Happy tale of a canny mechanic
I would like to supply an example that, for once, might bring some much-needed praise to the Connexions camp.
I have a younger brother, now 18, for whom school was nothing special. He left at 16 with GCSEs that were nothing special. But thankfully he knew that Connexions was an option available to him and went for an interview under his own steam.
The advice he received has resulted in him following a part-time vocational course in car mechanics at the local FE college (which, it must be said, could be better).
Although he hates college with a passion - since, I dare say, it reminds him of school - he spends four or five days a week working as an apprentice mechanic.
He absolutely loves it, his co-workers are impressed and his employer is likely to keep him on when he is qualified.
This may be only one example of the success of the Connexions service, but it is worth its weight in gold as far as my brother is concerned.