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Dumbing Down of Ol Blighty

#1
While one can occasionally distress upon reading that the ' working' level of the US Navy is set at a Grade 4 level [ some instruction manuals are set up in ' illustrated format ' [ i.e. comic books ]..

one does not expect to hear that the bastion of higher education and the aspiring of should be besmirched in the Mother country.. Have Oxford and Cambridge and all the little establishments along the line failed? Has the government ruinned the education system in the homeland?

to quote the Independent on Sunday:

Millions of British adults have such poor reading skills that they will struggle to keep up with karaoke lyrics at Christmas time..a government study has found...research for the department of Education's Get On campaign found classic [ sic ] songs like Frank Sinatra's " New York, New York " require the reading skills of an 11 year old and that this ' skill' is lacking in more than 5.2 million adult Brits!!!!

the horror!!
 
#2
I was looking at my cousin doing some work for her degree in socioligy,and commented on her lack of commas and syntax.´I´m copying from the text book!!!´came her heated reply............and fcuk me she was right,no sentences just what my old wrist slapping english teacher would have condemned as `phrases`!

It really is frightening :x
 
#3
It all boils down to the lack of discipline teachers and the like have nowadays. I know this makes me sound old, i am only 23, but we never had this in my day!

It is a scary thought but Blighty is turning in to a PC mess!
 
#5
The purpose of a state education is not to produce highly educated young people. It exists to provide a docile workforce since docile people with rudimentary education and awareness are more malleable in the workplace than educated workers.

Hitler, when asked what was to become of the Russian People after the Soviet Union was vanquished, replied: " we will educate them only to a level where they are able to read our traffic signs and to survive only as long as they are able to serve the greater German State"

An educationally docile workforce is less likely to be a politically aware and inquisitive workforce. It is more easily manipulated and influenced than those who are politically aware and active. This was a lesson learned from the student radicalism of the 1960s. These students were compulsorily educated under the 1944 Education Act at a time when the state was involved in the eduction process to a far less a degree than today exists and those educated under it began to reach early adulthood at that time to a far higher standard of secondary state education than today exists.

Stalin said that order came from keeping the masses ignorant.

Discipline in the workplace is maintained by high levels of consumer debt and mortgage commitments since an indebted man is a necessitous man. As Lord Henley LC observed in Vernon v Bethell [1762]2 Eden 110 at 113: "necessitous men are not, truly speaking, free men, but, to answer a present exigency, will submit to any terms that the crafty may impose upon them."
 
#6
1. Name the last 5 Welsh international footballers who were born in Cardiff.
2. Name the last three capped Scottish footballers who came from north of Glasgow and Edinburgh
3. Name the last 2 Northern Irish footballers to appear in a FA Cup Final
4. Name the last 10 English internationals with 4 or less letters in their surname.
5. Who were the last opponents the ROI beat by 4 or more goals.

We are not dumbing down, just looking at things differently...........
 
#7
Iolis said:
An educationally docile workforce is less likely to be a politically aware and inquisitive workforce. It is more easily manipulated and influenced than those who are politically aware and active. This was a lesson learned from the student radicalism of the 1960s. These students were compulsorily educated under the 1944 Education Act at a time when the state was involved in the eduction process to a far less a degree than today exists and those educated under it began to reach early adulthood at that time to a far higher standard of secondary state education than today exists.
So what you're saying is that all these highly educated types should be getting up in arms about various political matters?

So how do you explain the falling Voter turn out?
 
#8
Listy said:
Iolis said:
An educationally docile workforce is less likely to be a politically aware and inquisitive workforce. It is more easily manipulated and influenced than those who are politically aware and active. This was a lesson learned from the student radicalism of the 1960s. These students were compulsorily educated under the 1944 Education Act at a time when the state was involved in the eduction process to a far less a degree than today exists and those educated under it began to reach early adulthood at that time to a far higher standard of secondary state education than today exists.
So what you're saying is that all these highly educated types should be getting up in arms about various political matters?

So how do you explain the falling Voter turn out?
Thank you for your response Listy.

What do you think I am saying?

Education allows an individual to make informed choices in his life and enhances his life chances.

The great majority of our prisoners, numbering nearly 80,000 locked up in our jails are functionally illiterate and many holding down jobs have a reading age of about 11 years.

Do you see any correlation between what is acknowledged to be a generally poor standard of State education and falling voter turnout? Do you think that a person educated to a reasonably level would be able to interpret and critically analyse political discourse better than one who believes that politicos just talk over their heads about issues that are totally unfamiliar using words that are not understood and are therefore not worth the effort in taking any interest in because the man speaking is clashing with Celebrity Big Brother on the other channel?

I have already given you my views in this post and the post you respond to.

What are your views?

Regards and best wishes to you
Iolis
 
#9
Iolis said:
The purpose of a state education is not to produce highly educated young people. It exists to provide a docile workforce since docile people with rudimentary education and awareness are more malleable in the workplace than educated workers.

Hitler, when asked what was to become of the Russian People after the Soviet Union was vanquished, replied: " we will educate them only to a level where they are able to read our traffic signs and to survive only as long as they are able to serve the greater German State"

An educationally docile workforce is less likely to be a politically aware and inquisitive workforce. It is more easily manipulated and influenced than those who are politically aware and active. This was a lesson learned from the student radicalism of the 1960s. These students were compulsorily educated under the 1944 Education Act at a time when the state was involved in the eduction process to a far less a degree than today exists and those educated under it began to reach early adulthood at that time to a far higher standard of secondary state education than today exists.

Stalin said that order came from keeping the masses ignorant.

Discipline in the workplace is maintained by high levels of consumer debt and mortgage commitments since an indebted man is a necessitous man. As Lord Henley LC observed in Vernon v Bethell [1762]2 Eden 110 at 113: "necessitous men are not, truly speaking, free men, but, to answer a present exigency, will submit to any terms that the crafty may impose upon them."
Is that why this government has put more school leavers into university than any previous one?

I suspect you may be just a tad paranoid.
 
#10
Thank you Awol,

There are a great many more university places available now than than once there was providing you can raise the money to pay up to £3,000 per year for the privilege, before you pay for your books, accommodation and living expenses and then spend a great deal of your indebted employment paying off the loan. I do not remember reading anything about the introduction of tuition fees in the manifesto prior to 1997.

Some Universities have now become so concerned about the generally poor standard of state secondary education that they no longer accept 'A'Level results at face value and have introduced entry tests which has greatly upset the government.

Regards and best wishes to you
Iolis
 
#11
Iolis said:
...
Some Universities have now become so concerned about the generally poor standard of state secondary education that they no longer accept 'A'Level results at face value and have introduced entry tests which has greatly upset the government.

Regards and best wishes to you
Iolis
Incidentally, a number of private sector employers that I have spoken to recently no longer consider a university degree to be a good measure of academic ability. The argument is that it is in the university's best interest to inflate their results, and cannot be compared. Just how employable is someone who got a first in Coracle Manufacturing from Menai University (or to be fair in Politics and Philosophy from Oxford)?

No wonder so many are considering the International Baccalaureate as an alternative.
 
#12
As you say Iolis, it's a loan. An education with the student having years to pay off the loan at a miniscule interest rate. Considering the fact that those with a degree can go on to earn hundreds of thousands of pounds a year later in their careers, that sounds perfectly reasonable to me. It also stops freeloaders who just want to smoke drugs and doss for five years before facing the real world.

But that wasn't the point. You intimated that there is an establishment conspiracy to keep the public dumbed down, that our leaders are afaid of an educated populace. The fact that the government has spent billions to ensure that hundreds of thousands more students are getting degrees flies in the face of this theory don't you think? If what you suggest is true, they would be making subtle changes to ensure the opposite.

I agree that A levels and probably degrees are getting easier, but that if anything encourages a lot more people to go onto further education, not fewer, and is hardly the act of government that has sinister motives to keep the populace dumbed down a la 1984.
 
#13
Awol said:
. . .I agree that A levels and probably degrees are getting easier, but that if anything encourages a lot more people to go onto further education. . . .
Which would result in a large number of people with qualifications that required less intellect to achieve than those of years gone by. How does lowering the bar serve to do anything other than dumb down the populace?

[Disclaimer - Rowums would like to take this oppurtunity to point out that he is currently a member of the great unwashed and hopes that his degree will mean something. And yes, Mr Iolis is correct, those textbooks (that I never use) cost a fortune.]
 
#14
1) New Labour would probably argue that 80% of school leavers are EITHER literate or numerate!

2) I read for my degree in the early/mid 90s as a mature student. I was most surprised when we all had to take an introductory module so that the academic staff could assess our literacy. This was because even then the A Level had started to be devalued.

3) Now even further down the line, I get really concerned when I see basic grammatical spelling and punctuation mistakes made by young teachers who are supposed to be teaching English to the next generation.

SLR (not to be confused with SLR Boy).
 
#15
Rocketeer said:
...research for the department of Education's Get On campaign found classic [ sic ] songs like Frank Sinatra's " New York, New York " require the reading skills of an 11 year old and that this ' skill' is lacking in more than 5.2 million adult Brits!!!!

the horror!!
My God! They repeat everything too...
 
#16
An interesting topic.....several points to throw into the ring here.....
Falling state ed linked to falling voters......(Iolis).....
I would say that the fall in voters is not so much about the state of education these days ( dire though it has become), but actually a point of hope.....that the average bod in the street has the mental savvy to realise that , it matters not who you vote for....every party, politician and his stooge promises the earth, then withdraws after election frenzy into their respective ivory towers. Following this they totally ignoring any public opinion in favour of whatever nasty little backdoor deals they can wangle. We can all produce a list of examples here I am sure...

Lack of voting is, I would suggest, simply a matter of total apathy amongst the public.

The Blair Brigade have managed, in the last ten years, to destroy many, many social structures of this country ...education is just one of them....let's look to the future for results :)

On another note....having had the experience of sitting in seminal discussions at a respected university, I would add that it is just as difficult to express free thought there as anywhere else.....seminars are marked on individual contribution...if the tutor happens to dislike anything said, it is remarkable how one's term-time marks can alter. Universities as bastions of free-thinking ???...'Skimmed milk mascarades as cream'
 
#17
I'd have to take a slightly different tack on this. I don't think education has got worse over recent years. It just hasn't got better, or more accurately, hasn't adjusted to the demands of a changing economy. When I left school in the mid 70s, most working class kids were bound for 'traditional' jobs in industry that did not require particularly strong numeracy, literacy or social skills. Secondary Modern education reflected that. Now, people have to work in shops, offices, call centres, etc. These jobs require those very skills, yet schools still haven't caught up with this.

Another important factor is the British Working Class attitude to education. It simply isn't seen as important enough by parents and kids, a way to a better life. People who do do well in academic subjects get bullied and are told they're "too clever for their own good". I remember being told to forget about staying on at school and go and get a "real" job. Unfortunately I took that advice and it was a mistake that took me a long time to put right. I feel it's unfair to blame schools and teachers (and indeed whatever government it might be) if the rest of us don't value education.

My evidence is admittedly anecdotal but consider this-

1) My job involves face to face contact with personnel of all branches of HM forces (mainly of the most junior ranks/rates), as well as reading a lot of their written and word processed work on personnel/medical issues.

2) In the late 80s/early 90s I was an instructor at a DMS training unit for three years. I marked an awful lot of written work produced by trade training and upwards personnel.

3) I am also currently involved in a project to archive records (many of them produced by the predecessors of the people I mention at 1)). This often involves close reading of records dating back up to thrity years.

I don't really see, based on my experience, much difference between then and now. If anything there's-perhaps-a slight improvement over recent years.
 
#18
The modern education model with so many being awarded 'degrees' is little more than a cash flow generating exercise as was privatisation and home ownership.
This 'learn for life' game means that there will always be a demand for further education and therefore an industry has been created.
This is good in a service economy but it has set a false expectation in far too many. Way back when, degrees were awarded mainly to the top ten per cent of the population. This identified them as more able and in most cases were either vocational, such as medicine and law or academic. OK the upper classes sustained themselves with Arts and Classics but they never really expected tohave to earn a living.
As a result people with degrees expected to be more privileged and receive better rewards.
Remember that back in the 70s officers with degrees were almost unheard of outside Medical and Technical Corps.
Wind the clock forward and we now have a huge number of people with worthless degrees who all think that they should have the advantages of the past. What they haven't twigged is that the bar has been lowered, not for their benefit, but to maintain the Education Industry that has been created as part of the National Economy.
 
#19
We have this thing here called 'comprehensive education'...
Beloved by crypto-, real and quasi- socialists, Privisional Sinn Fein and Grinning Tony. It ensures the lowest common denominator in standards; just the thing for the upcoming control-centred politician to make caring and diverse policies about.

I wanted my son to go to an International School on an International Baccalaureate syllabus, but he's too thick, like me. I inflicted him on a Northern Irish Grammar school instead, where he did very well in his 'O's but let off all the fire extinguishers. He's now going to the RAF.
 
#20
Iolis said:
The purpose of a state education is not to produce highly educated young people. It exists to provide a docile workforce since docile people with rudimentary education and awareness are more malleable in the workplace than educated workers.
Remarkably similar to Eric Harris's views, as written in his journal before he decided to take out half of Columbine High School. Divided by an entire ocean, but couldn't slip a sheet of paper between your respective philosophies.

PAW
 

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