Abstract Focus of presentation Disparity in access to education is a recognised social determinant of health outcomes worldwide. Young people experiencing disadvantage often experience considerably more problems in their health and educational outcomes. The objective of this project, from a social epidemiological perspective, is to investigate whether social inclusion confers the potential to disrupt inequities by improving school completion for vulnerable young people experiencing disadvantage. Findings It is expected that groups with high vulnerability (represented by disadvantage indicators) will have poorer educational trajectories, with lower levels of school completion. It is also expected that this effect will be moderated by the level of social inclusion, such that vulnerable groups with high levels of social inclusion will have higher levels of school completion as compared to vulnerable groups with lower levels of social inclusion. It is also expected that other factors will influence the development of social inclusion, such that the developmental pattern of, and change in, social inclusion from childhood to adolescence may have a unique effect on school completion. Conclusions/Implications Identifying whether social inclusion can moderate the impact of vulnerability on school completion provides the opportunity to inform future interventions and has the potential to provide evidence to government and thus influence policy. Key messages Social inclusion may be a vital key to understanding the effect of disadvantage on health and educational pathways for young people in Australia, and an avenue for disrupting inequities.

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