The Bransholme Blues

(This talking blues was dragged out each year and I kept adding
verses about relevant things)

Tonight I've got chance to air my views
And tell you about the Bransholme blues
Talk about the children, talk about the staff
One or the other should be good for a laugh

(We've got the mushroom policy here,
Keep you in the dark and throw s*** at you)

The school I'm told is a single site
Any day of the week it doesn't look right
There's mixed sex classes in every year
We're teaching all grades at every tier
(There's more tears than grades though)

Now I'll tell you about the curriculum design
The core is set on mixed ability lines
The kids are confused, the teachers bemused
'Fact we're all mixed up most of the time

(You've heard of the hidden curriculum? We're still looking for ours)

Schools so large I've heard them say
Road Maps are issued by the AA
 (......I mean Automobile Association)
But despite its size they tell me that
You can get 'round the school in two minutes flat
(That's what you would be with all the kids on the corridors)

If there's anything new that they want you to know
They drop you a message in your pigeon hole
They won't use a word if a page will do
And why print one when you can always print two
(When we have half term the forestry commission lay-off four men)
((save a tree and don't tell me))

Well ever since I came to this school
I've tried to follow the golden rule
Attend the meetings, do my share
Even cover for my colleagues when they weren't there
(trouble is you don't feel like calling them colleagues then)

Checked my pigeon hole the other day
Chased out the moths, blew the dust away
Deputy head's getting used to me
Signs all my cover slips R.I.P.
(He doesn't know but that's what I'd like to do with 'em)

Now just last week it came to pass
He gave me a cover slip for my OWN class*
But the thing that hurt my dignity
Was it said "Work was available
(I checked with the office.... They said I was home sick)

With so many teachers and so many modes
Can't remember the names so we have to use codes
Children find it easy I have heard
They can define any teacher with a four-letter word
(And that's not nice)
Teachers get on here in different ways
Academic or pastoral or just out to graze
You can make head of department in a matter of days
Secret of success is gotta liaise
(And if you look you'll find most H.O.D.'s liaising around)
(I used to think a H.O.D. was a thing used for carrying bricks

The lessons are taught on a cyclic base
If you can't ride a bike you'll fall flat on your face
Every 42 days Monday's day one
And the rest of the month you have to guess where its gone
(Its sort of philosophical- the tannoy never
interrupts the same lesson on the same day at the same time)

Now I'm not complaining it works just fine
Means the kids can't find you most of the time
And if they do its usually  dinner time
Or they roll up at the end of lesson nine
(Sorry sir I was listening to the headmaster on the tannoy)

But Stop! news flash I've heard them speak
Of a new idea, a five -day week
But don't get too excited my friend
We're only going to have a one day weekend
(I think they're moving all the Sunday's to next month)

Well Silicon valley, here we come
Bransholme's got some computers to run
Not used for teaching or improving the brain
Just calling the numbers in a Bingo Game
(just as well most of the teachers here think
 a micro-chip is part of the new school meals policy)

If you want to survive in this school today
Don't bother joining the P.T.A.
Forget about the classroom and teaching affairs
Get yourself a job labeling chairs.
(When they make you chairman of a committee at this school
that''s what you do)

We're losing our head but I guess you all know **
A lot of us did a long time ago
If you can't DO TEACH is what they say
Do yo make senior advisor just the same way?

We've got a new head his name is J.C. ***
But I don't think he came from Galilee
Likes to "lead from behind" but he just can't win
Most of the leaders are following him..
(sycophants rule if its o.k. by you)

Well I guess that's all  I've got to say
Everything else seems to be o.k.
Boss just left and I'm not surprised
Probably typing out my P.45
(Night folks or should I say ... Goodbye)

* This really happened once, a new cover organizer

* Got called in the H.M. Office for this verse as he hadn't told the governors
    he was leaving  and this song was the first they knew

**This new guy loved to "Lead from behind"

When I was teaching at Bransholme every year we had a folk concert
 and every year I'd add a new verse to this talking blues.