Watch: Simon Pegg lays into Rishi Sunak's maths plan: 'F*** the tories'
In his first speech of 2023, the prime minister said that he wanted to tackle innumeracy levels by making maths a compulsory subject through to 18, but Shaun of the Dead star Pegg hit back, saying he had never needed maths skills beyond the level of a 12-year-old.
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Pegg posted an angry video to social media where he said: "So, Rishi Sunak, our unmandated, unelected prime minister twice removed, has decided that it should be compulsory for children to learn maths up until the age of 18.
"What a p****. What about arts and humanities and fostering this country's amazing reputation for creativity and self expression, what about that, what about the kids who don't want to do maths?
"I hated maths, I dropped maths as soon as I could, and I've never needed it other than the skill set I acquired at the age of 12."
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He added: "But no, Rishi Sunak wants a f***ing drone army of data entering robots.
"What a t*****. F*** the Tories, get rid of them, please. F***. F*** you, Rishi Sunak, and f*** the Tories."
Actor and writer Jolyon Rubinstein tweeted the clip and captioned it: "Simon Pegg for PM."
Someone else agreed: "He’s bang on."
Another person commented: "I studied maths up to A levels and it was also a large part of my degree. Part of my job is data analysis within financial services. I don’t think I use any or possibly very little of my A level or degree maths. A levels are about choice and vocation. This is pure distraction!"
Maths whizz Carol Vorderman also agreed that the plan was a bad one, despite her own keenness for the subject.
Speaking on Nick Ferrari’s LBC show on Thursday, Vorderman said: “People are suffering. I came from a very poor family – single parent, three kids – I was born in 1960 so I’m aged 62 now, and I was a free school meals kid all my life; I know how hard it is.
“He’s saying ‘Oh, my education was important’. Yes, it was important, you went to Winchester which is like Eton B, it’s a private school.”
She added: “Does he have any conception of what real people are having to go through and the lack of opportunities for children?
“And the only way we can change this country is when children particularly are given equal opportunity. I am deeply passionate about it.”
Asked about the compulsory maths plans, she said “the system is not working for that” and pointed out that many primary school teachers would only have studied the subject up to GCSE level.