Ethnicity, young people and ‘othering’ ‘its’ like we don’t exist’: transitions from school to nowhere

Nighet Nasim Riaz

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


This paper aims to explore the experiences of young people growing up in urban areas in the West of Scotland via community led youth work projects that aim to reengage young people categorised as NEET (Not in Employment Education or Training). By looking at their varied and complex biographies it will address young people's experiences and perceptions of their communities and their transitions from education to the workplace. Getting lost in the transition from education to work is one of the key risks of social exclusion for young people which may lead to subsequent involvement in anti-social behaviour and crime (Bynner and Parsons, 2002; Yates and Payne, 2006;Finlay et al., 2010). The study is undertaken in a youth work organisation in an inner city ward in Glasgow. The preliminary study explores conversations with four young people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds who discuss their transitions from school to finding a positive destination. Hayward et al (2008, p18) found that the people from the same ethnic minority groups (Afro Caribbean, Pakistani and Bangladeshi) which are highlighted by Smeaton et al "Parts of our schools system can match the best anywhere in the world but overall our school system is not world class. It systematically fails certain groups of children: children from poor backgrounds, looked after children, children excluded from school, children from certain ethnic groups" , are identified as failing to go on to positive destinations. This indicates that there is a link that these young people who are disadvantaged at school, do not go onto positive pathways of education, employment or training once they leave school.


ConferenceCiCe Conference 2014
Abbreviated titleCiCe 2014
Internet address


  • education
  • policy
  • young people
  • youth work


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