Anorak News | Wails From Wales

Wails From Wales

by | 17th, November 2004

‘WHEN Prince Charles talks, begonias perk up and take notice.

”Look what education did for me”

And so does the Express, which has seen the open letter written by the Prince – or aides known to him – to delegates at the Association of Colleges’ annual conference in Birmingham.

In his missive, the Prince, who famously became the first member of the Royal Family to take public exams, criticises educators for trying to make children into ”better robots”.

”There is no price more valuable,” he says, ”than the joy and self-esteem associated with…the mastering of a skill, the defeat of a mental obstacle, or the sensation of having one’s eyes opened to the beauties of literature, mathematics and science”.

Fair enough, although surely this is what teachers strive for as they stand before knowledge-hungry students, tutoring them in useful topics, like geography, art history and how to pass their art A-level.

But what the prince has no time for is what he sees as the increased reliance on technology in the classroom.

He wants there to be a back-to-basics approach to education, something he works towards in his summer school where he allows history and English teachers to rediscover the art of storytelling.

But not everyone can be lucky enough to have access to weighty texts like Watercolours by Charles, Prince of Wales, Highgrove: Portrait of an Estate by Charles, Prince of Wales or indeed The Old Man of Lochnagar by Charles, Prince of Wales.

And with a lack of talented teachers, what the Prince terms ”computer-driven modules” can be a handy substitute.

Of course, Charles could retrain as a teacher himself and lead by example.

And in his first lesson, perhaps he could start by teaching us how six mediocre O-levels and two A-levels (grade B in history and a C in French) qualifies anyone to study in the rarefied air of Cambridge.

Answers should be written on velum with a quill dipped in blue blood to the usual address…’

Posted: 17th, November 2004 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink