The primary educational objective in Denmark is to ensure ‘education for all’, and one decisive logic within educational policy is that young people’s transitions through the educational system and into the labour market should be accelerated and streamlined. This logic presupposes a normal transition with regard to young people’s educational choices and a view of educational choice as ‘rational’ and individual. Drawing on an understanding of educational choice as socially embedded, this article focuses on ‘youth at risk’ in education, post-15 educational choices and educational transitions. The main focus of this article will be the relationship between the subjective narratives of young people and dominant political storylines on education. I shall ask how political storylines on education can be traced in young people’s narratives, and if and how they affect the narratives and transitional processes of the young people in question. I shall argue that the normal transition, which is currently held up as the political ideal, risks further marginalising young people who are already on the periphery of the educational system.
Journal of Youth Studies, 2014, Vol 17, Issue 2, p. 236-251
biographical reflexivity; critical moments; educational storylines; young people's post-15 educational choices; youth at risk in education; unges uddannelsesvalg; udsatte unge; uddannelsesmæssige storylines; biografisk refleksivitet