Related to: Employment and Economic Activity, Economic Growth and Business Start-Ups, Students, Education, Children and Young People, Wellbeing

Key Facts:

  • 3.5% of 16-18 year olds were NEET in 2014 in Bath and North East Somerset
  • 0.9% reduction in NEET 16-18 proportion from 2013 and places B&NES in the second quintile nationally
  • 4 of the 7 NEET scorecard indicators place B&NES in the bottom quintile nationally

The acronym NEET describes the group of young people aged 16-19 who are Not in Education, Employment or Training. On the contrary, young people within the EET group, are engaged in Education, Employment or Training.

NEET description

The young people who populate this group can join or leave at any time; therefore the figures can change on a daily basis. A young person may be in the NEET group for a few days or several months depending on their circumstances. It is a priority for the government to reduce the levels of NEET in the UK as high levels can co-relate to lower standards of living in later life, teenage parenthood, low income and unemployment.

What does the data say?

Unicef’s 2013 NEET rates in rich countries comparative overview 1

In Unicef’s 2013 NEET rates in rich countries comparative overview, Unicef compares 29 of the world’s most advanced economies.

In all countries, NEET rates are affected by economic conditions and employment opportunities as well as by the effectiveness of education systems in preparing young people for the transition to work. Equally obviously, a high NEET rate represents a threat to the present and future well-being of young adults, a disincentive to those still in the education system, and a waste of educational investment and human resources. Research in different countries has also shown associations between NEET status and mental health problems, drug abuse, involvement in crime, and long-term unemployment and welfare dependence.

According to Unicef’s report the UK’s NEET rate is just over 9%, and is in the bottom third of the table, where the countries are with the highest NEET rates. At the top of the table, Denmark, Norway and Slovenia have NEET rates below 3%. At the foot of the table, Ireland, Italy and Spain have NEET rates of more than 10%.

It is important to note that one of the limitations of these league tables is that internationally comparable data on children’s lives is not sufficiently timely. Between the collection of data in a wide variety of different settings and their publication in quality-controlled, internationally comparable form, the time-lag is typically two to three years. This means that most of the statistics on child well-being used in this report, though based on the latest available data, apply to the period 2009–2010.

NEET performance in Bath and North East Somerset in 2014 2

In 2014, 3.5% of 16 to 18 year olds in Bath and North East Somerset were NEET, a 0.9% reduction from 2013. This is below the national figure of 4.7%.

% of 16-18 yo NEETNational Quintile
Bath and North East Somerset3.52
North Somerset3.11
South Gloucester3.01

Table 1: % of 16-18 year old NEETs nationally, for B&NES and neighbouring authorities. This data is for the end of 2014 and is an average for November 2014, December 2014 and January 2015.

The 16-18 NEET figure (averaged for 3 months at the end of 2014) puts B&NES 1.2% below the England average and in the second quintile nationally (see table 1). This compares favourably to neighbouring authorities.

From 2013-2014 there has also been a 0.6% increase in the % of 19 year olds acheiving level 3 (NVQ) to 60.1% in B&NES, above the national figure of 57%.

In contrast to these headlines, 4 of the 7 scorecard indicators show a significant drop in performance in B&NEs in 2014 (table 2);

Performance Measures


Quintile Position






% of 16-17 year olds made offer of an education place under Sept Guarantee






% of 16-18 year olds who activity is known to the local authority






% of 16-18 year old NEET re-engaging in EET






% of 16-17 year olds participating in education and training






Table 2: B&NES NEET scorecard indicators showing performance drops from 2013 to 2014. Note: does not take into account data collection issues and additional context.

What does the community say?

Children and Young People Plan consultation (2010): It is a priority to support all children and young people to engage in employment, education and training from 16-19, including increases in:

  • work place skills
  • job placements
  • diplomas
  • opportunities for disabled young people
  • Highlighting the importance of volunteering
  • The transferability of CRB’s (remove obstacles)

And the importance of access to a programme of activities to support employability3

Are we meeting the needs?

Connexions Advisers continue to regularly contact and support all young people who are NEET, with the aim of supporting them to progress on to the education and training opportunities available

We continue to work in partnership with providers and the Local Authority (as part of the area ‘Into EET’ panel) to review and develop provision. There are now a number of programmes available for NEET young people in B&NES.

Is should be noted that significant numbers of our NEET young people are on part time engagement or ‘personal development’ programmes.  Although these young people still appear in the NEET cohort, they are on the first step back towards re-engaging with learning or training.

Connexions has coordinated the Government’s September Guarantee on behalf of the Local Authority, which involves gathering and recording information on all education or training offers made to year 11 and 12  leavers in the B&NES area, and supporting any young people not holding an offer for September 2012. 

By the end of September 2013, 98.3% of year 11 students had had an offer of education or training (2196 offers made). This figure is an increase from 97.3% as of September 2012. This now exceeds the LA target of 97.5%.The number of no offers has also decreased from 37 in 2012 to 27 in 2013. The offer rate for year 12 students has remained stable at ~92% over the same period.