Further to the 2 Million Minutes post, which I strongly encourage you to watch the video links from –
Thanks to Zara in year 13 who spotted this week’s BBC article about the rise of Shanghai to the top of the international league table in the global PISA rankings for quality of education. Well worth a read.
2 Million Minutes, that I told you about in KS4/5 assembly, is a programme about the amount of time in total that American Seniors have in High School – basically, year 9 upwards. It compares two able children in each of the US, India and China and what they’re doing to make sure the have the best qualifications and break into the career they want.
You can watch the much-reduced summary videos on YouTube: part 1 and part 2, totalling about 15 minutes.
It’s worth bearing in mind not just the moral point (how lucky you are to be born where you were, to parents with a decent income, and attending a well-resourced school with excellent standards, highly qualified staff and small classes – most of the world does not have this) but also the sense that
- if you’re not careful you’ll waste these natural advantages of incredibly supportive teachers – do you really think any employer is going to give you second chances at homework, 6 weeks’ close support to do a personal statement or tolerate poor work? bosses won’t be as forgiving or supportive as teachers
- whilst young people in those other countries don’t have anything like the advantages you do, many of them – many millions of them! – realise that education could be their only route out of poverty, and work incredibly hard for it… are you sure you’re working as hard as them?
We don’t want you to be terrified of the career market, or think you have no future. You’re bright, engaged young people with great prospects. But don’t sleepwalk. Step it up.