Schools do try their best. We hear of a learning support teacher in Renfrewshire who had begun to despair of one pupil for whom spelling seemed a completely closed book.
In the best traditions of positive reinforcement, she decided to place a bar of chocolate on his desk as the ultimate reward if he passed the morning's spelling assessments. But his eyes filled with despair at a particularly difficult word.
He bit his lip, and looked at the bar of chocolate. He looked back at the teacher. Eventually he sighs, shakes his head and looks her straight in the eye.
"Can I phone a friend, please?"