E37 Final year of Juniors

It was time to go back to school and we were all a little excited.
I still had no love for education because of my experiences but it was going to be different as we were now in our final year of Junior school.

There was a tradition at the end of the school year that you and your mates would leave on the last day and you would all tie your school ties onto the fence or the gate and that would symbolise us leaving forever.

Mum wasn’t too happy as I had managed to convince her to let me walk home on my own.
She was just being a good mum but in the third year, I had managed to convince her to let me walk home without her picking me up on a Friday.

Now it was my fourth year and I had a credible argument against her.
I rightly pointed out that nobody had murdered, or kidnapped me.
Nobody had tried to drag me into a car and Purple Aki hadn’t once tried to feel my muscles.

She was pissed off well because she cared but she knew I was right and I was allowed to walk home by myself.
We all went into our new class which was 6Y and we were happy as we found out we were getting a brand new teacher.

We didn’t have to worry like in the second year who was coming in that day we had a brand new teacher fresh out of teacher training college called Paul Casey.

Casey didn’t last long as a teacher which ill talk about in great detail and to be fair I don’t think he was a bad guy deep down he was just in way over his head and the deeper he got the more he messed things up.

Casey came across as a very angry person but he did have a nice side.
It was unfortunate as we didn’t see it very often.
I have to admit though as angry as he got he never laid a hand on any of us.

It just goes to show you how broken the school system is if a plus point in me writing this is to say that a teacher never hit us.
Only the worst pieces of garbage would ever lay hands on a child 1980s or not.

We started our classes as normal and we realised quickly that children should be seen and not heard.
I don’t understand people like this especially when you’re dealing with children?

It’s understandable if the work is not being done or the children are disrupting the lesson but to scream at kids for talking then there is something wrong with you.

Casey had spiky brown hair which always looked like it needed a cut.
He also wore terrible jumpers the type which you would expect the presenters of Rainbow to be wearing.
Fair enough he was a Junior school teacher but if you see below they were awful.

A Paul Casey style jumper
The presenters of the TV show rainbow

The more we tried to be quiet as kids the more noise we made and then Casey got very angry.
He had bad skin and when he used to scream at the class he would turn the colour of beetroot.

The author at the rear second from right

Like many teachers of his era, he would take things personally, and then when he didn’t like you your cards were marked.
I wasn’t one of his favourites but I wasn’t completely on the shit list either.
I remember he took an instant dislike to Simon Ng and Danny Meers would get shouted at a lot as well.

I didn’t want any of my classmates to get shouted at but I have to admit that it felt good to not be targeted and singled out like what had happened with previous teachers.
In the first few weeks, Casey almost gave himself a heart attack.

If you were talking too much he would pull you aside from your classmates and scream at you for a good five minutes. There was way out of order and the more he screamed the angrier he got.
You would go back to your desk and sit down and you would then be quiet for a little while before someone spoke to you again.

Casey’s downfall was that he was terrible at maths.
There were thirty children in the class so even if you scream at everyone by the time you have got to the last person then the first few people who you shouted at would be talking again and the cycle continued.

To be fair to Casey he only really shouted at the boys as girls a lot better behaved so he realised he had to change tactics and fast.
He was one of those people who thought if you shout the loudest then that’s how you get respect.

I don’t have any issues with the fact he was not right for the job my only problem is who the fuck did he think he was to come in and spend all day screaming at children.
He started to send us to the office then for talking and then Mr. Owen would deliver his brand of justice.

If you were sent to the office you would likely get slapped on the back of your legs hard or occasions slapped across the face.
I don’t believe Casey would have sent us to the office if he knew what was happening.

He was out of his depth in the classroom but he was not a violent man and that was his saving grace.
This was around the time that Chris Farmakis, Simon Ng, Andy Edgar, and a couple of others were sent to the office for calling Stuart Williams names.

Now Stu and I are mates but at school, it would be best to say Stuart was years ahead of his time.
In hindsight, Stu had some serious balls but it was years later until I saw that.

Stu used to skip and dance across the playground and on occasion kiss boys on the lips.
They obviously went mental when this happened and there was always a barrage of name-calling along the lines of men who like to have sex with other men.

In modern times this would not have got even a third of the attention as it did back then.
OK, there were still gay people but people’s attitudes were a world apart back then.
People were not nearly as accepting of this and as a result, some pretty horrible things were said to Stuart.

I remember we were all being shouted at by Casey and a group the group was told to go to Mr. Owen’s office.
My name was originally called but then by the grace of God was told to sit down.
Stuart had rightly reported the lads for things that they said.

In the modern-day, it would be more of a scandal but back then we were not educated on subjects like this.
There were no openly gay people on TV nor were there any gay story-lines in soap operas so young lads will make their own minds up and the end result is usually very negative.

The lads all went to the office like they were going to death row and I remember thinking to myself this isn’t going to be good.
I found out later from Chris Farmakis what happened and Owen was going mental.

He was shouting at the lads determined to identify the ringleader when it was boys just calling names.
Owen kept asking what names did you call Stuart?
Nobody would answer as to when you open that door you have then sworn at a teacher and Owen would go nuts.

Owen was determined

What were you calling him?

The room was silent

This is your last chance what did you say.

Chris Farmakis looking at his feet mumbled kisser boy

Why do you call him kisser boy?

He kisses boys, sir

How dare you don’t lie to me boy

I’m not lying, Sir

Owen snarled and turned to Stuart in disbelief

Ok, then Stuart have you kissed these boys?

Yes sir

What really?

Yes Sir

Do your mother and father know about this?

Yes sir

Owen had no idea what to do this wasn’t in the teacher’s manual and he was lost for words so he dismissed Stuart and did what he knew best and went ballistic on all the kids.

He was screaming at all the kids and all the kids are panicking and then he starts moving towards Simon Ng
Simon backed away and his leg ended up against the hot air radiator.

Ahhhhhhhh ahhhhhh ahhhhhhhh then Owen stopped in his tracks when he saw what had happened.
This took the wind out of his sails and he warned everyone that if they came back to the office they would be in big trouble.

After that nobody said hurtful stuff to Stuart. As shitty as it was I believe it was ignorance on all of our parts why we said that to him.
I’ve been in regular contact with Stuart since we left school on social media.

The last time I saw him was in 2014 when I was walking out of college and he was walking in.
I ended up chatting with him for about 20 minutes and he looked great.
He had been cabin crew for years and now wanted a more stable job.

He applied to the college to be a maths teacher and he still works there to this day.
He lives with his fella and once in a while, we speak. I’m glad he’s doing well as Stuart is one of life’s good guys and would do anything for you.

Casey was losing his grip on the class so he started to take our break times off us.
He was at times close to bursting a blood vessel. His face would get redder and redder and I honestly thought at times I would get the beating of my life.

Many people said the same but luckily it never came. When break time came he would give us tests but in ridiculous times that even the clever kids could not keep up with.
It would always be crazy maths like 20×15 or 34×9 and three seconds later it would be another question.

This was extremely stressful for me as I was struggling with basic maths and English and when he ran out of maths stuff he would give us dictation at breakneck speed.

He started to sow the seeds of his own downfall as we figured out after a few weeks of this he would never mark them as he knew they would all be wrong and as a result, he would have to shout at us all even more and he didn’t have the energy he was completely burnt out.

There is an old saying that you should never deprive anyone of hope it may be all they have.
I know this wasn’t life or death but even as kids we saw we couldn’t do right for doing wrong so people stopped caring.

Casey was having a huge crisis of confidence because whatever he was doing wasn’t working at in his mind we were all out to get him.
The reality was were just kids and we were not particularly bad kids either.

Not many people can look at themselves and say maybe I’m the problem so he started shouting again and visits to Mr. Owen were coming more thick and fast.

Casey sent me to Owens office one day and Owen was furious and I’ve mentioned in earlier blogs he couldn’t stand me for a multitude of reasons.
I get to the office and it was the usual screaming in my face with his horrendous coffee and cigarette breath.

Today was different though I wasn’t arsed.
If I want back to Casey I would just get shouted at some more and when you know a slap is coming (Mr. Owen not Mr. Casey) and who it’s coming from you get conditioned to it.

We got to have our dinner at lunchtime but while the other kids would have the two other break times we would be sat in class being told we were the worst children ever.

I’ve also mentioned the past few years of my life and their instability and today I had had enough. I was just looking at Owen with eyes of hatred.
He kept shouting louder and my eyes kept burning a hole into him.

He went to push me and I moved and he nearly tripped over and then his face changed I knew I had fucked up.
He somehow managed to get behind me and he had twisted my arm behind my back and the pain was unbearable.

He was screaming louder and louder at me and I was sure my arm was going to break.
He was loving this and all I could think is when I get out of this arm-lock I don’t know how I will do it but I’m going to fuck you up.

My arm was right up my back and I couldn’t help it I screamed fuck off fuck off.
He screamed back don’t swear at me boy and then Miss Walsh came in and Owen let me go.

She had only heard the shouting and she said whats going on here.
I was in so much pain but there was no way I was going to show Owen even though he knew I was putting a brave face on it.

I smiled at him when Miss Walsh walked in and he screamed get out of my sight and I got out of the office quickly.
On the way back to class when I knew I was out of sight or earshot of Owen, I began to cry as my arm felt like it would come off and I felt physically sick.

I ducked into the boy’s toilets and got myself together as I didn’t want to walk back into class and give Casey the satisfaction of seeing me in tears.
I would never let another teacher have me in tears after what happened with Francesca.

I was washing my face in the mirror with all this hatred inside me for the cards I had been dealt.
I know some people have it a lot worse than me but at ten years old I had no idea how to fix this and around me, the answer always seemed to be violence.

I vowed I would get Owen back in the future and a couple of years later we had words again which ended considerably differently for him
I will talk about this in later blogs as it happened just before my second year of high school.

When people have no idea how to deal with their issues and they feel like they are helpless this anger just burns a hole inside of them.
If left unchecked it can consume you and it almost did me.

For many years I had all of this hatred inside of me and it came in useful as a teenager as I always wanted to fight.
This is the worst possible way to deal with problems even though they can’t be avoided at times.

For me, it was always my go-to because I didn’t know any different and pieces of shit like Francesca, Owen, and the deputy head Phil.
I would never let anyone put their hands on me again.

I didn’t have a clue what I was doing at first but sheer hatred will get you a long way when you’re determined enough and you feel you have no other options.
I had been conditioned by the school system to feel worthless because of my dyslexia.

No matter what I did it seemed to be wrong so I decided to do my own thing and fuck what other people thought of me.
I was always popular with my classmates but not usually with people of authority which I will go into more detail about in later blogs.

I walked back to class and Casey was busy shouting at the class for some bullshit and took my seat.
Today was special as this was the day Casey started to lose power.
There were builders in the school and this same couple of guys kept walking past our open window.

Then one of them was on his way home and he put stuck his head through the open window and shouted the lyrics from the Pink Floyd song called another brick in the wall.

HEY TEACHER LEAVE THEM KIDS ALONE

Then he ran off out of the gates. All of the class burst into floods of laughter and Casey went ballistic.
The more he shouted the more we laughed. Morale had been in the toilet for so long this was completely unexpected and caught us all off guard.

I’ve included the lyrics from the song below for those if your not familiar with it and also the song itself which you should listen to as it’s a timeless classic.

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teacher, leave them kids alone
Hey! Teacher! Leave them, kids, alone

All in all, it’s just another brick in the wall
All in all, you’re just another brick in the wall

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teachers, leave them kids alone
Hey! Teacher! Leave us kids alone!

All in all, you’re just another brick in the wall
All in all, you’re just another brick in the wall

The more Casey got mad the funnier it got and he had truly fucked himself over.
What could he do to keep us in for more breaks we hadn’t had a break for about two months and it was at the point where nobody cared anymore.

This reminded me of another very fitting song by Phil Collins from the time called I don’t care anymore.
I’ve included the lyrics as they are powerful especially in that time of my life as well as the song below.

Well, you can tell everyone I’m a down disgrace
Drag my name all over the place
I don’t care anymore
You can tell everybody about the state I’m in
You won’t catch me cryin’ ’cause I just can’t win
I don’t care anymore
I don’t care anymore, Jesus
I don’t care what you say
I don’t play the same games, you play
‘Cause I’ve been talking to the people that you call your friends
And it seems to me there’s a means to an end
They don’t care anymore
And as for me, I can sit here and bide my time
I got nothing to lose if I speak my mind
I don’t care anymore
I don’t care no more
I don’t care what you say
We never played by the same rules anyway
I won’t be there anymore
Get out of my way, let me by
I got better things to do with my time
I don’t care anymore
I don’t care anymore
I don’t care anymore
I don’t care anymore
Well, I don’t care now what you say
‘Cause every day, I’m feelin’ fine with myself
And I don’t care now what you say
‘Ey, I’ll do all right by myself
‘Cause I know
‘Cause I remember all the times I tried so hard
And you laughed in my face ’cause you held the cards
Don’t care anymore
And I really ain’t bothered what you think o’ me
‘Cause all I want out of you is just a let me be
I don’t care anymore
Ya hear? I don’t care no more
I don’t care what you say
I never did believe you much anyway
I won’t be there no more
So get out of my way, let me by
I got better things to do with my time
I don’t care anymore
You hear? I don’t care anymore
I don’t care no more
You listenin’? I don’t care no more!
No more!
Ohhh, yeah-yeah
Ohhh, yeah-yeah
Ohhh, yeah-yeah
You know, I don’t care anymore!
Don’t care no more!
No more, no more, no more
Don’t care
No more, no more, no more
No more, no more
No more, no more
No more, no more
No more, no more
No more, no, no more

After a while, Casey stormed out and went to fetch Mr. Owen and Owen came down to the class to shut us up.
We had calmed down considerably by the time he got there and he came into the class and went mental.

This was a typical day so we sat and listened and in hindsight, Casey lost his name that day and he knew it.
He had to figure out some new tactics and fast otherwise he would end up having a breakdown.

Published by aab01uk

A traveler trying to find his place in the world. Trying my hand at most things and making a new life for myself outside of the UK while enjoying the journey along the way. A very diverse path but always entertaining as the saying goes the truth is stranger than fiction. I've experienced some serious highs and lows and even hit rock bottom multiple times. This is my long diverse journey which will make you laugh and hopefully teach you some life lessons along the way.

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