There have been a few changes in my life over the last few months. Please don’t worry, though, as I am still a grumpy old git, as this will prove. From being made redundant after 30 years with the same employer, having a great summer, the Malta wedding for Half Portion and his delightful young lady, working for a friend for a couple of weeks after falling foul of the Dept for Work & Pensions (Lord forbid that I should enjoy myself on the pittance that Her Majesty’s government saw fit to pay me!) and finally settling into a permanent job.
So, a permanent job. This was a bit of a shock after 30 years of working in a flour mill. I suddenly found myself working in a school. I had to have an interview, show my CV and all that rubbish. I have never really written a CV before, I had just been promoted, or shifted sideways, depending on what was needed and what I wanted to do. But now I had to go and sell myself to people I didn’t know. Scary stuff, or what? I must’ve done something right, or the other candidates were really crap, because I now find myself almost 5 months into a job. I am now the site manager of a school. A primary school as well. I will let you into a little secret here. I love it. Every day throws different challenges at me, and it is a great place, with some really great people.
Now, for years I have always wound up a friend of mine over teachers working time, all that time off in the summer, yada, yada, yada… But now I have first-hand experience of what these people do with their day, and the challenges that they face. I have the responsibility of keeping the staff and pupils safe and secure, the teachers have the responsibility of taking small people, with developing minds and filling those minds with information and the ability to use it. They do it, sometimes, in difficult circumstances.
There seem to be a number of parents who pass all responsibility for the upbringing of their children on to the school. They also set the worst examples to their children. They have no self discipline, they are quite happy to smoke around their children and others. They disregard the safety of others by parking their cars in dangerous places with no thought for anyone else, blocking driveways and, in one case, the entire road. There are times when I would dearly love to grab one of these parents and shout ‘What the f… do you think you are doing! Have you no common sense or care for anyone other than yourself?!’
I am, however, continually, amazed by the fact that most of these small people that inhabit the building I work in, for several hours every day, generally come in smiling and leave smiling. And I think that is great testament to the teachers and teaching assistants who spend their days, sometimes very long days, educating our future leaders of industry, government ministers, rocket scientists and even footballers.
I will still wind up my friend over the hours he works, as I will occasionally those I work with, just because I can. But considering I hated every minute of school when I was younger, I am now back at school and will happily work there until the day I retire, or drop down dead (whichever comes first… and with the current state of our government it will, probably be the latter)
In the meantime, I will continue being a grumpy old b@$£@rd, the kids will still wave at me as I walk round the school and teachers will continue to work long hours.
So, parents… teach your kids to use a knife and fork, talk to them, read to them, give them some of your undivided attention before you send them to school. One day your son or daughter may be in the government that sets your benefits…