This Is Misfortune Not Carelessness – Yet!

I think what Oscar is thinking is "Remember when you had long hair too Colin?!"
I think what Oscar is thinking is “Remember when you had long hair too Colin?!”

It was Oscar Wilde who said (although I’m misquoting slightly!) “To lose one PA may be regarded as a misfortune, to lose another looks like carelessness” And I mention it, not just because Oscar is always good for a quote, but because I’m about to lose Hilary as my PA!

Up till now the Exec Head PA role in our division has included an element of time working on Elective Home Education. Nigel has now reconfigured that work and brought it together with support for pupils who are excluded, or are at risk of exclusion and/or missing education. It means the Home Ed part of the role has been extended and so Hilary will be moving across to pick up this Home Ed role full time. So i need to recruit a temporary replacement for Hilary this week – in fact I’m interviewing tomorrow and Jackie’s PA Nia is helping me out with those. Hopefully I’ll have a new temporary PA confirmed by the end of this week and in place pretty soon thereafter.

In my last authority, the departure of a long standing and highly effective PA left me needing a temp – I then went through 5 in 8 months!!!! I know it won’t happen this time – if it happened a second time I’d get the message – it’s me not misfortune!!

Academy Conversions

These are continuing as previously mentioned. This week there are TUPE consultation meetings for the staff involved at Carew Manor and there are consultation meetings at Camden Juniors for parents and other interested parties with both potential sponsors, Greenshaw High and the Harris Federation. The parents at Camden have set up a Facebook site about the academisation proposals and although they have a clear preference (it’s called Go For Greenshaw!) it nevertheless gives a flavour of some local views about the school’s next stage of development. You can find their parents campaign Facebook site at

Half Term Holiday

I know many of you were on leave for all or part of last week so this will be the first day back for you. I hope you enjoyed the break and at least there’s a bit of sunshine to ease you back into things. For me last week wasn’t leave but my calendar had more spaces in a day than I normally get in a week! So not leave, but a kind of half-leave for me! This week – back to normal!

Response To The Staff Survey

I’ve not forgotten about this! I have taken the feedback you all gave me when we did staff briefings in March and used those ideas, and some of my own (well, maybe not my own, but those that I personally stole from other people and places!!!) and turned these into an Action Plan. It’s currently being reviewed by Nigel, Jackie and Claudette and then we’ll get the final version published here so you can see it.

As part of the Action Plan, I’ll be looking for volunteers to give me on-going feedback about how we are doing in making changes where they are needed and in letting me know what works and what doesn’t! (That will of course be a case of “ideas that work – mine! Ideas that don’t work – someone else’s!”). I’ll send the details for this feedback group (it’ll be a staff sounding board for our division really) in due course but I thought I’d give you an early “heads up”.

As you’d expect, it won’t offer you money, but it will offer you a cup of coffee – if you’re really lucky, you might even get your coffee in a……………….Contact Point Mug!

Locality Team Visits

Some of us have been visiting other LA’s where they already have locality based teams up and running. It’s given us a number of different perspectives and ideas, some of which have been really thought provoking. Ann, Sharman, Annette and I are meeting on Friday morning to look at some of the lessons we’ve learned and plan out a forthcoming workshop with some of our managers and some managers from partner agencies to further explore how locality teams might work in Sutton and what they might look like.

And Finally…….

………..Shame on you QPR fans who chose not to send in a comment to the last blog update, thereby missing the only chance to win a cup that you’re likely to get in the next 10 years!

Related to that, I was wondering, with QPR relegated, who I’ll get to tease next year about their lack of success in the Premier League – and then up pop Crystal Palace through the playoffs!!!! Oh joy! I’d be grateful if all you Palace fans could leave me your names so I can send gloating e-mails etc during next season!!!!!!

And Finally, And Finally………..

……………..I bought my daughter a trampoline on Sunday morning. We dragged it home in the car late Sunday morning. It said on the box – this will take approximately two hours to fit together. Like any kid she wanted it put together then and there! And doting Dad that I am, I obliged, even though it was nearly lunchtime! My daughter finally got to use it around 8:00pm!!!!! There was blood on the grass, my fingers are blistered, my throat is sore from muttering under my breath and I’ve got at least 2 bolts left over!!!!! DIY is clearly not one of my talents!!!!!