Alarming new research shows our grandkids aren’t learning the right things 17



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You probably remember your first job very clearly and the feeling of being very grown up and finally earning a wage. You had some money to spend and some to save for your future – your first home, a holiday, maybe even a car. It was a real right of passage and a coming of age.

But things are changing and those feeling may not be ones our grandchildren get to experience in quite the same way. New research released today shows that almost two-thirds of Australian students are being trained for jobs that will disappear or look completely different in the future, a statistic that is “deeply alarming” and warrants the “serious” assessment of the vocational education sector.

The New Work Order report, released today, and reported in The Australian also analysed 405 occupations in Australia to show 60 per cent of all workers will need to be able to configure and use digital systems or build digital technology.

The new research commissioned by the Foundation for Young Australians reveals 58 per cent of stud­ents and 71 per cent of vocational education students are on a career path that may dis­appear or be funda­mentally rerouted.

“This is deeply alarming because not only are they studying and collecting debts for futures that don’t exist but no one is telling them these futures don’t exist,” says  foundation chief executive Jan Owens, who is quoted in The Australian today.

It is no longer enough to just be a “digital native” who can use technology to communicate or perform­ tasks.

“This is not as simple as just being able to turn on a computer,” Ms Owens said.

“As it stands, we are waiting until Year 9 to start serious digital skills training, which is way too late. We should be starting in prim­ary school.”

The report makes clear that Australians aged 15-24 are disproportionately affected by the tectonic­ shift in the way jobs are automated, globalised and shared, with low-skill labouring, retail and administration jobs hardest-hit.

Ms Owens also said that typical young Australian starting part-time work today would be employed­ in 17 different jobs spanning five careers over their lifetime.

Which skills do you think our grandkids will need to survive and thrive in the future? Do you feel they are being taught the right things? 

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. Respect for themselves and other people, manners, how to think for themselves. School should be a happy place to go to, if it is they will learn!

  2. I was born during the war so I’m not even a Boomer. So I drift along with the ones who are not seen.

    Over the years I’ve followed a program to be continually focused on the 3Es, the 3Ps, the 3Ts and the 7Ps.

    That is:
    3Es = find the most Efficient, Effective, Economic method of doing everything;

    3Ps = Practice, Practice & Practice

    3Ts = Training, Training, & Training (as in educational training)

    7Ps = Proper Prior Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance

    It will take me years to attain my goal. I know I have not done that yet. It is the eternal search for excellence.

    But most importantly one must enjoy the journey and attempt to learn something new every day.

    There are a few more which could be included but we won’t go there.

    One thing we were not taught was the need for good communication and that art is dying these days with the fixation on gadgets.

    I waffle too much. B|

    1 REPLY
    • I call myself a PB (pre boomer) that invisible group of people who just like you got on with the mystery called life.

  3. They need to know how to cook clean launder and drive, how to save money and care for others. Learn these skills early and they will survive and thrive to contribute to the common good

  4. In Australia, We had the best system, now We are just realising what We, once again have lost, Poor Children. !!

  5. They need to learn to be literate and numerate, to think, to research and respect others, co-operate and be mindful. Specifically it would be helpful to learn about their own and other cultures, nutrition and the environment, how to manage money, measure accurately and to communicate well.

  6. and PC schooling is now teaching them WHAT to think not HOW to think. Nanny State knows whats best.

  7. I don’t believe it is that different Lee Horrocks. In 65 I had my first day working in a computer room. Actually the largest one in the southern hemisphere. It was the start of my journey through computer operations and then systems analysis. in 72 Xerox said we would be in a paperless society in 10 years.

    Yes the planes have got bigger and quicker. Yes there are more consumables to waste our money on. Yes the houses are bigger and better but we have 25% of households as single ocupation.

    We still go through the same processes and expect to live longer. I still have 20+ years to catch up with both of my grandfathers.

    But when we remove all of the covering layers the basics have not changed that much.

    It would take very little to go back to a slower life with large extended families where we could sit and talk and ask questions face to face with family and friends. Maybe that really is the solution. B|

  8. I have little idea about specifics of what they should be learning for their careers, but as a relief teacher in my 60’s I am absolutely appalled at the inability of mainstream high school students to do basic maths or even spelling, form sentences, etc. They rely entirely on calculators and computers. For all I know they may well have knowlege of the subject they are studying, but have limited capacity to be able to communicate that to others unless face to face. The basics are still important as well as extensive computer skills.

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