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Building Back Better, the BoJo Academy Mark Two


REGULAR readers will be familiar with the catastrophic blaze which  engulfed the BoJo Academy and the subsequent building of a department store on the site. The educational establishment was shocked that such a venerable seat of learning could be lost for ever.

Fear not, the BoJo Academy has risen phoenix-like from the ashes.

Mirabilis miraculum’. Those were the words the Headmaster chose to describe the opening of the newly constructed academy. Housed no longer in forbidding Victorian buildings but in modern carbon-neutral premises, this new seat of learning will rightly take its place in the pantheon of academia.

Visitors to the Headmaster’s state-of-the-art study cannot fail to be awed by the contemporary decoration, courtesy of interior designers Cameron & May. Of note is the red neon italicised ‘Chillaxing’ sign suspended from the ceiling. That, and the striking leopard-print wallpaper, make a powerful statement about the school’s intent.

Whilst many commentators questioned the viability of funding for staff and buildings, naysayers have been proven spectacularly wrong by the Headmaster’s unwavering determination to secure enough money to see the project through.

A crowdfunding site, substantial donations from past pupils and surprisingly large sums received from overseas territories keen to promote educational excellence saw the mission through. Special thanks must go to South Sudan, Turkmenistan, Venezuela and Equatorial Guinea.

As School opened its doors at the start of Monkeypox Term there was a sense of trepidation regarding the recruitment of staff. Pupils were thrilled to see that the Headmaster has secured the services of familiar senior and junior teachers. Old hands such as Ms Truss and Mr Javid have quickly settled into their established routines, whilst junior teachers such as Ms Patel – who helps in domestic science – were warmly welcomed back.

The latter, who many will remember for her outstanding ‘blue-sky thinking’, has, in typical style, already presented the Headmaster with a fascinating proposal for an exchange programme with the Rwandan Correction School based in Kigali. This plan piqued interest from several sources and will be discussed at the next Governors’ meeting.

Underscoring her determination to make her mark and impress colleagues, Ms Patel cooked a selection of Rwandan rock cakes which she laid out in the staff common room. Unfortunately, owing to a mix up between Fahrenheit and centigrade with the new kitchen ovens, the delicacies were roundly described as ‘half baked’ – what a pity, but keep up the good work, Ms Patel!

Mr Gove, who pupils fondly refer to as Oddball, has agreed to rejoin the staff in the role of ‘roving master’ – not, please note raving, as some have incorrectly suggested. In his first intervention he oversaw the levelling-up of the rugby pitch, which had a distinct slope to the southern end – fair play!

Matron unfortunately could not be tempted away from her villa in the Algarve but has kindly consented to undertake Zoom or telephone consultations three days a week, Mon, Wed and Fri, between 10am and 1pm. Anyone feeling unwell and wishing to avail themselves of this helpful facility should, in the first instance, telephone Matron’s trusty housekeeper Senhora Furlough, who after a brief interrogation will allocate a suitable time to discuss your complaint.

Many have asked after Head Groundsman Mr Parish, who tended the old school’s grounds with particular care. Popular with staff and pupils alike, his legendary collection of tractor and farm machinery publications was well known. Boys killing time between lessons were entranced to delve into the complete set of Combine Harvester Cuties, while for lovers of oversize agricultural equipment Big Uns was a particularly well-thumbed periodical. Sadly, Mr Parish feels unable to return to full-time work. We wish him well.

With the opening of the School, it was time to do away with the fussy old-style names for the four houses to which pupils are allocated. With modernity and inclusivity at the heart of the BoJo Academy we are proud to announce Intersex, Non-dom, Windfall and U-Turn. Pupils will naturally feel pride in wearing the appropriate colours.

The school song has also been replaced. Whilst many thought Joe Dolce’s Shaddap You Face was a true representation of the Headmaster’s and Governors’ point of view, on reflection it was thought to be a trifle lowbrow. After careful consideration we would ask that all staff and pupils familiarise themselves with Johnny Cash’s The Man Comes Around.

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Alexander McKibbin
Alexander McKibbin
Alexander McKibbin is a retired media executive who worked across domestic and international media.

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