It is Obvious

Chris Rick has got altogether too much to say

I’m two thirds of pop group

Posted by chrisrick13 on November 26, 2013

It is obvious: invest in yourself

I’m lucky to be alive.  I have a different view on education to my wife…and she is a teacher.  At least she can’t answer back here.

I did my education with the elitist 11+, grammar schools and secondary modern schools, and university when less than 5% of the population went there.  The system was full of flaws.  My wife advocates a system of equality of opportunity for everyone enabling learning and valuing other things than the ability to add two numbers together and remember when the battle of Waterloo was.  A system full of flaws.

I showed my maths exercise book that I used in the 5th form to my sons as they got into the same year.  They both thought it was a foreign language.  They never proved Pythagoras.  They have never done any differentiation.  Never solved a quadratic equation.  They have also never learnt their ‘times tables’ which is like a bird trying to fly before it has grown feathers as far as maths is concerned.  It is a worry that one son teaches mathematics to young children.

What the system I went through did was to put people in boxes.  Anyone wanted a thinker they could go to the degree box.  You wanted a technician and you could go to the HND box.  Someone who could actually put things together – the apprentice box.  Now you have no idea based on their qualifications what a person can do.  I have bleated this before.

At a time that a degree was worth much more than it is now it was free.  I got a grant and my dad made it up to the full amount (£360 a year).  I even claimed unemployment during the holidays for the first two years when I didn’t have a job.  When I graduated there were companies fighting to get my signature on an employment contract.  With just a little effort I was going to be in the system and comfortable for life.  I came out of university with assets and more money than I went in with.

Now we have degrees of dubious value that cost, according to the NUS, £21,000 a year which is £63,000.  There is a nasty game now though.  Young prople are split down the middle.  There are those with degrees and those without.  If you are an employer with 300 applicants for a job what is as good a way as any to reject half of them?

So there are two ways to fund a degree: be rich or borrow lots.  Does this requirement not seem a little elitist to you?

Now the government is about to sell a lot of its student loan ‘book’ to…the mafia.  Might as well be.  I wonder that this might be a little like packages of sub-prime mortgages.  Bear in mind that it is a tax.  The loan only performs when the person earns above a threshold.  The payment is not related to the loan but is a percentage of earnings.  I’m sure that the entity buying the loans has done its numbers and I bet that those numbers are based on schemes to squeeze money out of ex-students.  Soon there will be fees and fines, payable now, for not complying with the various, complex, rules that are put in place.  There will be a department that ‘puts the squeeze’ on ex-students.  I can even see a new class of loan being invented where when certain conditions are met it is converted from a tax to a loan.  They might even try and lure students into switching voluntarily.

Degrees are close to becoming elitist again with an underclass of people with worthless degrees from the 90s and 00s lugging some very big albatrosses around with them.

It is obvious: invest in yourself if you can afford it

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2 Responses to “I’m two thirds of pop group”

  1. Malc said

    Couldn’t agree more with you,Chris.We have a problem with our Educational system as all the various international league tables show.As someone who coaches school kids about running a business and the father of both a Teacher and also an Associate Lecturer at University, I have some experience.Part of the problem is the crazy belief that we must protect our children from losing at games,exams etc and that selection by ability is evil-no-one must be seen to fail and negative feedback is banned in case their self esteem is harmed.This liberal/left approach has been prevalent for many years now and it is an absurd concept when you consider that as soon as the young adult leaves the Education system the first thing that they encounter is….guess what………….competition(jobs etc) where there are winners and losers.This comes as a shock to them.Bring back educational selection and the grammar schools is my view.It is the Lefties who peddle the non-selection idea and they completely miss the point that experience has shown that the ultimate Socialist States(USSR,China,East Germany etc)practiced and continue to practice selection based on ability-children are/were streamed into schools of excellence for sport/education etc.
    The lack of grammar schools also means that our country will continue to be run by “toffs” from private educational backgrounds because they have no competition from grammar school children.

    • Your note prompts me. If you are brought up to compete on achievement through excellence it will stick with you. If not you are likely to get into employment and adopt the natural survival instinct: kill or be killed. You will spend much of your working life being destructive rather than constructive. I see it a lot. Which is why mentoring and role models like you are so important.

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