Thursday, 17 July 2014
Letter from America
When it started cropping up all over my Twitter timeline I assumed the dreadful Barrowford Primary School letter to be an obvious touchy-feely spoof and I may have upset a number of re-Tweeters by “Bahaha-ing” rather prominently in response. But, bugger me if they weren’t falling for the saccharin-sweet antidote to harsh reality like ‘special’ kids at a petting zoo puppy-stroking session. Come on guys, this is not how we do things over here in the cradle of industrialised civilisation. Besides, it was obvious from the ‘really neat place’ phrasing that it wasn’t written by anybody familiar with ‘English’ English, although I can fully understand how a British-educated, state school head teacher might not have noticed.
Anyway, as viral as it was - some people just have no bullshit filter – the schmaltzy, twee transmission turns out to have been copied and pasted from an American blog and has been plagiarised extensively across the pond by many school-ma’am fans of the Disney studios, “It’s a wonderful” version of life. But, I have done my research and I’ve discovered that despite the teen-fiction naïveté and vomit-inducing flavour of the piece this wasn’t, as it appears, a cludgy first draft but the outcome of a lengthy piece of politically correct editing.
I hereby present to you the rather differently-hued first draft, recovered by the CIA from a waste basket in Wisconsin just a few hours after yet another playground massacre.
"Dear motherfucking assholes, here are your appalling SATs results; I hope you’re fucking happy. Despite the superhuman commitment and frankly mind-boggling number of hours we saps on the teaching staff put in on your behalf, it turns out that you have the loyalty, application and intelligence of June bugs and are unlikely to survive to sit another term, let alone to ever graduate High School.
Just as well because, as a direct result of your piss-crap-poor performance, you have managed to ensure this piece-of-shit hellhole we laughingly call a school will be closed down at the end of this term. The people who created these tests and scored them do not know each of you the way your soon-to-be-out-of-a-job teachers do, the way I do and certainly not the way your disappointed families do.
These tests do not always assess all of what it is that make each of you ‘special’ and ‘unique’. They do not know that many of you can barely speak intelligible English. They do not know that you can’t play a musical instrument for shit or that the only picture you are ever likely to paint will be rendered in your own excrement in a jail cell dirty protest.
They do not know that you and your friends can be counted onto become poster people for family planning or that your raucous and inopportune laughter could drive a Samaritan to slash his own wrists, or that three of your previous teachers can now only make it through the day under heavy sedation.
They do not know that you scrawl obscene graffiti on every surface or that you can barely write your own name, let alone compose poetry, or that sometimes you beat the crap out of your little brother or sister after school. They do not know that the only 'really neat place' you are ever likely to occupy is the holding cell preceding your turn in the electric chair.
No matter how great the stories you tell yourselves, nobody in their right minds would trust you as far as they could throw you. You are thoughtless, greedy, selfish and demanding and no matter how hard we tried your personal development has only ever progressed in one direction – delinquency... the scores you get will tell you something, but as pitiful as they are likely to be, they will only paint half the picture.
So, as I say, I hope you’re fucking happy. Enjoy your results you selfish bastards… in the short time you have left..."
The original was reportedly signed in the blood of the head teacher who administered the coup de grace to himself after dispatching a good proportion of the offending year and setting fire to the gymnasium block.