A critical youth work study: The NCS as a neo-communitarian project

Click here to download full article. The National Citizen Service is described as the UK Government’s flagship citizenship initiative. Since 2011, over 300,000 16- to 17-years-old have participated in the NCS, undertaking activities such as a residential work, team building, life skills and a social action project. In April 2017, the Government introduced the NCS Act creating…

National Citizen Service (NCS): 3 Things You Probably Didn’t Know

The NCS appears on the surface has a great opportunity for school leavers to do something good for their communities. It also supposed to be about learning new skills and meeting new people. However, the evaluation of the programmes suggests it’s not really succeeding with these goals. It is becoming the only show in town, attracting £1 billion to expand, largely collected by new private youth providers, offering employability skills and work-readiness approaches to citizenship. It suggests youth citizenship is not about empowerment, critical thinking or participation in democracy, instead it is based on neoliberal values – a sort of economic imperative of citizenship – witnessed by the shift towards employability and well-being indicators which surrounds current youth policy thinking.