I seldom write about policy matters, this being a parenting blog after all. However, a recent article on Bloomberg got me thinking.
A comment on Facebook suggested that the government should take the lead in abolishing civil servant ranking according to educational qualification but rather establishing tests and interviews for entrance to jobs, and promotions based on performance. There are some merits to this argument, for if the government continues to “discriminate against” non graduates then people will continue to seek to be graduates. however, this solution actually seeks to push non graduates up to graduate positions rather than resolve the issue of there being not enough people filling the non graduate positions. The solution to that problem is to somehow make people realize that the non graduate positions are desirable and honorable. This author does not profess to have a quick solution to this problem.
However, the comment led to me thinking of a related issue with the civil service grading system, i.e. that concerning scholars. One may argue there is a place for scholarships, so that the government can identify those with potential and groom them. No problems. There isn’t even a problem with placing scholars on a higher starting scale than non scholars although arguably this is already unfair when you consider the non scholar with equal credentials but had merely declined to take up a scholarship perhaps due to the bond. Be that as it may, any advantage should surely end there and thereafter it is surely to the civil service’s advantage to promote according to performance rather than maintain the separate tracks for non-scholars and scholars. The only thing the separate tracks lead to is the reluctance of capable persons who did not take up a scholarship, either by choice or because they were late bloomers, to be reluctant to join the civil service and hence result in a net loss of talent. Therefore the entire scholarship scheme needs to be rebooked. And by way of tribute to my math background notwithstanding the totally unscientific discussion, QED.