X-Factor and Britain’s Got Talent judge Simon Cowell has some controversial opinions about school, claiming that homework should be banned and his son Eric should leave school at 10.
When speaking about Eric, who’s currently five, Cowell said: ‘Listen if I can get him out at 10 to come and work for me then I would. I was better off out of school than I was in.
But I didn’t have that major stress about homework, because I would just throw it away. A healthy, happy kid is more important than an overeducated, stressed kid.’
It’s no surprise that he’s come under scrutiny for these comments, with Robert Halfon MP urging him to set a good example to low-income families. The Chair of the Education Committee had this to say:
‘School is the place that gives them some comfort, support, friendships and, even meals. Not everyone can be like Simon Cowell.
I think he’s got to be very careful to not encourage kids the wrong way. It’s not a great plus for hard-working teachers.’
Cowell attended Radlett Preparatory School and then Dover College, Kent, but left early and didn’t attend Sixth Form. After taking his GCE’s he passed English language and literature, before gaining another GCE in sociology at Windsor Technical College.
The entrepreneur has spoken out against homework, criticising it for ‘putting too much stress on kids’. Speaking to NBC, he said:
‘I saw a documentary recently where apparently the most academic kids in the world now are from Finland. The reason is they stopped homework and the education minister said there is way too much stress on kids.
They have to be kids, they have to enjoy themselves and enjoy school.’
The 59-year-old went on to say that he feels ‘everyone is taught they have got to achieve everything immediately or you’re going to be a failure’.
Citing himself as ‘not academically smart’, Cowell said he prefers the more apprenticeship way of working and he would ‘never put Eric under that pressure’.
In 2013, former Education Secretary Michael Gove also had strong words for Simon after his comments about the key for children’s success is to ‘get lucky’. In response to his, he said:
‘This is an irresponsible and stupid thing to say. Teachers strive every day to ensure children understand the importance of learning, hard work and discipline. Simon Cowell’s comments undermine their efforts.’
What do you think of Simon’s comments? Let us know on Facebook.