Using complicated electrical devices to curry favour with brats – the new black?

Maybe a ‘well done’ after GCSE results would suffice?

With thousands of GCSE pupils eagerly awaiting their results, UK electrical retailer Currys has, strangely, revealed the length to which parents are willing to go (essentially handing over lots of money) to equip children "with the technology they need for further study".

The company said that nine out of ten parents incentivise children to get good grades, although if they're only doing it now it’s a bit late.

The survey of 1,500 parents reveals that dads are rewarding their children with up to £673 for straight A* results at GCSE level – £141 more than mums would be willing to give.

How much is rewarded varies per grade – the better the grade, the bigger the reward, with an A* GSCE result bringing in an average of £59.34 and a C grade bringing in £39.88.

But perhaps more surprisingly, rewards increase again for a D-F grade, with parents handing out an average of £55.03 for an F. Currys suggests that this means effort as well as attainment is highly valued. Or it could be guilt from parents who didn’t help with homework.

The bad news for Currys is that mums are more likely to take their children out for an experience such as a meal, while dads are splashing out on technology-based gifts.

For those dads looking to curry favour with their kids, the most popular option is a game console or iPhone (17 per cent), followed by an iPad (15 per cent), laptop (14 per cent) or other tablet (10 per cent). TVs and cameras also featured further down the list.

Despite almost 9 out of ten (86 per cent) parents rewarding their children for good grades, only a quarter (27 per cent) were actually rewarded themselves when they were younger.

Regionally, parents in the north-east of England are most likely to reward their children for good grades (94 per cent) while people in the south-east are least likely (81 per cent).

From a financial perspective, there are stark contrasts – London-based students achieving straight A*s at GCSE are being rewarded almost double what their compatriots in Wales can look forward to, bringing in an average of £753 compared with £418.

Psychologist Emma Kenny recommended: “If you are going to reward your child, then it can be practical to think about their educational needs. A laptop that can help with homework and means they can be in touch with you if they are studying at university will be a welcome addition on their academic journey.”

Or maybe you could buy them a smart new uniform for next term, or some text books?

“With the new term ahead, many parents are equipping their children with the technology they need for further study as a reward for good results," said Ben Lovett, Currys PC World spokesperson, "but with some students earning up to £753 for straight A*s, there will be a lot resting on Thursday’s grades!”

Kenny pointed out that rather than being "grade obsessed", parents should reward their child for trying their best in their exams.

What your correspondent’s teenager will be hoping for is a Force FX Lightsaber, but Hannah and her sweets have probably put paid to that. ®

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