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News » WAB Debate


Do You Think It's Hard To Be A Teenager Today?

Tuesday July 3 2012




RESEARCHERS claim that Barnsley is the hardest place in Yorkshire and the Humber to be a teenager.

Education specialists Ambitious Minds has released a report that outlines the problems that teenagers face when they leave school.

It measures education, employment, housing and social factors - Barnsley was the region’s lowest-ranked place, and the fifth-worst in the country, dragged down by poor educational attainment, according to the report.

The report said it is tougher than ever for young people to find a job and get on the housing ladder.

Do you think it's harder to be a teenager today than in the past? What more could Barnsley do to support its young people? Join in our debate here.

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Reply Posted by Ambitious Minds on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 12:12
It's difficult being a teenager today, no matter where you live in the UK. You can read the full report here: http://bit.ly/N7mhFY

Reply Posted by Guest on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 12:13
I think there is a negative attitude towards people going to college and uni in our town and surrounding areas. As a teacher I have seen fathers outraged when I have told them how much their child loves reading because they would rather them be roughing up the other boys and playing football. Because we used to be a mining town and a lot of our fathers and grandfathers were miners I think they have a 'work hard to earn a living' attitude, which of course there is nothing wrong with, however they need to realise that it isn't as easy to get a job when you leave school at 16 and so it is better to continue your education. I would be interested in the statistics showing how many girls v boys go on to higher education from our town.
I also think there has been a massive change in attitude of teenagers. They seem to want to be treated like adults but behave like toddlers. Talk to any teenager and they will have high aspirations such as wanting to become a vet, doctor, radio presenter etc but when you watch their behaviour at school it soon becomes apparent that there is no possible way they will make the grades. I think the town needs to put more focus on teenager's futures earlier on.  It would be useful to have more careers lessons in schools before GCSE choices so that children can really understand what they need to study and what grades they will need to get into their chosen career.
A lack of weekend/evening jobs in the town is preventing these children from gaining any kind of responsibility and work skills so if they do leave school at 16 they are struggling to find a job because they have no experience. I understand jobs are tight but companies could run volunteer programmes and take on say 6 teenages for Sunday mornings for 8 weeks. This would give those children not wanting to go on to higher education a chance to gain something they can add to a CV when they start applying for jobs.
Big post I know but there is so much could be done to help.

Reply Posted by Hannah on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 14:06
'Research' like this makes me giggle. Being a teenager proves difficult where ever you live. Its not all about where you're brought up, it's about how you tackle life on a whole. Nothing annoys me more than when people blame their actions on 'I was brought up in a rough area'; it's a load of old tosh. I'm 19 & just finished college with very good grades & hopefully going onto uni in September. Every single kid in Barnsley has the same opportunities, but some choose not to take advantage of those opportunities. They can't complain about having no job prospects or anything if they haven't put the time & effort into going to school & college to give themselves a better step on the ladder.

Reply Posted by Hannah on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 14:06
'Research' like this makes me giggle. Being a teenager proves difficult where ever you live. Its not all about where you're brought up, it's about how you tackle life on a whole. Nothing annoys me more than when people blame their actions on 'I was brought up in a rough area'; it's a load of old tosh. I'm 19 & just finished college with very good grades & hopefully going onto uni in September. Every single kid in Barnsley has the same opportunities, but some choose not to take advantage of those opportunities. They can't complain about having no job prospects or anything if they haven't put the time & effort into going to school & college to give themselves a better step on the ladder.

Reply Posted by Ambitious Minds on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 14:45
The report points out the problems (lack of jobs, access to affordable housing, education attainment and other social factors) that teenagers face across England and how that affects their prospects for adult life. Sadly, young people in Barnsley (or anywhere else) do not all have the same opportunities and where they live does affect their chances. But it's not trying to make excuses - whatever your situation, if you don't try, you won't succeed. It's just that your chances of success are much better if you live in Kensington rather than Barnsley.

Reply Posted by Tom on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 15:04
The problem is, in 3 years time if the economy is still like it is, you have a degree, a shed load of debt and have to join the dole queue.  Life is signing on, paying your extortionate rent with housing benefit and taking drugs to pass the time.  Unless you can move for work or pick up some call centre job.

Hopefully the economy should pick up by then.  However, we have to fight our elders - they oppose new housing and factories and we need them.  They have their housing and pensions and a nice view - they fight to protect the view leaving us without housing or work.

Reply Posted by Obithecat on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 15:28
I don't think it's any more difficult as a teen these days than it was years ago.  However, we mollycoddle kids so much these days they have huge expectations & very little experience of  responsibility.  If mum & dad give you everything you want as a child & do everything for you then it's a huge fall down to earth when you reach young adulthood.  If you haven't been quite so spoilt the fall isn't half as bad.

Reply Posted by Dinky on Tuesday July 3 2012 at 20:11
I am 19, nearly 20. I have qualifications and experience and I cannot get job. I apply for everything going but still nothing. Its hard for people my age that has some experience and qualifications....its impossible for people that have nothing at all. But yet again there is nothing being done, we have plenty of qualifications to go for, but they need to be more accessible and affordable....its JOBS we need creating for after we gained our qualifications. And get rid of this Overqualified lark too.

Reply Posted by Zxninjaboy on Wednesday July 4 2012 at 07:06
Do we actually "pay" these so-called researchers to ram statistics into our already over-loaded and stressed heads.  Educated idiots... I notice they do NOT come out with any solutions!  

Reply Posted by Gemma Hayden on Wednesday July 4 2012 at 07:19
I think it's too young to decided what u wanna do with the rest of your life.. I wanted to go in the Navy but decided to go college 1st.. I did 5 year and after 2 changed my mind but continued with course as I thought it would still Benefit me.. Now Im 25 n feel like I wasted 5 years of my life.. I want to be a youth worker, a lot of what I did at college/uni involved youth work but I cannot get a job in this as I need youth work qualification.. So I have to start all over again, and because I work fund myself.. I kno a lot of people who chose 1 thing then decided they want something else from life, but its difficult to do that when you have to pay for it yourself as you work but if your unemployed you get this free. Maybe that's why there's unemployment as people can get what they want and return to college or training free if they dont work!

Reply Posted by BullRush on Wednesday July 4 2012 at 07:24
If you have the drive, you can achieve anything. Its not just hard for teenagers either, its hard for everyone living here, and everywhere else. Teenagers have it much easier these days and have more resources at their disposal, the problem is that they're idle and don't have any encouragement from their parents. Parents these days are too busy at work or been down the pub blowing their benefits, kids are left to fend for themselves and therefor they develop a bad attitude. Parents are not teaching their kids work ethic anymore. Bring your kids up right, teach them work ethic, encourage them, give them discipline and give them lots of your time, tell them they can achieve anything. 

Reply Posted by BullRush on Wednesday July 4 2012 at 08:54
There's lots of people without qualifications that seem to be able to find work Dinky, me been one of em. 

Reply Posted by John on Monday July 9 2012 at 16:54
yes it is hard

Reply Posted by Tom on Sunday January 27 2013 at 23:32
I'm 15 at the moment. Some teenagers find it hard, yes. But the majority of the time it is their fault. The schools and colleges are there it is up to them to make the effort. I am perfectly happy at the moment both in education and in terms of employment.