The NYA welcomes the publication of the government’s new guidance for Tier 1 local authorities on their statutory duty to provide young people with access to youth work activities to support their wellbeing and to promote their personal and social development, in line with section 507B of the Education Act 1996. The new guidance makes it much clearer for Councils to ensure that their provision is effectively meeting the needs of young people in their localities.
Youth workers achieved key worker status during the pandemic and their role within society is increasingly being recognised by policy makers and allied professionals as being integral to promoting young people’s health and wellbeing; enabling them to better engage with their schools; helping them to participate in decisions which affect their lives and the world around them; as well as furnishing them with essential life skills that will enable them to pursue their passions and goals.
As the professional statutory and regulatory body for youth work, the NYA is keen to support Local Authorities to fulfil their statutory duty. To this end we have developed a Statutory Duty Toolkit to enable all those responsible for commissioning or developing youth work to take the necessary steps to ensure that their provision meets local need, legislation and is effective.
We will publish the Toolkit for local authorities imminently, but in the meantime our recently published Practice Standards, Safeguarding Standards and Workforce Development Self-Assessment Framework provide essential frameworks to support the design and delivery of youth work which meets the relevant legal and statutory requirements. Over the coming months we will provide further opportunities to learn about the detail of the new Section 507B guidance and what best practice looks like, to help all those involved in meeting the new statutory duty.