The week in quotes

"Of all the many reactions to the murder of Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman, the stupidest has surely been the Government's decision to require every school employee to pass three different background checks carried out by the Criminal Records Bureau. One was originally enough."

The Sunday Telegraph editorial, September 1 "In a weak sense one in 10 of us may have been abused in childhood, but another abuse is of the much smaller number whose terrifying and life-twisting experiences have now been cheapened by being placed in the same category as the millions who in childhood noticed in passing that an adult's behaviour was a bit funny."

Matthew Parris, Spectator

"Mandatory lessons in citizenship are not only a thoroughly good idea, but they should have been introduced a generation ago. Now we have the chance to imbue citizenship and ethics in children as young as five years old. The only trouble is, their parents have the moral code of rabbits and zero interest in politics."

Janet Street-Porter, Independent on Sunday, September 1

"Look at the godless mess left by the Cultural Revolution. Look at the godly mess we've made in the Holy Land! We should tell the next generation honestly about our failures as well as our successes. And then help them ponder the values that come out of their own life experience. A rabbi said that we aren't just pushed from Sinai behind us but also pulled towards the redemption before us, and they must be one generation nearer to it."

Rabbi Lionel Blue, Thought for The Day, BBC Radio 4 Today programme, August 29

"Did you see that 30-year-old maths O-level paper that was reprinted in this newspaper recently? Did you feel ashamed that you could no longer calculate the square root of a cosine binary integer where x = (2y + z). There is no reason to feel ashamed. The reason you couldn't work out this sum was that not once since leaving school have you ever needed to know the answer."

Joe Joseph, The Times, August 29

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