Will firms be paid to wake teens up?
Filed under: Career
So will it work?
The schemeAccording to the BBC, the approach has already been trialled in the North East. Pertemps - an employment specialist - will do a variety of things to get young people into work. This includes getting them out of bed, driving them to job interviews, and then staying on their case to make sure they continue to show up on time in the mornings.
It's part of the £126 million Youth Contract which was hailed by the government as a breakthrough in tackling youth unemployment. The scheme has been championed by Nick Clegg who apparently encouraged 'creative' thinking in getting young people into work.
CriticsThis has been poo-pooed by critics of the nanny state. There are those who would argue that if people don't have the get-up-and-go to even get out of bed in the morning, they are never going to contribute effectively to the economy, and will continue to be a drain on employers and agencies employed to help them.
There are others who argue that regardless of whether they are up with the lark or not, there just isn't the work available. With scores of people chasing each vacancy, there is likely to be a qualified or experienced person at the front of the queue - leaving the youngster out in the cold.
DefenceHowever, the firm involved robustly defends the approach. It highlighted that in some families, where the adults have never worked, there is no culture of getting up and going out to work. It pointed out that chronic lateness was one of the most common reasons for youngsters from these families being sacked.
This firm, therefore, helps to instill a working culture, and put young people on the track. An investment in developing good habits upfront, will be rewarded once they commit to a lifetime of work rather than one on benefits.
They also point out that payment by results means that if the investment doesn't pay off - the firm won't be paid.
There will always be critics of this kind of scheme. There will be those who say it's too little too late - which is what Labour said when it was launched. Then there are those who argue it is too expensive and too much - which is the cry of those on the right wing.
However, there's an argument for at least trying this. There are plenty of head-teachers in difficult areas doing this sort of thing themselves - hand-delivering alarm clocks to families, or bringing children into school for breakfast in order to ensure someone somewhere cares if they're going to be late for school.
The question is whether it can work on teenagers. What do you think? Let us know in the comments.