. . . and the start of another week at school with a day out today. Last term, as previously mentioned, our local 'special school' ran a half day on Introduction to Autism for the Local Delivery Group SENCOs. It was extremely good and they were encouraged to repeat it for TAs. As a school, we decided that it was a great opportunity to learn first hand about this baffling condition, so have booked a couple of days' training for all our TAs and LSAs after many of them expressed a wish to learn more. The teachers have already had autism awareness training.
So today is the first of two day of training. Talky stuff in the morning and, a new development just for us, time to sit in the classrooms and observe in the afternoon. This is very special and we all appreciate the opportunity.
Today I'm going (again) with L, one of our new NQTs and half the TAs/LSAs. Next week Sheila is going with our other NQT and the other half of the support staff.
When the carpet in the living room was laid, several years ago now, I had two rectangles of the stuff backed and bound, to act as protective rugs, one in front of the French windows and one at the computer table. Both have had considerable wear and tear and look absolutely terrible now. The computer one is bedraggled and the backing has come off, leaving a very floppy mat that won't stay flat. The window one is absolutely disgusting, muddy and generally filthy dirty. While I was at Mum and Dad's this weekend, I admired the rug at their French window and asked if it was very dear. The resulting conversation sent Dad and me hot foot off to Gamlingay. I usually grace Gamlingay when I want curtain material as there is a fantastic shop there, Chelsford Fabrics, where you can just about be guaranteed to get exactly what you want at a very reasonable prices. Next door to the fabric shop is a furniture shop where my parents got their rug. Yes, they had a couple of rugs, right size, sort of OK colour with a pattern that isn't too unbearable (retro really) and for a price that means that even if they only last a couple of years it will be OK. £29 each! At that price I really can't lose.
The old computer rug is being chucked as it would cost more to have it re-backed and bound than it is worth. Apart from being utterly grubby, there's nothing wrong with the other, so I might keep it and, at some point, see if a good clean will make enough of a difference to be able to use it again. Inevitably, with a French window that is essentially the back door, a freezer in the garden shed and a grandson who runs in and out, whatever is under that window will get grimy, so a replacement would be a good thing to have anyway. I wonder if it's worth investing in one of those carper cleaners - the ones that actually shampoo and so on. If any of my readers have one, I'd appreciate your comments, please.