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Yes, Prime Minister

Now that I'm in the wonderful position of having time on my hands (i.e. recently retired), I'm enjoying watching Yes, Prime Minister over a cuppa in the afternoon.

What I do find disconcerting is that it was made about 30 years ago, but could just as easily have been made last week.  Truly nothing does seem to change in politics!  Today's episode was all about failing schools and a failed education system, sound familiar????image

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  • LoganLogan Posts: 2,532

    Yes it does,things never change. We've got a lot of those recorded, of cause seen them when they were made.image

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 4,511

    I watched them first time round too.  Brilliant then, and still so now.

  • PalaisglidePalaisglide Posts: 3,414

    KT, many things never alter and education is one, I saw a news item this morning saying some Grammar Schools were not getting pupils from poorer area's. That was the same in my time, around 60%  passed the 11+ we all had to take and around 25% of us got to High School because our parents could afford the Uniforms books and kit we all needed, even then some fell out of school when it came to new Uniform, few of us made it to sixteen many were out of the school at twelve thirteen because money was needed, even the few coppers a week those children could earn. Politics as depicted in Yes Minister which we all laughed at first time round has proved to be very much like the programme in fact too much, more snouts in the trough than we believed. I have seen a few on Dave late at night when BBC has failed to produce anything watchable which is getting more often and still laughed only more wryly as we now realise the truth behind the show. As you say nothing changes.

    Frank.

  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,455

    Lucky you,Frank, where I lived only 5 percent of boys could go to the local Grammar school as that was all the room there was in it. The rest of us had to go to Secondary Moderns. Fortunately all of those in the town encouraged us to stay on and take O levels and A' levels and actually did better than the Grammar school.

    You could actually get a Bursary for uniforms.

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 4,511

    It wasn't my intention to start a discussion on education, although I have no problem if one develops.  Previous episodes have covered the Home Office, Foreign Office etc etc.  It's the underlying reality that civil servants actually run Government, and that little ever actually changes.

    In today's episode they mentioned the school leaving age being raised to 16, and Sir Humphrey said it was nothing to do with education, it was to keep the unemployment figures down.  I was at DWP when it was raised to 18, and we said exactly the same thing then. image

  • B3B3 Posts: 15,068

    I think it's a  shame that it is assumed that the only measure of success is academic achievement. How much better it would be if a child who was not academically gifted. could aspire to be a great engineer or plasterer or bricklayer or gardener and achieve equal recognition.

    Come the dystopia we may be hurtling towards, who will be of more value?

    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • PalustrisPalustris Posts: 3,455

    "plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose"

  • Christine and I were 'brung up' in Mexborough, a former mining town in the West Riding, now misnamed South Yorkshire.  Mexborough and the neighbouring towns of Wath-upon-Dearne and Maltby had Grammar Schools.  These towns were not full of rich people, so the common herd got to go to the Grammar.  However, I agree that a Grammar education doesn't suit everybody, our neighbour's son had no academic ability or interest but as soon as he started doing metalwork he new he had arrived and became a very good mechanic.  My first 'proper' job was at Park Gate Iron and Steel and while I was there a young man gained his PhD having joined Park Gate as an apprentice straight from Sec. Mod.  One size does not fit all.

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 4,511
    B3 says:

    I think it's a  shame that it is assumed that the only measure of success is academic achievement. How much better it would be if a child who was not academically gifted. could aspire to be a great engineer or plasterer or bricklayer or gardener and achieve equal recognition.

    Come the dystopia we may be hurtling towards, who will be of more value?

    See original post

     Amen to that.  My nephew is a bright kid but would lose the will to live if he was stuck behind a desk all day.  He applied to join the Marines and passed the initial tests including the medical.  A couple of weeks before he was supposed to undertake some more appraisals he was kicked whilst playing football.  Long story short - he ended up with a blood clot on the lung so end of possible military career.  For a while he didn't know what he wanted to do.

    A chance conversation with a distant cousin ended with him starting an electrical apprenticeship, and he loves it.

    Great engineers can achieve great recognition, but when did you ever hear of a sparks or chippie getting a knighthood?

  • PalaisglidePalaisglide Posts: 3,414

    B3, Education is not the only measure of success, many people without the required certificates make it in life, the one thing they do have is being driven to do better and working when others are taking it easy, life style is in most cases not given it has to be earned.

    There were certainly no uniform bursaries in my time if parents could not afford it then you were out, it was also books kit and the uniform for me was every year as I grew to six feet. Mother bought me the complete set of Arthur Mee's encyclopedias which I  read over and over it set me on course to be an engineer. High School gave me the mathematical ability which is a must to be an engineer, everything you do is to a formula and without maths it is a none starter. In my day you left school to work in Banks, Building Societies, Chemists or became Teachers and Lawyers Clerks. Our area was a massive shipbuilding and engineering area and many of us were head hunted into engineering if we were good at maths. Really we had no choice, I certainly did not want to sit behind a desk for fifty years then retire but engineering was exciting and at that time dangerous, we walked the steel, no H&S so unguarded massive machines shaping metal, they would have your arm of if you made a mistake, once you have seen a girl scalped by a drill you become very cautious, that was how it was and what we did.

    Seen so many Governments come and go, all promise and no give, from "You Never Had It So Good" to we will all have to tighten our belts in a speech at a sumtious dinner in the London Guild Hall shown on Pathe News at the Cinema, the Audience gave their view on that loudly and raucously. Our disrespect for politics and Politicians has been weened over many years of "we are alright Jack pity about you lot down there". Will they ever learn respect again I doubt it looking at what is happening now.

    Frank.

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