Learning or Earning Health Lens

Supporting vulnerable young people to successfully transition from education to further training and employment

The Learning or Earning health lens is a collaborative project between the Health in All Policies unit, SA Health and the Department of Further Education, Employment, Science and Technology (DFEEST).

Young people who successfully engage in learning or earning experience better health, connections with their community and access to employment opportunities. 

We also know that young people, who complete year 12 or further training, are better equipped with the skills and tools needed to participate in the workforce and ultimately succeed in life. 

Conversely, young people who are not fully engaged in education or work (or a combination of both) are at greater risk of unemployment, cycles of low pay and employment insecurity in the longer term. Participation in education and training, and engaging in work, are also considered important aspects of developing individual capability and building a socially inclusive society.

About the project

The project will focus on supporting vulnerable young people to successfully transition from education to further training and employment, with particular consideration of the transition pathways available through the Skills for All initiative*.

The project will develop strategies and recommendations to contribute to the achievement of South Australia’s Strategic Plan Target 54: Learning or Earning and ultimately health and wellbeing.

Next steps

The evidence gathering phase of the Health Lens process will seek to identify transition points where young people are at risk of becoming disengaged; consider the precursors that lead to disengagement; and the experiences of young people while they are disengaged.

This will assist to identify effective population level strategies to minimise the precursors for young people at risk of disengagement, and strategies to support young people who have disengaged to re-enter the education/training/employment system.

A literature review will be undertaken to identify the risk factors and protective factors for young people transitioning from school to either training or work and will provide a summary of the evidence regarding effective interventions to support young people.

An audit of the programs in operation in South Australia will assist to identify opportunities to link current services and systems in place to support young people to successfully transition from education to further training and employment.

Seven Cabinet Strategic Priorities

The project supports South Australia’s strategic priority 'Growing Advanced Manufacturing’.

South Australia’s Strategic Plan Targets

  • T54: Learning or earning – Increase the proportion of 15-24 year olds engaged full-time in school, post-school education, training or employment (or combination thereof) to 85% by 2020 (baseline: 2003).

The Project also supports the attainment of T16 Economic disadvantage, T36 Labour productivity, T47 Jobs, T49 Unemployment, T51 Aboriginal unemployment, T55 Apprentices, T89 SACE or equivalent, T91 Non-school qualifications and T93 Tertiary education and training.

*Skills for All is the strategic direction for vocational education and training (VET) in South Australia (2011-2014). It aims to increase the number of South Australians in training and in jobs.