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Fiona, loved your piece about the in­spi­ra­tional James Dyson and ‘ed­u­ca­tion snob­bery’. My el­dest son dropped out of col­lege af­ter less than a term. We told him it was his choice but he had to get a job. He did, went on to an ap­pren­tice­ship and now has a trade, is earn­ing a good wage and the only debt he has is his mort­gage – not bad at 22. Are we dis­ap­pointed in our son’s choices? Ab­so­lutely not. So many stu­dents are study­ing ‘soft’ de­grees and hav­ing a very ex­pen­sive party for three years. Name with­held, via email

Fiona, I com­pletely agree with your thoughts on James Dyson train­ing our en­gi­neers of the fu­ture. My son left school at 16 to do an en­gi­neer­ing ap­pren­tice­ship. He has been paid to learn through­out and is now, at 27, an en­gi­neer earn­ing far more than my­self, a pri­mary school teacher at the top of the teach­ers’ pay scale. We need more vo­ca­tional sub­jects in schools, to tap the po­ten­tial of those with prac­ti­cal tal­ents. Lynda Thomas via e-mail

Fiona, I hope the bright young grad­u­ates Dyson has taken on are not treated as badly as his first lot of em­ploy­ees. Af­ter the in­tro­duc­tion of his ‘rev­o­lu­tion­ary’ vac­uum cleaner he de­cided to close his UK fac­tory mak­ing the staff re­dun­dant and mov­ing pro­duc­tion to cheaper fac­to­ries abroad. Nice chap! John Hart­ley via e-mail

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