Yobs are society's lost boys

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The Independent Online
THE shambolic imposition of the enormous national curriculum has taken from all young children the time they need to sit and practise writing and reading if they are to become literate ("Yobs in the classroom?", 4 December). Those with help at hom e, andthose prepared to consider writing and drawing as games, do well still.

From their earliest days, boys learn that they are valued for their activity, strength, and daring, not for sitting twiddling with a pencil. They see their screen role-models rushing around, defying authority, refusing to conform. Their computer games give them a chance to kick, hit, shoot and generally exterminate anyone who opposes them. They are encouraged to be the Lion Kings of their local community. And yet in their classrooms, they are weak, and they know it, and hate it.

The surprise is that most children co-operate with their teachers and their peers, in spite of large classes, a general under-resourcing of the school environment, and the social selfishness people have now copied from above. The notion of "yob culture"

does those youngsters a great disservice. If, unlike some, you accept there is such a thing as society, "yobs" are part of ours because they are our lost boys.

Lyn Mercer Milton Keynes