Tuesday, 2 June 2015

P. E. Dant's [Sic] of This #1

P. E. Dant has featured in a lot of articles recently, as our resident English teacher, picking out all the spelling, grammar, punctuation and pernickety inaccuracies the school has generated in the various documents it has produced. So, we thought we would give him his own column. For all the perfectionists out there, here is P. E. Dant's [Sic] of This...

For my first article, I thought I would break out my red pen and mark out the errors of the school's policies. The policies are all currently posted on the school website, and it only takes to look at it to see that one is called "Admiisions".

In their Charging Policy, the school reference advanced studies as an "A'level", because back in the old days we had O’levels, which was the study of a horizontal Irish man. The extra apostrophe must have been nicked from their Anti-Bullying Policy, wherein they mention "Barnardos", forgetting that it has an apostrophe, as originally, Barnardo, a Victorian philanthropist, was possessive of the charity in his name. This is Year 3 English. Keep up.

Wandering punctuation continued, with them neglecting the full-stop on the end of "etc". Now, if only they had some sort of magazine generated by the English department that had the correct spelling in big letters on the front cover…

Another little thing comes from the Anti-Bullying Policy once more, wherein they define Bullying as "deliberately hurtful behaviour, aimed at hurting, threatening, frightening or belittling a person or a group." Be as it may, the dictionary definition is, in fact “A person who is habitually cruel or overbearing, especially to smaller or weaker people.” Hurting someone once does not count as bullying, although it is still assault of some form. It’s only bullying if repeated.

Let's see if you can spot the problems with the following extracts (answers beneath):
  1. "If necessary priority within group 2, 3 or 4 will be decided on by the distance criterion"       - Admissions Policy
  2. "If student fails to attend SLT records on SIMS and a further 20 points will be issued" - Behaviour for Learning Policy
  3. "Adequate and appropriate training and guidance is given to staff who are first aid trained." - First Aid Policy
(1) Needs comma before 'priority' to make grammatical sense. (2) Gr8 ingrish thr. An ‘a’ or ‘the’ would be nice, even though it is basically in note form. Equally a comma after ‘attend’ would make it correct. (3) Tautology. They are saying that they give adequate training to be a First Aider to those who are then, de facto, First Aid trained. 

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