Talking shop

Former headteacher Sue Mulvany gets to the heart of issues that concern you


Last year, one of our colleagues remarried. She is very happy now and everyone is glad for her. The trouble is she never stops talking about her partner and how well off he is. She flaunts jewellery he has bought her, shows off about the holidays they have booked and to cap it all we were all invited for lunch one day to see the new conservatory he had built. The situation is getting out of hand; conversation in the staffroom is dominated by her husband's purchasing power. How can we stop this?


There wouldn't be a glimpse of the green-eyed monster visiting your staffroom wold there? Her life sounds brilliant to me. Although I admit that jewels, holidays and pampering on this scale isn't everyone's cup of tea, it doesn't half make life in the trenches bearable. It sounds as if she is having to make up for lost time in her previous relationship; let her enjoy it for a while longer. Meanwhile have a laugh about it and in a few weeks' time get a couple of her close friends to take her for lunch and explain the situation to her. Let her know that the messages she is sending out are making her friends feel alienated - they can't keep up and are beginning to feel that they have little in common apart, that is, from the job of teaching.

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