February 5th, 2017
Problems arise when a girl’s upbringing is at odds with her classmates
By Richard Marks
Ruth Barnes was 18 years old and in the Upper Sixth of Greenbank Girls’ Grammar School. She was shortly to take A Levels in History, Geography and English Literature.
Her father was the pastor of the local Evangelical Church and had strict standards of dress and conduct for his wife and daughter to accord with his interpretation of the teaching of his Church. They had to wear their hair long, could not wear make-up, drink alcohol, watch television and had to dress modestly with below knee skirts and tops with high necklines.
February 2nd, 2017
An unusual scenario for us, but still a lesson in discipline.
By Hilary Wilmington
“I’m to see Mr Edwards,” Marigold told the secretary.
“Oh yes.” The secretary glanced down at a pad on her desk. “Well, you’re right on time,” she said. “Just go straight in.”
Marigold ignored this instruction and walked towards the desk. What was this girl’s name? Sally. That was it. Pretty. And young. As Marigold approached, Sally’s hand went out and casually covered the book she’d been reading. But she was too late because Marigold had already seen it: Teach Yourself Accountancy.
Now Marigold remembered. Until recently, Sally had been working in the club downstairs and servicing clients elsewhere, like the rest of the girls. Then Edwards had made her his ‘secretary’. No-one took the title seriously but, lo and behold! Within a few weeks she could type eighty words a minute and could take dictation in shorthand. Typing and shorthand were all very well, Marigold thought, but with accountancy she was surely getting above herself.
February 2nd, 2017
A period piece depicting attitudes of the Victorian Era
By Jane Fairweather
It all began quietly enough over breakfast.
Papa suddenly remarked (between ingesting a rather large piece of bacon): “Has anybody except me noticed this horrific style for young women? There was a piece about it in the Times yesterday.”
“Papa, you know I don’t read the Times!” Georgina, the daughter of the household, replied just a touch ironically.
“Well you should!” Her father snapped. “Then you would have something to talk about with young men at Assemblies and Balls. There has not been the slightest sign of you becoming engaged and the costs are getting very tedious. And I am weary of seeing you reading old books about King Arthur and Greek heroes! If you are going to read such things, I wish you’d choose a solid modern poet like Tennyson. There might be at any rate one young man who might prick up his ears if you started to talk about Tennyson, not that there will be that many of them. It’s not that I want you to marry a huntin’ and fishin’ type, you know, but you need to find someone, my girl, for the sake of your own future and I wish you’d get on with it. And quite frankly the boys won’t have read the old books and you will bore them stiff!”
February 1st, 2017
A game at a party has painful consequences
By Gillian Howard
My name is Joyce Carr and I have just finished my GCE ‘A’ Level exams at our local mixed Grammar school. I have a very close group of 6 friends and a group of 12 others, mainly boys, who always hang around together.
Our school has always used corporal punishment and girls can be caned by the Headmistress over their knickers or the boys by the Deputy Headmaster over their underpants. Jennifer is the only girl in our group to have been caned and, while she said it stung at the time, she was only left with faint stripes on her bottom. After school and at gym the following day you could not see any marks. On the other hand, the boys said that Mr Rowlands really laid it on and the marks could still be seen after a week or more.
February 1st, 2017
The school dance doesn’t end well
By Gillian Howard
In 1961, Raymond, my twin brother, and myself, Christine Arnold, both passed our 11+ and became the first members of our family to attend Grammar School. Our parents were so proud of us and came to the Open Evening where we were told that we had to use a certain outfitters in the town centre and that full uniform was compulsory at all times. Any deviation would be punished. We were also told that if we were selected for any of the school sports teams then the school would provide all the sports tops in the first 5 years. The school was very proud of its reputation in sports, academically and in the local Town. There were also after school clubs for various things such as Chess, Stargazing and, in the 6th form, there was also a debating society.
January 25th, 2017
Two girls from a neighbouring school make a night time visit to Queen Anne’s and discover a discipline regime very different to their own.
By Tara Patterson
The two St Marys pupils climbed over the five bar fence into the grounds of Queen Anne school, Ambleside. Below them, beyond the hockey pitches, the school, its lights twinkling in the water and, to the left, the ugly brick boxes of the two twin boarding-houses was a dark October night. A strong breeze blew large threatening clouds quickly across the sky.
“It’s over there,” said Zoe Kennedy, pointing her small torch in the direction of a small stone boathouse on the edge of the lake far below them at the bottom of the playing field in the shadow of one of the boarding houses.
January 23rd, 2017
A girl is slippered, but it doesn’t end there.
By Julie Baker
My name is Jennifer Todd and I was born in London in October 1965. My parents were both lawyers and money was never in short supply, particularly given that I was an only child. My early schooling was unremarkable, but at 13 I was sent away to my father’s old boarding school which was in the Midlands and had recently gone co-educational. I was in the second batch of girls to be admitted and we were firmly in the minority. I made friends easily, applied myself well to my studies and was good at most sports, so the environment suited me very well. I got good O level results and opted to do English, French and Geography for A levels. I did make a conscious effort not to get too involved with any of my fellow male pupils.
January 22nd, 2017
A story of Bible Belt family justice
By Stinger Sam
“Genesis 3:6 says, ‘When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it,’” said Reverend Carter, standing on the church stage by the pulpit. “We all know and are constantly told that it was Eve who gave into temptation. But how many of us realize that Adam failed at his responsibilities as head of the household?”
“Amen.” Yelled a male attendee in the third row.
January 18th, 2017
Dealing with three pupils caught out of bounds leads to an unusual request
By Richard Marks
Southview was a mixed comprehensive school with a good academic record situated in an upmarket part of Midchester. The school adjoined a common which was used for school sports, and a number of footpaths crossed it which provided short cuts to the town centre.
In June 1983, a travelling fun fair took up temporary residence on the common and quickly became a major attraction for the pupils. The staff quickly became concerned at the number of pupils spending their lunch break at the fair and gambling on the fruit machines and penny cascades.