Albert Einstein equation

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Perhaps the equation today really means; Education = Motley Chavs 2 kids required before you’re guaranteed a semi on the DHSS instead of a bedsit?  

If as reported, A level grades have improved every year for the last 28 years, you would expect that our education system must be astounding. Shouldn’t we therefore have a nation brim full of Einstein’s by now? As opposed to idle work shy benefit sponging drunken scuffers, as is so often the case!  

For those who have actually bothered with studying and obtained good exam results, congratulations for your efforts and I hope you go on to do what you want in life. I like many others am convinced, politicians and educationalists have messed with standards so much, you are being fed false expectations about your future and your actual ability.  

The scramble for unfilled university places continues with up to 180,000 students chasing spaces. (BBC Education supplement)  

Earlier this year, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) produced a critical report that said; a fifth of firms claimed they were required to “pick up the pieces” after children left school unable to perform everyday tasks.  

Companies are being forced to stage remedial lessons in the three-Rs as thousands of school leavers enter the world of work lacking basic employment skills, according to research. (The Telegraph)  

Some comments from the report – Ready to Grow: Business Priorities for Education and Skills – are shocking, especially as ” these levels showed “no improvement over the position two years ago”. This is despite the much hailed GCSE and A-level results. The CBI study suggested that good exam scores were “not necessarily an accurate proxy for basic literacy and numeracy”, suggesting that tests in some subjects were too easy and the curriculum failed to challenge pupils. 

In many ways, we are fast approaching the point where education certificates are no longer be worth the (cheap) vellum they are actually written on. We already see the situation where degree level applicants are expected for many non academic type jobs and careers. What is even worse is when you have spent three years studying,  racked up massive student loan debt and, you can still only get that type of job. 

Should we really place so much emphasis on a University Education any more? And if we should, who should pay for it, the state or the individual? There is also the question of, should degree study be carried out immediately after leaving school or, should it be done after gaining some life experience? There is a lot to commend those who obtain degrees via less traditional means such as The Open University, at their own expense and in their own time. 

A recent article in The Independent by the education journalist Richard Garner; Star students: New A* grades have revived debate about dumbing down suggested… 

According to studies… A-levels are now different. Not necessarily easier or more difficult, but different. (Richard Garner

I suppose all is not lost? Future students could always waste utilise three years reading Harry Potter books for their degree at Durham (BBC news)!  


About Dave Hasney

National Coordinator for UK SMART Recovery - Previously a Recovery Worker and prior to that a Management Consultant and H&S Practitioner - Kept sane by Angling, Good Food, Real Ale & Wine - Cynical thoughts sometimes developed from others.

Posted on 19-08-2010, in Business Babble, Society Babble. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Today as the latest GCSE results were published, I was all set to bang off another post about the ‘predictable’ increase in pass rates etc then I thought, what is the point? This is a stuck record that has been in the same groove for the last 20+ years. Perhaps the majority of commentators are wrong and the exams aren’t any easier than they used to be? Pfffft 🙂


  1. Pingback: What a waste? « BANKSIDE BABBLE

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