Miss James – Snow day to you

At last – a morning with sun, no rain, slush or snow. Because while the country ground to a halt and 90% of schools were shut – we were not. Oh, no – we belong to the macho set of “we will open no matter what, forever and ever” school and so we did.

While schools right next to us were closed – for several days –  we remained open. No-one even contemplating thinking about Health and Safety – no we’d be playing on while the Titanic sunk, not clambouring for the life-boats.

Staff struggled in from the wilds of the North where overground trains simply didn’t want to start in the morning, while in the South-east limited services ferried the squished and desperate into London Bridge and Charing Cross ever later, every day. Then, in the evening trying to get home the station is freezing, the snow bites your face and swirls around you from every direction at once. Then you fight to get on the train and hope the stranger next to you doesn’t mind you invading every last inch of their personal space as you finally head home again.

Snow is pretty, looks lovely on post cards and in movies, it’s beautiful from your window – there inside your snug house where you imbibe warming substances – hot chocolate, red wine, chocolate, soup and crusty bread, etc, etc. Yes, I like to look at snow. I like reading in bed as the flakes flurry through the grey skies – I like that.

But outside in the midst of it it’s horrid. It’s cold, it makes you wet, makes your eyes water; the slush comes and then the ice after another frozen night makes you walk like a retarded penguin too frightened of falling over. Then when some “amusing” student throws a snowball at you you do want to kill them – even more than usual.

But, what killed us all really was that we were there, at school, doing the right thing, caring about the great uneducated masses of the inner city – hours to get there – and most of our beloved charges – who live within a walk or a nice little bus-ride – were not. So not possible to deliver a proper lesson to 1/2 the class – it’d all have to be re-done next time. So, what was the point?

Really, why couldn’t  I have had an extra day or 2 at home, sleeping, ignoring all the whiteness and coldness outside? Just one Snow Day – surely it wouldn’t have really hurt – won’t really kill the drive for improvement or the hunt for more and better GCSEs – surely not?


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