"My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together." “When I hear people say politics and religion don't mix, I wonder what Bible they are reading.” (Archbishop Desmond Tutu)

"And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, and to love kindness and mercy, and to humble yourself and walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6.8

"Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." Philippians 4.19

"Work out your salvation with fear and trembling." Philippians 2.12

Friday, January 20, 2012

Gifted, talented and age discrimination

I picked up a small badge on the corridor the other day which proclaims "Gifted and Talented". I've seen a number of such badges and they usually say "House Captain", "Library assistant" or somesuch, but "Gifted and Talented"? We might just as well give the kids a badge that says "Punch Me!"

I was wearing the badge on my waistcoat when one of my Yr 7s, a little cruelly I felt, said, "I've been reading your badge and I don't believe it." Now I am very fond of Yr 7 and, unaccountably they love me. It is incredibly affirming to be greeted - nay, mobbed - by the little darlings on the corridor: they always smile and say nice things - so unlike the other year groups who rarely tend to acknowledge one's presence. There are half a dozen or so kids from other year groups who stop for a chat and a banter after lessons but most seem very keen to put as much clear blue water between themselves and me the moment the bell goes, so finding myself universally popular with a whole class is something of a new experience. However, they are Yr 7 and so I am not trying to get them to pass an exam, which may account for it.

My line manager, who does the whole pastoral thing in school, asked for staff to express a preference for form tutoring next year. I do not have a regular form. I tend to do long term absence cover in that respect but I suspect the writing is on the wall and so I volunteered to take a Yr 7 class next year.

I am not to have a Yr 7 class. There was much talk about how long I would be continuing in the job and concern was expressed that I might not stay to see them through their five years of High Schooling, (too right!) but the inescapable but unspoken conclusion is that I am judged to be too old.

I'm sure there's a law against that sort of thing.

We had a parents' Evening this week for Yr 10.

"My mum doesn't want to see you."

Maybe not, but I'd like to see her.

"She says she doesn't like you. You taught her and she doesn't like you."

But I don't want to discuss her behaviour I want to discuss yours. This isn't about your mum, its about you.

"She won't come. she doesn't like you."

Some of them never grow up.

Today Georgie said to me, "My Dad really liked ........"

I smile in anticipation.

"......your waistcoat and tie."

Crushed again.


  1. Why were you crushed? A compliment on your spiffy outfit is not to be disdained.

  2. There's always the possibility he wasn't wearing one, Grandmere.