I know I shouldn’t be giving it a thought this early but I really do wonder how my son is going to compete in the global jobs market when he’s older.
It hit me when I read an article about the lengths to which some parents go to ensure their children succeed in life.
In many cases it starts in the womb, with parents “preparing” their child with everything from linguists to teach the bump a foreign language (Mandarin in the West, English in the East) to employing a nutritionist to create a bespoke brain-stimulating menu for the foetus.
Within hours of birth, many babies are enrolled at top nurseries and pre-schools; their parents having already researched the entrance requirements, completed the registration forms while the child was in utero.
Such is the growing competitiveness around the globe that parents are employing expensive nursery education consultants to ensure their child secures a coveted spot at their early learning academy of choice.
These professionals, who can charge around £350 an hour, work alongside the parents on creating a “strategic educational road map” for the child, routing a path from nursery to Oxbridge or the Ivy League.
In Hong Kong, parents are even more ambitious. With sometimes thousands of applicants vying for just a few dozen spaces, they will go to extreme lengths to secure their child a coveted nursery place. The growing trend is for parents to employ a specialist tuition company to work with their toddler.
These tutors prepare tots from as young as eight months old in everything from interview techniques and problem solving to fine motor and social skills.
It’s all in preparation for the child’s one to one nursery interview where they are required to show anything from how well they interact with other children to how musical they are.
These are the children of our future; the ones that will be competing against my son for college and university places, and then in the work place.
Working Mum, currently listening to Master A armpit trump the theme tune to Sanjay and Craig... Need I say more.