How to help your teenagers with school and university decision making, even when you’re short on time.

This was first published on http://www.familyfriendlyworking.co.uk , an online repository of advice, news and ideas for working parents. Follow the link to see it in its full original glory with pictures and everything! Compromise. Trade off. Robbing Peter to pay Paul. Burning the candle at both ends. Any way you phrase it, the work-life balance … Continue reading How to help your teenagers with school and university decision making, even when you’re short on time.

After I matriculated from Oxbridge at the age of sixteen I went on to become Jeffrey Archer. (Or why lying on your CV is neither big nor clever.)

As the closing date for UCAS personal statements draws inexorably closer I suspect there's more than a few students who are inwardly wrestling with whether to soften the edges of certain truths to paint a more favourable picture. Whether it's plagiarism, little white lies or enormous, industrial style juggernauts of lies it all comes down … Continue reading After I matriculated from Oxbridge at the age of sixteen I went on to become Jeffrey Archer. (Or why lying on your CV is neither big nor clever.)

What to do if my child doesn’t want to go to university?

If the *shudder* unthinkable happens and you find yourself holding a family meeting with much hand wringing and chest beating it can mean only one thing - your child has confessed to not wanting to go to university. 'How could this happen?', you ask yourself, 'we have books, they eat brie etc etc etc.' Well … Continue reading What to do if my child doesn’t want to go to university?

Your future doesn’t have to tick a box for someone else.

People understand what you're talking about if you mention 'The American Dream' - the idea of grabbing yourself by the bootstraps and taking whatever part of the world you want to take hold of and making it yours. Soaring wealth and opportunity are the promise, indeed the birthright of our continental cousins. But talk about … Continue reading Your future doesn’t have to tick a box for someone else.

Frustrated and annoyed by widespread disinterest.

I’ve spent most of of my professional life helping people get jobs. I studied journalism and have a degree in creative writing. I am a published author. I even worked at the BBC. I’ve spent the last three years working at colleges and schools to help with careers and academic decision making. I have contacted … Continue reading Frustrated and annoyed by widespread disinterest.

Careers planning starts with good work experience, that’s what the holidays are for.

It is done, summer is here - obviously only chronologically rather than meteorologically as I look out at the resolutely sullen British vista. My children break up for their holidays and although they are too young to co-opt into the world of work and I'm staring down the barrel of 7 weeks of Lego and ice … Continue reading Careers planning starts with good work experience, that’s what the holidays are for.

Welsh rareglot.

Have I lost it entirely? Am I the lone voice here? It was my understanding that schools up and down the UK are struggling to make ends meet. That they are in essence broke. Kaput. On their arses. Yet I've just read an article that has stated that the Welsh government have made a promise … Continue reading Welsh rareglot.

Nursing and tennis – it’s a whole new ball game.

Two things of note have happened in the news this week, widespread picketing surrounding pay and conditions for the public sector and the always in touch with the man on the Clapham omnibus Wimbledon starting. With Thursday being D-Day for public sector pay freezes, or P-Day if you prefer, my former claims about nursing and … Continue reading Nursing and tennis – it’s a whole new ball game.

Are you trying to seduce me, Mrs. Milkround? (Graduate schemes, it’s obviously about graduate schemes.)

So, July is upon us, exam season is over for one cohort but the real challenges are still yet to come. For many now is the time of year when you'll be starting to consider your longer term career options, post university. Now, apologies I couldn't get to you when you were 15 and still … Continue reading Are you trying to seduce me, Mrs. Milkround? (Graduate schemes, it’s obviously about graduate schemes.)

Turn up, tune in, drop out.

I've been gobbing off about this for a while now but new figures show even more clearly that the schools' push to get all students, regardless of their aptitude or suitability, into university is demonstrably failing. Not in the goal, they are indeed packing them in there, but keeping them there is something quite, quite … Continue reading Turn up, tune in, drop out.