‘Thinking man’s crumpet’ Carol Vorderman has kicked off her role as the head of the Conservative’s maths task force by embarking on a tour of Britain’s schools and colleges. However the content of her lectures and the methods employed have caused controversy among parent and teacher groups.
“I went to one of her seminars with my daughter.” said one concerned mother. “Carol started off by saying how she intended to take the ‘fear’ out of maths, which sounded fair enough. But alarm bells started ringing when she continued: ‘and you can lose that fear with a First-Plus loan!’ She then launched into a high-pressure sales pitch about competitive interest rates and repayment schemes. My Christina would have signed up to a £5, 000 loan for a new Hannah Montana playset if I hadn’t been there to intervene!”
Vorderman has defended her actions by claiming that young people can gain a greater understanding of maths if using it in practical situations. “Pythagoras’ theorem, differentiation and quadratic equations are all very well, but they’re abstract ideas. Kids of today need real-life mathematical concepts, like how much money they can borrow with First-Plus’ amazingly low APR.”
The former co-host of Countdown has further angered opponents by introducing special ‘pre-school secured loan’ scheme for children under five. “Whether it’s money for the tuck shop or an over-garage Wendy house extension, you can make it happen with First-Plus. Please note failure to keep up repayments may result in repossession of toys, school books or bikes. Vorderman-First-Plus Finance ltd. is a subsidiary of Mitchell Bros. Debt Enforcement PLC.”
(Written 5 Feb 2009)