It has been a busy week out on the soccer fields so finding the time to write has been tough this week. But here we are, at it again. And I have to say it is great to have regular readers, it almost makes me feel like that woman from that Julia/Julie movie. So to those readers who stumble back here each week to read my ramblings, a big thank you and don’t forget to tell your friends to stop by. Don’t forget to leave me a Like and a comment! Today I shall be talking about my school life and how much I really didn’t care about being there. If you were on a search engine and were looking for the old Spectrum game Skool Daze, this is not the place to find it. It was a great game, I just wanted to use the spelling to emphasize my loathing for the whole thing.
I spent the final three years of my miserable school life at County Upper School in Bury St. Edmunds. For those interested in such things, I also went to Howard Primary (elementary for my American readers) and Howard Middle. It’s the last three that were the most important. The only trouble with this is that I didn’t realise it was important until around 1998. I left County Upper in 1985. My last three years of schooling were a bit of a blur. I went nearly every day, but while I was there I was just going through the motions. I think the problem was that nobody actually told me why I was there. I understood that I was supposed to learn things, but why was I actually there. Now I know it’s all about giving you a foundation to go on to further education so that you can in the future get a fantastic job that is well paid, so that you can live a happy life. Yeah nobody mentioned that.
My teachers seemed to be just as enthusiastic to be there as me. Just to prove a point my highlight of my day was when in math class I could look out the window and count the train cars as the went by in the distance. My meeting with a career councilor was interesting, I had no idea why I was seeing this man, again no one explained. I spent my hour with him talking about my love of computer games. He suggested I work on my math skills. I was OK with that, I knew I could count to 75, that was how many train cars there were that day!
With all the my daydreaming I’m surprised I graduated High School, I left with two Math certificates, Two in English, and one each in Science, Geography and Drama. Oh yeah, I did want to be an actor, you see how well that worked out for me. Though it is still on my bucket list to be in a movie, so if anyone can help me with that send me an email!
With that in mind I thought I would share something I kept. I don’t know why I kept them and brought them to the States with me. My old school reports. These nuggets of what my teachers thought of me are always a source of entertainment for me. I’m going to include a few from middle school too. I’ll also add my thoughts on them too 🙂
English, July 1980, Grade E, Effort 3: David’s reading and comprehension are good but his written work is poor and spelling erratic. He must concentrate. (Mrs D’Albertanson) – My spelling has improved over the years. Thank you spell checkers! and as for my concentration…..oh shiney!
French, July 1980, Grade E, Effort, 3: David must make a more consistent effort to answer questions. (Mrs Long) – How was I supposed to answer the questions? I don’t speak French.
P.E. and Games 1981, Grade C-, Effort 3: Basic skill levels are sound. Needs to work harder at grasping the essential principle of team games. (Barry Fry) – The say good players play, and bad ones coach. That’s why I coach and why Barry was a P.E. teacher probably. Interesting note, Barry Fry ran in the first London Marathon.
French, July 1982: Not taken – I’d given up by then, French was not for me!
English, July 1983, Grade E, Effort 4: David has made poor progress – With more effort he could do well – He is not a silly person – he reads well – but he fails to keep up to date and to complete his work. (Mr Russell) – I can see this is where my grades plummeted, though it was not my fault. I hated Mr Russell. He scared me. My sister Jackie didn’t like him either when he was her teacher.
Biology, July 1983, Grade C-, Effort 3: David’s work is weak. Absence has not helped, I look for greater effort in these next few weeks. (Mrs Thompson) – Biology was always a mystery to me. Glad things cleared up later in life with that. If you want to really know how good I was at biology you should check out this past blog entry.
Religious Education, July 1984, Grade B-, Effort 2: He has done some good work but he would do well to try and be a little more organized. (Mr Crawford) – It is interesting that religious education was one of my better classes, I really don’t know why as I’m a bit of an agnostic.
Social Studies, July 1985, Grade D, Effort 4: David’s inability to concentrate plus his lack of organisation makes his progress slow. He also needs to work hard on expressing himself in written English. Although a pleasant boy to teach, I feel at present David is not doing himself full justice. He needs to return next term with a determination to succeed. (Mr Wilcox) – I wasn’t going to add this one, but I re-read it a few times and thought I would add it after all. The reason being I would love to have Mr Wilcox find this site and read this reply to his 1985 comment. Mr Wilcox, Sir, you were so right and though I let you down in class I’d like you to know that as I’ve grown and gotten old I’ve now made a career of organising things. I didn’t do myself full justice and now wanting to succeed is always a top goal. Thank you for being a great teacher. Last time I saw Mr Wilcox he was riding his bicycle in Eastbourne.
I really wanted to find an interesting report from my science class. There wasn’t one. The only reason I wanted to find one is because my Science teacher Tony Jewson was in the British Pop Band The Late Show that recorded the song The Bristol Stomp.
For those interested in what the Grades and Effort rankings are
Grade A – Excellent
Grade B – Good
Grade C – Satisfactory
Grade D – Below Average
Grade E – Weak
Effort 1 – Excellent
Effort 2 – Good
Effort 3 – Satisfactory
Effort 4 – Inadequate
Effort 5 – Needs Constant Pressure
Those who remember me from County Upper, leave a comment and say hi!
And because I have no idea when I’ll ever use this photo, here’s a picture of me in spain drinking booze at the age of 13.