It's the start of the summer holidays - a moment of celebration for pupils and teachers, not so great for parents of younger children or those we leave behind in school, working their civvie socks off (unhindered by mithering colleagues) to prepare for the coming academic year.
Alas, the sense of celebration was lost this year, for several reasons, a significant one being that the local bus company were only able to provide our usual school bus service and thus there was no customary early finish, which resulted in hours of shaving foam fun for some, terror for others and exhausting military-style vigils for the rest. The good-byes for those leaving our number were vague and begrudged and we left the pub early to return to our normal Friday night activities. So all in all, it just doesn't feel like the summer holidays.
More importantly, we have reached the end of an era: you might note the absence of fireworks, damped as they were by professional obligations that served only to mute our protests to a mere fizzle of jaundiced hope in a dark, dark night.
Anyway, now that the dirty deal is done, I can say exactly what I think of academies, although I'm pretty sure that anyone who knows me will have worked it out.
Forgive my ineloquent delivery, but the scheme offered little to begin with and as time has passed, the bribe faded to reveal the jagged, ill-conceived, double-edged sword of cost-cutting and ideology, now slashing away unhindered at our state education system. Fought for, won, defended for decades, lost in the blink of an unseeing eye.
Congratulations to Gove and his idiot public schoolboy chums, whose total ignorance of the reality of life in the UK has steered schools into a future of failing free market, cut-throat competition with those who were once our friends. Watch them, sitting in their billionaire's chairs, smirking, as we slay each other in the scramble for partnerships with local businesses to replace the funding lost through the inevitable set of cuts that will follow the mass conversion to academies.
Your brainwash cycle is complete. Welcome to the cult of privatisation.