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Banburyshire Family History

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go back to the last page you were on Memories of the 50s : School Reports


School reports were issued twice a year. In book form, the intention was that it should support subsequent application for University or employment. Against each subject there was a table of examination and coursework marks, ranked position in both form and subject-year, and a small section for comment by teachers of each subject.

How the staffroom must have chuckled as they competed with each other to compose pithy summaries of term performance. Nothing so mundane as 'must do better'. Some random examples from my report book include: Geography --'has apparently decided to rest on his oars'; English Literature - 'I like to think the School is ahead on points'; and Musical Appreciation - 'Who?' Comment by Religious Education was noncommittal; clearly my interest in individuals who 'smote' or 'begat' had been noted.

A larger section for the Form Master allowed for review of character and attitude. Clearly he had confused me with someone else. He thought my views on teaching practice were very interesting but intended to continue with traditional style and methods.

The House Master's report contained few surprises. I had achieved no athletic distinction (I blame the diet); created no model windmills from matchsticks; and had never entered a collection of cheese labels for the Arts & Handicrafts Exhibition. The lack of warm support from the hierarchy of White's House was perhaps understandable, although I did participate in debate at weekly House meetings. Sadly, School was not ready for pupil exchange with St Joseph's Convent, and educational visits to railway sheds were considered unnecessary.

The Headmaster was rarely seen by pupils, he being a small slightly built bespectacled man who scurried about the corridors in his gown like the White Rabbit. My only contact with him centred on a distressing incident with the Fire Brigade, but his comments lacked encouragement.

The final section of the report allowed for comment by parents. This was an opportunity, never taken, to criticise the standard of handwriting displayed by teaching staff.

Written by Smokey