Children and Young People's Voices Matter: progress report - March 2022

Report on progress made on the actions agreed at the fifth annual meeting of Cabinet members and children and young people on 16 March 2021.

Young people's experience of the pandemic and calls for a human rights based approach to recovery (actions 12-16)

Action 12 - Ensuring we keep children and young people's voices and rights at the heart of the nations' recovery from the pandemic so that Scotland's children and young people are not unfairly impacted.

  • We know that young people have been the most impacted by the pandemic, and that was the basis of the development of the Young Person's Guarantee. The Guarantee outlines the commitment to connect every 16 to 24 year old in Scotland to an opportunity to study; take up an apprenticeship, job or work experience; or participate in formal volunteering.

Action 13 - Ensuring children and young people are actively involved in the design of the new mental health training and learning resource, and that there is a greater focus on young people who are most at risk of developing mental health problems. We will ensure everyone who works in education and health care has access to this kind of training.

  • A new online mental health professional learning resource for all school staff was published in June 2021, to support the wellbeing of children and young people within their schools.
  • In August 2021 we published a Whole School Approach Framework for schools to utilise as they continue to support children and young people's mental health.

Action 14 - Ensuring young people's grades or lack of experience does not hold them back, and that the attainment gap does not widen. Employers and educational institutions will be advised to take into account the impact the pandemic will have on grades, work experience and other employment opportunities.

  • The first instalment of the expanded £1bn Attainment Scotland Fund was paid in the government's first 100 days of the new parliamentary term. Officials are currently working on the next phase of the Scottish Attainment Challenge which aims to improve the pace and impact of the programme and link with the Government's overall mission to tackle child poverty.

Action 15 - Better equipping Scotland's children and young people through improved Wi-fi connections, wider provision of technology for online formal and non-formal education, for extra-curricular activities, and to enable access to critical support.

  • Since the programme launch in May 2020, Connecting Scotland has brought 60,000 people online. Target groups have included low income families with children and young care leavers. Work is now underway to scope out an extension to the programme to reach 300,000 households over the course of this Parliament – helping people get the devices, data and skills to connect.

Action 16 – Reviewing the Requirements for Community Learning and Development (Scotland) Regulations 2013, and beginning work with partners, including COSLA, to determine the impact of these regulations on budget decision making, and in doing so, seek to safeguard investment in Community Learning and Development

  • The review of the Requirements for Community Learning and Development (Scotland) Regulations 2013 is anticipated to start later in 2022.



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