There’s more to education than academics…

  Don’t you just detest the snobbery surrounding academic qualifications! There’s far more to education than simple grades.

Thanks to people like those at the Edge foundation there’s a chance to acknowledge that. They have set their new date for VQDay, (Vocational Qualification Day) to celebrate the fact that there is side to education other than the academic, even though many schools would have us believe otherwise.

‘Vocational qualifications (VQs) have never been more important to the economy and the individual; they deliver the trained, talented employees businesses are crying out for and ensure young people have the skills needed to succeed in education and work’ they say on their website. And they’re absolutely right. We are sold academics in a package of superiority and school social climbing at the detriment of other valuable skills and the needs of the individual.

We need young people with skills not just bits of paper; academic qualification needs putting in perspective with that. Part of the reason that home educated children do so well is the fact that much of their learning life is spent on developing skills out and about in life before the bits of paper are added on, if at all. It’s a shame the children in schools are not given the same opportunity.

Check out the websites to see another side to the learning story.

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9 thoughts on “There’s more to education than academics…

  1. So agree with you! Although I have a strong academic bent there really is nothing to compare to losing yourself in a well executed physical skill – gardening, DIY, cooking and so on. I think it’s really important that children are encouraged to do these and other hands-on skills at least as much as bookish/technological tasks.

  2. I agree wholeheartedly with this post Ross, as my hubby is probably a good example of success from the apprenticeship route. He left school at age 15 as an undiagnosed dyslexic, with only a learners certificate in swimming, in his name.

    He joined Plessey in Nottingham as an apprentice tool maker and transferred to Rolls Royce to completed his apprenticeship. He worked for Rolls Royce for many years, and during that time he went back to college in the evening to gain a Maths qualification and later an HND in engineering, which was also employment assessed.

    At age 32 he started a degree course, but decided that it wasn’t for him and left after 6 weeks, and transferred to Blackpool College to complete a course in Technical Authoring. As the course was all relating to his employment skills, he passed with ease.

    Hubby immediately gained employment with a company responsible for writing repair manuals for trains. Once he had completed this short contract, he was offered a job back at Rolls Royce, helping to write repair manuals for aeroplanes. He steadily progressed through the ranks of Senior Technical Author, Project Manager, and Senior Project Manager. He has held a contract in Germany as well as a short spell in India. He works alongside ex RAF colleagues and graduates, who often come to him for advice on projects. He is very well respected in his career, for his experience and sound technical knowledge.

    Hubby is currently contemplating a job offer, in a global capacity, to help organise graduates, who have joined the company as trainee technical authors, but have no skills or experience to bring to the post.

    I am incredibly proud of my husband’s achievements, as I know how much he has struggled to overcome his learning disability. He gives my such inspiration for our sons who are home educated and also dyslexic, but oh so happy!

    May others see the positive benefits of vocational qualifications and apprenticeships, because one size certainly does not fit all 🙂

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