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Tale of the unexpected

The latest issue of St Aloysius College's Eagle Eye newsletter for former pupils carries a report on the S5 class ball, reported by one of the weans.

"Spirits were high and the atmosphere of bonhomie was almost tangible as the guests sat down for what was a truly delicious meal and then, enjoying champagne, we were entertained as Fraser Hopper delivered his witty speech with such panache: his was a polished performance and he raised a toast befitting the occasion."

The retro-Victorian English certainly beats your average comprehensive writing, where the event is usually just described as "pure magic, so it wiz". But did a pupil really write that?

Life of Brian

Nativity play rehearsals did not go quite as planned in one Edinburgh primary. "Please, miss, can I be a donkey?" "We don't have a donkey" the teacher replies.

"Can I be a camel, then?"

"We don't have a camel, Brian, but you could be a wise man."

Brian pauses for a moment. "Naw. I don't think I'll bother, thanks."

Doon the watter

Ian Fraser's last stand in East Renfrewshire's directorate had a touch of the west about it. At his leaving do before heading for his new post in Inverclyde as supremo of education and social work, he indulged his love of the even wilder west.

Dressed in stetson and cowboy boots, he spotted some colleagues. "There's the psychologists in the corner," he noted. "They're having a meeting to work out why a grown man dressed as a cowboy could be so happy in front of so many people."

Ye ha!

Grand

Strathclyde University's Donald Gillies has been up to his eyes in excellence for 18 months. In that time, he has counted the use of the word in 13 educational policy documents.

HM Inspectorate of Education's The Journey to Excellence comes top of the league, with a whopping 52. Not to be outdone, the new Education Minister has penned excellence 15 times in his article for this week's TESS (p 22).

Intriguingly, however, A Curriculum for Excellence comes joint bottom in the Gillies tally - precisely zero references, apart from the title.

We thought you'd like to know.

'Tis the season...

Primary pupils - you can't beat them: "The Jews were a proud people, and throughout history they had trouble with unsympathetic genitals."

"Lot's wife was a pillar of salt during the day, but a ball of fire at night."

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