I hear today that Prince Harry has finally left Eton after the end of his fifth year. Apparently, he's "confident" of passing his exams. But then, you <em>would</em> be confident if you had sat only Geography and Art at A-level.
I seem to recall William getting three A-levels, at grades A, B and C - am I remembering correctly? ("Easy as A, B, C!" shrieked the gutter-rags, in ecstasy.) I'm also fairly sure that Charles received even poorer results. Given the amount of money it costs to attend Eton each year (£19,090 basic from September '02, not including all the various compulsory 'extras'), and the fact that a chunk of that comes eventually from the taxpayer, you'd think that these royal lads could put in a little extra effort, and actually attain some respectable qualifications. But no. Here we have yet another royal shoe-in to an exclusive educational establishment, who takes on a subnormal range of studies in the least taxing subjects possible, comes out with low-to-middling grades which are useless in the real world, but nevertheless goes on without obstacles into positions of power and influence. Disgusting.
Footnote 1: Prince Harry is taking a gap year (watch out for him in a jungle near you soon, building hospitals amidst the film crews), before heading off to Sandhurst to train to be an army officer.
Footnote 2: The official Windsor tourist site impresses upon us that Eton, having been founded in 1440 to provide free education to some 70 poor scholars, has expanded to 1,280 boys who are “admitted by competitive examination”. Difficult to imagine the sort of aptitude test in which Wills or Harry could honestly beat scores of other candidates, unless it assessed suitability for orthodontics.