A groundbreaking new partnership, between Mensa and the Department for Education, will introduce an assistance dog scheme for educationally challenged students, who find it difficult to obtain paid employment after finishing schooling.
"Building on established canine work with the blind and the deaf, this is an obvious move." "In fact we are surprised we didn't think of it earlier" added David Hawkins, spokesperson for Mensa, the self-selecting self-congratulatory society for high IQ-ers.
Education Secretary Micheal Gove, the pudgy Cabbage Patch Doll look-alike, twice voted most punchable MP in a national poll, sees great potential."This scheme should improve employability for a difficult group and the pilot study could be the thin end of a very thick wedge. Big soppy eyes, drool and a lolling tongue are obviously endearing qualities but they haven't helped these dullards get jobs. The dogs, or Handlers, will help by giving a timely 'nudge' to the Trainees, to encourage suitable responses to simple role play interview questions such as 'Mr Smith is it?', 'How many beans make five?' or 'Take a seat'"
"Initially we plan to work the dogs in tandem with Learning Support Assistants, who are generally recruited to work with specific Special Needs students. Then, and I must emphasise that this wil only be after the most rigorous number-crunching, assesment and analysis of the results of the pilot scheme, we'll put the work out to tender the following Tuesday"
DfE sources believe that organisations including Battersea Dogs Home are not only interested in the scheme but are also well placed to make a successful bid as they will only have to provide a large handful of Pedigree Chum dog biscuits and a bowl of clean water each day. Acknowledging that this is "pretty much on a par" with what the current LSA contract provides for, it is thought that the dogs will nevertheless just edge it on Tie Breaker elements such as fetching a stick and licking their own genitalia.