Would You Rather Save Up For Holida...

Our excuse to save money is a great holiday away from the daily stresses of work, overtime and taking care of children and whatnot. Having a vacation ...


Five Minute Delay Biggest TfL Mista...

The UK Transport for London (TfL) had investigated several management issues related to the huge rise in London's vehicles, which led to traffic conge...


The Future Of Education: Meet Altsc...

It's not new that schools are handing free tablets or Chromebooks for enrolling students (not really free, they charge it with your tuition). But if y...

GP Contract for Seven-Day Service

GPs in England can go under a seven-days-a-week voluntary contract to provide services with better pay for patients according to Prime Minister David ...

Would You Rather Save Up For Holidays Than Retirement?

Our excuse to save money is a great holiday away from the daily stresses of work, overtime and taking care of children and whatnot. Having a vacation or a weekend getaway is something anybody can treasure to relieve stress and pain. Or maybe it’s just delaying something more inevitable because if you’re saving up for holidays, are you setting aside something even for your retirement?

While the US may not reflect the entirety of western lifestyle, let alone the United Kingdom’s own workforce personal spending habits, data from the country shows about 30 per cent of adults and parents don’t save up regularly for their retirement. Instead, they’re regularly saving for the holidays.

Surveyor T. Rowe Price adds that about 28 per cent of adults don’t regularly save for college but would save more money for holiday spending.

As fun-loving people of the United Kingdom, I’d say the data on this can be spot-on with our country, or maybe not? I’ll publish figures here later!

But it is true when TRP Senior Financial Planner Stuart Ritter says:

“It’s always tempting to splurge around the holidays, but parents aren’t doing themselves or their kids any favours by overspending.

“We’re all inclined to be more generous this time of year, and it’s important to be mindful of the financial trade-offs we’re making and stick to a budget that aligns with our priorities.”

It would seem that the financial crunch of 2008 was due to this type of behaviour, which apparently we haven’t changed, globally-speaking.

Five Minute Delay Biggest TfL Mistake According To Uber

The UK Transport for London (TfL) had investigated several management issues related to the huge rise in London’s vehicles, which led to traffic congestion and plenty of pollution in the UK capital. Their assessment led to a conclusion and a recommendation, that all Uber drivers start their trip within five minutes of booking.


The ride-sharing service responded saying that the idea would leave London drivers £1000 a year with company service fees taken into account.

Uber’s official statement said:

“These plans would take money away from hard working partner-drivers and also create a safety issue with people banned from getting into their car, even after it’s booked and waiting right there and they would add to congestion as cars will be forced to hang around, clogging up streets before being able to start trips. Let’s keep London moving, not slow it down.”

Encouragement To Prepare For an Appropriate Route

The TfL consulted with minicabs and found a five-minute interval to encourage drivers to prepare their appropriate route.

The TfL said technology has made it convenient for customers to find rides at any time, even more convenient than using minicabs or black cabs.

“…but it has also given rise to a number of wide issues.

“These include rising traffic congestion, illegal parking and an impact on air quality. No final decisions have been made and the consultation runs until December 23. We’re keen to hear a range of views from the trade and from Londoners.”

The Future Of Education: Meet Altschool

It’s not new that schools are handing free tablets or Chromebooks for enrolling students (not really free, they charge it with your tuition). But if you have video cameras that are used for teaching reviews per student and having students create playlists to focus on their interests rather than a well-rounded set of academics, you’re probably set for the school of the future.


That’s what Max Ventilla, the founder of micro-school AltSchool, does with students, who are showing positive results.

AltSchool’s Objective

Max Ventilla was a former Google Executive in San Francisco, California. His school aims to avoid “grades’ Classifications and instead rebrands teachers, schools and classrooms with hip, child-friendly terms such as educators, learning labs and studios.

School begins between 8-9AM but the schedules per student can be adjusted. Students sign in using an iPad application upon entry. An online platform tracks everything from the student’s health condition to the child’s personalised learning plan.


The Personalised Learning Plan allows the student to focus on his or her interests and learning every skill they need with their educators in learning labs. Studios allow the students to exercise theory to application where their “learning block” sessions allow them to see the results of their work, which they would remember and hone, throughout the next few years.

The True Future of Education?

Ventilla views the traditional school system as outdated for the modern educational need.

“There’s a need for schools that are created this century. [Most] schools are terrifyingly similar to the schools I went to 30 years ago.”

Parents have seen the possibilities Ventilla has introduced and 4,000 applications come in for every 200 slots per school in the Silicon Valley university. Students are selected based on their interaction with each other rather than a private-school interview or examination.

Not everyone is convinced with the true future of education.

“Utilizing a model that is centrally tech-focused and individualistic in nature will serve to diminish the interaction and overall social maturation of students,” says Jae Gardner, CEO of tutoring and educational consulting company the Ivy Key.

“When they come out, are they going to be academically prepared?” asks Upper West Sider Rachel Fremmer, who has two daughters in New York City public schools and is active in the schoolsystem’s governing body. “No curriculum is fine if you have a really motivated kid, but [what] if you have a kid who just reads comic books or plays Minecraft all day?”

GP Contract for Seven-Day Service

GPs in England can go under a seven-days-a-week voluntary contract to provide services with better pay for patients according to Prime Minister David Cameron.

Cameron intends to establish the seven-day hospital services by 2018. In the Conservatives Conference in Manchester, Cameron announced the contract despite controversies surrounding financial and performance figures that may ‘shame’ the announcement.

The Royal College of General Practitioners warn that the seven-day hospital service in England is unachieveable because it can risk the quality of care.

Meanwhile, trials of the seven-day hospital services allowed 18 million patients receive extra care during weekends from March 2015

Jonathan Asworth of the Labour party said Prime Minister David Cameron could not be trusted with his promises. He said Cameron has a track record of unfulfilled promises. He said the Tories took the “health service backwards.”

The new GP contract will be voluntary. It would allow GPs to partner or pool their services with other GPs, which would allow them to create federations to deliver seven-day care to more than 30,000 patients in their communities.

Federations will allow GPs to provide and deliver better integrated care, according to Cameron. This would allow them to share their knowledge with other health specialists including pharmacists and nurses in different communities.

Voters Are Watching Corbyn, Liberal Democrats Closely

The Liberal Democratic party has always been one to fall into the disfavour of plenty of UK voters. Their shame after being defeated in a general election four months ago had seen its leaders resign. However, four months later and the party is back discussing a possible future of the UK under their command.

With Jeremy Corbyn rising to the Labour leadership and cementing the position of the hard-Left Labour members in the party, many MPs may choose to defect to the Liberal Democratic party or create their new political party.

The Liberal Democrats now have Tim Farrow as their new leader. However, many ask if it will be enough to have Farrow as the man to do the Liberal Democrat everything they would need to have.

Farrow and Corbyn are both popular with activists. However, it is possible he could fail to reach out to his other members. Voters are watching closely and political parties who feel they are near to having a proper understanding of their political position, they may fail.

However, Farrow may save the Liberal Democrats from being an irrelevant party in the United Kingdom.

London Cabbies Launch New Service To Battle Uber

Uber, the ride-sharing business, had gained ground and new enemies in the form of cab companies in different parts of the world. London’s black cabs are offering fixed prices on all journeys and even discounts on longer journeys. The pricing change is a reaction against Uber’s convenient ride-sharing service that guarantees a ride.

In May, a demonstration of taxi drivers that felt regulation has screwed much of London’s transport market had frozen the country’s capital.

Meanwhile, Gett offers its black cabs that allow Londoners to set the price of a black cab at the start of their journey. Journeys having six miles or more can get a discount of up to 30 per cent from the metered fair.

Gett is an app from an Israeli Start-Up company and has 6,000 cabbies signed up in London, which is a great proportion to London’s 25,000 black cabs. The app had experimented with fixed fares in central London. Meanwhile, Hailo has offered fixed fares to all London airports since April.

Steven McNamara, General Secretary of the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association said Gett’s service does not guarantee they can par the income Uber drivers have. However, he expressed the Taxi industry being keen to move into the 21st century.

Investors Leaving London Due To Increasingly Strong Pound

The stronger the UK pound is getting, the more investors are trying to get out of London. Analysts are acknowledging a ‘softening of interest’ among property investors from Malaysia and others in Southeast Asia. Asian investors have been responsible for the increased property market, which had inflated the local markets.

One estate agent had recorded a 10 per cent drop in the value of luxury homes in Battersea. Experts had blamed the increasingly fading novelty of buying London’s high-end penthouses due to the increasing value of the pound in the last few months. Increased economic instability in investor home markets had also contributed to the move.

Knight Frank, an estate agent, said prime London homes owned by Russians had decreased by 2.9 per cent of the total value it had during the first six months of 2015. This is less compared to the 6.7 per cent in the previous period.

Buyers from Singapore had their values halved to 1.4 per cent in value. Chinese investors had their amounts drop to 9.4 per cent from 10.9 per cent.

Russian buyers, with the rouble falling by 55 per cent due to the sanctions imposed on Russia, find themselves at a huge loss.

Sime Darby, which owns 40 per cent of the Battersea project, said in a statement: “We are witnessing softening of interest among buyers from Malaysia and southeast Asian regions, probably due to the prevailing volatile currencies and uncertainty in economic outlook. No exchanged contracts have been cancelled to date.”

Lloyds, the biggest miss seller.

Every UK bank, including the UK ‘Big Four’, had paid the price of their misdeeds. Lloyds had recently announced a £1.8 billion additional provision for consumer compensation. Lloyds has a total of £9.83 billion in consumer recompense, making it the biggest miss seller of payment protection insurance. The Financial Conduct Authority estimates that there had been 53 million payment protection insurances sold. Most of the miss selling came from bank employees who tried to raise work volume for added incentive beyond quota. This new banking scandal put Lloyds, the taxpayer-backed banking company and 39% contributor to the total £25 billion UK PPI compensation package, back in the spotlight of public scrutiny.

Lloyds may be the first bank to redress PPI claims, but the former watchdog FSA fined £4.3 million from the bank this February for not paying its victims promptly for their miss sold PPI.
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Chinese- Style Education For Britain May Flop or Loft

The Chinese education system has long days and rigid discipline. It is less lenient than accustomed to, but it allows its students to top the global league tables. The Chinese-style discipline came with five Chinese teachers who immediately switched roles with their original teachers before school started.

In the BBC documentary ‘Are Our Kids Tough Enough’ with the episode “Chinese School”, students from the Bohunt School in Liphook had 50 children in year nine to take classes from Chinese Teachers. For four weeks, the students wore a special uniform. They began school at 7AM. Every week there was a pledge to the flag. The childrens’ lessons were focused on note-taking and repetition.

Group exercises were taken and students had to clean their own classrooms. They had two meal breaks in a 12-hour day.

As the week passed, the students’ behaviours improved. Teacher-pupil relationships had also improved. Some pupils also expressed they liked the Chinese-style education format. Because they had to write down what was written on the board, they understood effectively and it allowed them to remember the lessons by heart.

However, according to education analysts, it is not the format of teaching, but rather the culture, the parents and the values thereof in teaching are the key to topping the educational charts worldwide.

NHS Doctors Forced To Back Seven-Day Working Contracts

Proposals outlined by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt to deliver seven-day NHS services for patients in England and Wales come under fire as doctors’ unions say that the protests amount to a “wholesale attack”.

The current consultant contract places senior doctors in a contract that will have them on standby during emergency cases. Should the case be non-emergency, doctors could refuse to work during the weekends.

Hunt says he will not allow the British Medical Association to be “a roadblock to reforms that will save lives.” He is also signalling a move to performance related pay as he reforms consultant contracts.

Hunt said that if they cannot negotiation ,they are ready to deliver a new contract. The Health Secretary plans to remove the consultants’ ability to opt out from weekend and evening working by April 2017. All annual pay increases will be awarded based on levels of responsibility and achievement.

Hospitals in Salford Royal and Northumbria are already operating seven days and have seen improvements in both patient care and staff morale. However, the BMA argues there is no “robust modelling” of the impact of seven day services on staff members and working patterns.

Hunt is to respond to this, claiming “the lack of a consistent seven day service in hospitals could mean patients are 15 per cent more likely to die being admitted on a Sunday.