What do you study? cheap medication How relevant her words seem, in the week when a major international study revealed that England and Northern Ireland have among the worst levels of numeracy and literacy in the developed world. Not only do our 16- to 24-year-olds rank 22nd for literacy and 21st for numeracy, they are likely to be less skilled than their grandparents. Instead of having a highly educated upcoming generation, we are relying on the over-fifties to keep the show on the road. Those of us who dared to challenge pious New Labour education ministers when they reeled off inexorably improving exam results were told to stop knocking the achievement of hard-working teachers and pupils. It is now clear that those exam results were a cruel mirage. Dumbing down is a real and present danger to this country’s prosperity.