the green
paper. Respondents believed that many young people were not being given
sound advice in courses of study or occupations which were best suited to
their abilities. It was also suggested that young unemployed people were
unlikely to engage with their local authorities for IAG services. 79 (10%)
suggested traveller communities were not adequately addressed given that
they were high risk groups. 72 (9%) said that young people excluded from
school were not addressed in the document. 45 (6%) felt the needs of young
people who were being bullied and harassed should be recognised and dealt
Q3             Do you know of any projects or initiatives which have been
               outstandingly successful in tackling the challenges covered
               in this document? If so, please give details.

There were 644 responses to this question.

556 (86%) said yes           45 (7%) said no      43 (7%) were not sure

Respondents submitted many different successes, and these have been listed
at Annex E. The projects or initiatives that were most frequently raised were:

        123 (19%) - Youth service /projects - respondents said the youth
         service successfully tackled these issues already, and a range of youth
         service projects were identified as being good practice. These differed
         from area to area and have been captured in Annex E

        99 (15%) - Connexions - the success of Connexions partnerships was
         evidenced in the national customer satisfaction surveys carried out on
         behalf of DfES and in Ofsted inspection reports. Respondents felt that
         Connexions had significantly improved the range and quality of
         intensive support available to young people and had developed very
         effective methods of providing information, advice and guidance to all
         young people, whether in or out of school

        58 (9%) - Positive Activities for Young People (PAYP) - which provided
         high quality activities for young people at risk of offending or being
         involved in anti-social behaviour

        26 (4%) - Millennium Volunteers - an accredited programme aimed at
         young people aged 16 to 24. It was an organisation which encouraged
         young people to take part in volunteer projects in their local areas

        25 (4%) - Prince’s Trust - helped young people through training, skill
         building, business loans, grants, personal development and study
         support outside of school

        25 (4%) - E2E - was a flexible work based programme which helped to
         improve skills and career options. This was seen as a major national
         initiative which had made strong contributions to the needs of

        21 (3%) - Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme - a national award
         scheme with a four section programme with three levels, bronze, silver,
         and gold. Respondents said this award was committed to providing an
         enjoyable, challenging and rewarding programme of personal
         development for young people

        19 (3%) - Youth Offending Services -youth offending teams were
         already working with young people to prevent offending or re-offending
        and to develop a youth crime and anti-social behaviour strategy.

Q4 a)         How can we encourage young people to take their
              responsibilities seriously?

There were 663 responses to this question. Many respondents said that the
vast majority of young people already took their responsibilities very seriously,
and noted that this question presumed they did not.

426 (64%) respondents said young people had to be involved, be given real
choices, and ownership of those choices to empower them to make decisions.
They felt that young people should not be stereotyped and their views should
be listened to with less tokenism in the consultation process. 281(42%)
thought it was important to treat young people seriously. It was considered
that they should be given responsibility, and supported to understand the
consequences of their actions and decisions. Respondents also thought
young people should be encouraged to take an interest in the democratic
system and society that they lived in, to enable them to take responsibility
seriously. 271 (41%) said young people needed to understand what their
responsibilities were before they could understand why they should take them
seriously. Respondents thought young people should be consulted with, and
clear parameters of behaviour and responsibilities should be set out and
agreed between adults and young people.

233 (35%) suggested young people should be given the opportunity to be
responsible. It was thought they should be empowered to develop and run
projects, and given something they could be responsible for such as youth
and sports clubs, and as decision makers as members of their local
community. 177 (27%) said young people needed positive role models to
give them support and guidance. Respondents were of the opinion that
accepting responsibility should start early in the home, and young people
should be encouraged by parents. It was also felt that mentors, for young
people without parental support available to them, was a key way for life skills
to be communicated. 64 (10%) thought that media coverage showed
drinking, smoking and drugs as ‘normal’ life and it was important to control or
stop this image.

Q4 b)         What should the incentives be for good behaviour?

There were 550 responses to this question.

257 (47%) respondents felt a good incentive would be to praise and celebrate
good examples of how young people had taken their responsibilities seriously.
They said accreditation could be in the form of a certificate, awarded at a
celebration event, presented by someone they respected, and should be
promoted and publicised in the press. 173 (31%) thought young people
should have access to events, trips and facilities for displaying good
behaviour. Respondents suggested the facilities could include access to
extreme sports, which were not ordinarily available to young people, and the
trips could include residential experiences, or travel to foreign countries.
169 (31%) said financial reward would not instil a permanent desire to act
responsibly or to display good behaviour, and could be classed as ‘bribery’. It
was felt young people should be encouraged to see the reward as
participation in the activity, and to receive a ‘thank you’, rather than the
monetary reward approach. 100 (18%) respondents said young people
should be given increased responsibility which would give the young person a
feeling that they were respected, valued and trusted. They thought the
opportunity to take on leadership roles, or being responsible for mentoring or
peer support roles would be of particular benefit. 87 (16%) felt that
punishment and reward allowed young people to know the consequences of
their actions, and gave them clear goals for achievement.

74 (13%) observed that the green paper appeared to concentrate on those
young people who were already offending or likely to ‘get into trouble’. This
failed to reward or to acknowledge, those well behaved and well balanced
young people who did not get into trouble. 63 (11%) thought that opportunity
cards were an excellent idea as an incentive for good behaviour. It was
suggested that if the card used a points system, the points earned could be
spent to gain cheaper services, or be saved and used towards a larger
project. 49 (9%) said leisure vouchers were a good incentive, as these could
allow young people to purchase clothes, attend concerts, buy sports
equipment, and gain discounts for driving lessons etc. 48 (9%) felt the
greatest motivation to get young people involved and promote good behaviour
was financial.

Q4 c)        What sanctions should be applied for poor and disruptive

There were 608 responses to this question.

318 (52%) believed the use of sanctions to address issues of poor and
disruptive behaviour was unlikely to be successful. They felt that the focus
should be on positive behaviour and not negative. Respondents suggested
the young people who would be penalised most, were the young people most
likely to need more opportunities and positive interventions. It was felt these
sanctions would just enforce more negativity, and it would be self-defeating to
uphold them. 241 (40%) respondents thought rather than sanctioning young
people, the root cause of their poor behaviour and dissatisfaction should be
identified and addressed. Respondents believed the reasons for poor
behaviour could be linked to low self esteem, bad relationships and lack of
opportunities, and the reasons for their disruptive behaviour should be
emphasised and resolved. 165 (27%) said when sanctions became
necessary privileges such as access to activities could be withdrawn. It was
suggested that isolating young people from their peers such as applying
curfews was also an effective deterrent. However, respondents felt the
boundaries should be clear and consistent and any sanctions applied should
be equal and fair.
112 (18%) said that any exclusions and sanctions should be for a limited
timescale only. They suggested young people should be told exactly why,
and for how long, their ‘punishment’ was to be enforced, allowing them
reinstatement back to activities etc after a set period of time. 102 (17%) were
of the opinion that it was vital to involve young people in setting the standards
of poor and disruptive behaviour. Respondents considered this would allow
the sanction to be owned by the young person, and therefore they would be
more likely to accept any sanctions that were applied to them. 95 (16%)
thought there should be more rapport-building with an older peer or mentor, to
allow one to one support for a young person showing early signs of disruptive

Q4 d)         Do you know of any examples of schemes which have
              applied these kinds of incentives and sanctions effectively?

There were 167 responses to this question.

Respondents submitted many different examples, and these have been listed
at Annex F. The examples most frequently raised were:

       70 (42%) - Good youth work practice – the youth service found that
        incentives worked, but sanctions were unhelpful. Respondents
        suggested youth work accepted young people for who they were,
        respected rather than criticised them and challenged their behaviour
        rather than the person

       51 (31%) - Positive Activities for Young People (PAYP) was successful
        and had demonstrated evidence of diversionary tactics that work with
        high quality activities on offer, there were no financial incentives.
        Young people could select activities that interested and motivated
        them, and they were non-compulsory, which diminished the need for
        sanctions or incentives. In PAYP/U project withdrawal of the activity
        worked as a very strong sanction

       34 (20%) - Restorative Justice Work of youth offending teams (YOT) -
        young people come face to face with the victims of their behaviour to
        see and hear how this had impacted on them

       33 (20%) -School and formal education – successful schools use
        incentives and sanctions, and in general this worked for most young

       21 (13%) - Millennium Volunteers an organisation to encourage
        volunteering in young people

       16 (10%) - Prince’s Trust self achievement awards.
Q5            What more could be done to divert young people from risk-
              taking behaviour, like smoking, binge-drinking and volatile
              substance and illicit drugs misuse?

There were 683 responses to this question.

327 (48%) felt that the most important aspect of risk taking behaviour for
young people was access to advice, counselling and support. It was felt that
young people would experiment with substances they should not use as a
matter of course. It was suggested that the priority was to ensure they
received the information they needed to find out the risks involved, and the
consequences of their actions. 277 (41%) respondents said there must be
more preventative work in the early years with an additional positive emphasis
on a healthy lifestyle. They suggested there should be a coherent strategy for
parental support from birth. 254 (37%) believed that risk taking by young
people was part of human nature and therefore was inevitable. Respondents
suggested that young people should be directed towards informed and less
harmful risk taking activities, led by organisations that could allow them to
take controlled ‘risk’ in safe surroundings. 240 (35%) suggested young
people should be provided with more places to go such as youth clubs and
centres, which should provide alternative positive activities that kept them
interested, and away from risk taking behaviour.

190 (28%) said it would be a good idea for young people to receive
information from ex-offenders talking in schools about the dangers involved in
risk taking behaviour. It was suggested that young people were extremely
image conscious and ex-offenders would be able to emphasise the
unattractiveness and physical effects of smoking, drinking and drug and
substance misuse. 122 (18%) believed there should be stricter controls on
the sale and use of alcohol and tobacco, and tougher laws and punishment
for drug dealing and drug using. 102 (15%) said that powerful advertising on
television glamorised anti-social behaviour to young people, and this should
be stopped. Respondents thought drinking alcohol as portrayed on television,
made binge drinking exciting rather than unhealthy and anti-social. It was
also felt that the extensive media coverage of casual sex made this type of
behaviour seem normal for many young people. 93 (14%) thought there
should be more street based youth work provision to engage with young
people and develop trusting relationships.

Q6            What practical benefits and challenges will there be in
              developing an integrated youth support service?

There were 629 responses to this question.

413 (66%) said that a benefit of an integrated youth support service would be
a more co-ordinated approach. They suggested the service would be
improved by:

        A common assessment tool
      A better pooling of expertise

      Less duplication and agreed outcomes

      More joined up thinking

      Quality as opposed to quantity

      Sharing of resources and information

      Individual tailored support

      Early intervention.

293 (47%) thought a challenge would be about staffing and raised the
following issues:

      Managing the various cultures that existed within different professions
       – a cultural shift was needed to ensure that young people were at the
       centre; not the organisation

      Professional groups with different methods working effectively together
       i.e. youth service, Connexions and social services

      Providing enough staff to ensure a rapid response and early

      Motivating the workforce

      Lack of trust and relationships between agencies.

292 (46%) said training would be a challenge and raised the following issues:

      Properly trained staff were essential to deliver an integrated youth
       support service

      Workforce development was key, training was necessary so the
       service disciplines could effectively merge

      Retention of specialists working in multi-disciplinary teams

      Encourage people working with young people to acquire qualifications

      Training should be updated regularly

      There should be the same level of service anywhere in the country.

220 (35%) mentioned communication. Some respondents said
communication would be improved between professionals and organisations
by developing an integrated service, whilst others suggested that effective
sharing of information would be a challenge. Those respondents who felt
communication would be challenge, suggested information protocols would
need to be improved. They thought some organisations felt they were more
important than others, and would not share information because they had
their own ‘agendas’. 202 (32%) said the biggest challenge was the provision
of adequate funding. They felt it was vital to draw together all the funding
sources and disseminate them effectively. Respondents suggested there was
a great disparity across the country in terms of funding, especially in the
voluntary sector. 200 (32%) acknowledged the benefit would be that the
service would be a ‘one stop’ access, which would be valued by young
people. They noted there would be fewer gaps in provision and it would
prevent vulnerable young people falling through ‘the net’.

Q7           How can the Connexions brand be used to best effect
             within the reformed system?

There were 572 responses to this question.

290 (51%) respondents said the Connexions brand should be retained,
particularly because of the amount of money spent on establishing the
service. Respondents suggested this was an opportunity to develop and
advertise the brand across all the services aimed at young people. It was
also felt there was a risk that changing the brand would serve to confuse
young people and the public about its role and relationship to other services.
213 (37%) thought that Connexions should be looked at to see where it failed
and were it was successful, and then the successful parts should be used. It
was suggested that Connexions was good at providing career advice, and
respondents said if the Connexions brand was to be continued it should just
focus on providing independent careers advice and nothing else.

210 (37%) said the strength of Connexions was that it was immediately
recognised by the public and young people. They thought that young people
in particular valued and trusted the Connexions brand, and they knew where
to go, and who to go to for information and advice. 96 (17%) said that
currently the quality of provision and coverage was extremely poor in some
Connexions services and areas, and it would be better to restart with a new
name and image.

Q8           What more can we do to ensure that reformed services are
             focused on achieving the improved outcomes we all want to

There were 526 responses to this question.

272 (52%) felt that it was imperative that strong partnerships were established
and that mutual trust was built up. They said partnership working would
establish working protocols. Respondents also thought it important that the
voluntary sector was fully supported and involved, and their expertise and
experience utilised. 199 (38%) felt that clear guidance should be developed
and asked for the following to be considered:
       Ensure service providers were clear about their aims, what they were
        doing, and who for

       Guidance developed for Children’s Trust and the voluntary sector to
        enable voluntary organisations to be central to an integrated youth

       Clear lines of accountability and proper identification of roles and

       Integrated targets and performance indicators must be set.

194 (37%) said a strong focus was needed in central and local government to
provide leadership and strategy and ensure a common vision. They
suggested it was vital that the government showed its commitment to an
integrated youth support service by providing more funding and training
resources. 179 (34%) thought there should be a genuine involvement of
young people throughout, and the services subject to closer scrutiny and
evaluation by them. 177 (34%) said there was a need for regular and rigorous
monitoring, and clear sanctions must be in place if outcomes were not being

Empowering Young People: Things to do and Places to go

Q9 a)          What do you think of the emphasis in the proposals on
               empowering young people themselves to shape local

There were 826 responses to this question.

684 (83%) agreed         55 (7%) disagreed        87 (10%) were not sure

The majority of respondents fully supported the proposals to empower young
people to shape local services as long as it was real participation and
empowerment and not tokenistic.

403 (49%) said it was good that young people were being listened to and
given something positive to do. Respondents said if they were involved in
decisions about facilities for them, they would have more pride and ownership
and take more interest in making something work. 196 (24%) thought it was
important to ensure there was a clear route to involvement in shaping local
services for all young people. Some suggested adopting the ‘Hear by Right’
scheme. Respondents suggested young people would need skills and
knowledge to make informed decisions, before they could be empowered and
make their participation meaningful. 154 (19%) said dedicated resources
were needed to support young people’s participation. They thought the idea
of an ‘opportunity fund’ in each local authority which was to be spent on
projects that young people wanted was excellent.
119 (14%) thought it was important to identify ‘what was possible’ if
empowerment was to have any credibility. Respondents felt it was also
important to help young people to understand why some things would be
possible whilst others were not. 118 (14%) said it was important to ensure
that all young people were consulted, not just those who were already
motivated and articulate. Respondents believed the government should
consider in greater depth how to ensure the participation of young people
from disadvantaged or under-represented backgrounds in all areas of service
design, development delivery and evaluation. They felt it would be difficult to
see how ‘hard to reach’ young people would be engaged. 112 (14%) said
young people would be more likely to engage if the local services met their
needs, and they had been involved in shaping the service. They also noted
that the empowerment of young people could not happen without the
investment of time and support by adults who were genuinely concerned to
empower young people.

Q9 b)          What options are there for achieving this?

There were 520 responses to this question.

216 (42%) respondents said an option for young people to shape services
would be through their engagement in youth forums, parliaments and
councils. They stressed however that these groups must also have
representation from disaffected/disadvantaged young people. 207 (40%)
thought young people should be consulted. Respondents offered the
following consultation methods:

       Questionnaires

       Door to door consultation

       Consultation in schools (captive and representative audience)

       Youth Council consultation events

       e -consultation.

Respondents also suggested there was a wealth of information about
effective models and best practice in both the statutory and voluntary sectors,
and this information must be researched and drawn from inspection reports,
or from direct contact with the organisations involved.

191 (37%) suggested there should be more young people led projects, and
out of school activities that encouraged them to think for themselves, and
helped them to make choices and take on responsibility. 179 (34%) said it
was important that adults who worked with young people had the necessary
skills, knowledge and experience to relate to them and their needs
Q10 a)        What should be done centrally to support the development
              and delivery of local opportunity cards?

There were 793 responses to this question.

362 (46%) were unconvinced by the proposal to introduce an opportunity
card, suggesting this would be another thing that under-achieving young
people would fail at. Many said the card would have a national currency but
must be administered locally which could be problematic. Respondents
raised the following concerns:

      Connexions card uptake was a failure – one of the main issues
       affecting the take up and usage of the Connexions Card was the
       degree of centralisation, resulting in many of the discounts and
       opportunities being offered by national organisations that failed to meet
       local needs

      Opportunity cards would not work with disengaged young people – the
       card would most likely be used by motivated young people who were
       already participating, and it would do nothing to change the behaviour
       of the others

      Lack of access to facilities in rural areas would mean there would never
       be equality of access

      There was a danger that money currently going directly to provision,
       would be used to fund top-up payments to cards, and reduce the
       choices available to young people in their communities

      Money to administer the card would be better spent on front line

      Low income families could not afford to ‘top-up’ the card, so allowing
       parents this facility would create a greater divide between the ‘have
       and the have not’

      Lack of disabled facilities and opportunities for young people with
       disabilities. Some respondents felt opportunity cards should include an
       extra element so they could access the opportunities, e.g. provide/pay
       for a carer to go with them.

      There were a plethora of cards already on offer to young people.

304 (38%) respondents said the capital cost of the scheme was potentially
huge, and investment was vital. Respondents thought funding was needed
for start up costs, maintenance costs, installation costs, monitoring costs, and
installing readers and linking them to local data bases. 261 (33%) agreed
with the introduction of an opportunity card, and said it should be available for
use anywhere in England, and be established using the ‘Young Scot Card’ as
an example. Respondents suggested the following:
      Set national standards for delivery

      Clear guidance was required about the impact of benefits

      Young people liked the idea of the card and of receiving credits and

      Guidance was needed for local authorities with regards to the design
       and implementation of the cards

      The cards would actively involve young people in their communities.

254 (32%) were concerned that using the card to provide sanctions against
bad behaviour was flawed, and would contribute to further social exclusion.
Respondents suggested withdrawing the card as a punishment would restrict
access to positive activities that could help to rehabilitate these young people.
212 (27%) said all services should work together to develop the framework for
the opportunity card, and supported the proposal to pilot the cards in selected
local authorities. Respondents suggested using models currently in
existence, and developing a card using the best practice from these, would
create a card that met the needs of all young people. They also said market
research with young people was necessary before pushing this idea forward.

144 (18%) respondents questioned who would define ‘disruptive’ behaviour,
who would decide on the rewards and sanctions necessary, and how these
would be monitored. 142 (18%) felt the card must be advertised extensively,
and marketed to give it a positive image. 106 (13%) respondents expressed
concerns that the opportunity card could be a ‘back door’ introduction to
identity cards. Young people did not want their personal details on it and
were worried in case the card was lost or stolen.

Q10 b)        How should opportunity cards be developed so that the
              maximum number of young people can benefit?

There were 476 responses to this question.

235 (49%) respondents suggested that local opportunity cards would only
work if there were enough opportunities available for its use. Respondents
said it was essential that there were plenty of participating providers and
establishments, who offered many varied activities to ensure young people
felt there was some value in having the card. 205 (43%) supported a system
that was not linked to behavioural standards and sanctions, or with the
accrual or deduction of points. They said a credit system would be a better
approach whereby if the young person did not behave they did not receive
credits, but nothing was withdrawn. Respondents suggested the credits
should be for subsidised transport costs for rural areas, and discounts for
leisure and cultural activities.

165 (35%) said the card should be made available to all young people
regardless of their background, and the scheme should be rolled out
nationally. Respondents suggested giving the cards out in schools, and
holding events both in and out of school, so young people could learn about
them. 151 (32%) thought it was important to involve young people in the
design and usage of the opportunity card to ensure that the card was
considered useful and worth having. 42 (9%) said it would be better to
develop the Connexions card which was already established, and had huge
amounts of money spent on it, rather than setting up a new system.

Q11 a)          Which activities do you think have the most benefits for
                young people?

There were 694 responses to this question.

394 (57%) respondents said individual choice was vital, and any activity was
beneficial if it was what the young person had personally decided they wanted
to do. 283 (41%) supported the plans to increase sporting activities, and said
sport offered a wide range of beneficial participation opportunities for young
people. Respondents said there was a real opportunity in light of Olympics
2012 to increase the potential of sport and highlight the importance of
improving sports facilities and strategies. 280 (40%) thought creative
activities were of benefit to young people and these included:

      Performing arts/drama

      Music

      Expressive arts/dance

      Crafts

      Cultural activities.

182 (26%) said work related activities that led to qualifications and future
employment should be considered as a positive and motivational experience
for young people. They thought work experience promoted self reliance and
independence, and provided young people with the skills to be able to interact
with people, and form positive relationships. 143 (21%) said there was a
need to interest and involve more young people in voluntary work. 139 (20%)
felt team building activities involved young people in constructive group
interaction, and participation in collective decision making and planning. This
in turn would develop their self awareness, raise their self esteem, and teach
them the benefits of being socially responsible. 83 (12%) felt that there
should be more youth clubs and youth community centres for young people to
attend in a safe and friendly environment. 49 (7%) said there should be
activities to raise young people’s awareness of health, fitness and healthy
Q11 b)        Do the proposed national standards on activities cover the
              right areas?

There were 687 responses to this question.

222 (32%) said yes           191 (28%) said no   274 (40%) were not sure

Many respondents said the proposed national standards were clear and
appropriate. However the majority disagreed or were not sure, and their
issues and concerns are covered below.

162 (24%) thought the standards were sport focused, and there should be
more emphasis on the potential of the arts. Respondents said access to two
hours per week of cultural activity such as arts, drama, music and dance
should be specified in the way that it was for sporting activity. 153 (22%) said
the national standards were prescriptive. They suggested a wider range was
needed and should include:

      Access to transport

      Healthy food

      Health and safety

      Learning, training and work opportunities

      Cultural activities

      Transition to adulthood

      International youth work

      Access and inclusion of disabled young people.

94 (14%) asked for further clarification on some of the standards. The
following issues were raised:

      How would it be administered and monitored? Who defined
       constructive activity, who would judge whether the standards had been
       achieved, and what measures would be taken if local authorities failed
       to meet the standards?

      The emphasis appeared to be on quantity and not quality - standards
       were vague in terms of the performance indicators to be attached to
       the standards

      Two hours sporting activity per week needed defining - was this during
       school time or extra curricular?

      Further clarity was needed on ‘ambition’ as described in the document.
       It was unclear whose ‘ambition’ was being identified and whose
       ‘interests’ were served

      Clearer definition needed on terms such as ’access to’ and ‘sporting

79 (11%) hoped that the specified range of activities would be a voluntary
choice, and there would be no expectation that all young people must
participate. 71 (10%) said more emphasis should be placed on the statutory
youth service as the primary provider. It was suggested that young people
needed access to trained youth workers to help them get the most out of
activities, and felt the provision of high quality youth work support should be
part of the national standard. 58 (8%) said presently, there was a limited
range of activities for young people. In order to allow young people more
experiences, further investment was needed.

Q11 c)        Are they achievable and affordable within existing

There were 640 responses to this question.

34 (5%) said yes        427 (67%) said no         179 (28%) were not sure

The majority did not believe the national standards were affordable or
achievable within existing resources.

440 (69%) said it was imperative that there was further funding and resource.
Respondents put forward the following reasons:

      Investment was needed especially if what was on offer matched that
       anticipated under ‘Every Child Matters’

      Rural communities would not achieve the standards through existing

      Expanding services without additional investment would dilute existing

      There was considerable geographic variation in resources

      Voluntary sector and youth service were currently under resourced and
       could not provide free activities or opportunities.

Young People as Citizens: Making a Contribution

Q12           Will our proposals, taken together with those of the Russell
              Commission, lead to increased mutual respect between
              young people and others in the community?

There were 724 responses to this question.

246 (34%) said yes         100 (14%) said no         378 (52%) were not sure
Many respondents agreed that the proposals outlined in the Russell
Commission report within the green paper, should lead to an increased
mutual respect between young people and others in the community. However
the majority were unconvinced and said it was difficult to assess the likely
impact of the proposals, and time would be needed to evaluate this.

197 (27%) said there must be sufficient opportunities for young people to
volunteer and be involved in things they could relate to and see the benefit of
taking part. 175 (24%) thought that respect was a two way process and there
must be mutual respect between both young people and adults. It was
suggested that adults needed to learn to respect young people and their
diversity, just as much as young people needed to gain trust and respect from
adults. 168 (23%) thought a problem was the media, and said mutual respect
would only be achieved when the constant stream of negative news stories
was stopped, and more positive aspects reported on. Respondents said it
was extremely important to raise the profile of good and positive news stories.

116 (16%) said the proposals would need to be well managed, and the
community would need to show support to young people through its
businesses, police, social and voluntary services etc. It was felt that this
would create a community wide support service to allow young people to
increase respect and to show empathy for the communities they lived in.
Respondents thought intergenerational and cultural respect could only be
developed in a mutual environment.

99 (14%) felt this would only work if there was additional sustained funding
and resources. It was said that a major cost to volunteering was the provision
of travel expenses. 75 (10%) said the proposals depended on the quality of
staff who were driving this work forward. They said staff must have the skills
and support to carry it through to full effect. 58 (8%) thought the proposals
depended significantly on volunteering and volunteers tended to come from a
small section of society. It was thought highly unlikely that the disengaged
young person would get involved in volunteering.

Q13           What more can we do to recognise and celebrate young
              people's positive contributions to their communities?

There were 603 responses to this question.

417 (69%) respondents said there should be more public events and award
ceremonies to celebrate and recognise the constructive contributions made by
young people. 394 (65%) suggested there should be positive media
coverage, from both the local and national press. It was thought that press
stories should provide a fairer representation of young people instead of the
current trend of negative press coverage. Many said the use of celebrities
was needed to profile volunteering across the media.

135 (22%) said young people should be asked how they would like their
positive contributions recognised and celebrated, and their views should be
listened to. It was suggested young people were individuals and how their
achievements were recognised would need to have an individual meaning.
118 (20%) felt it was important to support young people and offer them
support, encouragement and praise.

Q14          Would the opportunity to earn rewards motivate young
             people to get involved in their communities?

There were 720 responses to this question.

252 (35%) said yes        152 (21%) said no         316 (44%) were not sure

There was a mixed reaction from respondents to the proposal of offering
rewards to young people for volunteering. Although many said rewards could
be a motivator, the majority felt young people should be encouraged to
volunteer for the ‘rewarding experience’ and not be ‘bribed’ into volunteering.
Respondents felt paying for what were traditionally volunteering opportunities,
would undermine the concept of active participation and the voluntary nature
of the activity, and focused the young person on money rather than an
altruistic service.

288 (40%) suggested that young people who wanted to volunteer would do so
anyway, and a reward such as money or material goods could attract young
people who would volunteer just for the financial incentives, and not because
they really wanted to participate or benefit their communities. 282 (39%) felt
young people simply liked to be praised and recognised for their efforts.
Respondents said giving verbal praise fostered self esteem and self respect in
young people. 260 (36%) said different things motivated different people and
the opportunity to earn rewards would depend on young people, and the
community they lived in. Respondents suggested the green paper did not
show a full understanding of the issues involved about motivation and
participation, and felt the document read like an adult perspective of what
young people should be doing without any assessment from young people
themselves. It was said that young people would need to be consulted to
make progress in this area.

75 (10%) said rewards could be a certificate or accreditation based on the
‘learning’ the young person had acquired through their volunteering
experiences. This accreditation could then act as ‘proof’ of the skills they
have achieved to help them gain employment in the future. 51 (7%) thought
the rewards should be in the form of vouchers or credits on the proposed
opportunity card. They said the credits should focus on access to sports, and
discounts on entertainment, clothes and in food outlets etc.
Q15          How can we ensure that young people from the diverse
             range of communities that make up today's society are
             effectively engaged by service providers?

There were 517 responses to this question.

262 (51%) respondents said it was essential that service providers ensured
their workers represented the diverse range of communities that they served
by recruiting them from the same diverse groups. They felt that staff must be
culturally competent and fully understood the needs of these diverse
communities. 217 (42%) said it was vital to ensure that the services provided
matched the diverse range of communities. It was suggested flexible and
varied provision must be developed, and services should be relevant and
easily accessible to young people, so barriers were removed for participation
from these target groups. 205 (40%) thought this could be achieved by
setting up link groups. Respondents suggested working in partnership with
local community groups, the voluntary service and the statutory service would
establish a regular dialogue and better links. 133 (26%) said that there must
be wider publicity, which could be achieved by service providers going out into
the communities to actively connect with young people and start to engage in
cross-cutting work. 24 (5%) believed that using personal advisors, or peer
mentors were good ways in which to engage young people to talk and mix
with others.

Supporting Choices: Information, Advice and Guidance

Q16          What kind of help and support is most important for young

There were 696 responses to this question.

419 (60%) respondents said it was vital that all help and support given to
young people was relevant, honest and non judgemental. 318 (46%) thought
it was important that young people had access to support and guidance at a
time and place that suited them, preferably 24/7. 296 (43%) said young
people needed a peer mentor to ensure face to face support from a skilled
and knowledgeable person, who they knew and trusted; and that the advice
was given in a safe setting. 224 (32%) felt young people needed help and
support relating to career advice and raised the following as examples:

      Qualification and career options

      Transitional support

      Access to work experience

      Post 16 opportunities in further education colleges.
197 (28%) said young people needed help on lifestyle issues and raised the
following as examples:

      Family and personal relationships

      Drug awareness - substance misuse

      Health issues including sexual health and teenage pregnancy

      Homelessness

      Access to benefits - finances.

171 (25%) thought it was extremely important that any advice given to young
people was confidential. 142 (20%) said the support should be provided by
knowledgeable staff who could identify young peoples needs, recognising the
need for specialist help from professionals when it was necessary.
91(13%) suggested that Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
was a valuable tool for providing help to young people, and advice and
guidance could be placed on websites to allow young people to access it
whenever they needed it.

Q17           How can we ensure that information, advice and guidance
              provided to young people is comprehensive, impartial and
              challenges rather than perpetuates traditional stereotypes?

There were 627 responses to this question.

307 (49%) respondents suggested that staff delivering the information advice
and guidance (IAG) service must be qualified and knowledgeable, and have
good interpersonal skills if this was to work. 263 (42%) said it was important
that those delivering the service received quality training, and there should be
continuous professional development (CPD) for guidance workers.
227 (36%) thought clear and transparent standards should be set for the
delivery and evaluation of IAG services. Respondents said it was vital that all
IAG conformed to these quality standards to ensure there were no
stereotypical expectations of young people.

207 (33%) said impartiality was best served by ensuring there was a strategy
of putting the young person first, and making sure advisers were independent
of any particular provider. Respondents felt young people should be asked to
participate in developing an IAG service, there should be regular and ongoing
consultation, and they should be listened to and their views acted on.
139 (22%) said it was important that the service was monitored and
evaluated, with follow up information and feedback from young people to
determine what worked and what did not. 124 (20%) thought IAG must be
delivered by user friendly methods, and materials must be produced which
were specific and relevant to the needs of particular groups. Respondents
suggested various media such as: videos, CD Rom, and ICT. 47 (7%) felt
there should improved financial support to enable providers to offer a more
comprehensive service. Some respondents said funding must not be
provided to organisations whose advice was biased or came from a particular

Q18          What do you think of our proposals to devolve
             responsibility for information, advice and guidance and
             guidance to children's trusts, schools and colleges?

There were 820 responses to this question.

214 (26%) agreed          252 (31%) disagreed         354 (43%) were not sure

The majority of respondents had reservations about proposals to give the
responsibility for Information Advice and Guidance (IAG) to schools and
colleges. They felt schools and colleges had a specific agenda and could
hold back information about other institutions. Those respondents who did
agree said this proposal was a good idea because there was a captive
audience, and young people knew the staff. More in-depth analysis is
provided below:

305 (37%) did not agree with devolving IAG responsibility and funding to
schools, and said they would not be impartial or confidential, and could be
biased in favour of their own institutions. Respondents gave examples of:

      Schools that had sixth forms where there could be an element of
       competition with local college provision

      Young people choosing not to use the information advice and guidance
       services in schools because of the perception that any disclosures they
       made would be reported to the head teacher, and subsequently to their

      Loss of quality management structures

      Loss of management information, labour market information and
       tracking ex pupils and students provided by the existing IAG structure

      Schools not providing the same quality and accessibility to IAG.

210 (26%) felt it would be extremely difficult to maintain independence, and
impartiality was essential, therefore the remit for IAG should be given to a
totally independent body. 187 (23%) said the most likely people in need of
IAG would be the young people not attending schools. Respondents asked
how the issues would be addressed for young people not accessing
education. They suggested Children’s Trusts must have a specific duty to
address the needs of all the young people who did not attend school or
college, especially the ‘at risk’ groups, such as young people not in education,
employment or training (NEET). 130 (16%) felt that placing the responsibility
for IAG entirely with schools would be problematic, and therefore an impartial
independent body should also be involved, ensuring schools did not have
overall responsibility. Respondents also said the perspective of employers
would be necessary for young people to receive good quality career and
labour market information.

127 (15%) supported the devolution of responsibility for information, advice
and guidance to Children’s Trusts working in partnership with schools and
colleges. However, they did not support the devolving of responsibility and
funding to schools and colleges directly. 124 (15%) said schools did not have
enough trained staff or the resource to provide the extra support and guidance
needed. Respondents thought the ‘youth offer’ would be largely done through
extended school schemes, and the role and responsibilities of head teachers
and governing bodies in delivering the offer would require clarification.

114 (14%) were concerned that schools and colleges were allowed to ‘opt out’
if they believed the Connexions service was poor. Respondents said there
would need to be clearly defined measures before school and colleges were
allowed to do this. They suggested allowing schools and colleges to ‘opt out’
could lead to fragmented services, and would not meet the standards of
impartiality. 78 (10%) felt it was appropriate for the responsibility to be
devolved to the Children’s Trust because it was a body that would bring
together all the partners responsible for delivering services to young people,
which would then provide a more coordinated approach. 44 (5%) said IAG
should be added to the curriculum as components of Personal Social Health
Citizenship Education (PSHCE) to ensure young people were offered the
chance to learn about and experience different opportunities.

Q19 a)       Do you agree that it is important to have minimum
             expectations of the information, advice and guidance
             received by young people?

There were 757 responses to this question.

686 (91%) said yes         25 (3%) said no         46 (6%) were not sure

The vast majority of respondents believed it was crucial to set minimum

207 (27%) respondents stated these expectations should be made standard
because it was very important that young people nationally received the same
quality of IAG. 134 (18%) said there should be high expectations, not just
‘minimum’. Respondents expressed concern that if the expectations were
presented as minimum, many schools could choose to restrict their provision
to these ‘minimum’ expectations. 125 (17%) were of the opinion that
minimum standards were absolutely essential. 66 (9%) believed that career
advice must improve if young people were to achieve their full potential.
43 (6%) mentioned that IAG should be standardised around the country and
then localised to provide flexibility for problems in local areas.
Q19 b)        Are the proposed expectations correct for each age group?

There were 608 responses to this question.

197 (33%) said yes         167 (27%) said no         244 (40%) were not sure

Although many respondents said the proposals were broadly correct and a
good starting point, most were unconvinced that the expectations were correct
for each age group.

164 (27%) said development was different for each young person, and age
did not equate to maturity. Respondents stated there should be more
flexibility, as age should not necessarily be the deciding factor because ability
and understanding were not age related. 78 (13%) of respondents mentioned
other age groups and expectations and suggested the following:

      Expectations should start in the primary phase i.e. year 6

      Input at age 11-12 should also include sexual relationships and health,
       drugs and alcohol abuse, appropriate to this age group

      IAG/CEG interventions at 15-16, 16 -17 and 17-18 - respondents felt
       the expectations were very vague about the support for young people
       between16 to 18

      More definition about housing needs for 16-18 age group

      More than one personal session was needed for year 9

      What about young people not in education employment or training
       (NEET) groups?

72 (12%) felt there was too much emphasis on work, education, and school,
and they were not broad enough to cover young people’s holistic needs.
Respondents highlighted the need for the expectations to cover personal,
health and lifestyle issues.

Q20 a)        Do you agree there is a case for quality standards for
              information, advice and guidance? If so, what should they

There were 745 responses to this question.

673 (90%) said yes          12 (2%) said no             60 (8%) were not sure

The vast majority of respondents said quality standards were essential in
order to ensure consistency of provision, and welcomed the emphasis on
quality standards, inspection and rigorous scrutiny. Some thought there
should be a national quality award for careers education, information advice
and guidance.
239 (32%) said there should be minimum qualifications for staff who were
delivering IAG, with on-going training to ensure quality support was
maintained. 197 (26%) felt the criteria for the standards should relate to
impartiality of information, accessibility and ensuring the advice given to
young people was up to date and accurate. 78 (10%) respondents said the
quality of careers advice was a decisive factor, and the quality standards
should demonstrate an understanding of career planning theory. 67 (9%)
stated that quality standards should cover all the advice given to young
people. 38 (5%) said lifestyle issues should be a feature of quality standards
for IAG. Those put forward by respondents were; health (including mental
and emotional welfare), diet, housing, substance abuse, education and

Q20 b)       How can they be made affordable without putting pressure
             on financial or workforce resources?

There were 389 responses to this question.

194 (50%) respondents were of the opinion that the proposals were not
affordable without additional funding. Respondents also raised the following
issues concerning funding:

      Resources would be needed for extended schools and ECM agenda

      Funding withdrawn from Connexions before any agreement was
       reached on commissioning would be disruptive and de-stabilising

      Resources should not be delegated to schools for careers advice

      National Audit Office has already reported there was insufficient
       resource allocated to the Connexions service

      Branding and opportunity cards were of no value and this funding
       should be used to improve quality.

156 (40%) said examples available already should be looked at to stop
duplication and financial pressure, these included:

      Matrix quality standard for IAG services

      Investors in people

      Adult learning inspectorate

      NVQ standards

      IAG learner support

      Connexions service

      CAF (Children’s index)
      Youth Access.

103 (26%) suggested that a lot of agencies provided IAG to varying levels,
and working together to share best practice, resources and premises would
cut down on overheads. Respondents also believed that partnership with the
voluntary sector was a strategic way forward to grow capacity and demand.
36 (9%) felt the use of modern technology should be increased, and the
internet should be used more to provide advice. Respondents suggested
websites such as the ‘Young People’s Network’ and ‘Youthnet’.

Q21          Would quality awards for IAG help to ensure high quality
             and impartiality?

There were 645 responses to this question.

340 (53%) said yes        99 (15%) said no        206 (32%) were not sure

There were mixed views on the issue of a quality award for IAG. Those
respondents who agreed felt that awards could be a useful tool to ensure
common understanding and to drive up quality and impartiality. The others
said it could become bureaucratic, all agencies did not have equal access to
funding and resources, and they were concerned about how the award would
be assessed.

136 (21%) respondents suggested the introduction of a national quality ‘kite
mark’. 75 (12%) were sceptical that an award would ensure quality and
impartiality believing that only adequate training, funding, robust quality
reviews and resources would ensure this. 59 (9%) said if quality awards were
launched then it would be essential that best practice was disseminated
across the country to drive up standards.

Q22          Do you think a 'personal health MoT' for 12-13 year olds
             would be an effective way of helping young people make a
             successful transition to the teenage years and to secondary

There were 673 responses to this question.

255 (38%) said yes       135 (20%) said no         283 (42%) were not sure

There were mixed views on the introduction of a personal health MOT for 12
to 13 year old young people. Respondents who were in favour of the MOT
suggested it could identify young people at risk and would get them into a
routine of checking their health. They suggested the MOT should be an
ongoing test, and should cover all aspects of health and not just the physical
aspects, i.e. emotional, mental, relationships and sexuality. Respondents
who disagreed or were unsure did not like the phrase ‘MOT’ and said the test:

      Was intrusive
      Was gimmicky

      Needed clarification on the nature, training and priorities for any staff
       involved in the ‘personal MOT’

      Was another test for young people to pass or fail.

204 (30%) expressed concerns that the health MOT would be resource
intensive and additional funding would be required for schools to introduce
this. Respondents also asked whose responsibility it would be to carry out the
checks i.e. education or health, and stated that schools would need help from
the support agencies to address any concerns which were raised by the MOT.
127 (19%) said the health MOT should be undertaken at an earlier age than
12 to 13, preferably at 10 to 11, because young people were maturing more
quickly. Respondents believed different young people faced different
problems at different times, so it was difficult to generalise on an age based

66 (10%) observed that the green paper failed to mention if the MOT would be
voluntary or compulsory, and were of the opinion that it should be optional in
order that young people could choose if they wanted it. 62 (9%) said the
health MOT would be a chance to ensure young people were aware of the
dangers to their health if they participated in risk taking behaviour. 34 (5%)
said a health MOT would alleviate a young person’s concerns, especially in
relation to their emotional needs and mental health issues.

All Young People Achieving: Reforming Targeted Support

Q23           Do you think there is a good case for bringing together
              within children's trusts responsibility for commissioning
              different services which provide support to young people
              with additional needs?

There were 709 responses to this question.

492 (70%) said yes           30 (4%) said no          187 (26%) were not sure

The majority of respondents agreed that children’s trusts should have this
responsibility, and said this would streamline services, improve outcomes for
young people, have a core of expertise, and there would be only one
accountable body.

245 (35%) acknowledged that there were obvious benefits to this proposal.
However they said children’s trusts would need to have clear direction and
accountability. Respondents made the following comments:

      They should have a remit of developing innovative, inclusive and
       responsive services

      Integration would be difficult and children’s trusts would need to
       manage agencies with different cultural outlooks and ways of working

      They would need to ensure that professional boundaries and
       specialisms were clear.

148 (21%) respondents suggested that resources should be ‘ring fenced’ in
order to ensure targeted and specialist services for those young people who
were in the greatest need were properly provided for. 148 (21%) said this
would provide the opportunity for better planning and more joined up
provision, preventing both duplication and vulnerable young people falling
through the gaps in the provision. 132 (19%) expressed concerns about the
commissioning process and raised the following issues:

      The commissioning process must be open and transparent, and the
       voluntary service must be included

      Commissioning decisions must be taken through partnership
       governance arrangements

      Commissioned services must make effective use of the available
       expertise and resources

      Commissioning IAG from different organisations could further weaken
       the provision for young people with additional needs

      Children’s Trusts could overlook the needs of young people and focus
       primarily on children

      A long term view must be taken.

68 (10%) said provision for young people with additional needs should be
included into existing provision, and not different services. They felt
separating universal IAG from ‘targeted support’ would lead to the
development of a two tier service which would be stigmatizing and ineffective,
re-creating the ‘gaps’ that the Connexions strategy sought to bridge. They
said there was a danger that young people with additional needs were
directed towards ‘care agencies’ rather than through the non-formal education
curriculum, and said they should not be treated as a separate group, and
must be able to access the universal service.

Q24          How can we ensure that young people facing particular
             barriers, for example those who are disabled, are effectively
             engaged by service providers?

There were 576 responses to this question.

244 (42%) respondents thought there would be training implications for staff
to ensure they had the expertise necessary to identify, and address the
barriers young people could face. 241 (42%) stated that the best way for
young people to engage in provision was to ensure there was a range of
different access routes to provision, and that physical access was made as
easy as possible. Respondents felt disabled people faced a number of
barriers in reaching access, and transport and personal care were mentioned.
215 (37%) said that the ‘Common Assessment Framework’ would identify the
needs and barriers of young people with particular needs, and service
providers should network and have a more joined up approach to ensure
these needs were met. 195 (34%) respondents felt young people should be
asked what barriers they faced so providers could understand them and work
towards breaking them down. 162 (28%) said funding should be in place to
enable young people to access the services provided. It was suggested that
some facilities needed funding to make adaptations for access. 70 (12%) felt
it was vital to involve and consult parents and carers.

Q25           How can we ensure that the new lead professional role is
              successful in co-ordinating the delivery of targeted support
              to young people who need it?

There were 573 responses to this question.

287 (50%) said the lead professional (LP) must have credibility to gain
acceptance from all service providers, developing effective working
partnerships, and managing communication and the sharing of information.
Respondents said there would need to be a lot of work done by the LP to
break down potential barriers and to build trust between professional
disciplines and across all agencies. 257 (45%) were of the opinion that
presently there were not many skilled lead professionals, and therefore
training and resources would be vital to introduce this role. 254 (44%) said
the LP must have the authority to make decisions, have transparent
accountability, and clear powers to command collaboration from all partners.
186 (32%) felt it was important that the LP had the ability to connect with
young people, otherwise the young person would find it difficult to engage
effectively, thus diminishing the benefit of this strategy. 155 (27%) said this
role should be part of the quality standards, and common standards of
professional practice must be set up to ensure a quality assurance system.

86 (15%) expressed concerns about the role of the lead professional and said
care should be taken in developing this idea. Respondents suggested that a
mechanism must be in place to resolve who would take on the ‘lead role’, and
that the LP had clear values which placed young people at the centre of the
decision making. 68 (12%) thought the concept of a lead professional role
was originally designed for the personal advisor (PA) role in Connexions.
Respondents suggested that it would save time and resource if this PA role
was developed to shape the lead professional role because of the training
they had undertaken in order to advocate and negotiate with other agencies to
get the best outcome for each individual. 56 (10%) said a problem could be
that the lead professional was given an unrealistic caseload of work, which
would prevent them from being able to carry out the intensive support work
needed for individual young people.
Q26          What more could be done to help older teenagers make a
             smooth transition to support from adult services, where
             they need them?

There were 500 responses to this question.

312 (62%) respondents said the system currently disconnected young people
quite abruptly when they reached 18, and this process must be less inflexible.
Respondents believed there should be more transitional support, with a need
to set up transition teams to help address this problem. 187 (37%) felt that
Youth Matters was relatively weak on issues around transitions into
adulthood, many believed that the way to make it easier for older teenagers to
make a smooth transition from youth support to adult services would be to
achieve greater coordination between adult support services, and those
services supporting young people. Respondents said adult and youth
services working together would aid communication, and ensure that
transition was not so sudden and not such a big change in ethos.

144 (29%) said at present there were not many transitional adult support
services to transfer young people to. Therefore respondents suggested that
the age range of the youth support service should be extended beyond 19,
because the applied distinction between young people and adults on the basis
of age was unhelpful. Respondents believed that it was important to treat
young people according to the stage they have reached rather than their age.
71 (14%) felt it was important that young people were made aware of the
services on offer and suggested having a local ‘one stop shop’ facility were
they could receive all the information they needed under one roof.
59 (12%) said there should be a national training strategy to educate service
workers about the transitional needs of young people.


Q27          At what stage(s) of their children's lives would parents find
             it most helpful to receive information about how they can
             support their teenage children?

There were 516 responses to this question.

289 (56%) respondents said there should be open access to information for
parents, ranging from birth to adulthood rather than at fixed stages.
Respondents felt that accessing information and support should be a
universal service for parents. 147 (28%) felt parents should receive
information about how to help their children from year 6 (age 10-11) in primary
school, because they thought this was when most difficulties started to arise.
110 (21%) thought the earlier a parent could receive information the better.
Some respondents suggested before children reached puberty at around the
age of nine, whilst others thought pre-school because so many of the
necessary life skills and developmental seeds were sown at this age.
95 (18%) said parents must receive information at the times of transitional
phases of their children’s lives:

      Age 11 - year 7 move into secondary education

      Age 13 - year 9 choosing GCSE subjects

      Age 15 to 16 - year 11 to consider alternatives after GCSEs

      Age 16 to 17 - year 12 to discuss possible HE choices and

Q28 a)        On which issues would parents of teenagers most like

There were 418 responses to this question.

The issues on which parents felt they would need more support were self
explanatory and are listed below:

259 (62%) Drug abuse and solvents
243 (58%) Behaviour/anger management - understanding how and why
          teenagers behaved like they did
219 (52%) Sex education - sexual relationships and sexual health/disease
185 (44%) Alcohol- under age drinking, alcohol abuse
182 (44%) Career choices - employment, training, work experience
178 (43%) Health issues - healthy lifestyle - eating, self harm, mental health
178 (43%) Further education - information on HE, college courses.

Q28 b)        How, or through whom should information be delivered?

There were 497 responses to this question.

297 (60%) respondents said information should be available from a variety of
sources in order to normalise the process of seeking advice and support.
Some of the places they suggested were:

      Children’s trusts

      Doctor’s and dentist surgeries

      Post Offices

      Libraries

      Health centres and clinics

      Youth venues and community centres

      Churches
      Chemists

      Supermarkets.

205 (41%) thought that this information should be delivered through schools
and extended schools, and further and higher education establishments.
178 (36%) said modern technology should be used to deliver information to
parents. Methods suggested were via email, text messages, through the
media, websites and parent support help lines. 106 (21%) believed staff who
worked closely with young people and families such as youth workers were
invaluable to provide information to parents.

105 (21%) thought parents should be entitled to one to one support with
professional specialist advisors. 62 (12%) said advice should be delivered
through Connexions personal advisors.

Q29          How could schools help parents remain involved with their
             teenagers' learning and future education opportunities?

There were 437 responses to this question.

309 (71%) respondents said better relationships should be built with parents,
and they should not be invited to school only when there were problems with
their child. It was suggested a culture should be developed to involve parents
more. Respondents stressed the following:

      Parents should be welcomed into school - many may have had
       negative experiences from their own school life

      Schools should treat parents as partners

      Parents should be involved in school activities

      Parents should be consulted and their views listened to

      There should be clear channels of communication to include two way

173 (40%) were of the opinion that parent teacher groups, or parent teacher
associations would involve parents in their teenager’s future learning and
education opportunities. Respondents also suggested that parent focus
groups, and consultation evenings which included their children would also
help. 127 (29%) said more information must be sent out to parents to inform
them about the programme of learning undertaken by their child and to report
on progress. 114 (26%) felt that schools must be more accommodating and
welcomed the extended schools approach of open access provision.
Respondents said extended schools provided an excellent opportunity to
provide parental support, and educational opportunities could also be
enhanced for parents in this setting.
Q30          Do you have any other general comments?

There were 605 responses to this question.

297 (49%) felt the green paper proposals were under resourced, and
respondents challenged the amount of opportunity funding that had been
made available. They said £40 million over two years was not enough to
enable local authorities to develop new approaches to strategic investment in
youth facilities. 213 (35%) suggested the green paper was an ‘urban model’
and could not be used within a rural community; they were keen to ensure
that rural issues were addressed. Respondents said access to transport and
services was a key issue for young people in rural areas.

159 (26%) supported the idea of one organisation having explicit responsibility
for the welfare of young people. They suggested that the Connexions service
had previously been given this responsibility, but Connexions had not worked
together with the youth service as a fully integrated service supporting young
people. Respondents said Youth Matters must ensure that they do become a
fully integrated youth support service. Some respondents also suggested that
consideration should be given to an integrated youth support service for
young people aged 11-19 as opposed to 13-19 so it began when they entered
secondary education. 136 (22%) thought the most important objective was to
be in touch with young people, and base the proposals around them, and not
on what adults or politicians thought they wanted.

127 (21%) raised the following issues surrounding the voluntary sector:

      Long term contracts must be given to the voluntary sector to give
       stability for staffing and planning

      The role of the voluntary sector was critical in engaging young people
       as citizens and supporting their development, it was suggested that the
       green paper made little of the benefits of engaging with this sector

      Funding would be an issue for voluntary organisations

      A credit style card would not work in the voluntary sector unless they
       were given the correct equipment. They said they would be unable to
       cope without resource to ‘scan’ the cards to allow young people free
       entrance to facilities

      Lack of voluntary sector representation on strategic partnerships.

93 (15%) asked for greater clarity and guarantees around the continuation of
the Connexions service. Respondents felt a new integrated service would
impact on the workforce currently located in Connexions. 88 (15%)
expressed concerns that large private companies would have an unfair
advantage over small voluntary organisations. They suggested it was
important to incorporate the skills and expertise of the work force currently
located in Connexions, youth services, the voluntary, community and private
sectors. 62 (10%) said the paper lacked clarity around the responsibilities of
local authorities, children’s trusts and schools, and other services such as
youth services and extended schools. Respondents said this lack of clarity
was unlikely to help local authorities to deliver services for all young people.
34 (6%) noted they had very positive experiences with local authorities and
welcomed more control being placed at that level. 34 (6%) said there would
be an ongoing need for thorough evaluation, covering all aspects of the
proposals when they are put into legislation.

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