Peter Hoskin

Swearing allegiance

Swearing allegiance
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Lord Goldsmith will today release his review into British citizenship and social cohesion. One of his ideas: that all school-leavers take part in ceremonies to swear allegiance to the Queen. It's window dressing, a pretty policy that won't achieve anything.

After all, the situation's becoming grimmer for those school-leavers. They're faced by high levels of tax; rising debt; and little chance of getting on the housing ladder. Add to this the increasingly devalued qualifications of the British education system and the fact that young people are all-too-often victims of crime. These factors explain why so many are choosing to leave the country, and this won't be remedied by flag-waving ceremonies.