Social Mobility

Moving between school and work / Social mobility

The House of Lords Select Committee on Social Mobility asked for information about what happens to young people between finishing school and starting work.

In particular, the Committee wanted to know:

  • Who are the young people who are aged 14-24, are working, training or studying, but who are not taking A-levels and going to university?
  • What can government and employers do to support these young people into good quality, secure employment?

What are the challenges for young women?

The job market, personal circumstances, educational achievement and quality of advice and training can all have an effect on young people’s ability to get into work and training. Being a woman brings extra difficulties.

For instance, 27% of female employees are paid below the living wage, compared to 16% of male employees.

Young women also have different concerns when it comes to apprenticeships. Women are more likely to need to meet immediate needs – including caring for family – whereas men are more likely to think long term about pay and progression.

The application process, careers advice, pay and flexibility are all issues that hold young women back from taking up rewarding apprenticeships in the same numbers as young men, with equal pay and prospects.

What does Young Women’s Trust want to happen?

  • The Government should appoint a Minister for Youth Employment
  • Data about NEETs, unemployment and economic inactivity should be published by age, gender and ethnicity to allow for consistent comparisons and accurate depictions of the situation for young women aged 16-30
  • The application process, careers advice, pay and flexibility relating to apprenticeships should be examined to ensure they meet the needs of young women


Read our consultation response