'˜In so many ways I was lucky to have my mum around at school'
Whether or not school is very appealing, at least there are a few hours in the day where you can escape your parents.
But for Charley Naylor, this was not quite the case. The 30-year-old attended Broad Oak Primary School in Penwortham, where her mum, Susan, was also a governor.
She says: “I went to school with all my four siblings and my cousins, but I also was at school with my mum. If she wasn’t shouting at us to get ready for school and reminding us countless times to take our PE kits, you could hear her over the playground shouting at the lads chasing each other with sticks, or the girls arguing over bird nests made of the fresh cut grass on the fields.
“It was Mrs Naylor in school and mum at home, so I was sometimes shouting bye to my mum as I waved from the gates of the entrance to school, only to walk past Mrs Naylor by the time I had lined up in the playground. There was ever an occasional embarrassing moment when you forget Mrs Naylor and shout ‘mummy’ as you walk past her showing guests around.
“I enjoyed school and I liked my mum being around. I particularly enjoyed it when a sibling misbehaved and had to stand at the door facing all the parents at home time. They knew there was going to be trouble when they got home. These were particularly smug moments of mine at times.
“However, not so great when the shoe was on the other foot and I was reminded of my mum’s reputation and how important it was for me to behave myself.
“In so many ways I was lucky to have my mum around. We experienced highs of her always being at assemblies as I was awarded best handwriter; the trips out to places like the zoo, and walking to the church for Christingle. There were also the lows of knowing there weren’t any secrets at school – being in trouble at school was never going to end well.
“But one of the best things was knowing if ever anything got a little hard, or if we needed a little pep talk, we only had to peer around the corner or check the dinner hall, and we had our own little secrets: a quick hug from mum to make all those playground fears, difficult maths and spelling tests feel achievable.”