Tuesday 27 September 2011

Z is not controversial

Today, there were a couple of things that came up that made me almost choose to write something political.  Not party political, of course, I don't do that - but anyway, I'm not going to.  This isn't that sort of blog, and I don't intend it to be.  I don't want to annoy or be annoyed.  All peace and happiness around here ... most of the time.

I had quite a lot of work to do today, and then Dilly asked if I was busy - so, of course, I wasn't, because family comes first.  They're completely revamping their sitting room, new sofas, carpet, colour scheme, curtains, the lot.  So it isn't really usable, so Hay was bored.  They came through for coffee (milk) and stayed for lunch (milk) and a nap (Hay).  It was much better than governor stuff, but that is still to be done.

I was quite annoyed that the chickens had pulled up some hardy cyclamen that I planted more than a week ago,  They had left the white ones and gone for the mauve.  I've replanted, watered and covered them, but they may not survive.  They're not edible, the chooks were just being naughty.  I can't be too cross, they wouldn't understand and would not even, as a dog would, be (look) sad that I'm cross.

It's Pugsley's birthday on Thursday, darling boy.  He is enjoying school, although pretty exhausted.  Dilly says that he cries quite a lot at present, and he doesn't normally, he's just overtired, although he gets enough sleep.  They are going on holiday next week, I think that's a very good thing.  He will have fun, get a rest and then it won't be long before half term.  After that, he'll be sufficiently in the swing of things to cope (we hope) for the rest of the term.  It's difficult for schools, if they offer half days for the first term then it's impossible for working mothers, if not it's too tiring for younger children - Pugsley, at nearly five, finds it tiring, but an August-born child is hardly four at the start of the school year.  One does one's best and it all works out eventually.  Being happy at home and school is what counts for most, after all.

It'll just be a family tea on Thursday, because of the upheaval it wasn't possible to have a party this year, and they had an outing at the weekend, as well as the holiday to look forward to.  They'll come through here, where there's no smell of paint.

Darlings, I must go.  I still have all that work to do that I didn't do earlier.  And it has to be done on the Sage's computer, chiz, chiz.  Why isn't everything compatible with a Mac with Office 2004?


Tim said...

Aw, go on, annoy us. No, on second thoughts, don't - I can annoy for all. Just carry on delighting.

Z said...

Oh Tim, you are lovely.

Tim said...

Hmm, dunno about that. But thank you!

allotmentqueen said...

Mac????????? Office 2004???????????? Are you some kind of masochist????????

And what is Squiffany doing about school if they're going on holiday?

Dave said...

I'm crying a lot too. I think I need a holiday.

Z said...

My first Mac, some 20 years ago, had Clarisworks. That was a lovely word processing programme. Unfortunately, since I email a lot of documents, I have to use a Microsoft product as that works for the majority. I'm going to leave it as long as possible before paying for an upgrade for the wretched thing though.
And Squiffany is having a week off school too. Taking a holiday earlier in the year was not an option, Al couldn't get time off work in the summer.

Dave, most of us think that your life is a holiday. But there's nothing to stop you going away again. If you stayed within reasonable driving distance of Norfolk, you could come back for Sunday service.

Blue Witch said...

I tend to agree with AQ - taking children out of school is not good, no matter how bright the child, or when in their school career it is.

For someone who is a governor at the school and whose mum is chair of governors at the bigger school to do it is really not a good example to set.

I understand Al's difficulties in getting holiday time off - but all parents have these to a greater or lesser extent.

Round here many schools/heads now forbid parents to take their children out of school during term term, irrespective of the actual legal position. Pressure on school places at 'good' schools is such that parents don't dare do it.

The first piece of ionformation I ask for when a child is referred to me for investigation of learning difficulties is the attendance records, for all of their schooling. It is amazing how often this solves the problem of why there are gaps in a child's understanding of basics. It's really hard for teachers to catch children up on what they miss, even in a week.

And yes, I appreciate that these children aren't likely to fall in the SEN category, but the parents of some kids who will be will think that if a governor can take his kids out in term time, so can they.

Ahem. Sorry: you said no controversy. But, bit of a bugbear of mine that one.

Z said...

Chris had a discussion going about this a couple of weeks back - as a former headmaster, he had a more relaxed attitude; but that was some years back and times have changed.

Parents don't all have the same problems getting time off, some businesses round here still have staff holidays in August as a matter of course - though there are some farmers who cannot possibly take time off in harvest season. Once Dilly goes back to work (she's a teacher), holidays in term-time will be out of the question anyway. Even at the high school, leave of absence may be granted for a family holiday in certain circumstances, including work-related ones. Al was bottom of the pile for an August holiday from work, and Hadrian was still being sick after pretty well every feed, so they wouldn't have wanted to travel then in any case. Squiffany and Pugsley are both way ahead of most of the children in their forms and their parents will diligently help with any catch-up work. In these circumstances, I can't really think that a single week will have long-term ill effects compared to the benefits of some relaxed family time together. The bonus is that Pugsley is very tired and this respite comes at a good time for him. We all know how much sickness sweeps through primary schools in the second half of the autumn term, particularly in tired little children who have used up all their stamina and whose immune systems are, as a result, affected. In short, it's not my business, but in any case I'm relaxed about it.

DUTA said...

Lovely set of gurglet and bowl in the top picture!
"..family comes first.." How true!
Happy Birthday to Pugsley! Hope he'll overcome fatigue , successfully cope with school, and be happy both at school and at home.

Z said...

Thank you so much, dear Duta. I shall pass on your good wishes.

WWW.ChiCha.in said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Blue Witch said...

Times have changed, you're right Z. I can remember when I was teaching actually encouraging the parents of a child with behaviour problems to take him out of school in term time, and being delighted when they did. *ahem* ;)

Z said...

Oh yes. I remember one boy who regularly went home from school at lunch time - a morning of school was as much as anyone could cope with. But that was before the days of "behaviour management" and so on.

Dilly showed me the pile of work that she's taking with her for the children to do. They won't mind, they enjoy it, but they won't slip far behind the others.

allotmentqueen said...

Sorry I didn't mean to stir up such a hornets' nest. I was merely querying Squiffany's getting time off school. Round here it has to be a funeral or similar before leave during termtime gets authorised.

In fact I know of a teacher (primary school) who was refused leave on a Friday afternoon to travel to her daughter's wedding (mother of the bride, and all that). Needless to say, she went sick on the Wednesday and took three days off!

Z said...

Not at all, AQ - as I said to Chris on his blog, the absence rate is looked upon sternly by Ofsted, and a relaxed attitude to holidays can spread. But the schools here don't go as far as yours in refusing reasonable leave.