An OFSTED Inspector Calls

Jen is scared of the Ofsted inspection happening after break.  But when the inspector walks in, her reaction is not at all what she – or he – expects.  A riotous comedy for anyone who has ever been inspected.


An Ofsted Inspector Calls

Jen – a history teacher – smartly dressed

Trish – a maths teacher (Australian accent?) – less formally dressed

Philip – an Osted Inspector – in a well-cut suit



A school staffroom.  JEN is looking at herself in a mirror, checking her hair and make-up.  Enter TRISH.

TRISH:                 Jen, this isn’t a beauty contest, you know.  It’s an Ofsted inspection.

JEN:                     We’ve got to look our best.  We’ve got to look professional.

TRISH:                 They’re coming to check our teaching, not worry about our make-up.

JEN:                     They like teachers to look smart.  It impresses them.

TRISH:                 Yeah.  They’ll all be in suits.  Boring or what?

JEN:                     I wish it was boring.  It’s scary.  I’ll feel better if I’m properly made up.

TRISH:                 Well, I’m not getting all dolled up for them.  The suit is just an outward sign of a patriarchal male society, Jen.  Ignore it.

JEN:                     I can’t ignore it.  The patriarchal male society is going to be inspecting me in my classroom this morning.  In any case, nothing wrong with a good-looking man in a well-cut suit.  I would; wouldn’t you?

TRISH:                 Jen, this is Ofsted we’re talking about.  It’s not Brad Pitt dropping in on your Year Tens.  Unfortunately.

JEN:                     The way you dress should show your respect for the students: respect them and they will respect you.  First thing they taught us on PGCE.

TRISH:                 All right, all right: you win.  You look fine, anyway.  More to the point: have you got a special lesson lined up for Ofsted to see?

JEN:                     Trish, how can you even suggest that?  Mr Bardell said they are here to see how we operate in normal circumstances.  They see hundreds of lessons: they can tell a specially-prepared one a mile off.  They just want to see normal, everyday teaching, a representative snapshot of a typical day at this school.

TRISH:                 So have you prepared something?

JEN:                     Of course I have.  We’re recreating the Battle of Bosworth in Room 57 in full armour.  Wait till Ofsted sees the shields the kids have painted.  I tell you, it will be like Hollywood.

TRISH:                 At least it’s not the Battle of Hastings.  You don’t want to have the bastard’s eye out.  Hey, that would muck up the report, no worries.  So what’s the worst that can happen to an inspector at Bosworth?

JEN:                     Well, let’s see: we can kill him, steal his crown and bury him under a car park in Leicester.  How’s that sound?

TRISH:                 Sounds good to me.

JEN:                     What have you prepared?

TRISH:                 Well, if they’d come last month they’d have seen us doing solid geometrical shapes.  The kids had a ball.  Lots of colourful paper-folding with scissors and glue to make 3-D models of cubes and pyramids and lots and lots of lovely mess.  You must have seen them on display in the corridor.

JEN:                     Oh, that?  I thought it was some sort of cheese shop in wacky colours.

TRISH:                 Shut up, you.  I’ll have you know that was a perfect display of geometrical precision, brought together with imagination and a sense of adventure.

JEN:                     Who told you that?

TRISH:                 It said it on the packet the paper came in.  Must be true.

JEN:                     All right, that was last month.  What are you doing now?

TRISH:                 Quadratic equations.

JEN:                     That’s not so much fun is it?  Unless you’ve set the equations to music?

TRISH:                 I’m not going to show them equations.  I’m not that stupid.  Today we’re doing lots of colourful paper-folding to make 3-D models of cubes and pyramids.  A perfect display of geometrical precision, brought together with imagination and a sense of adventure.

JEN:                     You cheeky cow.  That’s cheating.  Repeating something they’ve already done just because it’s colourful and looks good for the inspectors.

TRISH:                 Yeah, but I’m going to look better than Michelle Clark, aren’t I?  She can do the boring quadratic equations and go without a mention in the report.  I’m going to create colour and excitement –

JEN:                     And mess.

TRISH:                 – and mess and I am going to get a mention in that report.  I am going to shine.  I am going to get an Outstanding.  And Mrs Clark can shove that where the sun don’t shine.  So – it’s coloured paper and scissors today and the first person to say we did all this last month is on detention from now till Christmas.  Anyway, what should you be doing today?  I bet it’s not the Battle of Bosworth.

JEN:                     No, it’s not.  They did the Tudors in Year 8.  It’s a GCSE class and we’re supposed to be doing the Wall Street Crash.

TRISH:                 Well, why aren’t you?

JEN:                     I daren’t.  It’s all about stocks and shares.  I never really understood it.  I’d only get some Ofsted inspector who’s an expert in economics or maths.  I’m not risking it.  So we’ll do a battle.  Ofsted love that sort of thing.  Don’t they?

TRISH:                 They love active learning.  It always gets a mention.

JEN:                     But what if they’ve got the exam specification?  They’ll know I should be doing the Wall Street Crash.

TRISH:                 They won’t.  Ofsted don’t inspect what we’re teaching; just how we teach it.  What we teach is Ofqual.  You need to know your Ofs, girl.

JEN:                     I do.  Ofsted, Ofqual, Ofcom –

TRISH:                 That’s for the media, you silly cow.

JEN:                     Oftel.

TRISH:                 Now you’re taking the piss.

JEN:                     No, I’m not – I’m showing off.

TRISH:                 You know my favourites?  Ofsod, Ofpiss and Ofgetyourhands if you don’t want my knee in your crutch.  I’ve had recourse to all of them in my time, believe you me.

JEN:                     They won’t put us in special measures will they?  Oh say they won’t –

TRISH:                 Sod that.  Special measures?  I’m aiming for Outstanding, I am.  They always judge me Good.  Bastards.  They can stuff their Good.  This girl is Outstanding and they are going to say so.  Jen, what’s the matter?

JEN:                     It’s all right.  It’s just hit me: they’re coming, aren’t they?  They’re really coming?

TRISH:                 Jen, there’s no need to worry.

JEN:                     Trish, I’m scared.  I’m not ready.

TRISH:                 Here.  Do you want some coffee?

JEN:                     Caffeine’s not a good idea.

TRISH:                 A large vodka’s probably not a good idea, but if there was one here I’d take it.  Look, Jen, it’s one lesson.  You’ve taught hundreds of lessons.  You go in, you teach the little blighters, you go home and get through tomorrow and then it’s half term.  A week to relax and get drunk and forget all about this place.  You can do it, girl: you can do it.

JEN:                     Trish, he’ll hate me.  I know he will.

TRISH:                 What do you mean?  Who’ll hate you?

JEN:                     The inspector.  He’ll hate me.  He’ll take one look at me and think, “What sort of a mess is that?”  And then he’ll take one look at my classroom – oh my God!

TRISH:                 What is it?

JEN:                     I meant to get that table cleaned up.  It’s still got that huge penis Sarah Barker drew.  What if he sees it?

TRISH:                 He won’t.

JEN:                     He will.  I know he will.

TRISH:                 Then cover it up.  Put some exercise books over it.

JEN:                     It’s at the back of the room.

TRISH:                 So?

JEN:                     I keep my books at the front of the room.

TRISH:                 Then move them.  Just this once, move them.

JEN:                     I can’t.  I’ll need them at the front.

TRISH:                 All right.  Cover it with something else.

JEN:                     What?

TRISH:                 I don’t know.  You’re fighting a battle, aren’t you?  Cover it with blood.

JEN:                     There won’t be any blood.

TRISH:                 Wanna bet?

JEN:                     It’s in permanent marker.  What gets rid of permanent marker?

TRISH:                 Nothing.  The clue is in the name.

JEN:                     What if he thinks I drew it?

TRISH:                 Why would he think that?

JEN:                     Oh my God, oh my God.  I’ve got Ofsted coming and that stupid cow draws a huge cock on her table.  Why did she have to do it to me?

TRISH:                 Didn’t you ever draw a cock on a table at school?

JEN:                     No.  Never.

TRISH:                 Sure?

JEN:                     Yes.

TRISH:                 Liar.

JEN:                     I’m not lying.

TRISH:                 Liar liar, pants on fire!

JEN:                     No, I’m not.  I drew it in the girls’ loo.

TRISH:                 I knew it!

JEN:                     I bet you drew hundreds.

TRISH:                 Oh, Jen.  You do me an injustice.  I am hurt.  I am deeply hurt.  I drew just one.  Mind you, it was enormous.  And it was on the teacher’s desk.

JEN:                     Trust you.  Did you get punished?

TRISH:                 Of course not.  It was my desk and I was teaching Year 9 at the time.

JEN:                     You silly cow.

TRISH:                 How are we doing for time?

JEN:                     Another four minutes till the bell.  What can I do in four minutes?

TRISH:                 Well, that depends.  If it’s the four minute warning before the Bomb goes off – and I suppose you could say it is, in a manner of speaking –  aren’t we supposed to have passionate sex with each other?

JEN:                     I’m trying to be serious.  What do you think he’ll look for?

TRISH:                 He’ll look for evidence of the kids’ learning.  And in your classroom, Jen, he’ll find it in spades.  So calm down.  All right?

JEN:                     Yes.  All right.  I’m all right.  Will they warn us he’s coming or will he just open the door and come in?

TRISH:                 Just open the door and come in.

JEN:                     You’re sure?

TRISH:                 Positive.

JEN:                     No warning?

TRISH:                 No warning.  He’ll just slip in quietly and sit at the back.  Unless he comes with you at the start of the lesson.

JEN:                     What do I call him?

TRISH:                 What?

JEN:                     What do I call him?  I can’t call him Mr Inspector, can I?

TRISH:                 Of course not.

JEN:                     What about just calling him “Inspector”?

TRISH:                 What?  Like Inspector Morse, you mean?

JEN:                     No.  All right.

TRISH:                 Tell you what.  I’ve got a really good idea.  How about – and follow me closely here, Jen – how about if you ask him his name?  And when he tells you, you use it?  How’s that sound?

JEN:                     Patronising.

TRISH:                 Good.  It was meant to be.  Hey, we’d better get going.

JEN:                     It might be a woman.

TRISH:                 What might?

JEN:                     The inspector might be a woman.

TRISH:                 Does that matter?

JEN:                     No.  No, it doesn’t.  It doesn’t matter at all.

TRISH:                 Jen, are you scared of a woman inspecting you?

JEN:                     No.  Not at all.  Why should I be?  It makes no difference.  No difference at all.  Of course I’m not.

TRISH:                 You are.

JEN:                     Yes, I am.  Women are much harsher.

TRISH:                 On other women.

JEN:                     On other women.  Why?

TRISH:                 Because women can take it, that’s why.  Come on.  You’ve got a battle to fight and a crown to win.  And I have got scissors and paper to set out.  And an Outstanding to make my very own.

(They head to the staffroom door.  But as they get there, it opens and enter PHILIP ROYLE.)

PHILIP:               Ah.  Would one of you be Miss Jones?  History GCSE?

JEN:                     Yes.  That’s me.

PHILIP:               Hello.  I’m from Ofsted.  Are you heading down to the classroom now?

JEN:                     Yes.

PHILIP:               Good.  I’ll come with you.  I wonder if I could just wash my hands before we go?  I’ve just come from a maths class with Mrs Clark and the children were all cutting up shapes with scissors and glue.  I seem to have got quite a lot of it on my hands.

JEN:                     I’ll show you.

PHILIP:               Thank you.

JEN:                     You just go down that passageway and it’s the second door on the left.

PHILIP:               Thank you.  I won’t be long.


TRISH:                 That bitch!  That cow!  She said she was doing equations.  She even showed me her lesson plan.  What a total, heartless, double-crossing, two-faced –

JEN:                     Oh my God.  He’s gorgeous.

TRISH:                 What??

JEN:                     He is gorgeous.

TRISH:                 Who?  Him?  Mr Inspector?

JEN:                     Oh my God, those eyes.  That hair.

TRISH:                 What?  The eighties revival?  Mr Mullett?

JEN:                     And his nose –

TRISH:                 He hadn’t wiped it?

JEN:                     The way it just –

TRISH:                 Wait wait wait.  Are you telling me you fancy your Ofsted inspector?

JEN:                     Yes.

TRISH:                 Oh. My. God.  Jen, you can’t.

JEN:                     Can’t I?

TRISH:                 No, you can’t.  Jen, hello?  He is an Ofsted inspector.  He is Mr Scary.  He eats teachers for lunch.  You are a teacher.  He is going to sit at the back of your classroom and if he doesn’t like what he sees, he is going to eat you.

JEN:                     Oh God, I hope so.

TRISH:                 Jen!!!

JEN:                     Do I look all right?

TRISH:                 Professionally yes.  For going on a date – perhaps a bit formal.

JEN:                     What if he doesn’t like the lesson?  What if he knows I should be doing the Wall Street Crash?

TRISH:                 He won’t be a subject expert.  He’s a general inspector.  He’s come to assess your performance … no, I’ll reword that –

(Enter PHILIP)

PHILIP:               I’m sorry about that.  Bit of an occupational hazard.  Now, Miss Jones –

JEN:                     Jen.  Call me Jen.

PHILIP:               Very well.  Jen.  I’m Philip.  Philip Royle.

JEN:                     Hello Philip.  I’m Jen.

PHILIP:               Yes.  I know.

JEN:                     And this is Trish.  She teaches maths.

PHILIP:               Not with coloured paper and glue, I hope?

TRISH:                 No.  No – I never do that.

JEN:                     Trish is a traditionalist.  So am I.

PHILIP:               Really? I had this school down as quite progressive in its thinking.

JEN:                     Oh, I am progressive too.  Very progressive.  Very progressive indeed.  You wouldn’t believe how progressive I can be.  Just in a traditionalist way.

PHILIP:               I see.  Well, shall we be heading off?  We’re doing the Wall Street Crash today, I believe?  It will be good to watch a lesson on a topic I know something about.  Makes a nice change.

JEN:                     You know about it?

PHILIP:               I used to teach it.  I’m a history teacher too.  Which board are you doing?  Edexcel wasn’t it?

JEN:                     Oh yes.  If you say so.

PHILIP:               Er, right.  And it’s a Year Ten class?

JEN:                     Yes.  Yes, it is.

PHILIP:               And where would you place them in terms of assessment?

JEN:                     I’m sorry?

PHILIP:               Top set?  Middle band?  What level would you say they are working towards?

JEN:                     What level would you like?

PHILIP:               Perhaps we can discuss it after I’ve seen the class.  Do you want to lead on?

JEN:                     Yes.  All right. I’ll lead the way, shall I?  Unless you’d rather –

PHILIP:               I think it would be best if you went first.

JEN:                     Right.  Yes.  Of course.  This way – Philip.

PHILIP:               I think that in front of the class we should keep it more formal.  Don’t you?

JEN:                     Oh.  Yes, of course.  I’m sorry.  Mr – Mr –

PHILIP:               Royle.

JEN:                     Mr Royle.  Mr Philip Royle.  This way, Mr Philip Royle.

(Exit JEN and PHILIP.)

TRISH:                 Bloody typical.  There are hundreds of Ofsted inspectors in this country, hundreds.  And she has to fall for the one who knows what he’s talking about.  I mean, what are the chances?



JEN’s classroom. 

PHILIP: (off)      So what sort of techniques do you use to explain the ins and outs of American stocks and shares, Miss Jones?  I always used to find it quite a challenge with my classes.

JEN: (off)            Oh.  Well.  I’m not sure you would call it a technique, exactly – you might find it a little bit – er – unexpected –

(Enter PHILIP and JEN. They stop and look out at the audience, who, for this scene, are the class. The next line is done as a sound effect, unless it is possible to prime the audience to say it:)

THE CLASS:        Hail, Henry Tudor, rightful King of England!

PHILIP:               Unless I am much mistaken, they appear to be dressed in cardboard suits of armour.  With shields and, I think, swords?

JEN:                     Oh.  Do you think so?

PHILIP:               This is your Year Ten class?  GCSE?  Twentieth Century World History?

JEN:                     That’s right.

PHILIP:               Well, yes, I agree, it’s certainly unexpected.  Definitely an original approach to twentieth-century economic history.  Facinating, in fact.

JEN:                     I can explain.

PHILIP:               No need.  I’ll just sit at the back.  Forget I’m here.  I shall observe with the very greatest of interest.

(PHILIP takes a seat to observe the lesson.  JEN addresses the class.)

JEN:                     Good morning, everyone.  Now, as I’m sure you all know, we have a visitor today.  Mr Right.  Royle – Mr Royle – that’s him sitting over there.  And I know he’s wondering – and perhaps you are too – just what the connection is between the Battle of Bosworth, which was in fourteen – er – fourteen eighty-five and the Wall Street Crash, which – er – wasn’t.  In fourteen eighty-five, I mean.  It couldn’t be in fourteen eighty-five, you see, because it was in America and in fourteen eighty-five they hadn’t yet discovered America.  So that’s one thing they had in common.  You see?  And the Wall Street Crash was in nineteen twenty-nine, which was – er – which was – I think – yes, it was.  Four hundred and forty-four years after the Battle of Bosworth.  Exactly.  Isn’t that interesting?  And if you write four hundred and forty-four you get four-four-four, which is almost the same as the number of the Beast in the Book of Revelation that you were learning about last year in RE.  Which is quite spooky when you think about it.  So, what was the connection between the Battle of Bosworth and the Wall Street Crash?  That’s a very interesting question.  And it’s one I want you all to think about in groups.  So I want you to get into groups of four or five and I want you all to come up with four connections between the Battle of Bosworth and the Wall Street Crash.  Sorry, Paul?  Er – because I say so.  All right?  Well, think.  You must be able to come up with four.  All right, at least get three.  Three reasons why the Battle of Bosworth was like the Wall Street Crash.  Yes, I know they didn’t have stocks and shares in the middle ages, but you can find other ways, can’t you?  No, you two can’t work together.  And I’m not having you lot sitting together either.  Louise, put that sword away.  And you, Arjun.  No, we’re not going to re-enact the Battle of Bosworth.  That would be silly, wouldn’t it?  That’s the sort of thing you might do in Year Eight.  But you’re in Year Ten and you’ve got GCSEs to pass and we haven’t got time to waste on things like that, we’ve got an exam to pass, so what I want to know is – what I want to know is – what I want to know – what – what I want – (she faints)



The Staffroom.  Enter PHILIP carrying JEN in his arms.  He lays her across a couple of chairs and then TRISH runs in.

TRISH:                 I just heard.  What happened?

PHILIP:               She fainted.

TRISH:                 Oh my God.  Jen, Jen, are you OK, honey?

JEN: (coming round)  Where am I?

TRISH:                 You’re in the staffroom.  You fainted.  Here, I’ve got some water in my bag.

PHILIP:               Just lie still. Don’t try and move.

TRISH:                 (Producing a bottle of water from her bag)  Here.  Sip this.

JEN:                     (Takes the water)  Thank you.  I feel a bit better.  Oh, my God.  Trish – the lesson!

TRISH:                 What about it?

JEN:                     It was a disaster.  A disaster.  I can hardly think of it.  Oh my God – what will he have thought?

TRISH:                 Forget it.  The main thing is how you are.

JEN:                     I can’t forget it.  It was awful.  Awful.  We were meant to be doing the Wall Street Crash for GCSE and they were all dressed up as knights in armour because I’d told them to be and they had swords and shields and they greeted me as the rightful King of England.  And he noticed, Trish.  He noticed.  And then I started talking and I was talking rubbish and I asked them to compare the Battle of Bosworth with the Wall Street Crash and I said it was the Number of the Beast –

TRISH:                 The number of the Beast?

JEN:                     In the Book of Revelation.

TRISH:                 Oh.  Right.

JEN:                     And I kept talking and talking and I could hear this voice going on and on and not saying anything and making everything worse with every word and it was me, Trish, it was me.  And he was there listening to it all and taking notes and suddenly – it all went black.  And he’ll put me in Special Measures and Mr Bardell will sack me and I won’t get another job and I’ll have to go back to my mum’s sweet shop and work there and then it will go bust and we won’t be able to pay the bills and I’ll end up on the street and I wish I was dead.

(She bursts into tears on TRISH’s shoulder)

TRISH:                 Here. (She takes JEN in her arms to comfort her.  To PHILIP:)  You see what you’ve done?

PHILIP:               I won’t put you in Special Measures, Jen.

JEN:                     You won’t?

PHILIP:               No.  After you passed out, the class carried on with the task you’d set them.  They came up with genuine ways of comparing the Battle of Bosworth and the Wall Street Crash.  I was deeply impressed.

JEN:                     You were?

PHILIP:               One group said that both events were about gambling and risking everything – Henry would have been executed if he lost and Wall Street investors risked losing everything they owned.

JEN:                     They said that?

PHILIP:               Another group said that Henry Tudor was a good businessman and showed better financial management than Wall Street did.

JEN:                     And that was good?

PHILIP:               I thought that was very good.  And one group actually said they thought the Battle of Bosworth directly caused the Wall Street Crash.

JEN:                     How?

PHILIP:               It was a bit complicated but it doesn’t matter.  I was impressed.

JEN:                     You were?

PHILIP:               Yes.

JEN:                     You’re not going to put me in Special Measures?

PHILIP:               No.

JEN:                     Then I’m –

PHILIP:               You’re?

JEN:                     I’m – Good?

PHILIP:               No, Jen.  You’re not Good.  After seeing your students, I think you’re Outstanding.

TRISH:                 Hey!  I only got a Good!

PHILIP:               Darling.

JEN:                     What?

TRISH:                 What?

PHILIP:               Darling.

JEN:                     Darling?

TRISH:                 Darling?

PHILIP:               Well, couldn’t you tell?  From the moment I saw you – there was something – something in the air –

JEN:                     You felt it too?

PHILIP:               Of course I did!

TRISH:                 Now, wait a minute.  You mean to say you fancied her the moment you saw her?

PHILIP:               But of course.  She is the most beautiful girl I have ever seen.  And the best teacher.

TRISH:                 Oh great.  I get an old dragon of an inspector and you get a visit from Romeo.

JEN:                     Philip, did you really fancy me?

PHILIP:               The moment I saw you.

JEN:                     So did I.

PHILIP:               You fancied yourself?

JEN:                     I fancied you.

TRISH:                 Oh good grief.

JEN:                     My head’s spinning.

PHILIP:               Don’t try to sit up.  Stay down.

JEN:                     I can’t breathe.  I can’t breathe.

PHILIP:               Should I loosen some clothing?

JEN:                     Yes.  Oh yes!

(PHILIP loosens his tie)

TRISH:                 Hers – not yours!

JEN:                     No.  Stay like that.  It’s – irresistible. Oh, Philip – hold me!

PHILIP:               Darling!  I’m here.

(PHILIP takes her in his arms)

TRISH:                 Oh, get a room.

JEN:                     You don’t mind about my lesson?

PHILIP:               I loved your lesson.

JEN:                     Or the penis on the desk?

PHILIP:               Was there a penis on the desk?

JEN:                     No.  No.  There wasn’t.  There definitely wasn’t.

PHILIP:               Jen, I know we’ve only just met, and this might sound rather forward, but –

JEN:                     Yes?

PHILIP:               I want to ask –

JEN:                     Yes?

TRISH:                 No.

PHILIP:               – if you will do me the honour –

JEN:                     Yes?

PHILIP:               Of consenting –

JEN:                     Yes?

PHILIP:               – to proof-read my reports.

JEN:                     Of course I will.

PHILIP:               And in due course –

JEN:                     Yes?

PHILIP:               Ofsted permitting, of course.

JEN:                     Of course.

PHILIP:               Perhaps you would see your way to allowing me to ask you to be my inspector companion and Ofsted colleague for life.

JEN:                     Yes.  Oh yes.

PHILIP:               Darling!

JEN:                     Darling!

(They kiss. TRISH makes being sick noises.)

JEN:                     Will you be my bridesmaid, Trish?  Please?

TRISH:                 Bridesmaid?  You’re not really going ahead with this?

JEN:                     Of course.

TRISH:                 You want me to be your bridesmaid?  So you can marry an Ofsted Inspector?  You are asking me, your best friend, who has always looked out for you, who has always supported you, and carried you home, and even once buried your pet goldfish, to be your bridesmaid when you, in all seriousness and in front of witnesses, marry this – this – THIS?

JEN:                     Yes.

TRISH:                 You silly cow, course I will.  You think I’d let anyone else do it? I’ll even give you my paper shapes as a wedding present.

JEN:                     Where shall we get married, Philip?

PHILIP:               We’ll find a church.  I’ll check reports from Ofvic and choose a good one.

JEN:                     Not one in Special Measures?

PHILIP:               Only Outstanding will do for us.  We’ll get your wedding dress from Ofveil and the ring from Ofwed.

JEN:                     And maybe, in time, perhaps we’ll hear the sound of tiny feet?

PHILIP:               Perhaps.  From Ofspring.

JEN:                     Oh, Philip.  Philip.  My hero.  My he-man.  My Ofstud.

(She swoons.  He catches her and takes her up into his arms.  Then he walks backwards to where he was at the beginning of the scene.  TRISH meanwhile exits backwards.  Then PHILIP runs forward with her in his arms and lays her on the chairs, as he did at the start of the scene.  TRISH runs in.)

TRISH:                 I just heard.  What happened?

PHILIP:               She fainted.

TRISH:                 Oh my God.  Jen, Jen, are you OK, honey?

JEN: (coming round)  Where am I?

TRISH:                 You’re in the staffroom.  You fainted.  Here, I’ve got some water in my bag.

PHILIP:               Just lie still. Don’t try and move.

JEN:                     Now, wait a minute, wait a minute.  Everyone stop.  You mean none of that happened?

TRISH:                 None of what?

JEN:                     You’re not going to be my bridesmaid?  And you’re not going to marry me?

PHILIP:               I’m afraid I have no plans to.  Sorry.

TRISH:                 She’s hallucinating.  She does this.

JEN:                     And the lesson?

PHILIP:               The lesson?

JEN:                     You didn’t think it was Outstanding?

PHILIP:               No.

JEN:                     Did you think it was Good?

PHILIP:               No.

JEN:                     You thought it was Bad?

PHILIP:               Yes.

JEN:                     You’re going to put me in Special Measures?

PHILIP:               No.

JEN:                     No?

TRISH:                 No?

PHILIP:               I’m going to recommend you have a good half term break and I’m going to pretend that lesson never happened.

JEN:                     Can you do that?

PHILIP:               Yes, I can.

JEN:                     Oh, thank you.  Thank you!  (She throws her arms around him and kisses him)  Oh. Sorry.

PHILIP:               Don’t mention it.  I mean that – don’t mention it.  Ever.

TRISH:                 But won’t that leave a gap in your report?

PHILIP:               Yes, it will.  It will be one lesson report short.

JEN:                     You mean –

PHILIP:               I mean that in that sense, and that sense only, I’m afraid, I can officially designate your lesson as outstanding.