With all the insanity that surrounds professional football it made a nice change to watch a competitive if somewhat bad tempered affair at the lovely War Memorial Ground in Carshalton. There are ample match reports on this game so I will suffice to say that a penalty in the first 5 minutes by Carshalton was matched by an equaliser in almost the final minute. South Park also found time in the first half to have a penalty saved by the impressive Luke Colquhoun.
Here is the story of the game in photographic terms. Enjoy.
Nonsuch Park is an under rated park amongst the many in Surrey. Nonsuch school sits in one corner and there are times of the day when maybe the car parks are best avoided. By chance I was there this afternoon as the sun was going down, the rain had stopped but with only the I Phone as a camera. These photos attempt to capture a chill winter late afternoon. A certain amount of adult ADHD was also apparent in those attempting to leave the car park.
I am living it seems in a parallel universe and clearly was away the day, week or month, they taught us how to design a Renaissance church. This is a weekend homework item. Two versions scanned in, neither played with, the first greyscale and the second monochrome. I remain impressed……..
Isn’t it strange how a child goes to school from a young age, often 4 years, and each year they go up a class, sometimes with a new teacher. But then comes the “end” of that school, it happens to be called primary. Around 6 weeks later they start ” secondary or senior” school, and all hell breaks loose. Parents become worried about this entrance to a big school, new uniform, new ways of doing homework and often new ways of getting to school. For many it is the start of independence with a school bus or public transport. Indeed this scenario is what has greeted many children in the boroughs of Sutton and Kingston this week.
The reality is the children are worried for about 2 days before. They worry about the new teacher, the new locker, where the toilets are and if their friends still like them. Suddenly it is all over and the normality of school kicks in. That is exactly what has happened this week.
A little bit of praise though. Nonsuch school in Cheam has been exceptional in its planning and organisation from the original acceptances of places through to selling uniform. Praise also to the X26 bus which transports children in record time at no cost with the precious oyster cards. School is truly back.
One of the big changes since I was at school is the huge competition for secondary schools that are deemed the best. Fir example we are in the borough of Merton but have not selected any Merton schools. A few weeks ago Elena who is just 11 years and in year 6, sat the entrance exam for nonsuch school. Her chances come down to 180 places last year for around 1500 applicants . To have even a chance she had around 9 months tuition on exam technique which put simply means learning how to do mcq exams and practice in verbal, non verbal and maths. The real question when such tuition costs around 20-30£ a session for 90 minutes, is why schools are not teaching this anyway within the curriculum. Many able children will be denied a fair chance due to family finance. The other question is how much children are pushed into these exams when they don’t want to do them and are not emotionally onboard with going to what are colloquially called selective schools. One also hears of children being so stressed that they vomit or cry before or after the exam. There were rumors that may or not be true that this happened at tiffin boys school yesterday.
I was really proud of my 11 year old. She enjoyed the tuition but was lucky to be tutored in a group by a great last called mrs burgess. Recommended big time. She did well in the nonsuch exam and yesterday went to tiffin girls along with maybe 1200 others . I have to guess at numbers. We arrived 8 am to find huge queues down the Richmond road and there was a really impressive organization to get all the children in and out. This involved using coloured slips. Placards held by maybe 5-6 th formers, some very keen others totally unimpressed. Parents in lines in a tenniscourt and lots of walking up and down the road to Kingston. Big congratulations on the organization to Tiffin girls.
Clearly this is a debatable topic and in response to my twitter comments had some great discussion with pupils who both agreed and disagreed with the selective school system . Watch this space next April to see what school Elena arrives at in 2012