Phillip Wyatt: Being Teased

Phillip was born in 1959 in Bristol. He attended a local special school for deaf children in Bristol from the age of two. Then at age eleven he went to a residential special school for deaf children in Surrey, continuing on to the school's residential sixth form college.

Here Philip recalls painful memories of being teased at his school.


After dinner had finished we had to walk around in pairs. Everyone had a partner except me, I was left on my own. I wore glasses, they were NHS ones, and I looked Harry Potter wearing my round wire framed spectacles. At that time if you wore NHS glasses you would get teased. They all teased me for being poor. In pairs, we had to go into the dining room and set the tables ready for the next morning, I think we did it every day of the week. So we did that, and that was fine. It was quite a shock as in the pairs they were spotting each other’s mistakes and arguing about what was right or wrong. As I was on my own and had no one to point out the mistakes I had made, I got called thick, and teased terribly later. This was my first night. It was a very upsetting experience.

I remember it was during my first year, it was the May holiday, and my father arrived to pick me up from school. I was surprised that he’d come to pick me up. Unfortunately, he’d come in a three-wheeled car. All the other boys rushed to look at the car and laughed and pointed at it. I couldn’t win! When we returned after the holidays, I was teased for weeks about my dad’s three-wheeler. I just had to persevere. It was awful.

Explore more

Explore stories by theme or view the timeline of significant events in education for disabled people

A selection of other stories...