THINGS I will never, ever complain about again once this is all over, part three thousand and sixty two.

The frantic school run, bundling bags, French horns, PE kits and children who seem to think time is ELASTIC into the car; the daily Battle for a Parking Space in the hellish school car-park, while sweary-muttering about selfish double parkers who think a mini-roundabout is an acceptable drop off point; and the need to come up with a varied and nutritionally-balanced packed lunch menu for the boys on a weekly basis. (“Never had pitta bread for school lunch in my day,” grumbles their father, to the wind, as no-one is listening.)

I promise not to moan about having to keep under control the packed kitchen noticeboard, awash with timetables and crumpled letters rescued from schoolbags and smoothed, Blu-tacked and organised in date order (okay, so I actually secretly enjoy that) to remind us all that Monday is curling and band, Wednesday is gymnastics, the school trip is Tuesday, and there’s lunchtime boat-building (STEM is king) on Friday – oh and remember money for the new Barista Bar (seriously?) because Thursday is super-smoothie day.....

And I vow never again to cast up the hours spent waiting in cars for activities to end, or the lunchtimes missed to finish work early so as not to miss the latest concert/sports day/parents’ night/parental engagement learning session.

Life without all of the above is an unfamiliar and unsettling place. When I took my sons to school on Friday for what is likely to be their last day for the foreseeable future, they were subdued and sad.

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The teachers, too, looked heartbroken. As parents, we take for granted how much teachers do for young people, way above and beyond the day job. This puts all of that marvellous support into sharp focus.

There are much bigger things, of course, than the loss of after-school badminton, and the way teachers are rising to the challenges facing vulnerable young people is impressive.

But I feel sad for the seniors whose schooldays have ended this way; worried for my son and his friends due to sit exams; devastated for the juniors, who miss out on the simple joys of summer term.

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Young people are resilient, though, and in the space of one weekend, our boys have rallied.

“Look on the bright side, mum,” said the 12-year-old who should have been starting the second half of his modern languages course today. “This way, we can ALL learn Spanish together.” Every cloud...