22nd July 2005 at 01:00
It's been two weeks since four suicide bombers tilted life in London.

Within minutes of the first bomb, on July 7, teachers began posting the first of many threads in the TES web chatrooms asking each other what was going on.

At 11.12am shake_ya_thang wrote: "This is shocking! I've just heard this news from a kid (I'm currently in ICT) and it turns out the teaching assistant's husband is working in London. She has tried to call but the network is jammedIshe is worried sick!" Below is just a selection of messages from the hundreds of postings that followed in the next day or two.

* I was on a course at the Institute of Education and had to be evacuated from my tube train at King's Cross, but I saw all the injured and later heard the bus bomb, which was close to the IOE.

We were watching the news at lunchtime and people clapped Ken Livingstone's speech - there is no justification to do what was done to those people.

They were simply living their lives and trying to get to work.

I ran an assembly today for Year 9 pupils on good and evil and they got it quite clearly. There is no debate in their mind or mine.


* Londoners are a stoic lot and will carry on almost as normal. But school was very strange today (we're in west London). Kids quite scared, but weirdly mature about it.


* More support for London's Mayor, Ken Livingstone: He has been rightly castigated in the past for all kinds of things, but tonight he got it right.

Mind you my tears were also to do with relief: number two daughter and boyfriend live in London, and boyfriend was on the underground when the first bomb went off. It was a very long morning until they replied to my texts.


* Being blown up by malcontents is an inevitable price and consequence of modern day life in the UK, as is inadequately maintained rail track, speeding tw@ts in company BMWs, crap health care.

We reap what we sow. Live with it, and keep it in proportion. This is not a risk-free environment and never will be.


* My daughter was supposed to go on a school trip today - her school's well south of London and they were going to northern France by coach for the day. The trip was cancelled. And there was me thinking we're not supposed to bow down to terrorism.


* Nobody is destroying my way of life because I will not let them. I refuse to be cowed by terrorists, as do the rest of my colleagues who came into work this morning, as do the people on the bus who all spoke to the driver this morning and as do my fellow commuters on the train into town.

I am also proud of the schools I chair in Tower Hamlets where staff made an extra effort to get into work, even though we advised parents that we might have to suspend some classes. The real heroes are those who get on with it, do their jobs and do not let others derail their futures.

Old Bean

* Our job now is compassion, for the families and victims of the bombs and for the children taught that suicide is glorious. Compassion is all that will bring hope from this: anger's done enough already. All we can do is keep open the possibility of reconciliation in our torn world. I feel really, really sad. My thoughts and prayers are with everyone who lost someone yesterday.


* If we start changing our plans and altering our lives to suit the cowards that did this, then they win. They want us to be afraid to leave our homes, to live in fear. I have a trip to London in the last week of term, and I'm not changing my plans.

madmarkuk A new thread started after one of the bombers was identified as a former learning mentor in a Leeds primary school:

* I don't understand the shock aspect. Surely there are religious freaks and fanatics in all walks of life?


* The fact that this man (for want of a better word in light of what he did) was so highly regarded in his school, did so many extra-curricular activities... leaves me feeling sorry for the students he left behind.

I'm sure that there were students who held him in high regard, who looked up to him for all the "good" that he did in the school and for them as individuals. There are children whose lives he touched. They are going to have a rough time coming to terms with his actions, and I hope that they are getting the counselling and support that they need.


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