You do the maths...

News reaches Islington this week of two great British institutions gracing the borough with their presence. Two very, erm, different great British institutions.

First up, the great British institution of having stuff outsourced to India. Now, this is a recent invention, but who says that great British institutions need to be centuries old?

We do so much outsourcing now that it’s definitely part of the fabric of this sceptred Isle. Assuming, of course, that we haven’t outsourced the fabric.

A primary school in Archway has outsourced its maths teaching to India. Year six pupils at Ashmount Primary School in Archway (hello kids!) are getting one-to-one maths lessons over the internet from Indian tutors.

The teachers only get �7 an hour for their work, which admittedly does go further in India than England. Not sure by how much though. You do the maths. Oh no, hang on – they’ll do it for you!

At first, I thought that this was a bit weird. But then I remembered my struggle with maths throughout school and how I could have benefited from a little extra one to one tuition.

Actually, I found the subject so stressful that I could really have benefited from a Valium, but I don’t think the year six teacher would approve of that for her kids.

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One might also wonder why the year six parents (hello parents!) aren’t helping their kids with their maths homework. Well, if their parents are anything like my dad was when it came to maths homework time, it’s probably better that they’re not. Every evening would end up in shouting (dad’s) and tears (mine) as he failed to understand why I couldn’t add up properly.

Of course, I have taken my revenge on him since by ending up as a complete disappointment all round. Take that, dad (sob).

So – good luck, kids and maths tutors! I hope your sessions are productive and that you all grow up to be accountants.

The other great British institution to come to Islington this week was Tom Jones, who performed his new gospel album in Upper Street’s famous Union Chapel.

Given the venue and the theme of the songs, I do hope that nobody chucked their knickers at him.

I’m sure even Tom would agree that it would be most unseemly to throw one’s panties around in a house of worship.

LOUISE SCODIE is a comedian, actress and writer. A regular on the comedy circuit, she can also be heard on BBC radio.