At the end of each summer, with school leavers becoming freshers, I watch the 'university debate' with interest. More than ever, it seems that students are being encouraged to further their study and gain a degree. This is despite the reports of rising tuition fees, raging student debts and a current vacuum in the job market for graduate careers.
Too much teaching is seen as getting students through tests rather than giving them a real understanding of what maths is about and so preparing them for the next stage of education, work and life. Teachers have become more aware of the need to improve students' problem-solving and investigative skills, but rarely integrate that into the way children learn.
Record high youth unemployment statistics have sparked much debate about education today. Universities, vocational qualifications and apprenticeships have been making headlines, with much discussion about their value and the role they play in our society. It's a minefield of confusing and contradictory messages for school leavers and their parents.