Thank God it's Friday

13th September 1996 at 01:00
Monday: The new unitary authority is settling down, and now we're in CUBA - the County that Used to Be Avon. South Gloucestershire Council offices are nearby and I wonder whether the Director of Educa-tion will take an occasional stroll. I'm in the staffroom before the day begins and offer colleagues 10p to ask her if she's the new dinner lady. There are no takers so I increase the bribe to 50p. Apparently, even Pounds 1,000 isn't enough.

Then it's assembly and I welcome everyone before nodding towards the piano for the hymn to begin. But there's no one there - I've forgotten the pianist is still on holi-day. So I make a rare appearance at the keyboard myself.

Tuesday: Telephoning the LEA I realise that some of the stress in my life has mercifully disap-peared. I refer to Avon's switch-board, which ruined my appreciation of 'Greensleaves' whenever I waited for a connection. It could have been worse - imagine the outrage listening to Shirley Bassey singing 'Hey Big Spender'. It's a new term but despite assurances from on high that class sizes don't affect standards I was un-able to persuade anyone to have a class of 45 to reduce the workload on the reception infant staff.

Wednesday: A while ago I mentioned a pushy rep in one of my columns. Today my secretary falls about with laughter, saying that someone "can't wait to meet me". Then she introduces a lady who embarrasses me with a cutting of that column. What can I do except admit she deserves full marks for initiative, a cup of tea and my complete attention?

Thursday: I attend a meeting with the heads of other Anglican schools and it's recommended we don't put C of E on our notepaper or we might receive letters addressed to a cafe. The chair of the group is a priest and a head-teacher. No doubt his dog-collar is a ring of confidence. I wonder what tune he hears when he calls his boss and is put on hold.

Friday: While at the bank this afternoon I recall paying in a cheque from Avon County Treasurer last year in order to open an official account. The bank, however, wouldn't give me Pounds 25 against it until the cheque was cleared. I didn't know the county was that poor. I never liked Avon anyway. Even the spell check came up with Avoid.

Luke Darlington is head of St Mary's primary school, Yate, Bristol.

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