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September Guarantee

Country of implementation
United Kingdom
General short description of the innovation
The September Guarantee was an arrangement to ensure that all 16- and 17-year-olds are offered ?by the end of September, a suitable place in education or training, including in schools, colleges or work-based training by local authorities. The Guarantee was implemented nationally in 2007 for 16-year-olds and extended to 17-year-olds in 2008. The offer had to be one of the following: a) full or part-time education in school, sixth form college, independent learning provider, or FE college; b) an apprenticeship or programme-led apprenticeship, which must include both the training element and a job or work placement, where this is a requirement of starting the apprenticeship; c) Entry to Employment (E2E) or Foundation Learning; or d) employment with training to NVQ Level 2.
Target group
Policy Field
  • social
Type of Policy
  • public
Duration of the policy
2007-2009 (in some areas, e.g. Kent, the guarantee is still in place)
Scope of innovation
  • Scope: temporary
  • Spatial coverage: national
General description of (intended) objectives and strategies
A number of objectives where linked to the September guarantee and run in parallel to other services (e.g. Connexions services). This included: reducing the number of 16-18 year olds NEET; providing a strategic framework for reducing NEET; improving data collection and sharing; targeting support for all including those most at risk; developing appropriate post 16 provision.
Nature of the innovation-short-term perspective
support young people in educational participation and training to reduce the number of NEETS during economic downturn with low private labour demand
Type of ideal-typical strategy for the innovation
  • liberalisation
Type of innovation
  • new form of policy implementation/delivery
New outputs
  • others (participation in full or part-time education)
  • services
  • training schemes
Clarification of intended mechanisms, outputs and outcomes (optional)
The Guarantee is measured on the basis of an offer of learning, and not on the take up of a learning place. This is because it is about spurring the whole system ? schools, colleges, training providers, Connexions providers and the Learning and Skills Councils - to work together to prepare, support and enable young people to make the transition.
Intended target group
Young people aged 16 to 17
Actors involved in policy-making/implementation and/or evaluation
  • agency or national social insurance body
  • citizen communities
  • municipal government
  • private for-profit organisations (commercial)
  • private not-for-profit organisations (e.g. Third Sector organisation or NGO)
Clarification of the role of various actors
The local authorities work with schools, colleges, Connexions Services and the Learning Skills Councils (LSC) area partnership team to ensure that the relevant processes are in place, and that each has a clear understanding of its responsibilities. The Connexions Service were responsible for ensuring the young people in year 11 receive the information, advice and guidance that they need to apply for post 16 Learning opportunities. The Connexions Service were also responsible for tracking and supporting them and providing statistical evidence to the LSC, who was responsible for ensuring that there is adequate and suitable provision.
Intended output
  • others (participation in full or part-time education)
  • services
  • subsidies/tax-credits
  • training schemes
Clarification of outcomes in terms of impacting resilience and labour market inclusion
The guarantee was another means to support young people in their transition from education to work and to ensure they improve their employability and labour market attachment. It put also some political pressure on local authorities and relevant services ?to make things happen? and ensure young people are offered support. / / 92.4% of 16 and 17 year olds received an offer of a place in education or training in 2012 (95.2% of 16-year-olds and 89.5% of 17-year-olds). Of the remainder, most had either chosen not to apply for education or training (for example, because they had found a job) or could not be contacted. The same data for 17 year olds leaving learning shows 79.7% to have been made an offer i.e. 195,901 young people with 7.2% not having received an offer (not ready for learning 9.6% and not recorded 3.4%) (LSC 2008). / / References: / Learning Skills Council (LSC) (2008). Delivery of the September Guarantee, Paper 67/2008. Available: /
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