Thank God it's Friday

12th September 2003 at 01:00
Monday My first day as acting head. Real Head (RH) has been dragooned by the LEA to go to a school in another part of the city for one term. She has resisted all previous attempts but excuses have run out, so I am elevated from deputy. We are starting the term with an Inset day led by myself as special needs co-ordinator and the borough's educational psychologist. RH phones five times to see if things are OK.

Tuesday Several parents and children ask what has happened to RH, despite the news being broadcast last term in newsletters, at assemblies, and at social events. One parent asks if RH is enjoying her retirement. As RH is only 48, I decide not to pass on the parent's good wishes. RH phones six times.

Wednesday RH phones to remind us to invite her to the leavers' assembly at the end of term - 14 weeks away. The local vicar taking assembly asks how she is enjoying her sabbatical year. I tell him the real story, but he expresses surprise as he heard his version at the monthly church school's meeting.

Thursday RH phones eight times. There is a crisis at her school over a Year 6 trip. All the staff refuse to go with this particular class. Parents are up in arms so RH wants our school caretaker to head over there with our school journey file. As RH's filing system is creative and original, I have trouble finding it. The school secretary asks if she should hint to RH about the number of phone calls. I tell her that would be cruel.

Friday End of my first week as AH; only three phone calls from RH today, just to say hello, are we all right and did she mention the leavers' service? We both hope for a happy, hardworking term in both schools.

Kathleen Jones is the pseudonym of a deputy head in a north London primary.

She wrote this diary last term

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