Louche, chilled and chic

20th February 2004 at 00:00
Perhaps it's these dark mornings. Perhaps I've got SAD - Sats Affective Disorder - but I've never been more cheesed off with this lark.

"Use your head!" say those daft new adverts. I feel very headless. Can I avoid this treadmill? I comb The TES job ads - for the first time in 30 years. Let's see? All schools seem to be achieving like billy-ho. They've all got high expectations, high standards. They're all forward-looking and cutting-edge and "refurbished for the 21st century". Just like mine.

Do they need "a sexagenarian pedagogic ruin for snoozing underachieving village school"? Nope. Flash bigheads seem more the thing - passionate, innovative, collaborative, inspiring, aspiring and committed. Or sectioned.

All peddling the McCurriculum all over England. They're all the same.

But what's this? School chaplain? This is more like it! A bit of Traherne with the upper sixth, umpiring with the second 11, flirting with the crumpet at fetes. Fat chance. I've never been ordained or annointed - and I never had the Latin.

And then under English departments: "Chocolate lover wantedI we're not good looking and we draw the line at dynamic." And this? "Are you on the highway to nowhere? Want to get observed by failed teachers called inspectors?" I'm too late for both. I'll have to stay and write an ad for our department. We need more partners in crime.

"This merry department is a happy mix of the senescent and glamorous. The men - albeit hideously countenanced - have a louche charm lost on Ofsted.

They have always drawn the line at dynamic. The women are all gorgeous and jolly dynamic.

"Our office is a sanctuary from the national curriculum and strives for a nightclub ambience. We are presently chillin' to Basie and Billie and The Strokes.

"We are not passionate about Sats. We don't teach Sats but our results broke school and national records. How cool is that! We have a zero tolerance of jargon. Talk about targets and you get to teach Dave Mania. We don't want to know how brilliant you are with nutters or how you can turn Mania into Mozart.

"Fridays is dress up day. We practise a rigorous code - slinky black frocks and kitten heels and dead sharp suits. We are passionate and committed to Smarties, parties, Tizer, Henry Fielding, Fats Domino and Kevin Gallen. We have an equal ops policy - but you must support QPR."

Go on. Use your head. Check that TES Job section.

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