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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 21 Sep 2020, 22:03 
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Rescuing a Junior from the lake
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I don't know what they all did in the holidays. Some of them presumably stayed with parents or siblings, but that could've got awkward, especially during the long summer holidays. Drifted round visiting one person after another? The Easter holidays might have been a good time for sightseeing, but the Christmas holidays wouldn't.

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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 22 Sep 2020, 15:18 
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I wrote a reply to this last week and now I see I posted it in the other thread on retirement.
In Agatha Christie's 'And Then There Were None', Vera Claythorne, a games mistress, is glad to get a secretarial post in the summer holidays rather than family help job. So maybe some of the CS staff moonlighted? I hope none of them came to her sticky end, though....


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 23 Sep 2020, 15:50 
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I wonder how many staff ended up being "holiday tutors"...


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 26 Sep 2020, 17:23 
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Mrs Redboots wrote:

Nowadays, it is not assumed that the House mistress will be a single woman, and flats are provided, large enough to accommodate a spouse and small family.


Someone I used to know was a Matron at Oundle School, but in one of the new boarding houses. Her flat was huge, there was a kitchen, bathroom, sitting room/dining room and two bedrooms (one of which was huge) and the the stairs down to the actual boarding house.

I should think in the early years of the school being a Mistress was excellent, as people have said. But later on when they just seemed to stagnate on the platz less so. I think I would hate to work there, I'm fairly anti-social and hate organised events so I suspect I would not fit in!

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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 26 Sep 2020, 17:59 
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I’d like to think the CS mistresses on the Platz had a cracking social life, we just didn’t get to hear about it in the books...

I reckon the San had a staff bar or club, those trains down to Interlaken run late into the evening and Joey’s “radio parties” were actually something a bit more interesting....


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 26 Sep 2020, 20:49 
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Maybe the San had a bar, like Albie's in Casualty/Holby City, and the doctors, nurses and CS mistresses all partied the nights away in there :lol: .

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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 27 Sep 2020, 08:59 
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Alison H wrote:
Maybe the San had a bar, like Albie's in Casualty/Holby City, and the doctors, nurses and CS mistresses all partied the nights away in there :lol: .


Definitely :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 28 Sep 2020, 01:03 
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Caroline wrote:
I’d like to think the CS mistresses on the Platz had a cracking social life, we just didn’t get to hear about it in the books...

I reckon the San had a staff bar or club, those trains down to Interlaken run late into the evening and Joey’s “radio parties” were actually something a bit more interesting....


I like to think the mistresses had trips away from the Platz in their time off and that the girls at least got trips to Interlaken and the surrounding areas by themselves or groups of just a few.

The school in the Swiss books was so regimented. Was boarding school really like this?


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 28 Sep 2020, 10:34 
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Audrey25 wrote:

The school in the Swiss books was so regimented. Was boarding school really like this?

Good grief yes - far more regimented in fact. Every minute of every day was accounted for and even our free time was monitored, to what degree depended on which boarding house you were in. Some house-mistresses were less picky than ours.

The seniors were allowed to go shopping sometimes on Saturdays (we were in a town) in pairs but only in one designated street. The high street was banned as the two boys' schools shopped there.

The Chalet School was free as air compared to us.

I was at boarding school from 1953-59...

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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 01 Oct 2020, 01:14 
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cestina wrote:
Audrey25 wrote:

The school in the Swiss books was so regimented. Was boarding school really like this?

Good grief yes - far more regimented in fact. Every minute of every day was accounted for and even our free time was monitored, to what degree depended on which boarding house you were in. Some house-mistresses were less picky than ours.

The seniors were allowed to go shopping sometimes on Saturdays (we were in a town) in pairs but only in one designated street. The high street was banned as the two boys' schools shopped there.

The Chalet School was free as air compared to us.

I was at boarding school from 1953-59...


I honestly could not have stood that. My idea of hell is being with people the entire time. I need to switch off.


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 01 Oct 2020, 08:47 
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I met a group of our boarders at a dance at a boys' school


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 07 Oct 2020, 23:21 
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Audrey25 wrote:
The school in the Swiss books was so regimented. Was boarding school really like this?


If not worse, as Cestina has already said. I was at school in the 1960s, and, with hindsight, I rather pity the staff from that era, as it was one of huge social change. The headmistress and housemistresses had a very difficult balancing act between keeping us safe and keeping us content!

When we were in what would now be called years 7 and 8 we were kept strictly to quarters, and only allowed out with staff escort; as we grew older we had a little more freedom but until the Sixth form we were never allowed out in groups of less than three, and only allowed to shop once or twice per half-term. In school uniform. Not going to cafés or anything. In the Sixth we could go with just one friend and as we didn't wear uniform anyway, we could get the odd cup of tea while out.


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 08 Oct 2020, 11:32 
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In the 1960s, it wasn't really much better at a day school, at least at mine. Apart from the very few girls who went home to lunch, any suggestion that you left the school premises during the school day was almost unthinkable. We had rules about what we should wear in town - had to have our hats on, properly, and not walk more than two abreast. (I now see the sense of that one as I navigate my way past groups of 3 or 4 blocking the pavement, but it was a great nuisance at the time!) Because the staff lived out, you could never be sure when you might bump into them out and about, which added to the difficulty of breaking rules without being discovered. And even when I was doing Oxbridge entrance, we had to wear uniform in school, although as a great concession we were able to travel too and fro in ordinary clothes, and only had to be in school for sessions (before break/after break/ after lunch) in which we had a coaching.


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 Post subject: Re: Being a Chalet School mistress?
PostPosted: 16 Oct 2020, 02:39 
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I can only relate on the level of having served as a live-in counselor at a sleepaway summer camp for eight weeks. This, like the CS, was an isolated and enclosed environment on a lake next to mountains. I was a camper for several years and graduated to counselor, so was familiar with the culture.

If being on staff at the CS was like my experience, you had to have a fondness for the traditions and be willing to participate in them. We had a night off each week, where we went "into town" and generally engaged in "debauchery light" - usually a few beers - and returned to our duties the next morning. That free time was fun, absolutely, but it was always done with the recognition that we were representing the camp. And except for the occasional "indigestion" complaint, we all returned to our duties the next day.

Alas, no doctors appeared to save any of us.


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