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British Army lower standards for recruits to the reading age of a 5 year old.

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British Army lower standards for recruits to the reading age of a 5 year old.

Old 6th Apr 2020, 11:07
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British Army lower standards for recruits to the reading age of a 5 year old.

I know its not aviation but..... That's a reduction down from that of a 7-9 year old!! Blimey! recruitment must be dire.

Normally, its rules bar hiring anyone with a reading age below 'entry level two' – equivalent to that of a child aged seven to nine.
This is considered the minimum soldiers need to be able to read instructions for using firearms and explosives.
But amid difficulties in attracting youngsters, it has emerged that between 2016 and 2019 the Army took on 50 recruits at 'entry level one', with a reading age of between five and seven. According to the National Literacy Trust, anyone on 'entry level one' would struggle to read the instructions on a medicine bottle label – let alone for an assault rifle or a computer-operated drone.
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/uknew...cid=spartandhp
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 11:10
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Surely that's only for officers, innit?
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 11:14
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Interesting snippet from it.

Legend has it that in the Duke of Wellington's final soldiering days, he approved a new Army pay book, which for the first time demanded soldiers' names and details.

The Duke is said to have chosen the name Thomas Atkins as an example to show the men how to fill in the documentation.

But because so many were illiterate, they did not know how to write their own names, and hundreds put themselves down as Thomas Atkins – leading to British soldiers' nickname of 'Tommies'.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 11:53
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I say it has nothing to do with Army standards but an example of the complete failure of the UK education system that can't produce literate people. Heaven forbid they check the three R's .... reading, [w]riting and [a]rithmatic..!
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 11:56
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Originally Posted by TBM-Legend View Post
I say it has nothing to do with Army standards but an example of the complete failure of the UK education system that can't produce literate people. Heaven forbid they check the three R's .... reading, [w]riting and [a]rithmatic..!
.....including punctuation and spelling?

Jack
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 12:00
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I have spent a total of 3 years in the Falklands, between 1983 and 2002, and was collocated with the various Army units every time. It was not uncommon to have soldiers who could neither read nor write. In 1983 we used to do pay parades and some soldiers made their mark with a thumb print.
By far the best educated, and behaved, I served with were the Ghurkhas.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 12:00
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If they can’t read already, what a great opportunity for both the Army and the applicant. I can see benefits. Id rather leave education to the same team that brought us The Goons than Mexican drug cartels.

Being facetious, no sense over educating a grunt Wasn’t WWI won with actual 5yo’s in the trenches? I’m sure I read that somewhere??
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 12:13
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Quote from elsewhere, “Do not look at the entrance standard as a measure of an organisation. Look at the quality of the leaver.”
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 12:27
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in agreement with the others. how is this different to days of ol'? business as usual really
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 13:14
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I was training recruits in the Royal Artillery '64-'65 (Oswestry); in those days the Army tested recruits' intellectual abilities on joining, and graded them from SG (Standard Grade) 1, down to SG 9.

To join the Royal Artillery, recruits had to be SG5 or above. In every training platoon of 40 there would be 10 or so SG5, who were unable to write a brief factual account of how they got to the camp from home, or to add 2 2-digit numbers. The same recruits would be unable to read anything beyond a 2-word newspaper headline. This was all put right by the end of the 8-week course. It was rarely, if ever, the result of lack of intelligence; it was the result of rotten schools and teachers, who allowed some of every class just to "sit at the back" with no encouragement, while they dealt with the more receptive pupils. Overcrowding and lack of funding were also a root cause.

So what's new in 2020? Not much, we still have some poor schools and poor teachers, lack of proper funding, and overcrowding. Giving pupils iPads isn't an answer; it's papering over the cracks.

(To put it into perspective, the infantry regiments accepted recruits down to SG9, but in those days infantrymen were not expected to be intellectuals.)

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Old 6th Apr 2020, 13:30
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Well I knew plenty of people who had EPC and EPC(A) during the mid-80's and they were equally barely literate.

A sad reflection on both the schools outside and the internal education system.

At that time schools were saying to pupils 'don't worry about spelling and grammar - so long as you can get you idea across.............'

:-(

Arc
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 15:24
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Not surprised … I had a boss that passed me his work to check before it was posted.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 15:37
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During the days of National Service the Army had no choice. For a large number of them the first six weeks was intensive lessons on reading and writing. Numbers came later when they learned to set a gunsight.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 16:05
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That happened in the late 90's! The Stanine Score for TG9 was reduced, so we got f**kwits!!!
I refused to give my initials when passed weather info from Kinloss!
KSS: We're now GREEN, Can I take your initials?
Me: What's changed?
KSS: The Colour Code, we're now GRN
Me: So what's changed?
KSS: The colour code! Can I get your initials?
Me: NO!, What's changed?
KSS: The QFE is now 998

WTF!!!!!!!!!!!
(Colour code is based on Cloud-Base & Visibility, but a change oF QFE/QNH was useful to ScATCC (Mil) as we passed weather onto to aircraft inbound to Scottish airfields!)

Last edited by unclenelli; 6th Apr 2020 at 16:27.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 17:49
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One had a maths master at school who was a proud veteran (well he told us often enough) of the Rifle Brigade (as it was then).

He claimed that it was the first regiment to insist that all its soldiers could read and write.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 18:07
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During the Vietnam War, the US army essentially recruited functional illiterate’s, project 100,000 or McNamaras Morons. Forest Gump wasn’t all fiction!

Some had physical impairments, some were over- or under-weight, and many had very low mental aptitude—often to the point of being mentally handicapped!
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 18:36
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There are some seriously good eggs out there who struggle with the academic side so I’m glad the Army is taking them on and will put them through the education centre sausage factory (kicking and screaming probably).
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 19:44
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Speaking as a Yank who graduated from a very middle of the road US Public High School, I am shocked and dismayed that the country that gave the world Shakespeare, the Kings English and a beautiful example of how to speak so properly without really moving your lips from her Majesty yesterday, I am astounded that you Brits are closing in on the US in education. Keep it up and we can have exchange students between the UK and Alabama or Mississippi, the end result will probably be the same.

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Old 6th Apr 2020, 20:55
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Originally Posted by Zaphod Beblebrox View Post
Speaking as a Yank who graduated from a very middle of the road US Public High School, I am shocked and dismayed that the country that gave the world Shakespeare, the Kings English and a beautiful example of how to speak so properly without really moving your lips from her Majesty yesterday, I am astounded that you Brits are closing in on the US in education. Keep it up and we can have exchange students between the UK and Alabama or Mississippi, the end result will probably be the same.
Agreed...the result will probably be along the lines of 'fix bayonet, engage en'...Don't need to R and R for that.
But that doesn't stop the p*ss-stained armchair warriors of PPRuNe pontificating.
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Old 6th Apr 2020, 22:25
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The Sun is written for someone with the reading age of an average 7 year old, The Financial Times is written for someone with the reading age of an 11 year old.

The idea that you want intellectuals as privates in uniform has never been true, nor ever likely to be. The person sought is one who can be trained to follow orders.

In many cases over the centuries, the enlistment of someone in the army gave them a chance of a life, rather than an early death through malnourishment, health and welfare needs.

Unsurprising to many is the fact that the Army is able to turn out some reasonable citizens out of the dross that come out of civilisation, it doesn't always work but in majority of cases it does.
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