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Who is this ‘Mat’ – and does he really want me?

Image credit: "i saw you on tinder" Trastevere 2014 by Denis Bocquet - licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Who is this ‘Mat’ – and does he really want me?

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The Secret Governor may or may not be on your governing board. They may also continue to refer to it as a ‘governing body’, which may or may not be an attitude which Requires Improvement. They have indicated that this post represents a very personal opinion, with which you may dis/agree wholeheartedly.

Oh My Gove! It’s date night for me tonight! I’m off on a blind date that was set up by my friends Michael G and Nicky M. I’ve seen Dangerous Liaisons and I’m sure there’s an echo from two of the characters in that, but I can’t place it.

Anyway, I’m a small, well-maintained primary and my date – who is a big boy who my friends say is called Mat – is by many accounts an outstanding person – I mean, he says his goal in life is to be “a system leader” and I’ve read about those in Schools Week – everyone reads that, right? Right? Anyway, apparently he’s got lots of money, keeps acquiring property and is more than willing to meet all of my needs so we can have a long and happy relationship well into the future.

I’m a little apprehensive as Mat has been very forthright – almost pushy – and seems very confident about how he will be the best thing for me – like I’ll forget there was ever anyone or anything before him – but at the same time he will ensure my views are listened to at all times. I am a little suspicious – he seems to be talking to a few others as well, and I’ve read online that he’s using the same lines on everyone. Between you and me – well, he sounds just a little bit desperate and I think he would take anyone as long as they measured up to his preferred statistics. Despite all that, in the wooing love letters he’s sent to me so far, he assures me he’s The One.

Anyway, wish me luck… I’m a little scared just in case he gets me all squiffy and tries to take advantage of me… I admit I am feeling a little vulnerable as a lot of my friends have recently hooked up – and my friend Nicky is pressuring me to get a partner before I’m left on the shelf – apparently if I leave it more than five years I’ll be past my prime, or Mat and his peer group might have lost interest in the whole “meaningful relationship” thing. She insists it’s the best thing to do – sometimes it feels like it’s all she ever talks about – but I confess that I’m really unsure. What if it doesn’t work out? It’s too early to think about pre-nuptial agreements, I know – but do they even exist for this? Is there some sort of probation period when we could be ‘engaged’ to see if it would really work?

When I was reading about the new White Paper (which is a title for someone’s idea of a perfect marriage if I ever read one) I saw that there would be a lot of new web sites to help in this. So… that would be… like Tinder for schools…? I’m not sure I like the sound of that. Friends from my town have been to what they’ve described as ‘speed dating’ events where lots of MATs are there, and they say they still get phone calls from some of them every now and again. Has anyone reading this been to one of those? Was it as cringe-making at it sounds?

Ugh. Why isn’t it like the TV?

Whatever.  I’ve told Nicky that no matter what Mat says, I’m not letting him get me into bed on the first date.

Do you have any advice for our nervous governor?

We asked the luminaries of the obscure nexus of educational comment / relationship advice for their tips for those taking their first steps in dating. Here’s what they had to say:


Image credit: “i saw you on tinder” Trastevere 2014 by Denis Bocquet – licensed under CC BY 2.0.


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