Thank God it's Friday

26th March 2004 at 00:00
MONDAY

At the end of lunchtime I notice a crocodile of primary school children coming up the drive with their teachers, obviously for the matinee performance of our pantomime. They've just been dropped off by a coach which is now reversing out of the car park. Unfortunately the performance was last week.

TUESDAY

At 7.30am a teacher asks if I know there are two broken windows in the staffroom and a brick on the floor , which is covered in broken glass.

During the day someone realises a laptop has gone missing and, even more important, a teacher's bag containing her planner. The intruder must have crawled along the floor to avoid triggering the burglar alarm. The bicycle tracks on the grass outside are a help, revealing the nature of the getaway vehicle, but aren't as good as DNA for identification purposes.

WEDNESDAY

The first snow of the year. At 8.30am the car park contains eight teachers'

cars, rather than the usual 30. Will there be enough staff to run a timetable? I could end up with a few hundred students in the hall for a very long maths lesson. We go for a 15-minute registration, then normal lessons starting at 9.15am instead of 9am. It works, just. We run out of plasters after lunch, dealing with snowballing casualties.

THURSDAY

I learn a new expression today: "to go Hulk". A public-spirited Year 11 student intervenes when a large group snowballs his younger friend. When he calms down he explains his behaviour in terms of this phrasal verb.

FRIDAY

Correspondence with the LEA finance department continues. An increase in sixth-form numbers means we are owed a large sum of money. At last we get a response from the finance officer to our request to confirm in writing that the money will be paid. The response commits to paying the amount in full, but, strangely, it neither states the amount nor when it will be paid.

The writer is head of a secondary school in the north west. He wants to remain anonymous

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