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Keeping Youth Away from Crime: Searching for Best European Practices

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherCentre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity (CREID), University of Edinburgh
Commissioning bodyEuropean Commission, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship Funding Programme
Number of pages45
Publication statusPublished - 11 Mar 2014

Abstract

Scotland is a small country with a commitment to social justice and inclusion, and public policy aims to respect the rights of children and young people. Current policy trends in Scotland include: emphasising early intervention rather than provision at the point of crisis; investing in early years services; integrated working across services for children; and holding services accountable by outcomes, rather than focusing on processes. There is much in Scottish children’s services to celebrate, but equally much that is in need of improvement. Scotland is around the OECD average in terms of inequality in PISA outcomes. There is a wide gap in pupil attainment linked to social deprivation. Pupils with additional support needs and from deprived neighbourhoods are significantly more likely than others to be excluded from school. The Scottish Children’s Hearings systems emphasises welfare rather than punitive approaches, and secure accommodation is used only rarely. However, the rate of imprisonment of 18-25 year olds in Scotland is one of the highest in Europe. The Getting it Right for Every Child programme emphasises inter-agency and preventative approaches, but there has as yet been no national evaluation of its effectiveness. Overall, levels of economic inequality in Scotland are high, and whilst children’s services can ameliorate some of the difficulties that inevitably arise, major social change will require a fairer distribution of national economic and social resources.

    Research areas

  • children's rights, Charter of Fundamental Rights, youth crime, European

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