§ 56. Mr. Richard Wainwright
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what effects she expects the paying of a weekly allowance of £19.50 to young people undertaking training courses as part of the youth opportunities programme to have upon the numbers of young people who would normally apply for further education courses which fall within the discretionary grant system; and if she will make a statement.
§ Mr. Oakes
It is too early to say what effect the allowances to be paid under the youth opportunities programme may have on the numbers of young people continuing their full-time education beyond minimum school leaving age. I know that many people are concerned that the comparison between the level of discretionary awards available to these young people and the YOP allowances may lead to some who might have stayed on in full-time education deciding not to do so. On the other hand, the YOP is aimed at a different group of young people from those who normally remain in full-time education and this is reflected in the nature and scale of the programme. I shall be keeping a close watch on the trends in participation.