Regarding your Voxpop about apprenticeship placements for school children (DW 13 March), I’d say that traditional apprenticeships have always worked well based on a system of mutual benefit. Although changed, it is still an effective system for learning creative and practical disciplines. Standardising the existing practice of ‘work placements’ would benefit all involved.
I would, however, draw the line at sending school children on apprenticeship placements. To benefit from this they’d need skills to be able to participate at a basic level, an understanding of the commitment required, respect for the profession and a host environment with time and goodwill to give. The notion of mutual benefit is much more abstract here.
Shouldn’t school children be benefiting from being children at school? Learning a variety of things in an environment where they can make mistakes and find an occupation they want to pursue without being pushed into participating in the commercial world.
Sebastian Bergne, Industrial designer, studio director, teacher and father, by e-mail