If we continue the industrial-level neglect of our adolescents, we do so very much at our own peril – says Mercy Muroki
A-Level pupils have been told to prepare for “disappointment” when results are announced this Thursday
Eight years ago today, I was waking up as a university student.
I had woken up the day before, after a long wait for my A-Level results, logged into the university offers portal and found out that I had got into my first place at university.
I was elated. I grew up in a household where nobody had gone to university – and here I was, getting into a Russell Group university.
I mean, yes, I was three months pregnant at the time and had to take a year out to have the baby, then take my baby to university with me – which wasn’t ideal, nor easy for that matter.
But it didn’t matter because I had got into university. And back then, university still felt like a golden ticket to a better life.
The promise of university was a more prosperous life, a good career, higher earnings.
Eight years on and what a different world it is for today’s budding university students.
A-Level pupils have been told to prepare for “disappointment” when results are announced this Thursday.
The Office for Students has predicted that there will be a spike in the number of applications being rejected after exam boards were ordered to get a handle on spiralling grade inflation by grading students more harshly than previously.
This means students face opening their A-Level results and, instead of the As and Bs their teachers have confidently predicted, they may instead see far more Cs than they bargained for.
Now, most of us will know a young person in this position. Whether it’s your own children, grandchildren, or family and friends.
And the sad reality is: this cohort of young people coming of age have been the unfortunate victims of a series of unfortunate events beyond their control – events that are having a demoralising and even devastating effect on their futures.
Now, while it’s tempting, I wouldn’t go as far as saying young people have never had it so bad – they’re not living in a world war, for one.
But, nevertheless the prospects are indeed bleak.
A-Level students have just had two years of educational disruption because of lockdowns, in the most crucial years of their lives so far.
Lockdowns in which more than half of final year students reported losing their jobs or internships.
Only to emerge out of that being told that even the brightest students could very well miss out on that much coveted university place they’ve worked so hard for.
This also comes at a time when even going to university is more expensive than ever.
The student debt owed to us, the taxpayer, has quadrupled in 10 years.
The Government forecasts that the average debt for students who started their course this academic year will be a whopping £45,800 by the time they finish.
And by the way, only 20 percent are even expected to be able to pay back in full.
And there’s the fact that universities are cesspits of hardline left-wing ideology with censorship and cultural dogma rife.
Never mind education, education, education , indoctrination, indoctrination, indoctrination is the stock-in-trade for our once respected universities.
Even if you’re a high achiever and good enough for the likes of Oxford and Cambridge – it ain’t looking so good either.
New figures show that for the first time, four in ten UK applicants are turned away from those two universities as they opt for overseas students, instead – who of course bring in far more cash for unis.
In fact, in one of our top universities, the London School of Economics, a staggering 70 percent of students are from overseas.
An unwelcome reality for those British students who have to fight over the 30 percent.
Look, I don’t purport to have the answers to how we can resolve this dire situation for the country’s young – in fact, I fear there are not many quick and feasible answers.
And in any case, solving the messes the Government keep getting us in is well above my pay grade.
What I am saying is that as the Government rightly focuses on what the future will look like what with spiralling inflation, energy crises, and just a generally crumbling state, it should not lose sight of the people who we will all need in the future.
The future taxpayers, the future scientists and engineers, future doctors and nurses.
If we continue the collective, industrial-level neglect of our adolescents – we do so, very much at our own peril.