Sunday, 17 February 2013

Daisy and Alice at the Marvellous Tea Rooms

On the 1st February Diane and I did a workshop at the College of Music. Debs, I like my job, teaching inner-city children and some with behaviour or learning difficulties, but once in a while, a large group of music college students - lovely. Thank you, Christine, for asking us, and for asking us back, and again.

After dinner I passed out gently on the sofa, listening to the Archers.  Rick had gone out in the car. Walt phones up at 7.40. Was I driving to Daisy's show?

Daisy's show!  Driving!

I drove to Walt and Tara's while they walked to mine. I drove back to my house. We found the last parking space in the Calls to fit a van. We got to the Marvellous Tea Rooms for five past; they waited; they were brilliant.

Lizzie and Cherie were there.  Here's a picture of the three friends two decades after they left Lawnswood School. Not being dyslexic, Cherie and Lizzie went straight from school to uni [not that life was ever easy, I know that.]; Daisy had to wait sixteen years before she could knock at the gates and be let in. Her group tutor told my daughter that she was a waste of space and spoiling her friends' chances of a further education.

When Daisy left Royal Park Middle School to go to Lawnswood I told the high school that she had been diagnosed dyslexic, aged six, at Brudenell Primary School and that Royal Park had put her on some computer programmes for it.

I would go to the Parents' Evenings in despair. "Daisy must do something about her spelling". One time, as I went in, the deputy head looked at my pink hair  and told me it wouldn't be allowed if I worked there.  Luckily, although I had done my teaching practice at Lawnswood, and had absolutely loved it, I was now teaching English and Music at Foxwood School. And when I briefly stopped dyeing my hair pink, my headteacher, Bob Spooner complained that he had a reputation as having a punk teacher on the staff, and that I was letting him down.  I couldn't have been looked after better, and Daisy, worse.

Monday, 4 February 2013

A Memory of Snow

In January I went to speak at Hebden Bridge Town Hall. Really this was political rather than social but it was an interesting evening.
Hebden Bridge Station on a wintry night 

Snow was threatened so I took the train. The train left late; the snow did indeed come down. The Calder High School people were hoping for Alasdair from the AAA [Anti-Academies Alliance] in London; they got me from the AAA in Leeds. I've got over their disappointment.

back of the Henry Price Building
Moorland Road 
Left the meeting at 9.10, rushed off to the station. Would it have hurt to check the times of the trains back? I waited on this lovely empty station till the 9.49, took a couple of pics of trains, buses and stations.

snowballs in School View
Afetr that Debs, snow was everywhere in Leeds; well, actually it was all over the country. And I spent a fortune going to Moscow . . . .

I cycled round round to Walt's on the snow; whoa, not doing that again. Found him, Stella and their nextdoor neighbours throwing snowballs.

    Debs, I think you get it: it snowed: beautiful and fun while it lasts, make getting transport difficult and briefly make the world stop ticking as normal, and you can reflect upon why you do what you do. Schools closed - so what?

Do we live to go to school; or do we go to school to live?


snowballs in School View

Otley Road