Recommendations for youth employment

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Extend the French Youth Guarantee scheme(1)

  • Raise awareness of the Youth Guarantee among young people and businesses in
  • Companies could provide more support for local job centres in their efforts to increase professional integration, notably by meeting with youngsters, explaining their business to them and carrying out mock interviews. Work placements and internships should be widely promoted.
  • Expand the initiative to more sectors, notably manufactur- ing and the craft industry, by developing new
  • Learn from the experience of French regions where the Youth Guarantee has already been trialled, and lay the groundwork for extending it in January 2016 with the help of local players, job centres and social partners.
  • Emphasise that the initiative was conceived and is fi- nanced by the European Union.
  • Publishing the fact that it is an application of the European Youth Guarantee scheme could restore the EU’s image among young people excluded from the employment market.

European mobility as a factor of professional integration

  • Provide more information for young people and their support networks about the various mobility schemes available in Europe.
  • Relatively few people know about the European Voluntary Service or Erasmus+ grants, even though they are becoming much more open and accessible to all young people.
  • Inform staff in educational institutions about the important role that mobility plays in professional integration.
  • Many educational institutions (schools, apprenticeship training centres, colleges and universities) do not offer mobility opportunities for their students, simply because they themselves did not apply to Erasmus+
  • Language learning can be a key factor in professional integration and an impediment to mobility. Language learning should begin in early childhood, and the focus should be on building oral skills while having fun.
  • Developing teacher mobility is essential to ensure that foreign languages are taught by native speakers as often as possible.

Build closer ties between education and business

  • Develop work experience placements.
  • These placements should be available to students in vocational and non-vocational training. More cooperation between teachers and the business community could improve outcomes for young people.
  • Introduce school students to the business world.
  • By organising meetings with company managers, craftspeople, engineers, employees and actors in the social and solidarity economy, and asking them to present their career, their business and their day-to-day work.
  • Continue to promote apprenticeships in France.
  • Make sure every educational institution appoints someone to manage partnerships with businesses, chambers of commerce, industrial companies and banks.
  • Encourage gap years.
  • Unlike in other European countries (Denmark and Germany for instance), gap years are not encouraged – and are even frowned upon – in France. Yet taking time out to choose the right career, do volunteer work or travel can be extremely beneficial to young people, and looks very good on their CV.

Encourage entrepreneurship

  • Promote entrepreneurship through study curriculums.
  • Make it easier for unconventional schools (which, like Ecole 42, focus on motivation rather than official qualifications) to obtain government certification.
  • Increase technical and financial support for young entrepreneurs through corporate foundations and local job centres.
  • Facilitate access to loans.

1. This scheme was first introduced in France in October 2013, and then extended to dozens of regions.

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