Pupils bait staff pets

Rookie teachers are now better catered for than ever before, we constantly hear. And nowhere is this more so than in the pages of the General Teaching Council for Scotland's publication for probationers.

Some of the "top tips" for new teachers are indispensable. "The trauma of pencil borrowing will play a large part in your teaching career" is indeed the case. There follows another warning about "machines who know when you are stressed and react by refusing to copy or running out of toner".

Pupils, of course, can be perverse. On the one hand, young teachers are urged to make sure they know their way around their school. "Pupils will often enjoy directing you to the wrong location," the GTC advises. "Do not take this personally as it is written in the pupil handbook of teacher baiting."

On the other hand, the GTC says: "You will be surprised how much loyalty your pupils have to you as 'their teacher'. You will become like a pet and they will defend you against other pupils who are 'not yours'."

Such a confusing world.

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