But let us remind ourselves, in fact education has never been more popular, with three-quarters of adolescents moving on to post-compulsory studies and over one third going to universities.
Of course there are obstacles to be overcome if we are to meet the national targets of practically every person leaving education with at least NVQ 2 or five C-plus grades at GCSE by the millennium. But as the article on Phoenix High School in your education section on the same day shows, real teachers and real schools are working on these. Let us support these efforts and stop the panic.
No doubt there will always be a few like Mark Twain who "never let his schooling interfere with his education".