Knowing the score

8th June 2007 at 01:00
One adult Spanish class tutor, a retired secondary teacher in the educational afterlife at Strathclyde University, took advantage of the UEFA Cup Final between Sevilla and Espanyol in Glasgow the other week by shepherding her class to the city's George Square to speak and listen to real Spanish with the invading football fans. Her day was made when one of the Spaniards told her that she must have had a great tutor herself as she "spoke Spanish like a native". Just as well, since the lady in question is actually Spanish.

Sweet and sour

A P6 girl told her teacher that her family were going out for their tea to the Jade Palace Chinese restaurant. She also reported that, while this was lovely, it was sad too. The teacher wondered what was sad about a family having tea together at the Jade Palace. The girl replied: "Well, it's the anniversary of my granny's death - and she died in the Jade Palace."

Full disclosure

The novelist Christopher Brookmyre never knowingly oversells himself, it appears. When he gave this year's GTC Scotland lecture, he confessed he couldn't work out why he had been invited to give it - apart from the fact that he had his disclosure certificate. His experience, as the parent of a P2 pupil, was that if you were so approved, you could be invited into the school to talk about anything from road safety and palaeontology to sexually transmitted diseases - while knowing nothing about any of them.

Cool it

They're not leaving anything to chance at Edinburgh City Council. Its spanking new offices at Waverley Court have an equally spanking heating and ventiliation system. This allows the building to be warmed and cooled naturally but, being a caring employer, the council has told its staff that they can "open windows as necessary to maximise their comfort". The effectiveness of all this will be monitored "during the natural ventilation operating strategy". Is this what we used to call opening and closing windows, we wonder?

Pastures new

The irritatingly misnamed "McCrone deal" for teachers (the post-McCrone deal was put in place following the McCrone inquiry) will now have to be extended to other fields. For the ever indispensable profes-sor Gavin McCrone has now been asked to cast his beady eye over farming and the rural areas of Scotland. So the "McCrone report" will, in future, not be synonymous with generosity for teachers, but with stirring initiatives such as the Less Favoured Areas Support Scheme.

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