Developing the young workforce: fifth annual progress report 2018-2019

Fifth annual report of developing the young workforce covers academic year 2018 to 2019 and highlights early progress made in the first part of academic year 2019-2020.

Prologue: #MyLearnerJourney – Promoting all pathways

Thanks to Young Scot – the national information and citizenship organisation for 11-26 year olds – young people continue to be at the heart of the programme. The voice of children and young people lies at the heart of the strategy.

Over the last year, Young Scot has brought together young people from across Scotland to gather first hand experiences of education and training. Groups of young people met throughout the year to explore different learner journeys and the way in which education and skills are provided and promoted in Scotland

To deepen their knowledge they gathered opinions and experiences from other young people along with educators, stakeholders and policymakers. These discussions provided the them with opportunity to challenge the system and start to build solutions for any identified issues by having open discussions with other young people and decision-makers.

Creating the conditions for success

The groups undertook a range of engagements with schools, colleges, third sector organisations and agencies working with young people. This allowed them to understand the challenges and opportunities within education services. It also helped them to understand the variety of barriers that exist for young people from different circumstances in accessing education, and what an improved system would feel like for them.

The outputs gained from these engagements, along with those from an earlier co-design stage, allowed the group to start developing messages to promote all pathways available to young people and explored ideas for a shared vision for education.

Young people then worked to develop these ideas into a visual campaign.

Considering proposed approaches

The group formed a communication working group with Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework, YouthLink Scotland and Skills Development Scotland. The group considered the emerging themes and ideas and tested these with young people, educators, policymakers, parents, careers advisors and other stakeholders, this included:

  • Challenging employers and teachers to promote all routes/pathways;
  • Looking at teacher and youth work training in education;
  • Developing a whole system approach;
  • More advice from earlier on (CIAG, mental health, financial and others);
  • Promoting all pathways, and not just one – equal mix include MAs, colleges etc;
  • Promoting the benefits of different modes and styles of learning;
  • Preparing people for their environment as well as their academic pursuits;
  • Building messaging around skills and achievements earlier in school;
  • Including parents and families in the conversation throughout.

Next steps

We will continue to work with young people and stakeholders during 2020 to develop and launch a national communications campaign to promote wider achievement and the learner journey more broadly.

Case study: Getting the message

#MyLearnerJourney social media campaign

During the summer, the Scottish Government worked with Young Scot and a range of partners across education to develop a campaign to promote and celebrate the achievements of all our young people and their journeys or pathways.

As part of this, a social media campaign was established, #MyLearnerJourney, running from 15 July and culminating in a Celebration Event on 6 August, the SQA school exam results day.

#MyLearnerJourney aimed to:

  • Creatively highlight the range of pathways available to young people, through showcasing and celebrating young people's achievements across a range of awards and qualifications, not just those certificated on Results Day;
  • Showcase examples where educational settings are providing a diverse Senior Phase offering for learners, tailored to their needs and aspirations;
  • Emphasise that the purpose of the Senior Phase curriculum is to; provide young people with the skills, knowledge and experiences that will prepare them for their future; and the best possible opportunity to fulfil their potential;
  • Achieve better informed and a more balanced media coverage on SQA Results Day which better reflects the Scottish Government's policy ambitions to ensure our young people secure positive destinations which are right for them.

Agreeing key messages up front was central to the success of the campaign. These key messages will form the basis of our approach to a national communications campaign during 2020. The key messages were:

  • There is no wrong pathway for our young people; everyone's learner journey is different;
  • School is not just about attaining the highest level of qualifications but also receiving the best possible educational experience;
  • Our curriculum is designed to support a wide range of innovative and flexible routes for young people – ensuring they can become successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors throughout their lives;
  • Increased collaboration between industry and education means the routes into employment available are the most diverse they have ever been and the uptake in vocational qualifications has increased substantially year on year.

This year's Result's Day Celebration Event, hosted by Forth Valley College, showcased the diversity of our young people and the many different routes they choose to take.

Our results

The #MyLearnerJourney campaign delivered positive results, both from partners and media outlets.

Over a short period of time we were able to measure the impact of this activity, including:

  • A significant increase to our followers, engagements and impressions on the same time period last year;
  • #MyLearnerJourney was ninth in trending charts for Glasgow and Edinburgh throughout results day itself;
  • 450,521 impressions (the number of times #MyLearnerJourney appeared on someone's Twitter timeline) from 15 July through to August.

Partnership working underpins our approach

To ensure we captured a diverse range of messaging, young people from Young Scot, YouthLink Scotland, Colleges, Skills Development Scotland and the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership participated in this work.

We want to take this opportunity to thank partners for their contribution and their commitment to this work and look forward to continuing this in the year ahead.



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