Thank God it's Friday

1st November 2002 at 00:00
Monday I decide to wear my pink shirt and pinstripe suit. The suit has a skirt, which means I'll have to wear tights and proper shoes. That'll make my feet hurt, but it's about time I had a change from trousers. Everyone asks me where I'm going, or if we are having visitors.

Tuesday I wear trousers, flat shoes, big jumper and a coat for my playground duty. I venture out tentatively to be met by the masses who jump in the puddles and slip on the mud.

Wednesday I'm at a literacy co-ordinators' conference. As I'm the literacy co-ordinator I'm allowed out wearing a different hat (so to speak). I decide that I would like to go dressed as a person, not as a headteacher. Someone might talk to me. I wear a pink rugby top and cut-off trousers and sit at a table with three people I don't know. At one point, the consultant says: "These documents have been sent out to headteachersI that's right, isn't it, Val?" She looks at me. So do the other literacy consultants - so much for the disguise. Back at school I feel unprofessional as I show the builders round the junior classrooms. Sadly, they don't notice my casual look.

Thursday I see the sun briefly so I decide to wear a dress. Bad move. "Mrs Woollven, Mrs Woollven, you're wearing a dress. I like your sandals. I can see your toes." I make a hasty exit, without falling over my heels. Perhaps children shouldn't see my toes, perhaps it's not professional. Back to trousers then.

Friday I'm working at home and start at 6am when all is quiet - I'm in my dressing gown. I tackle the staff handbook before showering and changing into jeans and do well until the phone rings at 9am. Zach is refusing to go to his classroom again. I change into my pinstripes and set off for school.

Val Woollven is head of St Andrew's C of E primary school, Plymouth

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers

Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today