OECD Education Policy Perspectives

The OECD Directorate for Education and Skills helps countries compare their education policies and experiences, and learn from each other through large scale assessment and surveys and comparative policy analysis. This policy papers series presents analysis for policy makers, practitioners and researchers on a wide range of policy issues covered at OECD: from pre-primary to higher education, from policy design to implementation, from student performance and well-being, to teacher training and practices, to school resources.


How schools can help protect young people in a recession

Career guidance has never been seen as more important but what really makes a difference to the prospects of young people? This paper provides guidance to schools on how school leaders, teachers and guidance professionals can be most confident that they are providing useful support to students. It summarises available research on how schools can be most effective – and shares examples of how countries are helping to prepare young people to become career ready even at the most difficult times. In particular, it focuses on three important teenage attributes which act as indicators for whether they can be expected to do as well as possible in the jobs market. It matters:

  • What teenagers think about their futures in work
  • How they explore their potential futures at home or at school
  • Whether they experience workplaces through part-time working, internships or volunteering.

Young people who think about, explore and experience potential future lives in work are much better placed to make decisions that are right for them and compete for available jobs. The paper summarises the key evidence, sets out principles underpinning more effective career guidance and shows how well students are doing in different countries. Finally, encourages interested policy makers and practitioners to stay in touch with OECD work that will conclude late in 2021 with the development of data-driven tools for practice.


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