Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

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rockfreak
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by rockfreak » Wed Sep 28, 2016 6:43 pm

A different slant now - an otherwise strict master, Arthur Rider, taking an uncharacteristic break. Maybe he'd just got fed up with trying to cram some French into us but for some reason the subject of a Hollywood film came up in the lesson. "Right," said Arthur, "I'll give you ten minutes on this," and he launched into an impassioned polemic on the virtues of high culture over popular (particularly Hollywood films). Half an hour later he was still going strong as we all listened agog. Then he realised that the period was nearing its end and wound up his talk to concentrate on French for the remaining minutes.

Fitzsadou
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Fitzsadou » Sat Oct 01, 2016 9:50 am

There were other types of unsatisfactory teachers apart from those who couldn’t maintain discipline. (I leave out predators of young boys, for hardly surprisingly the moderators don’t like such references.) They included alcoholics and there was one present for many years around my Housey time after the Second World War. Reference has already been made to him elsewhere in the Forum. He clearly coped and was by no means a poor teacher, nor too terrible as senior housemaster, although he was rather remote. There were other housemasters much worse than him. His classroom discipline was fine. This master was Francis Haslehust (“Fred”, or “Fred H”) of Thornton A. His affliction was obvious. By late morning his breath stunk. But no one seemed to mind. Or didn’t the authorities know? I imagine today’s reaction to such a disability would be very different. Were there other alcoholics on the staff?

There was a song sung in December, using the music of “Noel, Noel”. It included the words,

No ale, no beer,
All stout sold out.
Born was Fred H with his tongue hanging out.

Kit Bartlett
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Kit Bartlett » Sat Oct 01, 2016 10:25 am

Cecil Cochrane ( Corks, hence his nickname ) certainly liked his tipple as did Hector Buck. These two together with Kit Aitken had regular drinking sessions, usually in Kit's study latish in the evening, when a general" do not disturb us" arrangement was announced in advance.
I have commented before on a previous thread on the lack of privacy that all Housemasters generally had, Their studies were always open to any boyafter a knock on the door.

sejintenej
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by sejintenej » Sat Oct 01, 2016 6:28 pm

Kit Bartlett wrote:Cecil Cochrane ( Corks, hence his nickname ) certainly liked his tipple as did Hector Buck. These two together with Kit Aitken had regular drinking sessions, usually in Kit's study latish in the evening, when a general" do not disturb us" arrangement was announced in advance.
I have commented before on a previous thread on the lack of privacy that all Housemasters generally had, Their studies were always open to any boyafter a knock on the door.
Kit was far from unknown in the local pubs. After leaving Corks actually claimed that he could drink 24 hours a day starting in Smithfielf Market at about (from memory) 3am; I simply couldn't keep up with him.
It is hard to make a comeback when you haven’t been anywhere.

michael scuffil
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by michael scuffil » Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:23 am

Pullen the Chain said he was a teetotaller. Were there any others?
Th.B. 27 1955-63

Straz
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Straz » Thu Oct 06, 2016 1:13 am

Slightly off thread here, but I do recall Kit Aitken's mantra of 'Rough Copy', 'Fair Copy', uttered many, many times during his Latin lessons.
Oh, and that William James quotation that he loved so much:
'Is life worth living? It all depends on the liver...'
Having delivered it, Kit would always say, 'Joke over! Joke over!"
Great times!
Paul Strange
Leigh Hunt A 1969-71
Peele A 71-75

Alex
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Alex » Thu Oct 06, 2016 5:09 am

I may be a bit thick so could you please explain,

“Kit Aitken's mantra of 'Rough Copy', 'Fair Copy', uttered many, many times during his Latin lessons”.

Also I may have a poor memory, but I don’t think he taught Latin. As a senior boy, for a term I was in a class from Kit nominally on current affairs. Yet in one lesson he read a short story about a WW2 incident involving a Piat anti-tank gun.

sejintenej
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by sejintenej » Thu Oct 06, 2016 7:53 am

Alex wrote:I may be a bit thick so could you please explain,

“Kit Aitken's mantra of 'Rough Copy', 'Fair Copy', uttered many, many times during his Latin lessons”.

Also I may have a poor memory, but I don’t think he taught Latin. As a senior boy, for a term I was in a class from Kit nominally on current affairs. Yet in one lesson he read a short story about a WW2 incident involving a Piat anti-tank gun.
I think I had him for latin during my first year in the upper
It is hard to make a comeback when you haven’t been anywhere.

michael scuffil
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by michael scuffil » Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:49 am

I think Kit taught lower forms in all the subjects taught in the West classroom block. If he taught Grecians option current affairs, it must have been to fill up his timetable. Mostly he taught English and History, but if you were a bright boy, the only time you would have been taught by him was on the LFA English and History ('Saxon and Viking' moving on to 'Norman and Angevin' -- remember those books?) Homework was always learning 16 or so lines of poetry. I remember his enunciation of 'the good abbot of AberbroTHOCK' (who placed the bell on the Inchcape Rock -- a very moral tale).

There is a nice French translation of his joke:

La vie, vaut-elle la peine d'être vécue? Question de foi(e).
Th.B. 27 1955-63

Alex
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Alex » Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:11 am

Thanks for your two answers. That’s a very natty French pun. I have never met it before. But my real problem was the mantra,
'Rough Copy', 'Fair Copy', uttered many, many times during his Latin lessons.
Could someone explain that please?

Kit Bartlett
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Kit Bartlett » Thu Oct 06, 2016 12:44 pm

On the subject of Kit Aitken, twenty years Coleridge A Senior Housemaster 1946-66 there should perhaps be a separate thread.
My late brother Nick Bartlett ,CA 45-53 wrote a tribute to him in The Blue after his death in May 1974.
Kit had a vast store of sayings and aphorisms some of which were handed down to succeeding generations.
Ones that come to mind include, "Never touch a boy in anger or affection", "D .B.L. (Don't be late) " Don't come down too often" relating to visiting Old Blues, "Take, Take, take, Coleridge, well heeled", Never talk to a master with your hand in his pocket". " Coleridge A is a small house but a happy house"
There are many more.
I don't think he had any trouble with class discipline

Straz
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Straz » Fri Oct 07, 2016 12:01 am

Sorry to take us on to a different thread.
Kit Aitken did teach Latin while I was at CH, along with other subjects. Possibly he taught Latin to younger forms.
Re: "Rough copy. Fair copy."
I call it a mantra.
It's what Kit would always utter repeatedly, as we were doing Latin translations during his lessons.
First we would do a rough copy of the translation.
When we were happy with this, he would ask us to smarten it up, with a "Fair Copy" version.
Hope that explains that one...
Re: aphorisms. Kit certainly had many of this. As I said, my favourite was 'Is life worth living? It all depends on the liver", quickly followed by "Joke over, joke over."
Canoeing: I also recall that he was rather keen on doing this... quite tricky, considering he had a false leg.
Paul Strange
Leigh Hunt A 1969-71
Peele A 71-75

Alex
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Alex » Fri Oct 07, 2016 5:15 am

Thanks. I never realised he taught Latin, so it didn't click.

Kit Bartlett
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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by Kit Bartlett » Mon Nov 28, 2016 5:13 pm

Two more aphorisms from Kit Aitken.
Advice to Old Blues when visiting the school, based no doubt on past happenings.
"Never introduce your fiancee or girl friend by her christian name "
"Don't smoke in the Day room" ,
When Old Blues used to offer to contribute to House Funds he would say with a twinkle in his eye "Not until you are earning at least £2,000 a year"
We are talking about the very early nineteen fifties when such an income would have been well in excess of what the average young Old Blue. who had just left school could possibly imagine reaching.j

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Re: Poor disciplinary C.H. staff

Post by gneuss » Mon Nov 28, 2016 8:08 pm

I'm surprised no one has mentioned 'Scratch' the vicar of Itchingfield in this thread. He used to teach me RE and had absolutely no classroom control. One of our favourite tricks was to get a mirror reflecting the sun and lower it down the wall above his head with the aim of getting it to reflect off the top of his bald head without getting in his eyes. We must have been little s*ds to teach!

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