How disgruntled I can still feel when a pupil lets me down. After all these years, you'd think I'd know to expect this, but when my student didn't turn up for the last private lesson of term today I was, to be honest, pissed off. Partly it was because I'd had to curtail my own afternoon to be back here for the right time - and had actually remarked how I could no longer be bothered having to do anything - although I had plenty to do in preparation for the meeting I'm chairing on Saturday. But partly it was because here is a really bright kid who needs what I have to give him - especially the push to put some real work into English - and parents who cared enough to set him up with the lessons and pay for them, and yet neither he nor the parents seem to have realised that he'd messed up.
So tell me, anyone reading this: how much responsibility do you take for your 14 year old child? Do you let him take care of his own arrangements, even if his tendency to absent-mindedness messes up someone else's? Or do you step in to check if you feel he's got it wrong, to liaise with the teacher just in case? When my family were at school, I seemed to be incredibly bound up in the minutiae of band practices, forgotten trumpets, late sessions on the magazine ... but then I was part of all that, and at times we felt we were living in a boarding school.
Rant over. Holiday approaching. But I'll maybe update if I ever find out what happened - maybe there was an earthquake. Just a little one.