Thought for the day. Latest data reveals that in the UK 34,000 children are suffering from Long Covid. In Scotland it has been announced that when schools return they will maintain Covid precautions such as masks. The Scottish Government is also spending millions on improving classroom ventilation. Meanwhile in England, all Covid precautions have been removed from schools as they are deemed perfectly safe….
There have been many DEEP SIGHS recently.
We have just found out that the Psychologist supporting Hawklad is leaving in two weeks time. At this stage the Service is not able to confirm when a replacement will be put in place. They can’t even confirm if the support will continue.
It takes Hawklad a significant amount of time to build up confidence in new faces. It took a lot of work from this professional to establish a bond, unfortunately now it’s all change again. That’s been the story over the last 5 years. So many new starts….. Even if a replacement is immediately put in place it will take many many months before any kind of meaningful link could be possibly established. That is at a time when his stress and anxiety levels are rocketing with an impending return to classroom teaching (?). A time when he is likely to require high levels of support.
This service is the last remaining support that Hawklad gets these days. But like most areas of child mental health, it’s a service under stress. Service demand rapidly outstripping its limited resources. The service has to prioritise those children most at risk of immediate harm and many families miss out on the help they so badly need. We may well start to miss out. Too many children suffer. Parents and families try do their best. Muddle through. But some of these areas are highly specialised and parents are just not equipped to deal with the issues. Plus many parents are already running on fumes and are struggling.
My country can find the money to buy additional nuclear missiles, can find the money to buy a new luxury royal yacht, can find the money to build a High Speed Train link that few people want, can find the money to pay Government Ministers legal fees and cover bullying damages awarded against a member of the Government. YET the country can’t seem to find the money or desire to protect its very own children.
A simple trip out to the local Post Office. Ok it’s a 6 mile round trip but it’s the only option unless you want to venture much further into town or city. I went with my work parcel, money and mask.
On Monday the Government lifted Covid Restrictions across England. Clearly infections aren’t rapidly rising and we don’t have the highest infection rate currently in the world.
I counted 7 other people in the shop/post office. I was the only one wearing a mask. The bloke next to me helpfully reminded me that masks weren’t required anymore because the Prime Minister had said so. I kindly reminded him that was not the message our A&E doctors and nurses are desperately trying to get across. That’s the thing. While our NHS teams are having leave cancelled to cover reopening COVID wards the Governmentand its MPs are just about to start their summer holidays. I also asked the chap to back away as he was now within 1 metre of my face. For some reason he seemed to take great offence at that.
Just like with most things the one thing our Government is great at is creating divisions in society. One group against the next. Well they have just done it again…..
There is a new rule in England. If there is an independent body then our Prime Minister will appoint his friends to make those bodies definitely not independent. It started with BBC News. Then the media watchdogs and it’s just getting silly now. There is an independent body that advises on ethics in public life. Guess what. He has appointed an old university friend, who with Johnson was part of a notorious drinking and partying private club. That’s modern England for you.
So clearly it’s ok to appoint whoever you like to anything these days. So why don’t we all do that. What fun we can have. How easy life will be.
So here are a few of my appointments.
I would like to appoint myself as James Bond.
I would also like to appoint myself as the new Thor.
I would also like to appoint myself as the next winner of the Great British Bake Off.
I would like to appoint our family dog, Captain Chaos as my Countries Prime Minister. Far more qualified than the current numpty and our dog doesn’t lie. The Cap is also not a racist, sexist or homophobic.
I would like to appoint our family cat and gerbils as his Government.
On discussion with my son I would like to appoint Hawklad as the new Darth Vader, Head of Disney and lead guitarist of Iron Maiden.
It’s stormy here. Has been for over 24 hours and more to come. Sadly more storms might be heading our way.
I wish I didn’t have to keep going on about the Government. But every day, every day they strike again. This time it’s that all formal COVID restrictions will be lifted. In two weeks it will come down to individual choice. If you want to observe social distancing or wear a mask on public transport then you can, but you don’t need to. This is at a time when variant fuelled infections are rising. Currently at 27000 new cases per day. The so called Prime Minister is talking about 50000 new daily infections by the time restrictions come off.
Let’s not be under any illusions now. The plan in England is for vaccinations plus herd immunity to keep ahead of COVID-19 . Banking on vaccines staying effective while purposely infecting as many of the young as possible. It’s a massive gamble when you remove all the other restrictions that are designed to keep COVID under control. We just don’t know how long vaccines stay effective. We don’t fully understand the long term impact of COVID on the body and brain (10% of cases lead to long lasting symptoms). We don’t know how long vaccines will stay effective against variants.
As many scientists and doctors have pointed out. Variants accelerate when a virus is rapidly spreading. Like now…. England has become a giant Variant Factory. You should only release restrictions when virus numbers are under control and are LOW.
It’s a mess.
A mess when those in Government openly talk about not needing to wear a mask because the are vaccinated. They completely miss the point. Masks are primarily there to protect others. To reduce the risk of you spreading the virus to others. To those at higher risk, to those who the vaccine is not working effectively, to those who are not vaccinated, to our unprotected children.
It’s no secret that I have fallen out of love with my country. I don’t like what it is becoming. I don’t like the way it’s run. I don’t like the corruption. The inequalities. The new values we are supposed to sign up to. I hate the xenophobic outlook. I constantly seem to be at odds with a sizeable portion of my fellow citizens.
But is it just me .
“Dad if we win the lottery can we leave England.”
“England is going down hill. It has been for years. It’s becoming ugly. I’m European but I’m not now allowed to be. I didn’t get a say in that. The country has no future the way it’s going. It’s stuck in the past. Our leaders are racist, law breaking clowns as corrupt as any in our history. I’m ashamed to call myself English now.
I can’t disagree with you sadly. Where might you want to move to.
Switzerland. If they won’t have us then Germany or France or Italy or . I would go to Canada, or America or New Zealand. Anywhere apart from here.
Another day of school at home. Another day of me demonstrating how little I know about Science and French. Surely answering questions like why would the earths magnetic poles switch?, involves more than incoherent mumbling and awkwardly shuffling of my feet.
Je suis un muppet et plutot stupide…..
Maybe those parents doing homeschooling should have some boaster classes. Bring the likes of me up to speed. Deep sigh. Not much chance of that here in England with our current law breaking charlatans in charge. They can’t even look after the pupils correctly.
Our so called Government has announced an extra £50 per pupil to help them catch up and deal with the impacts of COVID education disruption. That disruption has been massive. Apparently £50 is a world beating some that shows commitment to the next generation. The US is giving its students a top up of £1600 per year, Netherlands the funding is £2500.
Our Government would much rather spend money on important stuff like a new Royal Yacht costing £200M. It also comes from a Prime Minister who enjoyed the privileges of a Private Education at one of the worlds most exclusive and expensive schools. In today’s money that cost somewhere near £50000 per year.
The weather has definitely changed but the school at home project chugs along. It will do until the end of the third week in July. After that the so called government is telling parents to send their kids back to school in September with minimal additional safeguard, as it is completely safe. Let’s see how many kids do return….
That’s a thought for another day. Back to the present lets see what I’ve learnt from this weeks school at home project. Remember it’s not true Homeschooling, it’s schools version. They are two completely different approaches.
Trying to teach basic cricket skills is no fun during torrential rain and a thunderstorm. Unfortunately the house does not feature an indoor sports hall facility.
Clearly the Games Teacher and a certain Dad disagree on what constitutes a good bowling action in cricket. The game must have changed since I was a kid.
Old school French to English dictionaries have so many pages yet they don’t seem to have the exact word or phrase you need.
School repeatedly sending an email out to pupils with the title ‘Important information about Careers, please read‘ will mean that the email is never opened.
Another week and another Food Technology lesson focusing just on puff pastry. As son says “I don’t even like the stuff so I’m never going to eat it. This is a wasteof time…”.
The school has a really good online teaching infrastructure. Probably as good as any UK school. So it’s so frustrating that with a few teachers we still have to print out a copy of a sheet. Son fills it out by hand and then has to take a photograph to send it back in. What a waste of paper.
Getting no feedback on a piece of work does not really help.
Drama is such a great lesson when the kids get to watch a ‘live’ theatre production on the iPad. Even his Dad sat and watched Treasure Island.
The Dead Sea is sinking at 1m per year. That’s quicker than my football team.
Why do all the felt tip pens instantly turn dry and useless as soon as the words ‘for art today you will need coloured felt tip pens’ are mentioned.
What is the fascination of doing word searches as a teaching tool. I am trying to work out how finding a word in a sea of letters will help embed concepts and theories into a young mind. Especially a mind which sees words through dyslexic eyes….
Without caffeine trying to undertake long division is impossible. So the following words sent shivers down my spine. ‘Dad can you check this sum, it’s 13422 divided by 317′. Really…..
I have a policy of not trying to interfere in son’s work but even I have a limit. My limit is where his Form Tutor asks the kids to do 20 minutes quiet reading then take a photo of the book. Sons choice of book – Stephen King’s IT. Just NO, how about a Roald Dahl book.…..
Why do school keep asking a kid with dyslexia to read books without additional checks and help…
Fukalite is a chemical compound.
The school iPad can survive having a full glass of orange juice spilled over it.
Apparently Continent’s move at the same rate as your finger nails grow… This is still quicker than how fast my hair grows back.
When your son is not wearing his dark blue school blazer it would be smart to put it away neatly in the wardrobe. Leaving it on the back of a chair for 3 months and in front of a south facing window is not such a smart idea. One side has definitely faded in the sunlight. Deep joy.
So that’s it for another school at home week. We can definitely do this.
I stumbled across a few old photos. From a time before parenting. Even before my first ever digital camera… A time when my body was still young and I could run up mountains. A time when the wind would still blow my thick long black hair across my face.
A trip to the West Side of Northern England. To the Lake District and to one of Englands most famous mountains. The Old Man of Coniston. It’s not a huge mountain standing at just over 2600ft. But it’s steeped in history. It’s positioned next to the beautiful Coniston Water. The walk to the top takes you through old copper mine workings. Alongside a couple of stunning little tarns. Then finally onto a summit with sweeping views.
Hopefully one day I will return to the summit. A summit climb with considerably less hair. Which will take much longer this time and feature many sandwich stops..
Yes an excuse to sneak in a Switzerland photo when it’s not Sunday. A country which just does things better than here in England. When the Swiss organise a bird lineup it is always going to beat ours.
I was racking my brain to think of stuff my country can do better than Switzerland. It’s not an extensive list so far,
Road pot holes,
Stuff being late,
Crap customer care,
Cheaper basic drugs like cold remedies,
The NHS, a big plus……
Charlatans like Boris Johnson,
Royal Family (depends if your a republican or not)
Mental Health Crisis,
Care Home Crisis,
A shocking pandemic death total,
A Government proud of killing so many people,
Becoming insular and xenophobic,
Key service cuts,
Large school class sizes,
Inability to speak a second language,
Shouting and swearing,
Fish and chips,
Will stop now as the longer this list gets the more depressed I get at the thought of living in England. Yes we have some things we can be rightly proud of but the list of not so good stuff is rapidly expanding. Bring on my weekly Swiss Sunday…..