Budget 2011: Why do we have an uneducated workforce Mr Osborne?

Whilst Osborne calls for a ‘more educated workforce,’ fees for University continue to rise.

Jennifer Scott

COMMENT: Unless you have been one of the lucky people basking in the sunshine without being in reach of a TV, radio or internet connection, you will know today saw George Osborne announce the 2011 Budget.

From a business perspective, there were many positive moves. Enterprise zones will give companies new locations with cut price rates and superfast broadband, tax relaxation will take the pressure off struggling firms, and start-ups will be encouraged by a loosening in regulations.

What got to me though was Osborne's continued repetition of the UK needing a "more educated workforce."

More educated? Do we not have more people going to university than ever before? Aren't we approaching rules to keep children in some form of education until they're 18? Isn't there a willing workforce unable to get these wonderful jobs of which he speaks? And isn't the increasing accessibility of the internet helping to broaden children's minds as well as helping them keep up to date on Facebook?

I just found the phrase highly patronising to young people looking for work. Yes, there are incidents of kids who turn out like the brats at Jamie's Dream School, but yet again, the children who worked hard at their GSCEs and wanted to get a good education, followed by a good job, are lumped in with the minority.

The budget speech did have positives for getting young people into work with funding for 80,000 new work experience places and an extra 50,000 apprenticeships.

However, Osborne himself admitted less than one in 10 businesses in the UK even took work experience people on board. Is this because people ranted about the youth of today messing up our streets, just as he did when he was in opposition? I mean, who wants a hoodie in their office! Now he is in power, he is claiming they aren't educated enough to save the UK economy.

It also strikes me as odd that the Chancellor calling for higher student fees, likely to price many out of university or, at the very least, put them off the whole experience, is worried about getting a more educated workforce.

More free education for all would be the answer to that Chancellor. Both young and old, from all economic backgrounds, and both academic and practical.

Yes, many are excited about the petrol prices, but there are almost 20 million people in this country that don't drive. Wouldn't we all benefit more from an education? I know I would have preferred it.

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