Stop pressuring kids into university, pleads Dutch minister
Parents must stop pushing kids to get into university, Minster Arie Slob for Primary and Secondary Education said to newspaper AD. According to him, this puts unnecessary stress on children and casts vocational education in a negative light, while the demand for people with practical skills is only increasing.
Slob wants to put an end to the social trend in which vocational education is considered "not good enough". The demand for tradesmen is already so great that companies attract 14-year-old students and offer them a work placement. "That also says something about the vocational students: sometimes they are literally the golden hands that are needed for the future." the Minister said
Yet the number of students in vocational educations is falling. This is partly due to population shrinkage, but another important factor is that many parents pressure their children to get into university. "Stress among pupils, that is a subject that has not been mentioned much, but it is really something to pay attention to - also for me as a minister", Slob said. It annoys him that so many children experience constant pressure at a school level they can not handle.
The Minister therefore makes an urgent appeal to parents to look at where their child fits and which school level is suitable, instead of immediately pushing for university. "If you as parent push your child up - you have to get to university - then your child will not be happy."