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Tes Editorial

Leaving speeches

It's that time of year again and I have to make one this year. I'm utterly dreading it. Anyone got any good advice?


If you are funny, crack a joke or two.


The best ones are aimed at everyone, the worst at the speaker's little bunch of cliquey mates.


People who cry during their leaving speech are deeply embarrassing. Why go to all the trouble of finding another job and then weep buckets? If, on the other hand, you have been sackedasked to leavemade redundant, don't turn up on the leaving day at all.


The worst leaving speech I ever sat through came from a long-serving teacher who spoke endlessly about former staff and pupils. Given the staff turnover at the school, this was meaningless.


A good speech needs three things: stand up to be seen, speak up to be heard, sit down to be appreciated.


A few golden rules: don't use visual aids (unless they're really funny), don't make a video (unless you're really funny), never slag off even your worst enemies (you come across as a saddo) and keep it short (remember most people want to have left the building).


A good speech should be like a bikini: brief and cover the essentials.


I made a deal with the headteacher: he wouldn't tell lies about me and I wouldn't tell the truth about him.


Best leaving speech? Mr Gilbert's final words to the sixth form in The Inbetweeners Movie: "Good luck with the rest of your lives and try not to kill anyone. It reflects very badly on all of us here."


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