I watched Jamie’s Dream School last night. Jamie proposes to inspire twenty young people with diminished interest in education to see it’s potential. The Dream School uses celebrity ‘experts’ to make the lessons more interesting, ‘inspirational’ individuals like Rolf Harris, Simon Callow, Robert Winston and others.
To my mind, TV chefs probably need to stay in the kitchen. Jamie doing this amounts to nothing more than another attempt to increase his popularity / notoriety as a saviour of the down trodden and champion of stuff. Seriously, why else would you take a group of twenty kids who never wanted to learn and try to show them how good education can be? Jamie wouldn’t get the attention if he hadn’t set it up this way of course – take people who don’t care and try to show them they should. Take the families who don’t cook and show them how to. Take the struggle youths with no jobs and get them cooking in their own restaurant.
How about this Jamie, just by way of a suggestion… How about you take the money you invested into this venture through your production company, and spend it on allowing an average man in an average job to take a year off work and do the sort of thing he’s always wanted to do – like travel, or study (because he really didn’t do it hard enough when he took his degree), paint, sketch, write poetry, learning to do something completely new for a living without pressure to earn much… Just a year away to really embrace new possibilities. Seriously, I’m up for the challenge. He can film me if he wants; I don’t have a problem with that. I’d be happy to learn to paint with Rolf Harris. I’ll discuss history with David Starkey. I’ll take to the stage, filled with inspiration and trepidation, after a few hours with Simon Callow. Just give me the opportunity; give the average guy a chance!
Yes, I know that doing this for people who aren’t interested and care more about chatting/texting/whining makes for television likely to engage and enrage; but why do it again and again? Why not allow someone average to try out something new, push their envelope, and leap out of their box? Too much to ask? I mean, I almost appeared in ‘Wife Swap‘!