I absolutely agree with the headmaster Matthew Tate.
After witnessing Holly Willoughby on ‘This Morning’ (which was on in the background…honest) ask Matthew Tate in a live interview whether the way in which he has conducted the affair is appropriate, considering all the media attention it has drawn; he very aptly replied that yes he does, although he would rather be doing his job than appearing in their interview. The media jumps on the story and then presents a loaded question about the harmful implications of their own chosen interaction in said story. Declining an interview would no doubt have given him a more sinister reputation in the public eye but by appearing, his professional integrity involving the privacy or his pupils is called into question. It’s a lose-lose situation for teachers. They are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.
Here are a couple of Daily Mail headlines in all their characteristically understated fashion:
“Police are called to school gates as parents protest after ‘Gestapo’ headmaster sends home SIXTY children for not wearing the right uniform – on his FIRST day in the job”
“Parents’ fury as children are KETTLED by teachers as new headmaster steps up his ‘Gestapo-style’ crackdown on uniform rules sending home another 20 children”
To be compared with earlier headlines:
“Think school pupils are rude and unruly? You should meet the parents”
“Could unruly children be tamed with a vitamin pill? Pupils taking the supplement were ‘better behaved at school'”
It’s OK everybody, the Daily Mail has it all in hand. Teachers please don’t intervene in enforcing school rules or children’s behaviour.. you human herding NAZIS! All the kids need is to pop some vitamin pills… obviously! And we should consider the aggrieved parents’ fury as justified even though they are more rude and unruly than the pupils.
Contradictory – CHECK
Ambivalent – CHECK
Indiscriminately Vicious – CHECK
*DISCLAIMER – If after reading Daily Mail headlines you feel nausea, head aches or dizziness it is probably because you have just read pure poison.
My memories of school were that is was nearly always the kids that wore the wrong items of uniform, or just wore them incorrectly, that were the bullying, gobby, nasty little sh*t bags. A great many parents of our generation, and the next, waiver all responsibility and dump it into the laps of teachers (as if they didn’t have enough to deal with). Yet when the teachers take control of something that the parents should be policing, they come under fire from those parents and some of the media.
Dear parents, do you want your children to learn respect for rules and discipline in order to help them gain important life skills that will enable them to function successfully and happily in society, professionally and personally?
If yes, then dress them correctly; clothes shopping and fitting over a period of six weeks is relatively straightforward. If your child dresses themselves incorrectly then discipline them appropriately. For if a parent’s attitude is laissez-faire about school rules then how can anyone expect the child to be anything else? Teachers and parents should form a united front and children should be taught to respect that.
Parents are the first teachers in any child’s life and always the most influential.
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