Wednesday, 28 September 2011

When I grow up....

Having read my post ‘September and back to school’ you’ve probably decided you don’t want to be a teacher in Italy. So, what do you want to be when you grow up??

I asked two of my students. Both female, both thirteen, both very good at English, both from privileged backgrounds and happy families.

The first said that she’d really like to use her language skills, travel abroad and maybe live in America for a time.
‘Unfortunately I won’t be able to do that, though,’ she added.
‘And why ever not?’
‘Because I want to have a family too. So I’ll have to stay at home and look after my children.’

The second said, ‘I’ve been thinking about this a lot myself.’
‘And what conclusion have you come to?’
‘Well the best thing really…. (and there was, I promise, not a hint of irony in her answer)… is to be a footballer’s girlfriend. You know, you get to go to all the good parties, meet famous people and don’t have to do anything.’

Not a lot I could say to that really!

A few years ago, when the ‘bung bunga’ scandal first came out, Noemi, the very first of B’s bambine to become famous, was interviewed by most of the press. (She was only just 18, meaning of course that B had ‘met’ her when she was underage … he’s still not been done for pedophilia but it’ll come sooner or later) The journalists asked her what she was going to do after finishing her final school exams. ‘I haven’t decided between being a TV presenter or a politician,’ was her answer.

As though the two things were interchangeable. And maybe in Italy they are.

But there are other ways of getting on…

I read an article last week about a survey involving Italian university students, of both sexes.
Apparently the number of students prepared to offer sexual favours in return for passing exams with good grades is on the rise. It was only 12% in 2009, 25% in 2010 and is now at 48%. So not all is lost.

I also almost forgot to mention that September is the month of ‘Miss Italia’. Usually for four or five consecutive evenings hopeful beauties parade up and down on prime time TV hoping to catch the right person’s eye.

This year I confess it was narrowed down to two evenings… But, you know, it was probably really interesting… the future education minister, the new tourism, agriculture or equal opportunities minister might just have been amongst them. It really is all a career opportunity here in Italy.

All that I need to do now is decide what I’m going to be when I grow up J