Thursday 2 February 2012


A lovely, heart-warming story of a return to our senses in this Guardian report into Non-Quals. There are currently, it informs us, a barely believable 3175 qualification titles that are nominally equivalent to a GCSE*. That they are to scrap over 3000 of them says much about their actual worth.

But wait, what... wait... I mean...wha... (Deep breath) Three. Fucking. THOUSAND? When I was at school we had maths, physics, chemistry, history, biology, art, English language, English literature, Latin, technical drawing, a few modern languages and a handful of vocationals such as woodwork, metalwork and cookery. From where, in the name of arse, did they even dream up the125 that will remain, let alone the other three-fucking-THOUSAND?

A search reveals such edifying subjects as fish-fiddling, nail-painting, hoarse whispering and tape measuring. I'm sure there's a proper list somewhere but I don't have the stomach or the lungs for it. Spewing up while simultaneously shaking fists, rending garments and raging to the heavens is far too much effort for midweek.

But obviously, an enormous percentage of kids are and will remain far too stupid and/or lazy to actually merit a real GCSE (For overseas readers, the GCSE is a vastly dumbed-down replacement for the 'elitist' [Ordinary] 'O' Levels of yesteryear, that you had to study in order to pass.) So, I guess we should have at least a handful of thicko subjects in order that they can feign achievement. We may as well make them as meaningful as we can.

Some suggestions for modern vocational O Levels:

  • Getting your fat arse out of bed in the morning
  • Keeping your gob shut until you start paying taxes
  • Knowing which side your bread is buttered
  • Holding down a shit job for years while studying hard to improve yourself
  • Working out where babies come from and how to stop it, allied with:
  • You pop 'em out - you pay for 'em
  • Paying your own way
  • Stealth Wanking - which will come in handy for time spent in prison
  • Finding somebody who gives a shit

Trust me when I tell you - yet again - that the average ability in maths and English in this country is appalling - about the level of an eleven year old at best.

With this in mind I present the latest, proven-to-work, guaranteed-results technology for primary school, to be introduced at the same time as I consign to the skip all unnecessary teaching technology toys:

The iSlate

(*GCSE = Gratuitously Counterproductive Shameful Excresence)

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