[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Children with the best maths skills earn the most money, according to government-funded research.
A study by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), funded by the Department for Education, measured the maths achievements of a group born in 1970 and compared it with the salary they earned once they were in their thirties.
A child in the top 15 per cent of maths scores at age 10 is likely to earn 7.3 per cent more at age 30 than an otherwise identical child who achieves a middle ranking maths score, even after controlling for the qualifications that they go on to obtain.
This was calculated as being able to earn around an extra £2,100 per year.
Claire Crawford, programme director of the skills sector at the IFS, and one of the authors of the report said: “Our research shows that maths skills developed during primary school continue to matter for earnings 20-30 years down the line.
“Moreover, they seem to matter more than reading skills, and over and above the qualifications that young people go on to obtain. This highlights the importance of investing in skills, particularly maths skills, early.”
The report, commissioned via the Centre for the Analysis of Youth Transitions (CAYT), used data from the British Cohort Study, which focused on ability aged 10 and reading and maths achievement at ages 30, 34 and 38.
Being in the top 15 per cent for reading skills, it was found, added around 1.9 per cent or £550 or more per year at age 30 than an otherwise identical child who achieves a middle ranking reading score.
The report concluded that although reading skills earn some return in the labour market, employers “seem to value maths skills more highly and are willing to reward them with higher wages, indicating that there may be a shortage of such skills”.
Employers have repeatedly warned that not enough school leavers have the right skills.
The Skills Survey 2012 conducted by the Confederation of British Industry found 30 per cent of employers dissatisfied with the numeracy skills of school leavers, and with 15 per cent of graduates.
Some critics have also pointed out that a lack of basic numeracy and the failure to teach children personal finance skills may have contributed to the consumer debt problems blighting millions of Britons.
However, Government plans for the new national curriculum, unveiled last month, indicated that financial capability would be included in citizenship education. A public consultation on the draft National Curriculum will run until April 16.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]