The article will explore the history of vocational services very briefly, explore recent policy shifts and ask why, despite so many shifts in policy and programme, disabled young peoples’ access to training and employment are still very limited. A reading of UK vocational and post school policy over the last ten years would lead a reasonable observer to conclude that disabled young people had never been as well supported and protected in their search for economic belonging and wellbeing. Policy has shifted towards mainstreaming and emphasised disabled peoples’ right to live ordinary lives and to realise their expectations. However, institutional discrimination, credentialism and inaccessible learning and training environments are all seen as important. Access to employment and training are two key issues for disabled young people attempting to get a foothold in contemporary society. Their social inclusion and economic standing remain closely linked to their entry to the world of paid work. Despite major policy shifts aimed at enhancing the social inclusion of disabled young people and similar efforts to join-up post school training, qualifications and employment support systems, there remain real barriers to disabled young people getting equal treatment and opportunities. This article will largely explore the vocational position of disabled young people in England, but will also draw on some key findings from Wales and Scotland which inform policy analyses in this area.
|La Nouvelle revue de l'adaptation et de la scolarisation
|Published - Jan 2010