Careers advice is an absolute, hands down essential part of education. Careers advice is an absolute, hands down essential part of education. So why are 93% of young people not getting any? What's the point in having a choice between school, college, apprenticeships, university or setting up your own business, if you don't even know those choices exist?
What I think is new now is a broader recognition that it's a question of UK competitiveness - excluding half our population from the technical skills pool and limiting our innovation to the imaginations of one narrow demographic. As well as being overwhelmingly male STEM professionals are much more likely to be white and middle class than the population as a whole.
Like poor managers the world over, Michael Gove believes in performance-related pay. Although not subject to this regime himself, he imagines that teachers will care about students more, be yet more passionate, focused, organized, energetic and committed if there's more money in it for them. Why would he imagine such a thing?
From my own experiences of being a student, it seems as though nowadays we are constantly reminded by our parents and other adults how lucky we are to be at university. They always seem to be going on about how jealous they are of the fact that we are students, how they wish they could go back and do it again... To be honest, I can see where they're coming from.
Who is in the right here? Hard to say. As a nation we should support the plight of teachers who supply arguably one of the most important services in the county, the people we charge with enriching the intellect of our young people. But national strikes are becoming annual events. This will be the third strike since 2011.
Last Thursday; we discovered that Yashika's work may never pay-off and that her dreams may never come to fruition. We were then informed that she would be removed from the life that she had built here and sent back to Mauritius, the very place that her mother had worked so hard to remove her from. Her life here would be ruined and the educational endeavours that she has made, nullified.
What I talk of is the Third Year Crisis, a phenomenon that has taken on a new lethal edge for the CV generation. Whereas back in the days of our wondrous parents (hi mum, hi dad), most students could fall back on the fact that a 2:1 from a decent University would pretty much guarantee a job, what we now face is a dog fight of epic proportions.
During a recent speech to manufacturing industry executives, Business Secretary Vince Cable cited teachers' lack of workplace knowledge as the 'underlying problem' in careers advice and guidance. According to Cable, teachers - predominantly graduates themselves - "know about UCAS forms - but... know absolutely nothing about the world of work."
We already knew that poor numeracy was more widespread than poor literacy and that around half the population of working age had only primary school-level maths skills (too many power naps at secondary school?). We also knew that poor maths was linked to lower earnings (even more so than poor literacy is) and possibly to wider wellbeing. But now the new economic research put a figure to the estimated overall cost.
The recent news that Michael Gove, Education Secretary and MP, wishes to bridge the gap between state and private schools and extend students' time in the classroom to a maximum of 10 hours per day, has received mixed reaction from both parents and teachers alike. While there is evidence to support longer school days, there is also just as much research negating the idea.