Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Class A Thugs

You know. I feel certain that somewhere, someone has a Miss Underscore voodoo doll and is merrily stabbing it with shiny new pins.

Pompous Pilate and I have had another falling-out. Although, the first thing to report is my theory that his unannounced visit to me the other day was actually a way of checking up on me. I think he suspected my robbery was fictional. It did co-incide with the interviews for the St Mary Mead school, I imagine he thought I made the story up to get some time off. Eeee Hun and I discussed this at length.

'Eeeee hun. He absolutely forbade me to call or text you to find out if you were in. He said he wanted it to be a surprise.'

I know men are insensitive creatures and generally do not consider etiquette, but surely even a man of the male gender would know that women do not like surprises like that. Square cut emerald Art Deco rings - yes. Unannounced visits - no. It kind of reminded me of the time Rochester texted me at 1am to say he had landed back in the North and wanted to come over. Romantic? Possibly. But no time for leg shaving or sheet-changing?

Anyway, yesterday P.P. dragged me out of my literacy lesson. The Yorkshire Pudding had a proposition for me.

'I've re-thought the class lists for next year. I am going to give you a choice of two classes. Have a look and see what you think. You know, I've not given anyone else a choice Miss Underscore. You are honoured.'

Somehow I doubted that very much. I looked at the class lists:

Class A - a huge class of 'less able' (a lovely, politically correct euphemism for children who can not yet count to 10 or read/spell 'cat', despite being 8-10 years old).

Class B - a much smaller class that included every extreme medical, emotional and behavioural special needs child in the school. Oh, and did I also mention they are also all 'less able'.

It was a bit like choosing between firing squad and lethal injection.

'You know Miss Underscore, having seen you teach and knowing your skills I think you could be a wonderful calming influence on Class B. I think you'd relish the challenge of Class B. I know I would if I was in your position. Your behaviour managment is outstanding you know.'

Hmmm. That was interesting. In my observed lesson he told me I didn't warrant an 'outstanding' rating. I was tempted to point this out to the beetrooty buffoon, but my instincts told me it was not the time for a debate on semantics.

I found myself incapable of choosing. Pompous Pilate started to bully me to accept Class B. He said I did not have time to think about it and he needed a decision immediately, in the end I reluctantly capitulated. I spent lunchtime talking to some trusted Stepfords. All of them were horrified at my new class. All of them said they wouldn't have touched Class B with a shitty stick. I began to feel I had been had.

So, I went back to see Pompous Pilate.

'Ive changed my mind' I said. 'You promised the teachers that your restructure would be fair. You would distribute the challenging children evenly amongst all the classes. No one would have a rough deal this year. Yet you want to give me a class of 21 of the worst behaved children in school, plus all the mecical special needs cases AND the 'less able'. I don't think that is fair, so I'll take Class A please.'

Pompous was turning redder and redder in front of me. I could see he was furious.

'You are the best person for that class. You already made your decision.' he snapped.

'You gave me no time to reflect on that decision. You gave me a choice. I have reflected and made my choice. I choose Class A. That is my final decision.'

I quite enjoyed raising the beastly buffoon's blood pressure, he huffed and puffed like an amorous hippopotamus. I somehow managed to stay cool, calm and unemotional. He tried everything to persuade me: he raged, flattered, threatened and cajoled. I stood firm.

I think I really should be moving on from the School of Hard Knocks though. Much as I love it. So, I am off to look round another school today. And Pompous Pilate is having to recruit someone specially to take on the dastardly denizens of Class B.


  1. Good for you! I'm glad you stood up to PP. Hope you find a better place to work where you are actually valued and can still make a difference. Good luck xxx

  2. It is a battle of wills, to be sure! I also just discovered on Friday I am going to be the only teacher who does not have a Teaching Assistant next year, despite having such a large class of 'less able' children. I think this is his way of punishing me. Idiot!