Jack’s Story

In November 2023, Jack was referred to CXK’s YES service by his school. Jack had stopped attending school in Year 10, only starting to attend again at the beginning of Year 11. Due to his non-attendance he was set to do a limited number of GCSEs (English, Maths and Science) and work mainly in the specialist support department of the school. When I met Jack in Spring 2023 he hadn’t yet made an application for college.

Jack did subsequently apply for college and had a place to study mechanical engineering, but due to personal circumstances and health-related issues he didn’t end up attending. He did well in his GCSEs despite the circumstances in Year 11 and obtained 55 in Combined Science and a 4 in Maths, plus grade 2s in English Literature and Language.

Jack is autistic and recognises that this impacts his social interactions. Jack rarely left the house and felt that he was unable to travel on public transport so wasn’t able to explore other colleges. Personal family circumstances which have meant appointment attendance has been difficult at times.

So, I worked with Jack to discuss his education, employment, and training status. Jack was unsure about his future plans and had not found any January/February courses suitable for him.

We decided to focus on boosting his confidence to transition back to education by September 2024. During our initial appointment, we explored his interests and agreed on strategies to overcome his isolation. Jack shared his achievements in Maths and Science and his passion for Physics, leading us to consider engineering-related courses.

In our next appointment, Jack identified Electrical Installation at ESCG-EB as a good course choice and completed the application with my assistance. I also introduced him to the Engineering Transition Programme at Bexhill College, which he found appealing. We reviewed the Amaze activity calendar, and Jack chose groups to join, recognising the importance of social interaction. We agreed on a plan where I would help him with employability skills, such as creating a CV and practicing for interviews, while he engaged in positive activities to build his social skills and make friends.

By our third appointment, Jack took a significant step by traveling independently to the office. We applied for the Bexhill course, and he selected two Amaze groups, writing to the organiser to book his place. We discussed strategies to help him remember tasks between appointments, including setting phone reminders and receiving additional support from me. Our future plans include completing his CV and checking in after his first Amaze group session. Jack has shown progress by independently attending appointments, actively participating in decision-making, and exploring opportunities that align with his interests and skills.

Jack said: “I feel a lot more confident since seeing YES, I even feel better leaving the house to go to the shop and do everyday things. I feel more confident and excited about starting college and doing a course that I’m interested in!”


CXK’s Youth Employability Service (YES) provides free, up to date, impartial information, advice and guidance to young people in East Sussex. Commissioned by East Sussex County Council, we work specifically with young people aged 16-19 who are not in education, employment or training (NEET), or are at risk of being NEET.


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