chapter  7
ByMichael Barber, David Carr, Margaret Carter
Pages 17

Haywood High School, situated as it is in High Lane, has views over much of Burslem and the rest of the Potteries. The school playing field looks on to the stadium, if that is the appropriate term, of Port Vale football club, an organisation that knows all there is to know about the vagaries of league tables. The school serves two large housing estates, both of which are predominantly council-owned and are representative of the more deprived parts of the Potteries. Behind the school a gloomy shopping street runs down the hill towards Burslem. The shops are of the small, local variety and each of them has its own one-armed bandits aimed, according to Yvonne Jeffries, the headteacher, to persuade pupils to part with their limited funds on their way home. Some years ago the fish-andchip shop there did a roaring trade during the school lunch hour, and bought a row of game machines to exploit the pupils while they were in the queue. Yvonne Jeffries, who was appointed in 1989, decided, as part of her improvement strategy, to prevent pupils leaving the school at lunch-time. The chip shop owner was outraged. He said the school was putting him out of business. The school was unmoved and the chip shop is still there. The incident is a sharp reminder that being responsive to the local community, as the jargon has it, is not always plain sailing.