As a Headteacher, I possess a wide enough vocabulary to traverse an opening paragraph review without resorting to the phrase “rollercoaster ride”. However, to describe our opening to the year as anything other than sporadic in nature would be less than accurate.
Suffice to say, when the boys have been good they have been more than a match for most other schools. But when they’ve been bad, they have been terrible.
I look forward to the day I can write one of these in positive terms again, but it’s been two-and-a-half years now and I’m starting to lose a little hope at this stage.
Gunn, A. [A-]
Whilst not without an occasional questionable moment, Gunn has been a rare beacon of consistency, and an established high standard of performance that became most noticeable during his absence.
Long, G. [C+]
Unfortunate to join the class when it was at its weakest and most prone to errors. Long did his best to cover for the absence of Gunn and was moderately successful until things really began to fall apart and exposed his individual shortcomings. Will look much better when the class is more settled.
Stacey, J. [B+]
After Aarons finally graduated to higher education, Stacey has emerged as a very able replacement. Very different in style, he has at times offered more end product than Aarons, without possibly the same level of consistency as yet.
Fisher, K. [B]
The expectation was that Fisher would need a year or two with the juniors before he would be ready to work with the senior boys, but so impressive was he that Herr Wagner has seen fit to give him some classroom time already. The results have been mixed, but with enough positives to suggest a very bright future lies ahead.
Giannoulis, D. [B-]
Symptomatic of the form of the class in general, Giannoulis has had some very bright moments interspersed with some elementary errors that have let both himself and the class down. That struggle for consistency has dogged his time at the school, and he will probably need a good second half of the year if he has any wish to extend his education here.
McCallum, S. [B]
Word of the day remains consistency. This is what has held McCallum back thus far in his time at the school, although to be fair to him, when he finally got his opportunity this year he has produced excellent results. Another who needs this to transfer into a strong second half of the year, but the last few weeks have been his most impressive to date.
Gibson, B. [C]
Has received plenty of criticism for the work he has produced this term, much of which has been unjustified. Whilst far from faultless, he has been possibly the most consistent of the boys at the back of the classroom and has been judged more on mistakes of the past in my opinion. He may find that his opportunities have become limited by the emergence of McLean as a viable alternative to his own skill set.
Duffy, S. [C-]
Took heavy criticism for some mistakes (and there were some whoppers) but has looked so much better in recent weeks when alongside a partner who relieves the need for him to be more technically adept. Throws himself into lessons wholeheartedly and is better than he has been given credit for overall.
Baath, D. [C]
A last-minute addition to class in the wake of Omobamidele’s sudden transfer to another school, Baath must wonder why he bothered, or if he was ever anything more than an afterthought. A very experienced boy with plenty to offer, he would have been better served at any number of other schools that could use his talents. As it is he remains mostly unoccupied in class with Herr Wagner calling on virtually any other boy ahead of him, even when his experience would have been most useful. His route back would seem even trickier now with the recovery of Hanley, who does the same work every lesson as Baath would, only much quicker. Curious addition to class, and clearly not someone that Herr Wagner planned for or wanted.
Warner, J. [C+]
A bright, very quick youngster, who is technically comfortable in a way the more senior boys are not. However, as promising as he is, there is a naivety to his work at times that can be exposed by harder tests. There are certainly some good attributes to work with in future though.
McLean, K. [A-]
A revelation in recent weeks. Now he has been sat at the back of the class, he has been able to help out his less-gifted classmates and answer the tricky questions they are not able to. Will always be a pupil that some love and others remain unimpressed with, but he’s shown a growth in his education and understanding that does him proud.
Nunez, M. [B+]
Has quietly developed into a key member of the class. Showing some of the consistency that had been missing thus far and has clearly found a way to utilise his strengths in Herr Wagner’s lessons. Slow start to the term but it appears to have finally clicked for this young man.
Gibbs, L. [C]
Energetic and hard-working, Gibbs just lacks a little composure to take his work to the next level. A popular lad, he has all the raw attributes to get top marks in any exam, and now he just needs to add a little inspiration to his perspiration and concentrate on doing the simple things well every time.
Sara, G. [A]
Statistically, he is in a class of his own, not only at this school but across the country. His creativity and work with others are second to none. Does have days where he makes simple unenforced errors or goes quiet, which is why this isn’t an A+ but Sara has undoubtedly been a rare success this term.
Forshaw, A. [D+]
Much was expected when Herr Wagner was lauding his early signs of promise before his first day in class, but has shown nothing to suggest this was warranted. Ineffective, disorganised, and technically lacking, he has been a major disappointment.
Placheta, P. [C+]
When he has started lessons at the back of the class he has been too easily distracted and his test scores have been through the floor. However, when he is closer to the front his lightning-quick answers have impressed, and he has been able to add some quality to class discussions. Still lots to work on but has been his best term yet.
Springett, T. [C-]
I am still not sure what Springett does well (if anything), or what he adds to class when he attends. He is just there. And that is a problem as if you are not really adding to the group, you are effectively taking away an opportunity for a student who could. All to prove.
Hernandez, O. [C+]
We all know how lively and exciting Hernandez can be in class, but his test scores tend to come up short every time. He is also currently committing the cardinal sin of being called upon in class by Herr Wagner to answer every question ahead of other boys, and constantly getting them wrong, which is annoying everyone. Time to put up or shut up methinks.
Fassnacht, C. [D+]
So much was expected given Fassnacht’s impressive historical record, so it has been something of a surprise that this mature student has failed to find his feet with any level of success. An occasional classy piece of work is overshadowed by a general inability to get up to speed with the class or add much to the general performance levels. Must do better.
Sainz, B. [A-]
It took a long time for Sainz to be allowed to join the class but since he has, we have all been taken on that midnight train to Borja. Wonderfully creative, he blotted his copybook with an unnecessary detention that let his classmates down badly. We look forward to more from him over the remainder of the term.
Rowe, J. [A+]
No more could have been expected from this young man, who truly made his breakthrough this year. Excellent results, time and again, are attracting envious glances from schools around the country. Creative, hard-working, strong, and determined, he has been a revelation.
Barnes, A. [C+]
Barnes arrived with a reputation as a determined and professional boy who could lead by example and ruffle feathers amongst members of opposing schools. And whilst we have looked better when he has been in class, I am really not sure how much of this has been down to Barnes’s own efforts. Whilst he has moaned and cajoled examiners to try and influence test results, he has yet to put together anything truly impressive himself yet. A work in progress.
Sargent, J. [A]
An all-too-brief flash of his undoubted talents to begin the school year, Sargent was looking incredibly effective until ill health struck him down. His return is eagerly awaited and test scores in general are expected to pick up as a direct result.
Idah, A. [B]
Unlike previous years, opportunities were provided on plenty of occasions this year for Idah to impress. Oddly he received more when he was producing lacklustre test results earlier in the year than more recently, when he has actually been far more effective and impressive. Herr Wagner clearly sees something in Idah, but his choice of when to call on him in class is difficult to follow.
Hwang, U-J. [B-]
Very ordinary results for a long time, and then suddenly a switch was flicked, and Hwang became a dynamic force in class, only to succumb to a poorly-timed spell in sick bay. Early signs following recovery remain encouraging though.
Herr Wagner. [C-]
Last year was very poor, so it was important for Herr Wagner to show improvement in the class’s scores as soon as possible. He tried a new teaching method which initially seemed to work, only for the loss of a few boys to sick bay to derail everything, and test scores plummeted more quickly than Joey Barton’s job offers. Our president, Dame Delia’s preference for having a charming Teutonic around meant that Herr Wagner remained to teach the class, and he has steadied the scores, albeit against lesser schools only. How he fares going forward, who knows, but he will get plenty of chances from a school that is willing to hand them out in perpetuity as long as one’s face fits.