27th July 2012 at 01:00

Waiting on tables is not to teenagers' taste

When FErret was just a kid, college students were grateful for whatever work they could come by.

But the current crop of youngsters just doesn't have the same work ethic. Teenagers on Guernsey, the BBC reports, are "too embarrassed" to wait on tables. Elvio Pires, who runs a restaurant on the island, recalls one young applicant who asked if he could work in the kitchen "because he didn't want any of his mates seeing him serving in the restaurant".

The chef leading hospitality and catering training at Guernsey College of Further Education, the appropriately named Steve Bacon, says a "change of culture" is needed to encourage islanders to enter the industry, as the caterer has "never been treated as a professional" in Guernsey.

"If you take France or Germany, it's a profession," he says. "It's in their culture, so they are not battling with parents and career advisers."

Richard Vivian, head of Guernsey's careers service, offers a more pragmatic explanation: that the "low pay and long hours associated with catering and hospitality" may well put some people off.

Going back to the good old days with a guild

The Coalition's back-to-the-future approach to education continues apace. If you thought a return to O levels and a 1950s-style education was retro, it emerged last week that one idea being discussed by FE and skills minister John Hayes is the creation of a Further Education Guild.

It would, a report drawn up on the issue claims, be responsible for professional standards and codes of behaviour, training qualifications and continuing professional development.

The proposal follows last year's announcement of plans for a "master teacher" status in schools.

What next, in this lurch back to the Middle Ages? Colleges to be ranked on students' prowess in archery? Lutes to be taught in music lessons? Round tables to be installed in staffrooms? They could happen yet.

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