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New research will provide evidence of pathways taken

Posted by Community Colleges NZ on 31 August 2015 | 0 Comments

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

New research being conducted by the Collaborative for Research and Training
in Youth Health and Development
 and supported by Community Colleges
New Zealand
Unitec, the YMCA, and Ako Aotearoa will provide evidence
of the longer-term pathways for young people who have been students on the
Governm
ent’s fees-free Youth Guarantee programme.

The longitudinal study involves interviews with a cohort of students from three
programme providers - Community Colle
ges New Zealand, Unitec and the YMCA
– at several stages (entry, at graduation from their programme of study, and on
four occasions post-graduation). Interview responses will be used to provide
qualitative analysis of the pathways taken by the cohort.

Participants are asked a range of questions including whether they have
progressed to further study, gained employment, have improved mental health
and have remained out of the criminal justice system.

It will also provide information about the educational pathways and employment
of participants who have been clients of agencies such as Child, Youth
and Family.

"This research is very timely in the light of the recently-released report by the
Children’s Commissioner that reported little or no tracking for the thousand
or so young people who exit the Child, Youth and Family service each year,”
says Research Project Manager Virginia Archer.

“We know there will be evidence of where some of those young people are
ending up within our research, and it will be very interesting to see how prevalent
they are within the fees-free Youth Guarantee education sector. This kind of data
is not currently available and will provide clear, research-based information that
can inform a wide range of policy initiatives in the education and social
development sectors.

We need to know if the work we are doing with fees-free Youth Guarantee is
serving the needs of our students, particularly the five per cent of our students
who are the most vulnerable and who will potentially cost the country the most
if they end up in prison or as another long-term unemployed statistic.

This is a vital piece of research that the Government and New Zealanders as
a whole need, especially given the amount of public funds that have been invested
in the Youth Guarantee programme.”

The first round of student interviews has been completed and a set of interim
results will be publicly available next year. The project will be completed in 2019.

“We have the funding and ‘in kind’ services needed to implement the research
project through to 2017 and we are looking to the Government and other potential
funding sources for the money we need to complete the work required from
2017-2019.”

Pictured: Virginia Archer, Research Project Manager and
Manager Community College Marlborough and Nelson.