The Curmudgeon


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Your Foetus Is Learning Too Slowly

After twelve years of target-fiddling, tabloid pacification and finger-wagging, New New Labour has discovered that boys tend to develop literacy skills more slowly than girls; though fortunately this is not an insurmountable handicap in gaining Government employment. "What we can see is that boys, particularly on emotional development, lag behind girls," blathered Dawn Primarolo, the Minister for Tiny Consumers. "That emotional development is very important in language development through play before they start school and reading and writing." Since New New Labour has been reforming the education system for the aforementioned twelve years, this emotional immaturity in our XY-chromosomally oriented infant human resources is clearly the fault of nursery staff and child minders, who have not been doing enough to force the little brats to put pen to paper. Accordingly, nursery staff and child minders are now to be ordered to "set up role-play activities tailored to boys' interests, such as builders taking phone messages and writing up orders, post office employees writing on forms, and waiters taking orders from customers". It is not clear where Dawn Primarolo or her handlers got the idea that boys of three and under dream of taking messages, writing forms and serving in restaurants, but given Primarolo's grasp of male psychology I suppose we must take her word for it; although, since the post office is being "reformed" and too many builders would push house prices down, it does seem a bit cruel to raise the little ones' hopes. Oh well, there's always waitering. Meanwhile, government targets for emotional development and employability in the womb are doubtless even now taking eloquent, coherent, calligraphically unimpeachable shape on the back of somebody's envelope.


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