An intermittently Liberal anthology compiled by Jonathan Calder

Thursday, January 23, 2003  

National Vocational Qualifications
Accrediting qualifications as NVQs involved slow passage through the NCVQ bureaucracy, but by May 1995 the target for coverage was all but met: 95 per cent of occupations were covered by standards, and 794 different sorts of NVQ had been created and accredited. Well over a century before, Trollope had lampooned the academic cleric Mr Jobbles, who dreamed of a day when the whole world was "divided into classes and sub-classes [and] ... The greengrocer's boy should not carry out cabbages unless his fitness for cabbage-carrying had been ascertained." Mr Jobbles's day, it seemed, had finally arrived. But in the workplace itself the plot was going heavily awry.

As NCVQ's tenth birthday approached, it was clear that at least half of its brand-new NVQs were effectively unwanted and unused: 364 had never been awarded to a single candidate, while another 43 had involved a single award to a single candidate. For many others, the number awarded fell short of double figures.

Alison Wolf Does Education Matter?: Myths About Education and Economic Growth (2002)

posted by Jonathan Calder | 8:32 pm