My worst parent - Ms Fenwick made me sick

10th December 2010 at 00:00

I was determined that I was not going to have any more sick leave. One bout of flu and a twisted knee had taken its toll. The days had added up. From now on, I decided, I am going to be health personified: plenty of fruit and veg, vitamin C tablets and in bed by 10 o'clock sharp. That should do the trick.

It was only three weeks until the end of term and I was determined to be in every day. No question.

I hadn't, however, banked on Ms Fenwick.

At first, I was as pleased as punch when I saw her waiting with the other parents. She hadn't been to a parents' evening for the whole of Cassey's school career. My nagging at the children had paid off, I thought. I felt almost smug.

My enthusiasm for our meeting plummeted when I noticed the watery eyes, the red nose and a large wad of tissues crushed in Ms Fenwick's hand.

I tried to keep my distance. I stood at the other end of the classroom, pointing at wall displays. I opened a window and hung out of it, enthusing about the new school pond. In the end, though, she cornered me. She had brought Cassey's story book and there was no escape. I had to sit next to her.

The sneeze, when it came, was expansive. I envisioned the microscopic viral particles filling my workspace and settling in, waiting for their next victim. Me.

After four days, I thought I had got away with it. I was still a picture of health. It was on the following Saturday that I felt the first inkling of a razor-like pain in my throat. Thanks, Ms Fenwick. Thanks very much.

The writer is a primary teacher in Sheffield. Send your worst parent stories to and you could earn #163;50 in MS vouchers.

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