Sunday, 14 July 2019

Some statistics, some unfairness, some symmetry and some oddness!

On the train home from London to Manchester, we have been travelling first class. This is purely and simply because it turned out to be cheaper to book seats in first class than elsewhere on the train. As a result we have had free cups of tea, free egg and cress sandwiches, free biscuits and free fruit!

How the other half live!

In the newspaper I came across some statistics about school funding. Most schools, probably all schools, have Parents Teacher Associations. The main aim of such organisations, as far as I have ever been able to tell, is to raise funds. This has become even more significant in the age of state school funding cuts.

Here’s some of what I found out!-

  •  Cardinal Vaughan Memorial school, a Catholic boys’ comprehensive in Holland Park, London, raised £631,770 in donations from parents, ex-alumni and benefactors.
  •  Hasmonean High School in barbet, North London, raised more than £1million in 36 hours. Some donors gave £10,000 each! 
  • These schools can use these funds to pay for extra staff. 
  • Trinity St Mary’s Church of England School in Wandsworth raised £2,000. 
  • They use some of the money to help provide transport for homelesss people who have been moved out of the area, so their children can still attend the school and have some measure of stability in their troubled lives. 
So we have private schools, state schools in areas where the PTA can help them get by and state schools in areas where the parents probably need help from the school as much as the school needs help from them.

Injustice is rife!

I started off watching Wimbledon by seeing Venus Williams being knocked put of the first round. Yesterday I watched Serena Williams lose to Simona Halep in the women’s final. There is a kind of symmetry there!

Here come some more statistics:-

The 2019 tennis championships are estimated to have generated £240m revenue for the All England Club, 12% increase in London hotel bookings, £28m in merchandise and concession sales, 300,000 glasses of Pimm’s, 473,000 fans through the gates.

This next is for my friend Colin who lives in Poio, Pontevedra, Galicia, Spain, and who is always assuring us that Christopher Columbus was born in Poio. They claim to have his birth certificate in Poio museum!! The Observer must have done a feature last weekend on “ Fantasy Island, a colourful tour of Dominica”. This week they published a correction:

“We described Christopher Columbus as a Portuguese mariner. His wife was a Portuguese noblewoman but he was born in Genoa, Italy, and undertook his major voyages of exploration for the Spanish.”

There you go. It must be true. I read it in the newspaper!

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