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Buttoned up

Kay Cameron, assistant head at Barrhead High, rejoices in the nickname Mrs Trutex following her key role in the school's uniform drive. Better still was the conversation between two mums as Mrs Trutex measured a wean for one of the blazers supplied directly through the school.

"Dae ye think she does alterations?" one mused as the AHT struggled to convince a child that she really would grow into the blazer.

"No, sorry," Cameron replied.

"See, ah told ye," said mum number two triumphantly. "But she can't be from Arnott's. She's no' snooty."

That was just one of the stories which Barrhead hopes will convince a national local government panel that it is resourceful enough to win one of the first Scottish local government quality awards.

It was certainly an unusual caravan that trooped into the Edinburgh HQ of the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities last week: East Renfrewshire director Eleanor Currie, Barrhead head Kenny Dykes, two pupils (one uniformed, the other not) and a dummy.

"This dummy, wearing a skirt, is known as 'Dumb'," Mrs Trutex told the panel. "We have a male one back at Barrhead," she added to the panel's delight. "It's called 'Dumber'." Surely a dead cert for an award, if for no reason other than to congratulate a director of education for entering a national competition accompanied by a dummy.

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