From the forums - Who's who, and how Gove kept hold of his L-plates

11th March 2011 at 00:00
Plastic identity tags drive posters mad, while the ed sec's lack of road sense intrigues

ID badges have been vexing teachers in the TES online staffroom. Gladis23 has been told that staff must wear their badges around their necks at all times, but is not sure they make any difference. "I don't see how having a plastic tag around your neck improves pupil security one iota," gladis23 says.

Cuteinpuce reports that badges at a previous school were brought in a week before Ofsted arrived and staff were told to pretend they had been wearing them for ages. But some mischievous teachers swapped them around during the inspectors' visit for a jape. Sadly, it fell flat. "To our great disappointment, no one noticed," cuteinpuce says.

There is plenty of support on the forums for the badges as a way of checking who is in school. But for those holding out against the march of the police state, there is comfort to be had from the experience at resources4drama's school.

Badges were duly brought in and the eager beavers even brought in their own lanyards, but the system lasted just a week. "Within 24 hours there was a thriving market in badges which, on very close inspection, bore the correct teacher's name but a picture of Superman, Jordan etc," resources4drama says. Good to know that subversion is alive and well.

The news that education secretary Michael Gove took seven attempts to pass his driving test has had posters reminiscing about their own driving experiences. Lurk_much reports that he failed his driving test six times, although when he supplies the reason it becomes a little clearer: "I am bad at rules, very aggressive and have a low IQ." Obviously qualities that would be a positive advantage to a driver in some Mediterranean countries we could mention count for nothing in the good old UK.

Gowiththeflow never even attempted the test, giving up after just three lessons. "The instructor and I agreed that it would be best for humanity if I just gave up," gowiththeflow says.

Lilyofthefield can match Mr Gove's record, at least in driving, but this brings her no comfort. "I am beyond depressed that I have something in common with Gove," she says.

Finally, seeking inspiration in what was the first week after half term for most, posters share their favourite famous quotations. Many focus on the importance of good schooling, such as Malcolm Forbes's "The purpose of education is to turn an empty mind into an open one," suggested by jabed. Others are more tongue in cheek. Take magic surf bus's favourite, re-mastered by the comedian Billy Connolly. "Before you judge a man, walk a mile in his shoes. Then, who cares? He's a mile away and you've got his shoes." If that isn't a philosophy to live by, then we don't know what is.

Nick Morrison

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