More teenagers in the UK are out of work and without a college place than in most other developed nations, according to international data published today.
Figures show that school-leavers are more likely to be classed as “Neet” – not in education, employment or training – than in countries such as Estonia, Portugal, Hungary, Slovakia and Slovenia.
It emerged that the UK was ranked ninth out of 32 nations judged by the number of 15- to 19-year-olds with effectively nothing to do.
The data – from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) – will fuel fears that a generation of young people have been failed despite billions of pounds invested in education under Labour.
Figures show almost one-in-10 school-leavers were without a job or college place in 2009 – the latest comparable data – above the international average. Only Spain, Italy and Ireland had higher rates among EU nations.