Steven Gradidge. Hi :)

Eric Schmidt’s Criticism Is Justified – Step Up Britain

Posted on: August 30, 2011

Speaking at the MacTaggart Lecture at the Edinburgh International Television Festival, Google Chief Eric Schmidt has said education in Britain is holding back the country’s chances of success in the digital economy and I am finding it very difficult to disagree with him.

He said ‘The UK is home of so many media-related inventions. You invented photography. You invented TV. You invented computers in both concept and practice…Yet today, none of the world’s leading exponents in these fields are from the UK.’

One is very confused. From what I have recently been reading, Britain appears to be celebrating a record level pass rates for the recently announced GCSE and of A-Level exams. I would applore education officials to stop pushing such statistics and get on with educating people. Improving exam results IS NOT improving education. Let me make it clear that I’m not slamming teachers, just the ever increasing failing curriculum. I owe my past teachers everything for what they have taught me and hold them in the highest of regard. For what they do and for what they actually get in return, teachers are truly heaven sent wonders.

Change in necessary.

Our entire global infrastructure depends on computers. It seems as we rely on them more for entertaining and organising our daily lives, we know less about them. Yet most people, even in the younger generation which grew up in the Internet age (my generation), know almost nothing about how they actually work. I would argue computing (in its purest form) is just as important to daily life as basic maths and language skills. Problem solving is a key skill; a recruiting prerequisite that computing helps to develop and nurture.

  • Question: Where do Banana’s come from?
  • Answer: Tesco?

I also agree with his criticism over (dickhead) David Cameron’s proposal to limit the use of social media sites and other communication channels during civil unrest in the wake of the UK riots. The very public acknowledgement of suggesting this highlights the complete lack of understanding of social media and increases pressure that the likes of David Cameron and Theresa May need to be educated on how these services are used and should be used alike. Stop the demonization of Social Media and accept your ignorance of it. Embrace it. Use it. Empower with it.

So how are we Brits expected to rival the leaders of this new computer generation if the Government are willing to pull the plug at the sight of unrest? Ludicrous.

Anyways it’s not all doom and gloom as we take a trip down nostalgic lane and look at what the UK once produced.

  • Football
  • Cricket
  • Rugby
  • World Wide Web (Tim Berners-Lee)
  • Television (John Logie Baird)
  • Radio (James Clerk Maxwell)
  • Telephone (Alexander Graham Bell)
  • Steam train (George Stephenson)
  • Light bulb (Sir Humphry Davy)
  • Underground trains (Dr Edward Hopkinson)
  • The Police (Sir Robert Peel)

Who knows what might be next ‘eh? 🙂

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1 Response to "Eric Schmidt’s Criticism Is Justified – Step Up Britain"

[…] school-taught ICT lesson could disagree with the sentiment. Oh, and look what else I said about the weakening education standards in the UK. He wants our kids using the apps of today while programming the apps of tomorrow. Yep… Catch up […]

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