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Going back to school is tough on the kids but we all just need to roll with the changes

Amanda Brunker


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Amanda Brunker

Amanda Brunker

Amanda Brunker

School returns to the Brunker house on Friday and I’m excited, but the kids are less so. I’m well prepared. After five-and-a-half months without an alarm, I’ve ordered a megaphone to get the lads out of bed.

I’ll also have buckets of cold water ready in case they ignore the sweet sound of my amplified singing voice.

After a torturous summer of arguments, I expect the shouting to continue as everything is thrown into chaos.

I know the experts tell us structure is good for kids, but nothing suits teenagers.

So I’ve also invested in a new lock for my bedroom door and earplugs to mute the complaints.

The next couple of weeks will be gruelling, and everyone’s going to be cranky.

Although it will be daunting for some, the kids will learn to adapt to the new hygiene practices fairly quickly, probably better than most adults.

Wearing visors instead of masks had been suggested by our school until yesterday. I’m sure it was to make the class clowns more visible.

This week, parents received an updated email stating that face masks provided better protection to staff and pupils, so now I have a drawer full of visors that may never be worn – more clutter.

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Of course, there’s rain forecast for Friday, which will be a great source of motivation for all of us.

However, that won’t make much difference to me as my days of holding my son’s hand up to the classroom have long gone.

The word is that neither parents nor their cars are allowed into the school car park.

Instead, pupils are recommended to either walk or cycle to school, even though it’s beside a hospital and shares a busy narrow road that has no cycle lane.

While I’ll hopefully allow the lads to cycle most of the time, depending on the weather and traffic, at least I won’t have to worry about the morning wardrobe.

There’s no need to update my autumn style, as my school run wardrobe will consist of PJs, a headband and shades, even if it’s cloudy out.

No one will know I’m not dressed to perfection while I’m dropping my sons off at a kerb somewhere near the school.

The one thing I’m sure of is that I won’t be allowing my kids to take any chances when it comes to keeping themselves sanitised.

I already have them carrying several bottles of handwash around with them.

I do worry that all of their homework going forward might need to be done digitally.

That means they’ll probably spend more time on Instagram and YouTube than on their education, but it is what it is.

We all just need to roll with the changes and hope for the best.

It might sound defeatist, but I’m just a Covid-weary mammy.


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