Tony Blair's oldest child will be 16 on 19 January 2000.
I note that Anthony Giddens, the ideologist of the Third Way, recently
emphasised that "The market can sometimes be a means of helping to alleviate
inequalities rather than only creating them - as welfare to work policies
recognise." and that the Third Way "Places a stress upon active welfare,
coupled to labour market reform." Giddens also pointed out that "A
fundamental feature of the new social contact pioneered in third way politics
is 'no rights without responsibilities'."
What finer example of faith in active welfare-to-work policies, equality of
opportunity, the value of labour market participation, and the acceptance of
responsibility, than to give Euan Blair the same equality of opportunity as
the children of the poor - by withdrawing him from the elite London
Oratory school, and placing him on one of the fascinating and opportunity-rich
welfare-to-work programmes for 16-year olds, pioneered by the
For instance as...
a trainee press operator on a Modern Apprenticeship programme
a Modern Apprentice, Security Alarms
a Modern Apprentice, Timber Trade Yard Operations
a Modern Apprentice Vehicle Body Fitting (Replace vehicle body panels, panel
sections and ancillary fittings!)
...or on a NVQ course in the Framework Area 'Tending Animals'
...such as Pet Care and Supply ("Recognises the skill of those managing the
care of animals in a retail environment")
or on a National Traineeship in the clothing industry ( cutting, sewing,
pressing, and sealing)
or the welfare-to-work MacFavourite, the Modern Apprenticeship Fast Food
or then again a NVQ Level 1 in Meat & Poultry Butchery Operations
As the UK Department for Education and Employment found in 1998,
"Modern Apprenticeships are attractive in a number of ways: they are felt to
enable the acquisition of job-related skills, qualifications and experience,
as well as enhancing career prospects."
Who needs a university place, with these advantages available, at 16? Euan
Blair will no doubt be strongly motivated to take up his place, (and of course
appropriate sanctions can be applied to those who fail to develop a sense of responsibility).
I hope that Anthony Giddens will advise his good friend Tony Blair of the