School daze

Three red signs, each with the word 'wait' on them.

Us Brits are good at waiting for things – we endure apparently endless summers characterised by rain and disappointment in the vain hope that there will be a couple of weeks of sunshine at the end of it, we’re all patiently looking forward to the day that David Cameron and his equally clueless friends fuck off and, if we see a queue for something, we join it. It doesn’t matter what the queue is actually for, it’s in our DNA to stand in line for an interminable amount of time. We even voted Waiting for Godot the most important play of the 20th century, so something about sitting around waiting for nothing to happen is obviously something that strikes a chord with us. Speaking of which, Wednesday was one of the longest days of my life as Kate and I nervously sat by the email inbox hitting the F5 key ad nauseam hoping for news of Dylan’s primary school place.

My sister, who lives in another county, got an email at 6am informing her that her little lad, Jack, had been given their first choice. With the local council’s website seemingly blissfully oblivious and the previous correspondence we’d received simply telling us the date we would hear, we turned to social media to see if anyone else had received any news. Just about everyone I knew around the country had heard first thing. Some had been given a set time for later in the day when information would be forthcoming but, for the most part, people knew where their kids were going in September. Everyone, it seemed, except for people in East Sussex. Well, that’s not entirely true… the local paper knew how many had got their first choice, so the information was available.

Finally there was some news. It was late morning and the council Facebook page carried what seemed to be a hastily written update saying that emails and letters would be sent out late afternoon. Nothing on email or their own site – or Twitter, for that matter either – just a Facebook update. As both a concerned parent and experienced communications professional, I was tearing my hair out but I suppose it was something.

A few hours later and after much pacing around the living room doing irreversible damage to the carpet in the process, we got an email. We got Dylan’s first choice. Just as well as it was our only choice because we don’t drive! Phew. We slumped into the sofa, relieved. I think I lost a stone as well as most of my fingernails and am also contemplating buying some Just For Men to disguise the greys that have started to appear at my temples, but we got the news we wanted. Eventually.

We told Dylan the good news. “That’s nice. Can I watch Monsters Inc?” he said.

Comments

  1. Kate

    Lancashire didn’t put theirs on their website until 6pm (no emails). And then, of course, the website crashed. Most people therefore didn’t find out until 7pm when they finally sorted it out. Of course, 6pm is when there is noone in the office and you can’t ring anyone either. Shocking service. (I wasn’t waiting but I felt for my friends who were..)

    1. Post
      Author
      Tom

      Thanks Kate. That’s really bad – can’t understand why they don’t provide the information at a standard time across the country – I’m assuming that they have the results at least the day before, so it shouldn’t be that difficult for them!

  2. Ruth (geekmummy)

    Glad you got your first choice 🙂 We were waiting for the results as well, but nowhere near as nervously – we had both the catchment area and the sibling rule on our side. It was still a relief to get confirmation of our D’s place though.

    1. Post
      Author
      Tom

      Thanks Ruth – glad D got his place too. 🙂 I bet you were still just as nervous as we were even with the sibling rule; I know I’m going to be when it Xander’s turn!

  3. Merlinda (@pixiedusk)

    We got the an email early in the morning and got a letter yesterday. But I am still not impressed with our council. Paid parking is still killing our household and the high street here. I hope I am making sense. Just dropping by from #pocolo

    1. Post
      Author
      Tom

      Sorry to hear that Merlinda. We seem to be better off on that front as parking is free here – that said, we don’t drive so aren’t taking advantage of it!

  4. Hurrah For Gin

    So relieved for you 🙂 felt your pain here but we were super lucky to get first choice too 🙂
    I know a few people who got none of their choices – so competitive around here!

    1. Post
      Author
      Tom

      It’s a stressful and emotional process alright and I really feel for those who didn’t get any of their choices. Chuffed for you that you got your first choice. 🙂

    1. Post
      Author
      Tom

      Yes, I really can’t see why they can’t release the results at the same time across the country. If they can do it all on the same day, times shouldn’t be an issue. And, yes, Dylan was representative of young children everywhere. Little beast!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.