My worst parent - Detention with menaces

8th October 2010 at 01:00

As a young teacher with about four years' experience, I put a girl in detention the next afternoon for repeatedly disrupting a lesson, then being rude to me when asked not to. That evening after school there was a staff meeting - a strictly run affair - to which I had already posted apologies due to a prior engagement.

Apparently, about half way through the meeting the door burst open and an enraged parent stormed in looking for me. He was about 5ft 8in and not particularly heavily built, but he nevertheless exuded menace and was very angry.

The head, a rather old-fashioned man of advancing years who strongly resembled Ted Heath, stood up and said, "Young man, we are trying to hold a civilised meeting here. Please leave", and was treated to a foul-mouthed reply. The irate parent was finally persuaded to leave and given an appointment to see the head of year the next day, but he never turned up. One of the staff who thought he recognised the man realised once he got home that he had appeared in the Strangeways TV series.

He had been a prisoner at that time with such a reputation for violence that even the warders would only enter his cell in pairs wearing full riot gear. He had been sentenced for GBH, but served four years more than his sentence because of his constant violence in prison. A narrow escape for me, then.

Years later, I met him. He was deputy manager - and enforcer - at a local taxi firm where I did some evening and weekend work. When I reminded him of the incident he just grinned. But behind the smile his eyes were cold.

l The writer is a teacher in Lincolnshire and is particularly keen to remain anonymous. Send your worst parent stories to and you could earn #163;50 in MS vouchers.

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