Do something radical to prepare children for life

8th May 2009 at 01:00

Your anonymous correspondent claims that "Learning how to learn" is not an essential skill (April 24). Yet the first article in your "Training our way out of trouble" supplement that same week quotes the senior policy adviser to the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education as saying: "Learning to learn is what matters and, to some extent, the curriculum or specific study is second order. Productivity is important, but it's equally important to become a better citizen, parent and member of a harmonious society."

The same article quotes the latest UK Commission on Employment and Skills report: "Learning providers generally were not . offering employers the skills and knowledge they require."

These are some of the key issues which A Curriculum for Excellence addresses. So instead of yearning for some mythical "golden age" when children sat quietly at their desks, absorbed the "imparted knowledge" and passed their exams - before promptly forgetting most of what they had "learnt" - I suggest that your correspondent has a good look at the 21st- century world and accepts that we really do need to do something radical to prepare our children to live and work successfully in it.

Colin Weatherley, The Paddock, Gullane, East Lothian.

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