Testing, testing

Reliance on technology to address meetings is always a dodgy business, as two officials discovered at the Cosla meeting. Jim Stevenson, Highland's man in charge of educational resources, managed to wipe one of his colour overheads from the screen.

Gordon Jeyes, Stirling's education director, had a more basic problem: how to switch on his microphone. It turned out he was speaking to the wrong report anyway, for which chairman Elizabeth Maginnis apologised.

"It's all right," Jeyes replied. "I'm used to being destabilised."

"As long as you're not being delayered," Maginnis quipped, referring to the term used to describe local authority proposals for a slimmer secondary school management structure.

A new description would have to be found, she suggested, being reminded of the question asked of her at a meeting of Edinburgh parents about "this business of deflowering".

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