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October Knott's Landing
03-10-2017

Acronyms are everywhere. It seems like everywhere I turn they are closing in on me. Schools are an especially rich seam of impenetrable acronym based gobbled gook.

It starts before you even get in. Are you applying for the EYFSP (Early years foundation stage programme) or straight into F2(Foundation 2)? Then they go up to KS1 (Key Stage 1) and on to KS2 and 3. Is your school VA (Voluntary Aided) or an academy? Their books come home and at the top of each page is the QFL (Question For Learning), also known as the WALT (We Are Learning Today). You might be worried about their SATS (Standard Assessment Task/Test) in year 2 and year 6 or maybe you just don?t know what an NQT is (Newly Qualified Teacher). Is your secondary school studying for an eBacc (English Baccalaureate)?

AcronymEducation isn't alone in creating acronym soup. The NHS is another place that aims to baffle you with seemingly random letters. Need a doctor? Perhaps the OOH (Out Of Hours) is the right place for you. Just make sure you don't get a DNA (Did Not Attend) note on your file. If it?s serious you might end up in the ED (Emergency Department) of A&E (Accident and Emergency) and if you are really unlucky the HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Service) team might have to come and get you. Once you've been patched up you might need an OT - (Occupational Therapist) or a PT (Physiotherapist).

If you are old, then your health authority might be part of the HASCIP (Health and Social Care Integration Programme).  It's a nightmare to have to repeat some of the incredibly long and unwieldy terms but what is often forgotten is that every acronym is another brick in the wall that separates the organisation from its confused users. The more acronyms, the higher that wall, and the harder it is for you to be understood.

Of course it's not all serious. The internet has spawned a whole raft of them. Are you a Noob (new player) on a game? MFW (My face when) I see yet another daft cat GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) and fall of my chair giggling ICWYDT (I see what you did there). Just remember if you have to Google it, you are probably too old to use it!                                 

TTFN! Helen Knott

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