'Exam grades don't matter and are damaging to students' mental health' says Northampton millionaire
“A memory test should not be the only thing that defines us or our futures"
A millionaire philanthropist and entrepreneur from Northampton says exam grades do not matter and are damaging to the mental health of young people.
Matt Stockdale, speaking ahead of the release of A Level results today, Tuesday August 10, and GCSE results on Thursday, August 12, says there is a growing trepidation for the mental health impact they are having on students.
Matt, who first rose to fame by creating the hugely successful HomePride brand, now runs a job hub website, SetYourWorth.com, and has decided to remove all exam results from its entire platform, fearing young people will become victims of a broken education system and a dated recruitment process.
Matt says a broader education experience is far more important to an employer than the performance of the individual, at a particular time on exam day, calling for a radical shake-up so that kids can be kids for longer, reducing anxiety and stress.
He said: “Young people already have it hard, throw in the disappointment of exam grades, the effect of Covid and an unfair recruitment process, it’s no wonder young people feel so hopeless about their futures.
“A memory test should not be the only thing that defines us or our futures. Many very successful people did not do well at school but has not stopped them from creating fulfilling and prosperous futures - What chance do children who have experienced a life trauma during their education, have a learning difficulty such as dyslexia or simply didn’t gel with a particular teacher, have if exam grades are the only yardstick," he added.
As part of this commitment to combating students' mental health, SetYourWorth will also be donating 10% of UK sign up revenue to mental health charity Mind.
The SetYourWorth platform shows an enquiring employer to what level a candidate has been educated, for example, high school, college or a university education, with no subjects, grades or even educational establishments indicated. The platform also includes a useful option allowing candidates to select ‘university of life’ for those who see life experience as more useful to employers than academic achievements.
The non-discriminatory, altruistic website was launched to allow people to set their own worth, including their salary expectation, whilst addressing the many societal issues we face including sexism, racism and ageism.
Matt is the CEO and founder of a portfolio of successful companies in the technology sector and across household inventions.