This is a version of an article that first appeared in the Manx Advertiser
Parents – except those who happen to be teachers – will be celebrating.
The kids have gone back to school!
For some children, it will be their first school ever. For others, it will be their initiation into a new institution.
It can be daunting if you are starting at secondary school, and it doesn’t get any less daunting for a while, so here are some tips to bear in mind.
Brothers and sisters. If you have older ones, there is something inevitable about teachers making a reference to them at some stage. You can say, politely: ‘Please may I learn something new, rather than hear about someone about whom I know too much already?’
Year eight children. Just 12 months ago, they were the new arrivals in secondary school, feeling as daunted as you do right now. Don’t make the mistake of thinking this will lead to mass empathy from them.
Blazers. There’s no real logic to why some schools want you to wear them, other than it’s possibly easier to wipe off chalk from a blazer than from a designer label tracksuit top.
Chalk. Ask the older teachers. They’ll remember it.
Tutting. As secondary school pupils, you cease to have any semblance of likeability in the eyes of your elders. Many, who would have smiled when they saw a group of children in primary school uniform, will tut because you have had the temerity to be on a footpath. It’s all part of growing up.
Teachers. Instead of one teacher for nearly all your lessons, you’re going to have a different teacher for each subject. There are pros and cons to this. The cons are that it will take them all a little longer to realise how wonderful you are, the pros are that if you are unlucky enough to have a teacher with the charisma of Ed Miliband and the likeability of Michael Gove, at least you won’t have to spend too much time with them.
Don’t worry. If you don’t like your new school, you only have to do a minimum of five years at it. More to the point, once you leave school and go into the world of work, you might start to realise it wasn’t so bad after all.
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