Osborne’s road to recovery needs designers and inventors

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From: Mrs C Russell, Irving Terrace, Clayton, Bradford.

GEORGE Osborne has Budget aspirations for a “Britain Open for Business”. Yet the Government fails to identify a curriculum to support it.

The Chancellor declares that “Britain is Open for Business” and sets the scene for young creative high tech businesses to emerge. He wants more companies to come back to Britain. He wants to see more manufacturers, designers and inventors in Britain. Exactly where does he think this high-tech designer and inventor work force will come from?

The Design and Technology Association highlighted a White Paper published in November in which the Government clearly indicated the direction of travel for education and learning in the future. The paper features sections on teaching, leadership, school improvement, funding and most importantly, the curriculum.

This comprehensive document covers so many aspects yet fails to make reference to Design Technology, ICT or Art and Design. Setting the scene for a “21st century curriculum”, it fails to indicate where these critical subjects should feature.

Existing engineering and technological industries provide a huge number of jobs and opportunities for students, who will go on to lead the way to solving the future problems of modern living and to becoming employers and teachers of the future.

Yet, if this trend of marginalising Design Technology is allowed to continue, all we will achieve is a workforce that is spectacularly-ill prepared and unqualified to become the new designers and inventors George Osborne so anxiously awaits.

Osborne may have put petrol in the tank of Britain to get us back on the road but the question we need to ask is “the road to where?”

From: David Marshall, Park Drive, Mirfield.

HAVING planned ahead to visit my eldest son and family this weekend which involves a round trip of 340 miles, I waited to hear what George Osborne was going to do for fuel prices in the Budget.

Well, of course, he couldn’t do much but a penny off is better than nothing. I went to Sainsbury’s the next morning to fill up always knowing they’re a bit cheaper than the local garage.

It was disappointing to see the price at the pump the same as our local. I asked the girl on the till had the penny come off and she said yes but Sainsbury’s had put it up a penny yesterday.

It’s almost unbelievable how companies like this can be so cynical. It is very reminiscent of the character in Les Miserables – the master of the house – except that they are “rooking the customers”. How on earth is the Government to stop the oil companies passing on to the consumer the new tax levied on them? Well, they’re not, are they?

From: Brian Card, Bramham Road, Acomb, York.

GEORGE Osborne’s reckless policies to cut too deep and too fast are hurting families.

In this Budget, the Tories have confirmed the banks will get a tax cut this year while families in will see their child benefit frozen and will pay an average extra £450 in VAT this year. And families earning as little as £26,000 are set to lose their tax credits next year too.

But while their plan is definitely hurting all the signs are that it’s not working either. The VAT rise and cuts which go too deep and too fast are driving up unemployment again and the independent budget watchdog says inflation will be higher and the economy will grow more slowly this year and next.

That’s why borrowing will actually be higher after this Budget than before. So these reckless plans will make it much harder to get the deficit down. It doesn’t make sense.

From: John Warcup, Tintern Avenue, Bridlington, East Yorkshire.

On a television programme some time ago, when discussing the price of fuel paid by the British public, we were told today’s pump prices were based on what the oil companies were paying for crude up to a year previous.

In May 2008, the price of a barrel was $135 and the price at the pumps averaged 114p. per litre. Today oil is $105 a barrel and the price at the pumps is getting towards 140p per litre. Who’s kidding who?

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