Technical schools should never have been abolished

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John Roberts in his article “Education must have practical focus in

face of jobs revolution” (Yorkshire post Wednesday 04 June 2014),

claimed “A leading think-tank has warned”, “Major improvements are

required in vocational education as the majority of jobs in future will

need workers with practical qualifications rather than degrees”

In my opinion one of the gravest mistakes over the past years has been

the demise of secondary technical schools together with the excellent

vocational education which they provided.

Nigel Farage is mistaken in his demand for a grammar school in every

major town. Not everyone is suited to a grammar school education,

neither are their career prospects necessarily enhanced.

In the 1940s Dewsbury Secondary Technical School offered a number of

excellent pre-vocational courses. The one which I chose was a course in

building. In addition to Woodwork, Brickwork, Plumbing and Painting

and Decorating, the curriculum covered, English, History, Geography,

Maths, Building Drawing and Geometry, Chemistry, Physics and Mechanics.

Although it wasn’t possible to study for the School Certificate or O


My leaving certificate enabled me to be selected for an apprenticeship

as a joiner at Dewsbury Co-operative Society..

Many ex- Dewsbury Tech pupils went on to do very well in the

professions and teaching by studying for further qualifications either

at night school, on day release or by correspondence course.

I reiterate it was a grave mistake to abolish vocational education


Harold Laycock

SunnyBank Avenue,