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Youth Coaching Scheme

Good practice

Description

In Austria, the Youth Coaching Scheme offers high quality coaching and input from other services to ensure participants are provided with support to meet their individual needs.

Beneficiaries

  • All learners during their 9th year at school (last year of compulsory school education).
  • Learners at any school type at risk of dropping out, early school leavers, and those “Not in Education, Employment or Training” (NEETs) up to the age of 19.
  • Learners with special education needs or disabilities up to the age of 24.
  • Learners with impairments.
  • Learners from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Countries

Type of policy/initiative

Prevention
Intervention

Preventative/Intervention

Level of implementation / Scope

National

Stage of implementation

Mainstream. Pilot started in 2012, and national rollout since 2013. The new, nation-wide funding period will be from 2016-20.

Aims of policy/initiative

The measure aims to keep/re-integrate young learners up to the age of 19 in the education and training system on a lasting/sustainable basis.

Features and types of activities implemented

The measure was designed by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs in 2012 based on an evaluation of the 'Clearing' measure, targeting learners with special needs and disabilities.

The coaching process is divided into 4 steps:

  • Make contact with youth who at the age of 18 have yet to complete compulsory education or training.
  • Initial meeting for general counseling.
  • In-depth counseling, including targeted vocational counseling, support to individual decision-making processes, and arranging access to other support measures.
  • More intensive coaching for those who require it

Coaching is based on a case-management approach which foresees that:

  • one coach is responsible for the entire process
  • the coach will build upon the existing strengths of the young adult
  • parents/teachers are involved in the process
  • new measures are suggested

Furthermore, young adults participate on a voluntary basis and do not need approval of their parents. Gender and diversity mainstreaming are also implemented in the concept.

Resources

Funding is guaranteed until at least 2020, when the next call for projects will be issued.

Evaluation of the measure

The pilot phase was subject to an external evaluation in 2013 which had been designed to accompany the measure from the outset by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. The evaluation was based on qualitative interviews which sought to gather information regarding views on youth coaching. A quantitative survey of coaching providers and an analysis of the monitoring data were also conducted.

Moreover, an effect analysis was conducted.

Evidence of effectiveness of the measure

According to the evaluation, about 87% of schools that implemented youth coaching in 2012 agreed that youth coaching made a significant contribution to dropout prevention. Furthermore, 85% of participants had developed clear goals during the coaching (not necessarily VET related). 57% of learners said that their perspective on their future profession had improved.[1]

According to the Federal Coordination Office for School to Work Transition (BundesKOST) (2014) 76% of participants found that youth coaching helped them to develop a better perception of their future and 71% found that they were more aware of their skills and strengths.[2]

Migrants reported a major improvement in their level of numeracy and literacy.[3]

[1] Steiner, Mario; Pessl, Gabriele; Wagner, Elfriede; Karaszek, Johannes (2013): Evaluierung "Jugendcoaching"- Endbericht.

[2] BundesKOST (2014): Jugendcoaching 2014. Teilnahmebefragung.

[3] Steiner, Mario; Pessl, Gabriele; Wagner, Elfriede; Karaszek, Johannes (2013): Evaluierung "Jugendcoaching"- Endbericht. p.162.

Success factors

The following success factors are based on the testimonies of participants in the measure interviewed for the Cedefop study:

  1. Voluntary participation: young adults participate in youth coaching on a voluntary basis. This ensures that the participant is motivated to do the coaching and contributes to the impact of the coaching.
  2. High political commitment: the responsible ministries work closely together to develop and implement the youth coaching scheme. The level of political commitment is considered high by interviewees and evaluation reports. This also ensures sustainable funding for coaching providers and coaches.
  3. Network with other measures, institutions and companies: the networking activities of coaches and coaching providers are considered as one of the main strengths of the youth coaching scheme. Networking ensures a smooth transition to other measures and supporting institutions (e.g. youth welfare or the Public Employment Service - PES) but also enables vocational orientation by a network of companies that provide internships.
  4. High quality coaching: the coaching providers have to ensure a high quality of coaching. This is done, for example, through supervision and training. In addition, coaches are highly qualified and are mostly social workers, psychologists or pedagogues.
  5. Individualised support (case management approach): youth coaching is based on a case management approach. Each individual participant is supported based on his or her needs. This includes regular coaching, close cooperation with other social support measures in the region and a flexible process. This ensures that the needs of the individual are met and also ensures targeted support.

Contact details for further information

Sonja, Schmöckel
0043 1 711 00 866473