Chai And A Chat #179 #ChaiAndAChat

Hello Peeps, another Monday has come, and we have another week’s worth of catching up to get on with.

Have you got your drinks ready? Mine is here!

  • If we were having chai I would tell you that, in a strange way, I was so excited about returning to school because even though the week has its fair share of stresses, we also had a fun day to look forward to, with the kids. I’ll start with the stresses… So I had a big meeting on Tuesday, an EYFS Audit, where two members of the Trust our school is a member of, came in and questioned me on various elements of my department, followed by a tour of the Early Years. One was on time, one turned up late… which meant that they didn’t get to see the amazing things my Teaching Assistants had sorted out for the children to be doing outside because it was almost home time before we got to go down there! Still, I think it went okay. Then, Wednesday, we had what is kindly called a Trust Development Day, but that masks the true reason. It is like a Mocksted. Basically, a practice mini Ofsted examination run, where all the heads of the other schools in the Trust, along with the CEO, come to scrutinise our school. Seeing as both my head and I are in recovery from covid, as well as two other key members of the leadership team, and two office staff, it wasn’t best timed, but something that we just had to do, seeing as it had been postponed, due to COVID several times already. And we had the added fun of the CEO of another Trust, and one of her heads coming too! Blimey, is all I will say, along with the fact that I had to conduct the whole of that morning, with meetings and tours, dressed as a Pirate Captain… see below! And it seems that it went well, too!
  • If we were having chai, I’d mention that staff shortages were also a thing, as one of my co-teachers had to take early maternity leave, so we were short for 2 days. However my other co-teacher stepped up and came in for a couple of extra mornings, to help with the staffing, and we also had a day with the new teacher who will be the maternity cover, as well. Then, on Friday, the second co-teacher fell ill, so we were short again. All I can say is thank goodness for volunteers, work experience students, and a fantastic team. We made it through!
  • If we were having chai I’d have to tell you that Pirate Day was spectacular! The children absolutely loved every moment of celebrating their term’s topic, and really got involved with every moment of the day! We all had a smashing time!
  • If we were having chai I would have to admit defeat to Covid. It was totally exhausting and O found that I was taking my inhaler several times during the day, and by the end of the day, I was shattered. I think I was asleep by 9pm most days…
  • If we were having chai I’d say that despite feeling not my best, the weather was again fantastic last week, and we enjoyed Saturday, with Hubby Dearest getting more things ready in the garden, including new flowers, solar lights and a firepit! The Barbeque was meant to arrive, but it didn’t. Never mind, still time for that to come too!
  • If we were having chai I’d have to mention that Sunday was Mother’s day, and though the clocks went forward, and I was still up at the crack of dawn, I was spoilt rotten! Lil Princess even made me a cake!
  • If we were having chai I would end with a pic of my furbaby Sonu Singh, enjoying the sunshine in the conservatory! He’s one LOOOONG Kitty!
Bitmoji Image

This week I will be half praying that Monday goes by without the dreaded Ofsted call. If we get to lunchtime and nothing, then we can all breathe a sigh of relief until after the Easter break. If we do, then we will be under big stress until the end of Wednesday! I don’t know if I just want them to call, so we can get it over with, or not! Other than that, it is the last week of term, filled with Easter fun. The kids finish on Thursday, and we are having a staff social night on Thursday Evening, in school. A Big Quiz and Fish and Chips! We are back in on Friday for an INSET day, then it is the holidays for two weeks! Roll on this week!

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46 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: The Connecting Power of Coffee Shares – Marsha Ingrao – Always Write
  2. Jennie
    Apr 01, 2022 @ 02:07:08

    So, Ofsted has not officially made their (dreaded) visit? Or did I miss that? I know this is the biggie that has been looming for some time. Your pirate costume is wonderful, and I’m so glad the event was a huge success. Best to you, Ritu. 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  3. Marsha
    Apr 01, 2022 @ 00:04:10

    Ritu, how do you do it all? It sounds like all your visits went well. The good news is that all the people who visit are people too, and know how hard it is to have visitors. I used to be in a position where a small part of our jobs were to visit school sites to inspect for different state mandates. For a while we had to inspect for mice droppings under the sink and other signs of infestations. The teachers loved those inspections because the school districts always had to have things fixed. So good things came out of them. Most of the time we visited classrooms. Teachers were not so crazy about those visits. Eventually we started taking teachers from the school with us on these visits so they could watch other teachers in their school teach for a few minutes. It was eye-opening to them – both in a good and bad way. But it was stressful, so my hat is off to you. I love your pirate costume. How elaborate. I’m sure the kids adore you because you make such a big effort. This is a great post and a wonderful challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Apr 01, 2022 @ 06:02:23

      Marsha, I don’t envy the inspectors we have over here, because all schools resent them.
      It’s all about judging a school, and the stress we are put under, in order to show how well we teach, and run a school is immense.
      We have separate health and safety visits, too, but they aren’t thus stressful.
      When Ofsted come, it is an intense 2 day visit filled with class drop ins, and ‘deep dives’ (new buzz word) with heads and subject leaders, grilling them, as well as questioning other staff, parents and teachers!
      But, thank you 🥰

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

      • Marsha
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 06:49:58

        I’m sure our jobs were not appreciated. I can hear my teacher friend’s voices in my head when it happened to me as a teacher. We tried made as many friends and as few enemies as we could. We had other aspects of our job that helped us make friends across the county, and we all worked really hard at being kind and understanding. I don’t envy your visits. They sound super stressful. I don’t remember ever having to question other staff and parents. It sounds like they then give you a certification of some sort. You mentioned an Ofsted Certification of Good regarding your daughter’s school. I would love to be a fly on the wall and watch you teach. I’m sure you are fabulous. One of the things I enjoyed was being an encourager. Many of the teachers I worked with became leaders in their schools and eventually the county office. I felt I had a part in bringing in a lot of young and capable educational leaders before I retired.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 07:03:16

        Yes, it is an inspection to see quality of teaching and learning, leadership, how we offer SEN children education and opportunities, in order to be graded, Outstanding, Good, Requires Improvement, or Special Measures.
        Schools are rated. Parents can look at reports when choosing schools, etc.
        We are Good with Outstanding features, right now, and want to stay there!
        But it’s a weight hanging over our heads, as we know we are in that window of being due, but you only get a call the day before to inform when they are coming!
        I truly love what I do with my children, and I have a fabulous team. 🥰

        Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 07:05:48

        I’m sure you do. You have such a great attitude. I just can’t believe you have time to do all that you do. You must be very organized to be able to write and lead a team of teachers, be a mom and wife, blog and be active on social media. It’s impressive.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 07:08:07

        It’s tough, but I feel lucky to be able to do it all because I love each of those aspects of my life, so I’ll give them my all, but I’ve also learned when to step back and recharge, now too.
        Wisdom comes with age, doesn’t it? I used to burn the candle at both ends but that got me nowhere! Xx

        Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 07:12:07

        I tend to do that, too, and end up burned out. Even in retirement, I’m awake and sometimes productive especially in the middle of the night, and wimp out during the day. Luckily no one is depending on me to have to get something done. That was a long answer to I’m not wise yet but I am aging. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Apr 01, 2022 @ 07:15:39

        He he!!
        I think, even when I hit retirement I’ll always be rushing around!
        Take care, Marsha! Off to school for my last day before Easter break, now 💜

        Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha
        Apr 02, 2022 @ 04:58:52

        Have fun and enjoy your break!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Apr 02, 2022 @ 05:30:17

        Thank you!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Marsha
        Apr 02, 2022 @ 10:55:00

        🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Carol anne
    Mar 29, 2022 @ 13:03:18

    What a busy week Ritu! So glad you got spoiled for mothers day! Sorry covid is still doing a number on you. I hope your week is off to a great start! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  5. Erika
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 19:48:21

    Wow, what a week that was for you, Sis! I can totally feel how much you enjoyed Pirate day!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  6. willowdot21
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 16:47:36

    Love the photos sis you look amazing! Was the cake as good as it looks? ….love the T-Shirt and the pirates outfit.
    Fingers crossed today was good for you 💜💜💜💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  7. beth
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 13:14:56

    amazing week once again, ritu!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  8. Keith
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 13:13:28

    Ritu, love the t- shirt and costumes. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  9. Sadje
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 13:05:59

    Fabulous costumes!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  10. Annette Rochelle Aben
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 10:53:13

    You are dynamic! Go get ’em, girl!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  11. ranonymuse
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 10:07:56

    If we were having chai, we would be having Parle-G too 😉
    PS – The Pirate dress looks badass!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  12. Steve Tanham
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 09:38:19

    That pirate captain… so glamorous despite the mocksted all around you. Beat photo I’ve seen this month, Ritu. So if you get bored with teaching…

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  13. CJ
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 09:37:28

    That cake is amazing, well done Lil Princess. Well done on powering through the week, I can well imagine how exhausted you were. It must be stressful having the threat of Ofsted hanging over you. I hope they don’t wait too long, it might be good to get it over and done with. Your pirate costume is absolutely brilliant. I wouldn’t mind dressing as a pirate for a day. I hope you have a good week with no staff absences! CJ xx

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  14. Books & Bonsai
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 08:08:31

    Sounds like you are ready for an easter break!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  15. OIKOS™- Art, Books & more
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 07:30:20

    Love the T-shirt too, Sis! Now, only one week to go, and with a bit more good weather you will be able to use the garden the first time this year. These coming holidays are eagerly awaited. Have a nice week, Sis! May all go well. xx Michael

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  16. OIKOS™- Art, Books & more
    Mar 28, 2022 @ 07:25:02

    Reply

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