The Youth Employment Service was a British government agency from the 1950s to the 1970s, aimed at school-leavers (teenagers).
From the late 1910s, many Local Education Authorities in England and Wales had set up Youth Employment Services, started by the Education (Choice of Employment) Act 1910 , for up to the age of 17. Scotland had not been allowed to do this. The Education Act 1918 allowed LEAs to Guidance to the Age of 18.
The Unemployment Insurance Act 1923 allowed LEAs to cover juveniles in an unemployment insurance scheme. In 1927 the Ministry of Labor established the National Advisory Council for Juvenile Employment.
The Employment and Training Act 1948 was passed by the Labor government of 1945-51 , and section 10 of this act established and employment advisory service for all young people under 18 who attended school. By January 1949, 43 county councils and 73 county boroughs in England and Wales, and 3 town councils and 10 county councils in Scotland had submitted plans for their youth employment services.
In the 1950s and 1960s, the service had great popular support.
It would be replaced by the late 1970s onwards by the Careers Service.
The organization (also known as the YES), set up in the district and regional centers, provided vocational guidance for people aged 16-17, many often from grammar schools . Only the most academic would be expected to graduate from the age of 18 in the 1950s, and many of those at the age of 18. The A-level had been introduced in 1951, and Higher School Certificate ; in Scotland it has been the Higherexam. In 1945 24% of those at grammar school left before the age of 16; by 1949 this had lowered to 16%. In 1945, 15% of those at school would stay until the age of 18; by 1949, this was over 20%. By 1955, around 34% of those at grammar school stayed on until 18.
In 1962, around 38% of boys found apprenticeships.
It was financed by the Ministry of Labor and local authorities.
The total cost in the early 1950s was 1.7m. In a study from 1950-3, it was found that around 1.48m school-leavers had been given advice, and 1.357m had directly found employment.
A Training Allowance Scheme had been introduced in 1947 for Youth when Training away from Home. Those working in the service are known as Youth Employment Officers; in later years, their function was largely taken over by careers advisory officers . The service is run by the Central Youth Employment Executive, composed of people from the Ministry of Labor, the Ministry of Education and the Scottish Education Department . In 1963 there were around 1,000 youth employment officers. Youth Employment Officers were trained at the Youth Employment Service Training Board.
The service had eight activities
- Contact with school – the service for school children.
- Knowledge of opportunities available – from a working knowledge of local industries
- Contact with potential school-leavers – to introduce children to the realities of going to work, and giving work-experience schemes
- Training – to discuss what course would have been appropriate for the appropriate career that had been chosen
- Review of progress – if the youngster was later unhappy in the job
- Disabled children
- Unemployment insurance and supplementary allowances
- Central Advisory Council For Education
- National Youth Employment Council , set up by the act, and appointed by the Ministry of Labor three years at a time
- Youth Opportunities Program , established by a Labor government in 1978
- Youth Training Scheme (YTS), established in 1983 by the Conservative Government of Margaret Thatcher
- National Apprenticeship Service
- The Future Development of the Youth Employment Service , 1965