When I was a kid, school wasn’t brilliant, yet my recollections are nothing like my current experiences. At drop off and pick up, school just seems to be stuffed with milling parents, conducting their social lives. When I was a kid there were no parents in the school at all. Perhaps now it is the architecture of the buildings that causes this.
My infant and primary schools had decent sized playgrounds between the school building and the road. The roads were always busy, but kids were dropped off and had the security of a big playground surrounded by high chainlink fence, were talking 40+ years ago here. Even at infant school this was for 5&6 year olds I can remember walking down the school drive by myself and into the playground. There were no milling mums gassing about shit, no queen bees buzzing around being up their own arses. No the playground seems to be filled with, an insane cross section of people all milling about. All trying to get through exceptionally narrow gates.
Just as the parents drift about the playgrounds and the buildings so do the children. When I was a kid, there were absolutely no parents in the playground and when the teacher blew the whistle we all lined up. Of course there was some squabbling, but we lined up and then trooped into the classes to our desks. Now it appears to be a free for all with the class rooms opening onto to playground with children drifting into class when ever.
Another thing that gets me is how scruffy and disorganised the classrooms are, there is stuff everywhere, Not put in cupboards, no neatly lined desks facing the focal point of the board and the teachers desk. The teachers desks look like waste paper bin took a big shit on the desk itself, all manner of crap littering the rooms, no one seems to understand neat and tidy, a place for everything and everything in its place.
Does this free form style really work? Schools are supposed to be one of those formulaic things that helps to define how the next generation behaves, the orderly behaviour in schools when I was a kid defined how we behaved outside, all you have to do is get on a bus near a school at 3:30 so see how things have devolved in such a way that William Goulding (author of lord of the flies) would think that his dystopian bit of playground shit (I think the book is dreadful) is actually showing orderly behaviour instead of how fucked up the little bastards become when left to their own devices.
I hated school as a child and now I hate it as a parent.