Thursday, October 20, 2005


When Slenderdeer High School teacher, Anthea Albantine started a book-lending service for her English Literature students last month, she was hoping to capture their imaginations and create a love for reading. However, as a new week dawns, Mrs Albantine is facing an uncertain future after her project was unceremoniously scrapped and she herself was suspended indefinitely from her job as Head of English.

This reporter contacted Kay Blundell-Harrow, a senior official at Suffolk Local Council, to clarify what had happened. Ms Blundell-Harrow gave the following statement:

"Mrs Albantine has been suspended forthwith following an incident that can only be described as grossly insensitive and discriminatory. Mrs Albantine lent one of her students Tolkien's The Return of the King, which naturally resulted in the disciplinary action meted out."

When pressed further, Ms Blundell-Harrow explained that the book in question has a cover illustration depicting Gandalf the White, who is carrying a white staff, and could therefore be offensive to visually impaired people. Mrs Albantine, she continued, should have been aware of this, and is thus at fault.

Mrs Albantine refused to comment on events, although a source informed this reporter that she is looking forward to working on her ongoing novel.


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