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Don't mention the war...
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 10:58 am
I have just had a very odd letter from a school I visited last Summer, returning some stuff she hadn't given me back after photocopying, and a spinning top which one of them had "lost".
In the letter she suggests that in dressing the children in the authentic, hand sewn costumes I have slaved long and hard over...:
"it would have been more appropriate to simply show the children the codpiece as opposed to actually putting it on the child model. Alternatively, perhaps you could show the costume to the teacher first, so that they may make an informed decision.Either way I believe it would avoid any unnecessary embarrassment on the child's part."
I always discuss dressing the children with the member of staff, I always ask her to choose someone "brave" who will not mind being the centre of attention for a bit. I explain that the clothing is as accurate as I can make it, and it is discussed with the children that different parts of the body were considered embarrassing then to now. Yes the codpiece does get some giggling, always. But then it does with adults too. Most groups like this bit particularly.
The child is always wearing either uniform or pe kit underneath the costume, and all dressing and undressing is done in full view- for obvious reasons.
I am ringing the teacher at lunchtime to discuss the matter.
Well, what do you think, should I put this one down to experience, or make all future teachers examine the codpiece before the event, and risk turning it into a big issue?
As a further point about this teacher, she is the first to request a full written risk assessment of all the activities we were to do, and the only one to refuse to let the children handle arrows at any price, in case they hurt themselves. She did let them have those very sharp and dangerous pencil things at all times, but if she could have made them use crayons I think she would.
I was also told not to mention Henry the 8th or the monasteries, because they are a Catholic school and all mention of the persecution of Catholics is off limits. I could say he had more than one wife, but not dwell on it!
So clean up the history to meet pc standards, or tell it like it was within reason- can I not mention wars either? People died you know.
Frustrated Lucy the Tudor
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 11:41 am
"I was also told not to mention Henry the 8th or the monasteries, because they are a Catholic school"
Presumably any visiting speaker to this teacher's class would also be banned from talking about
The Big Bang
The Spanish Inquisition
The Reparations paid by the Catholic Church in Ireland to all the children abused by its priests in orphanages
Whoops sorry that last one just slipped out.
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 11:57 am
"Give me a child of under seven and I'll give you a repressed, guilty adult"! What's the risk assessment of sending your kids to a Catholic school? On the up side, they will be better behaved (this is on average).
O.K, It seems to me that you have a case of the extreme wing of catholicism
I wonder how she'd react if you told her how a*al she's being?:twisted:
I don't think she's being P.C (which is, after all, a moveable feast and changes with the weather) - but whether it's true concern or inflated ego is a debatable matter.
All right, Henry didn't have six wives, it DOES depend on how you count them, but changing the facts of History, not to mention the costume, is beyond the pale!
I first took tudor costume into schools 27 years ago. Complaints on the codpiece 0. Though I was pulled up in Walsall one day, "for making the children enjoy themselves too much"!
Don't worry this is one teacher in ten thousand and will probably retire soon due to 'stress'!
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:09 pm
I wouldn't let it worry you Lucy - Jack has been dressing kids in Tudor gear & codpieces for years & years & as far as I know no complaints!
Mark it down to 'experience' & make a note somewhere to remind you if they ever have you in school again - but in terms of not talking about Henry - what age were the kids? They'll have to find out sooner or later about the reformation!
Seriously it sounds as though they are a school where they never get the same people in twice because people refuse to go back. You aren't wrong - they are.
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:17 pm
It wasn't like the Roman church didn't shut down monastries and redirect cash before No8 broke away and took over as head of the new English church, and he gave the monks he was 'making reundant' pensions.
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:40 pm
You think that's tricky I have to do sex health education and condom provision in the local Catholic schools!
Chalk it up to an overly sensitive teacher and move on- it sounds like she is putting her own problems forward under the guise of it being the children's problem.
As long as the codpiece is within marriage then it shouldn't be a problem
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:03 pm
Thanks, once again people here restore my sanity, what little of it remains.
I didn't think I was being too outrageous in dressing a child in kit that my own boy wears quite happily.
I will probably not be asked back to that school, but as they haven't paid me yet (from July) , due to an "oversight", I don't think I'll feel the lack.
codpieces and teachers (!)
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 1:32 pm
just got back from a morning school workshop to find this thread. Seconding comments above - this is the particular teacher's problem and not yours - sadly, her/his issues impact on the children's educational experience. Nothing wrong with what you are doing - as you say, the children get loads out of it and most teachers also like hands-on sessions.
As for not mentioning persecution or dwelling on the multiple wives, is this teacher actually delivering the curriculum??!!
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:03 pm
Stick to your guns Lucy mate. Teachers are mostly so ridiculously PC these days they just go over the top!
As long as you go over everything you are going to do/say to the children beforehand and they agree then you are in the right. And make sure you get paid! Don't let them get away with it!
Re: codpieces and teachers (!)
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:37 pm
saracen wrote:As for not mentioning persecution or dwelling on the multiple wives, is this teacher actually delivering the curriculum??!!
Great point. She seems to be selectively censoring her pupils' education, something which I am sure is illegal. If you can be arsed, it might be in her pupils' interest for you to raise the matter with the Head of the school and/or Ofsted.
She sounds like a religious nutter to me, who's prepared to put her own repressed views ahead of her duty to her pupils. That makes her a potential danger to those she teaches.
Even so, I'd have thought a Catholic zealot like her would want
her pupils to know about all the repression Catholics have suffered throughout history, if only to show how great
Catholicism is for surviving it all intact.
Don't mention the war? Don't mention indulgences
more like. *coughcough*
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 2:52 pm
lucy the tudor wrote:Thanks, once again people here restore my sanity, what little of it remains.
I didn't think I was being too outrageous in dressing a child in kit that my own boy wears quite happily.
I will probably not be asked back to that school, but as they haven't paid me yet (from July) , due to an "oversight", I don't think I'll feel the lack.
Form N1 and a a Letter before Action works wonders, even more so if you're not going back
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 3:10 pm
agree with things above, get paid, give them hell and maybe it will help the kids learn a more balanced view of the world
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:09 pm
Much as it would be fun to challenge her retentive behavior, i am fairly new to this business, and daren't rock any boats which may feed my kids, so no criticising the teachers (otherwise I would have hit a Mancunian power freak teacher in June, who had me nearly in tears with the way she spoke to the kids in her charge- and I'm no fluffy bunny meself)
But it is good to know I'm not the only one who thinks she is just WRONG!
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 6:30 pm
Name and shame Lucy, just in case one of us other 'history outreach' types gets offered the gig instead. Then we could politly refuse rather'n have the same grief.
Posted: Wed Sep 10, 2008 8:18 pm
Well now. You may well be jumping the gun when you refer to this teacher as a Catholic zealot. You don't have to be a catholic, or even a Christian to work in a faith school (you just need to agree to teach their doctrine), I have no problem working in an Anglican school which has teachers ranging from evangelical near baptists types to avowed atheists there.
The tudor coverage is "rich and poor", Henry VIII and the English Reformation" and "Expansion and Empire" (which generally has the Armarda in it. I cannot think of a way of teaching about the English Reformation without mentioning divorce, religious persecution though. When i worked at Holy Rood Catholic Jur. we did also mention Mary Tudor and her persecution of English protestents which balanced this out-I just point out that the churches have moved on from that now.
Now I did dress up at one school and had a complaint from one of the office staff that she thought my codpeice was too tight and showed off my tallywhacker. I must add that in all honesty I have never needed a codpiece to show off my manhood, I'm proud to say it speaks for itself.
My resposnse was first to put on a different pair of hose-they were even tighter-and then to ask what the school would expect a professional dance troupe to wear if they were displaying ballet. I made it clear that if they didn't want someone to come in with good quality authentic clothing and obgects de art they need not bother me again. The fact that they did not I regard as a twisted complement.
Then again please rememmber that we are living with a society where by you only need to look at a child in a off way and you're being hauled over coals. I looked through some of the reasons why teachers have been put on the 99 reg. one is for shouting at a class, not swearing, not threatening to harm but just shouting at them.
And to make it worse i still don't think it would have stopped, or will stop another Soham happening. It seems that people are so concernded with telling teachers et al off for raising voices and upsetting feelings of little darlings they totally miss the evil bastards like the couple who systemtically tortured to death their 18 month old wean dispite him being on the child protection register, each time he got hurt he was sent home for another round of beatings and burnings, may he rest in peace and may they one day burn in Hell. amen
(From a real catholic zealot.)
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:35 am
No, you don;t have to be a catholic at all - in fact I'm about as close to the antichrist as you're going to find anywhere - and I worked in RC and C of E schools, with gay abandon. (RC are good as we used to watch the racing on the classs telly after the kids had gone home when I had a good Catholic Irish head). I've worked in a lot of RC schools - and have to say I doubt it's got a lot to do with the fact it was an RC school.
This individual teacher may have had an unfortunate manner - but she may be saying something that is useful to you.
Evil arch-enemy of organised religion that I am (on here!).... I trained to teach at a Catholic college and worked happily in RC and C of E schools, as well as non denominational, so hope I can shed a bit of light to help you. RC schools are brilliant places, with strong, positive ethoses and dedicated staff.
In terms of delicate religious sensibilities, I'm probably as irreligious as they come - I was professional at my job so none of the parents ever suspected my own personal belief system (or lack of one). Cos I was trained by nuns - the ninjas of the classroom, really - no-one in the staff of any school ever thought to check if I actually WAS RC or not. Saying that so you don't think when I say what I'm going to say, that I'm some religious or moral nut-job...
You have a lot of people telling you what you want to hear which happens a lot on this kind of forum... but not too many of them have worked in schools, let alone RC ones, I'd imagine, to have informed opinions.
I actually think you're skating on thin ice.
My first day as a student teacher, some old hack pulled me aside and said *One thing matters in this job*. I wondered what it was going to be - had all these flowery *To Sir With Love* ideas come to mind.... You know what he said? *Always... always cover your own *rse first*. And he was right.
The cod piece thing (if you'll pardon the expression) strikes me straight away as something I'd steer totally
clear of. Am pretty sure my union would have said the same - regardless of denomination of school, individual teachers' sensibilities, etc etc. The whole dressing them thing is opening yourself up to risk. Even if they do it all themselves unassisted. I've seen it done by others doing your job who weren't themselves trained teachers and, if I'm honest - I did wonder the educational value of the trying on the clothes thing - esp when they had a short session and it took half of that wrestling kids in and out of costume. Showing them the clothes would have equal impact. Maybe more. And the kids can relax and listen knowing they're not going to be hauled up to perform.
For a child, this sort of unusual classroom experience's a bit like being in the audience of some stage hypnotist - you don't want to be singled out by him and humiliated, but if called on to go on stage - with all your mates watching - you may feel forced to go. I just wouldn't put kids in that situation. Ask them to volunteer if you must do it and even then - use your judgement at who is confident. It may be a great control technique - making the class mouthy kid dress up stupid - but that's the extent of it.
The codpiece....that is something a kid could find humiliating - you have to think what happens when you leave. Even if Child A is OK with it at the time - it opens them up to other kids ripping the pi55 later on. I wouldn't even go there. What about classes with the odd muslim kid? Or Jehovah's Witness? Would they find it offensive? You bet they would - mine would have anyways.
What if the teacher who you ask beforehand who is a good bet for being yer model is a bit of a brainless twonk and doesn't even have the judgement to pick the 'right' child? You don't know the kids - you're dependent on them to get it right. You can't afford to be dependent on the judgement of a stranger, whose abilities you can't judge. Basically I'd say - don't even go there!
I find the whole thought of it excruciating. Not because I'm some moral looney but because I can see the potential disaster waiting to happen, in that situation. If you were a teacher, your union would say don't touch the kids - the unions have been saying that for 20 years. Rightly so. We live in a very litigious world. Also in your game, you'll know already - it's jungle telegraph. You pi55 one teacher off and they will be on the phone to their mates at the next school down the road.... You know you're doing well if you have a very high rate of re-bookings, right? If they dry up in this area - that teacher has been talking. It's surprising how many school trips/outreaches are booked purely because one teacher recommends to another. You have to keep them onside.
Ask yourself some hard qs. Why do the kids need to even wear the stuff? Or all
the stuff? If you're just doing the usual social distinctions stuff - could you convey that another way? Does the dressing up itself take up too much valuable time? What other hands on activities could you plan, to hit the same attainment targets maybe with less potential problems?
And is it worth it to you, running the risk of causing embarrassment to a child potentially, or offending someone's sensibilities?
As for the edited version of history - again, there may be more to it than meets the eye. The teacher herself might not give a toss - I know I wouldn't. BUT - she'll get it in the neck from a gobby parent, if you start going into too much depth about naughty Henry 8 or whatever when the school are saying privately, behind closed doors *Look this is an area of the curriculum we want to skim over for x or y reason* (And why shouldn't they have an opinion about the content? You're in there working FOR them on that day, whoever they are.)
Don;t want to offend you, Lucy, I always enjoy your posts. But I had to reply to this honestly and I'm not going to waste your time or mine telling you what you want to hear. I've done my time in a fair few RC staffrooms and heard and seen a lot of things - and hope you can get a bit more insight into maybe why she reacted like she did, to help you in the future.
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:42 am
Thanks for that honesty too, I have tried to contact the teacher in question to discuss the matter further, and I do take your reply very seriously.
I will discuss some of the points a bit more thoroughly after the weekend, because I do think they are well worth exploring.
But I'm packing to be a Viking in Woodbridge later tonight, and it's a long way to go, so I don't want to rush my consideration and give a ill judged response (like wot I usually do).
Don't mind at all being made to think a bit about such things from all angles, it's sometimes hard to know what others actually do in the class room, trade secrets and all that...and that's actually why I posted about this one, to see if I am in the minority.
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:22 pm
I have to totally disagree with Vd'A - dressing the children up in Tudor or medieval gear is all part of my introduction to the day - I ask for volunteers - I always get a huge amount of hands raised to pick from & once the children are dressed - with very little assistance from me, they stay in their clothes for the first hour and I give them roles to act out. One is the lady, one is the lord, one is the plough boy, one is the still-room mistress or a spinster, they get given accessories to hold or use, and everything the do puts the rest of the day's activities in context. I explain the colours & qualities of cloth, I explain the bum-roll, I explain how rich people can't usually dress themselves, they even get to wear bits of armour. I give them bits of harness, hats, a padded jack, use arrows spinning through the air & talk about rushing to the church where the armour is stored & whoever gets there last gets a hat on a stick.
It is how I conjure the setting, I hand round bits to look at as well, I don't get them to wear anything that is too complicated to put on, but everything is made to fit over their own clothes, and even if the plough boy just wears big hose and a jacket & hat, he feels different. Walking in pattens, passing the shoes round, talking about washing the clothes, feeling how heavy they are to wear, it is all a part of it.
I ask them all to stand in a line at the end, rich to poor and take a bow to their classmates and for a photograph before they take off the clothes themselves.
To miss this out would not engage some of the children who can't take it all in by someone stood there talking. I use a lot of making and handling in my day in school and the clothes are a very useful window into that Tudor world.
Anything that they are not sure of I refer them to ask the teacher to show them pictures, cod pieces are seen it all the pictures of Henry VIII. I don't think I have a pair of hose with a codpiece in my kit that I take round, but I borrowed one from Jack for a specific gig at a school where Charlie dressed up a boy to be a Tudor architect and I know he just explained it as 'this was the rich people's fashion at the time'.
As for taking risks - we all have £5 million PLI & CRB checks and we are all intelligent enough to be able to respond appropriately to a situation as it arises.
It's not a question of being asked back either - most schools don't run the Tudors every school year, often it is every other year, every three years of every four years. I also pride myself that if I have done my job properly with the written handouts that I supply and the activities that I give the teachers to run if I'm asked to work with perhaps 3 classes at once, often I have successfully trained the teachers so that they can set up a similar set up using photographs that they have taken on the day, they might not even need me to re-run that workshop again.
There has to be a difference between a normal school day and a day with one of us turning up. I've run my Tudors for schools since 2002, Jack has run his since the mid-90's & gets repeat bookings a year in advance. We are there to take risks - its is why we are living history demonstrators and not teachers.
We each get told repeatedly by the children - 'this is the best day I've had in school - ever!'
I've also run the Tudors workshop in a school for special needs, a catholic school and a school for Muslim girls. All to the same enthusiastic response.
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:45 pm
What Kate Tiler said.
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 1:30 pm
I'm sorry to say that I'll side with Viscontesse D'Asbeau. We live in a sick world where making a child feel slightly awkward is a crime and you have to guard yourself on every angle. A friend of mine (a teacher) grabed a child to stop them falling down the flight of stairs that they just threw themselves down and the child (just to emphasise his power over her) made a complaint about her grabing him. This could have ended her career if she hadn't caught him 'by the book', thankfully she's done it all by the numbers and was exhonerated, but it illustrates the kind of world that we live in.
Personally I think that this attitude is a form of child abuse and fails to prepare the child for their life. But what does my vote count!
Lucy. You did nothing wrong. However, the teacher is the boss, so you have to play it there way in future WITH THAT CLIENT. That said with other clients, you've no need to change what you do at all. Just make sure that you're covered and read the situation carefully. Thankfully you're not in a position to be confronting the little ****s. Perhaps you should as part of your 'bid' get permission to dress the children.
I would question the teacher's judgement to raise the codpeice or and the reformation as taboo subjects. Ignorence is the devil's greatest weapon!
All the best Lucy (and everyone else too).
Posted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 2:02 pm
What Kate said too.
When I went into schools with clothes to demonstrate, the children, from 5 years to 15 or so, couldn't wait to try everything on - no coercion required.
Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 1:28 am
I've seen the old dress them up as different social classes so many times now, though - there's got to be other things to do? Depends on where you're working but it's a potential minefield.
My concern here also was more Lucy protecting herself from problems. I'd say she can't afford to take the teacher on, because if she does she may lose a lot of bookings (and I know of people in this game whose work has completely dried up once the jungle telegraph gets hold of something negative). The real test of any outreach is the % of re-bookings. I know of people that get a very high % and that constitutes a lot of their business. So much is word of mouth - so it's naive to say (as some here have) give the woman a gobful. If you're professional, you'll sit on your (understandable) feelings, and schmooze and move on to the next one.
You can go in with so many activities, the dressing up thing is incidental, really. And as I say, I've seen it done by people with no training in classroom management so it can get ridiculous when they have a 40 min sessin maybe and 15 mins of that is wasted on wrestling people in and out of costume. From what Lucy says, she is doing much better than that but still - hard question to ask but you have to be rigorous - what function is it serving?
Any good teacher will constantly be doing interactive and hands on activities with their kids anyway - it's not like it is quite so thrilling to the kids as maybe some of you think and TBH they'll say they've had the best day ever just because they think they're having a bit of a laugh and a skive off 'real' work. (I know I used to!)
Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 6:32 am
just a slightly different perspective from the museum side, one of the things our loan service is asked for by teachers over and over again is garments that can be tried on by the children and items to use in guided roleplay to help them get a sense of different historical periods. its one of our top requests (and one that currently isnt really part of the remit of that particular service of the museum at the moment, but thats by the by) there is no doubt from the requests we get that teachers see dressing up, in the most accurate costume possible given the scaled down nature- as a valuable part of their coverage of a historical topic.
I can see many valid points raised by VdA, but on the whole I'm with Kate, as long as the reason for the costume and method of inclusion in the sesion is well planned out, its a positive benefit and there is no reason why anyone, child or adult, should feel awkward.
If the teachers have done their pre-visit work properly the children will already know broadly about tudor clothing by the time the big day arrives and they will have a fair idea of what garments will be included and that its very different from modern fashions
Posted: Sun Sep 14, 2008 10:34 pm
Yes, Sally when I taught I used to use the museums loan service (which very few colleagues seemed to even know about let alone use!) Once we did the 1950s and we got loads of great stuff and the kids did try the clothes on etc - but that was in the context of working with me - who they knew and trusted and who knew them 100% - enough to judge what would be appropriate etc. That's a great resource for teachers and it's a shame how few of them use these things!
But that's a different context to an outsider coming in to the classroom. CRB doesn't cover it - it's a matter of sensitivity to the various and different kids', their families, etc. It would take me MONTHS to build up trust with, say, JW parents - some outsider could come into the classroom and shatter that in minutes. OK for them as they're on to the next gig.
I'd always work with my kids in a hands on way - we'd DO not talk about, wherever we could - get out of the classroom at the least excuse... and everything was interactive and fun - so kids taught that way aren't massively impressed by visitors coming in and 'letting; them be interactive - a good teacher does that already!
I think what Lucy does is great and she's very likely the 'top end' of what's out there. But even so - if you think hard about what it is you're trying to achieve in terms of the kids' education - are there other ways to achieve the same goals? A bit of rigorous thinking and some new ideas are never a bad thing, eh?
And Lucy can;t risk pi55ing these people off - if they're her bread and butter.
Almost more interesting is the stuff re. Henry 8 - and as I said above, it's a hard fact - they will all have their own ideas re. 'the curriculum' - it's presciptive enough as it is - you have to respect that different schools will have their own views and can and should call the shots re. what you can skim over and what you can delve into.
Posted: Mon Sep 15, 2008 4:13 pm
My school ( a fair few years ago now) was an RC school, and I met many teachers of a similar type to the one you are talking about Lucy!
For me, those teachers left me with a determination to find things out for myself rather than blindly accepting what was taught in class. If you think about it, Im sure plenty of people will agree none of us stopped learning when our formal education ended, if anything it was the start and possibly the reason we have all ended up here!!
But to balance out the teachers who were restrictive in their teaching, I can remember teachers who taught me to think for myself, who having captured my imagination encouraged me to continue learning outside the syllabus. Surely that can be the case for this school too?
Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:22 pm
One thing this has shown is that there are vast differences in opinion on a matter like this. Whichever side of the debate you are on doesn't really matter, as its obvious from the replies that schools themselves differ. So perhaps Lucy, you should simply look over your marketing material.
If the information you provide to schools outlines just what you are doing (perhaps giving a choice for dressing up or not) the teacher/school will then be able to make an informed choice about what they require of you, and make that desicion based on their own policies.
It may well have been that the teacher in question really didn't know about what makes up the dress of the period, and by being unaware then could imagine the hassle she might get from parents later from the codpiece. (I think we have to remember that too - a school knows when they have a particularly difficult parent).
In your literature have pictures, explain everything, then no-one is caught off-guard. You can then continue to offer the service, letting the school decide if it is right for them, if it isn't, you may still get work by offering an alternative.
Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:44 pm
I think in this instance that the teacher in question failed to do what the Vicontesse was advised to do - she failed to cover her ar*e and has been caught out in some way and is now trying to shift the blame. The school was the client and should have made clear to Lucy areas that were out of bounds and what was and was not acceptable to them. They would have appeared to have failed to do this. Was a teacher present during the lesson? If so then a cough and a quiet word should have been sufficient to steer the lesson into 'safe' waters. I don't think Lucy did anything wrong. The school clearly did by failing to find out exactly what service they were buying into.
Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 8:07 pm
It wasn't the *rse that was the problem!
Kids love dressing-up in 'thentic kit. Even the big tough y6 boiz. And they look damn smart too, for the most part. And they learn through it.
More strength to your elbow, and blacklist that particular school, Lucy!
Posted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 9:10 pm
charlotte's class is learning about ww2 and the teacher is begging me to go in with guns and uniform to show the kids.....
guns awesome he said. tell them about the blitz, evacuation and how scary being bombed is. and what started the war......
i've had to ask him what the cirriculum says started the war these days.
Posted: Wed Sep 17, 2008 8:09 am
In any forum debate there is always someone who thinks their professional/life experience or opinion is much more important or relevant than everyone elses, or indeed than it actually is.
So in that vein, I'll step cautiously into this debate, because I have very little experience of schools, except that many years ago I was in one.
But I do worry that we might be preventing our childrens mental growth because we are not capable of understanding and quantifing genuine risk.
I know the world is set up that way (why are there life jackets on aircraft?), but Carol does [it appears] take all the proper precautions.
There are already a number of studies that suggest our overcautious attitudes are seriously damaging the development, and indeed life prospects, of children.
It seems odd that we should think there is a huge issue about what is essential the equivelent of the flies in a pair of trousers.