Tom Wylie on ‘Youth Matters’

I heard Tom Wylie speak on “Youth Matters” (The Government Green Paper on youth) and as promised, a synopsis of what he had to say (as I understood it):
In his introduction Tom read out the result of a study into the health of young people that was published in 1905. It’s recommendations were a more or less exact match with the priorities and recommendations of “Youth Matters”
Tom used this to say there are always concerns and moral panics about young people BUT what has changed is that young people now have a much more extended transition into adulthood, the move from dependence to independence is now much more difficult.
Tom broke down Youth Matters into four chunks:
1. Things to do, places to go
The introduction of national standards affecting what will be on offer locally. The “opportunity cards” that all young people will be given.

2. Active Involvement of young people

Working within the ‘hear by right’ideas and an emphasis on volunteering
3. Information, Advice and Guidance
Accountability for advice given and Connexions are all to be moved back under local authority control
4. Reforming Targetted Support
A consolidation of funding and leadership given to local authority but with a mandate for partnership work including the voluntary sector.
Tom had worked out “five tests” of whether “Youth Matters” will work
1. Can the Goals be turned into entitlements?
2. Relevance i.e hence young people’s involvement
3. Responsibility: who has the duty to secure provision?
4. Accessibility and diversity
5. Sustainable: will it be sufficiently resourced
Tom concluded that it was not bad but these were the dangers that he believes exists …..
Young people could lose out
Youth work could decline
Vested interests block the outcomes
Opportunity cards divert resources
Smooth transitions to adult life inhibited
He also expressed concern that it seems to be focused more on 12-16’s, it doesn’t cover transitions to housing etc, it has very little on arts or PHSE BUT Massive amounts on Sport.
There’s a pdf here that give’s Tom’s own outline of the five tests.