Young people are able to enter employment (including supported employment) once they leave school if they choose to do so; however, up until the age of seventeen years they must also remain in at least part-time education or training.
If a young person wishes to look into the option of employment then this should be discussed as part of the transition planning at their school (please see our ‘Education and Transition Planning’ section).
A young person’s Special Educational Needs (SEN) Personal Advisor should be able to provide information on employment training schemes in the local area, as well as any courses provided by local colleges which have work-based training built in.
The Government has published guidance on the help and support that is available to young people with a disability to find and stay in work. Visit the Government website.
Information can also be provided by the Jobcentre Plus. Their Disability Employment Advisers can help a young person and their family to look at the jobs available in the local area, and the skills which would be needed to access them. To find your nearest Jobcentre Plus branch, visit the Jobcentre website and enter your postcode.
The Department for Work and Pensions has an Access to Work Fund. This provides a grant to help individuals over the age of 16 years with disabilities (as well as those with health or mental health conditions) to either enter employment, continue in employment or start their own business.
A young person may benefit from this scheme once they have a job, or date to start a job, as it could help to pay for a support worker, special equipment or the cost of getting work if the young person cannot use public transport. More information can be found on the access to work website.
Entering employment can change a young person’s benefit entitlement and it is important to be aware of this. Our ‘Money and Benefits’ section provides information on how benefits can change as a young person becomes an adult.
Other sources of information in this area are:-
- A young person’s Special Educational Needs (SEN) Personal Adviser
- The Jobcentre Plus
- The Department for Work and Pensions' Benefits Enquiry Line, on 0800 882200.