Found: the average child

IT is Monday morning. It is time for the literacy hour; the time "designed to maximise the time teachers spend directly teaching their class and to shift the balance from individualised work ... to whole-class teaching."

Some pupils go out with a teaching assistant for early literacy support, some go out for additional literacy support, still more are taken away for further literacy support. Five children have IEPs (individual education plans) and are working with a specialist teacher, four have IAPs (individual action plans) and are off to work with their EMTAG (ethnic monitoring and traveller achievement grant) teacher. Two children with specific learning difficulties are taken aside by the SPLD (speech and language difficulty teacher). Eight children are directed to booster classes, three set off for enrichment as part of G and T (gifted and talented) provision funded under EiC (Excellence in Cities). Five children can't stay because of a clash with Springboard (Additional Numeracy Support) and one child is not here because they are talking to the learning mentor.

Three children are on a PAT programme (phonological analysis training) with an STA (specialist teaching assistant) and two are starting phonographix (another specialist programme) with a specialist teacher. That leaves just the one child... and the class teacher.

Who is this child? Eureka! It must be the average child. Who said there was no such thing! After the teacher has liaised with all of the above adults the average child will receive TBOETTTHL (The Bit Of Energy That The Teacher Has Left).

Vicki Paterson Headteacher Brindishe school London SE12

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