In ‘The Entertainer’ by John Osborne, the main character Archie Rice looks out across a disinterested audience and says “I’m dead behind these eyes”. Supply teachers tend to have that same withered look. The latest supply teacher had the audacity to teach, not so much with an iron fist, but more with Freddy Krueger’s razors.
He implied that the kids were not brought up well by their parents and reduced one girl to tears, before he was quietly led away. He may have appeared on the verge of ‘going postal’ but he did manage to shut them up – albeit through shock, more than anything else. His brief cameo was a jolt, but a highly entertaining one.
I was also stopped in my tracks, quite literally, by a small girl, on the stairs. “You’re very tall” she said, looking up, before moving on. She delivered it like a put down, in the same disapproving tone as if I’d just spilt something down a new item of clothing. I’m going to overgrow my nasal hair just to spite her.
A fun day experimenting with fizzy drinks and mentos was cut short by the appearance of Zak. Roisin threatened to give him his first exclusion from School. She had phone in hand, ready to call his Dad to collect him. At the 11th hour he began reluctantly to put pen to paper. I later overheard the Head Teacher tell Zak that any further bad behaviour in Assembly may mean he will be excluded…from future Assemblies. It was demoralizing. I half expected Groucho Marx to burst in and say “what’s a kid gotta do to get excluded round here!”
It may have been the rousing performance of ‘Hooray for the Summertime!”, but Zak did improve in the afternoon. With a herculean amount of persistence on my part I got him to complete a ‘Get Well Soon’ card for Mrs Godsend and I also saw him give some football stickers to classmates. And then he went and spoiled it all by doing something stupid like demanding them back at the end of the day.
Right now Zak needs all the friends he can get. He told me has “8,000 friends” including two boys from his new area called “Mercedes and Angel”. Either he’s got their names wrong, or there could soon be a new crime busting outfit to rival Charlie’s Angels. With all the upheaval in his life it’s no wonder Zak retired to the medical room with a headache. It was all the excuse I needed to get the latest playground incidents;
bit own finger very hard
pulled own thumb back
hit by car tyre
fell in bin
I sincerely hope this didn’t all happen to the same kid. Especially not the boy whose parents forced him on non-uniform day to wear a suit.