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9:47am on Thursday, 14th July, 2005:

Experience Work


My elder daughter is on work experience this week and next. What this means is that I have to drop her off in the middle of an industrial estate at 9am and pick her up at 5pm. In the interrim, she's working at a magazine publisher's, helping out on some of the obscure titles they provide for their insatiable readers.

The aim of this exercise is to make children so averse to work that they'll willingly pay to go to university, just so that they can avoid it for three more years.

They have these forms they have to fill in, saying what their learning targets were and how well they achieved them. These serve the very useful purpose of teaching children that making their responses up is far quicker than telling the truth, thus supplying useless stats to decision-making bureaucrats who determine the future of the scheme based on the seemingly-positive results — just as happens in real life.

One of the purported aims of work experience is to give children careers ideas. The kid who served me in Nibbles café yesterday, for example, will have the career idea of never working in a service industry ever again ever ever. My daughter has been luckier than he, however, in that she's discovered that it's possible to sell teddy bears at $280 a pop. Now all she has to do is find a UK university that offers a bear-making degree.

[Aside: she had a reason for looking at that particular bear.]

Oh, and everything you always suspected about magazines was true: the first thing she had to do was write some letters to the editor.

Referenced by Ceilidh.

Referenced by Selling Drugs.

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Copyright © 2005 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).