11th April 2008 at 01:00
"We used to live in one room, all 26 of us, no furniture, 'alf the floor was missing, and we were all 'uddled together in one corner for fear of falling," recalls one character in the famous 1970s Monty Python "Four Yorkshiremen" sketch.

"You were lucky to have a room! We used to have to live in a corridor!" replies another.

Recent comments by Kevin Brennan (below), the children's minister, could have been plucked straight from the script, as he evoked the "bad old days" of his former teaching career.

Speaking in an interview with The TES, he mused: "If you could go back 15 years in Tardis (from Dr Who), to when I was teaching, to the leaky Portakabin in Radyr Comprehensive, to my Year 8 and 9 history class, I think most teachers would walk out," he said.

"They'd take one look and walk out, or say 'Where's my teaching assistant support?'"

The Cardiff West MP's dreary scene was supposed to make modern day teachers feel grateful for their lot. Teachers didn't really realise how much better life was under Labour, he suggested.

Taking an even more intergalactic angle on the old "you don't even know you were born" line, he added: "I think there's been a dramatic change, which I think you only see if you've been into outer space, as I have for several years. Not literally, but you know what I'm saying."

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