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Young people actively discouraged from choosing apprenticeships

Young people actively discouraged from choosing apprenticeships

On the same day as Suffolk County Council announces £1.5m of spending on a series of targeted efforts to promote the importance of apprenticeships and drive greater take up by businesses and young people, we hear, again, that young people are being diverted away from …

The cost of Higher Education: is up the only way?

The cost of Higher Education: is up the only way?

Many argue that higher education finance is unsustainable. After an initial boost from higher fees, real university incomes are falling, capital has been cut, and research funding is shrinking.
Budget constraints are affecting every aspect of public services and yet the obsessive pursuit of academic achievement …

Send out the child-catchers

Send out the child-catchers

Two messages popped up in my inbox just now. Nothing unusual about that but their juxtaposition seemed significant.
The first alerted me to a story in the East Anglian Daily Times headed “Over 200 parents prosecuted last year for failing to get children to school”. This …

Maths and English sentences increased

Maths and English sentences increased

There is widespread agreement that Maths and English GCSEs are vital qualifications in that they are the two essentials that employers most often ask for.
Education Secretary Michael Gove obviously agrees too. In fact, he agrees so strongly that from next week, ALL 16 year olds …

The Pressure Pyramid

The Pressure Pyramid

The students at a perfectly normal, local, secondary school have recently set up a project, “Who Asks Us? to help understand the pressure and consequential stress that teenagers face under the school system.
Last night they presented the results of five month research in the form …

Competent vs. qualified

Competent vs. qualified

It is said that “things are the way they are because they got that way”. So please, step back with me, into the mists of time …. time … time …
Once upon a time, not so many years ago … the UK was swamped by …

Taste and fear of structured learning

Taste and fear of structured learning

Most of my learning over the past quite a few years has been through on-line interaction with fellow travellers on this road through life, well, that or frantically scanning “help” files to find the magic bullet that will solve my problem.
I guess the big difference …

A hammer for an uncertain world

A hammer for an uncertain world

I’m just starting on a consultancy contract to completely update the national occupational standards for the UK travel and tourism industries. Those standards will become the new basis for the National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) in the industry so it is important to get them right …

The froth on the burger

The froth on the burger

There has been much UK press excitement this week about McDonald’s (yes, that McDonald’s) being approved as an “awarding body” so that they can offer, assess and moderate their own in-house management and supervisory qualifications.
The extent of coverage came as something of a surprise. No …

Learning outside school, education in school?

Futurelab sent out a flier last week entitled Image a way to … support learning outside school. It points out that only 15% of children’s time is spent in school and appeals for ideas about how what it refers to as “informal learning” in the …

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