Reports, reports, reports…
Tis the season to be jolly and that sort of thing, tis also the season to be up to your proverbial in reports that have to be written in order that parents have their suspicions confirmed about the academic application of their various offspring.
Report writing is a delicate balance between factual accuracy, satire and semantic implication. It’s a tightrope I like to tread (but not 120 times!) as I enjoy the wordplay and subsequent feedback from parents (if it’s done correctly). For example, a lazy but intelligent boy who is also a pain in the arse with his behaviour in lessons could be described as follows: “Wilf is an academically strong and lively student who may benefit from occasionally refocusing efforts in classwork”
Similarly, the painfully shy student who wears excessive make-up and has no interest in study whatsoever could be ” Wanda is a quiet, popular student who needs to prioritise her study in the next few months in order to maximise her choices post exams”
Words/phrases to be avoided these days are as follows: Special – far too open to derogatory interpretation. Rees-Mogg – never ever use this term, every child has the right to develop without being saddled with this millstone. Lazy wanker – for obvious reasons, although far more accurate than most alternatives.
I have spent the week with a quiet soundtrack to my writing and these are the tunes that made me put my Sheaffer down. First up Western Skies Motel with a beguiling thing, then Del Amitri with an updated arrangement of their classic (overblown but still lovely and relevant) and following my first trip to the cinema post-Covid where I saw Neil Young’s Harvest Time – absolutely brilliant – there’s been a lot of Neil listened to recently. I mean a lot!!