1 Jun

howling cub


Many years ago before the National Curriculum and Ofsted things were very different.  Better in many ways not in others.  I’ve always been proud of my children.  My personal children and my *temporary* children, the ones I was privileged  to have in my classes.

This is a true story about my eldest child.

Mr T was a lovely bumbling head teacher: most of the time!  The Staff tended to make decisions and then tell him what they were but occasionally he surprised everyone with totally rigid rules that he would not shift from.

A constant topic of annoyance to our dear Head, and to most of the Staff, was the lack of parental support to the kids when they had special events, assemblies etc., etc., parents evenings were often barely attended whatever time of day or evening was chosen.

No1 came home near the end of her first year in secondary school so excited… she had a letter saying she had been chosen to receive the Head Teacher’s award for excellence… She was/is a clever child but I’d just been going through divorce so the fact that she had managed to stay focussed was astounding.

I was so proud of her!  Then I read the letter, the ceremony was sue to be the next week at 1pm…Oh o!   As a full time teacher how could I work this?  I knew the Head hated spending money on supply teachers.

I went into school the next day and asked if I could book the time off with no pay and explained the reason.  The answer was a categorical NO!  He just wouldn’t listen to any appeal I went home so heavy hearted to tell her.  Planning to take the time off sick just didn’t fit in with how I was.

She didn’t cry or make a fuss she just said she’d ask her nan to go… I was gutted.

The next morning whilst I was teaching the Head came into class, his face was all red, he didn’t make eye contact.

“Come and see me at break please” he said and high tailed it before I’d even had time to open my mouth  (Yeah, that quickly!)

I carried on with the class wondering what the hell I’d done THIS time!

When I went up to his office he was really sheepish…

“Your daughter has been on the phone to me for an hour this morning”  he whispered…

“Oh? why? what did she say?” I was confused…the event wasn’t even on my mind!  Or the fact that she should not have been near a phone, pre mobile then!

Apparently my 11yr old daughter had given him a polite, yet lengthy lecture on the hypocrisy  of an Educational establishment that bemoaned the lack of parental support for it’s pupils then denying a teacher who happens to be a parent the opportunity to go and support her own child in a commemorative assembly where local dignitaries where going to be present.  My daughter had also mentioned that during this event she would speak on this topic to explain my absence to everyone who was in attendance!

Oh how I laughed!!!! That’s the way to do it!   Needless to say I was given the time off and the rest of the staff were able to benefit from that phone call and attend school plays assemblies etc for their own children.

I’ll never forget the pride I felt in my daughter in taking the initiative and working out exactly which buttons to press to get her desired goal.

What does she do for a living now she is grown?

She’s a Forensic Psychologist….






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