It was pretty damming, wasn't it? A culture in which it was felt that whistle blowers' careers could end suddenly if they mustered the breath to blow a whistle. To tell the truth, I've never been given a whistle to blow as part of the standard equipment I've been expected to use in any job I've had. I don't know whether PE teachers get them. My whistling abilities are limited to melodies, attempted birdsong and wolf whistles, which I hasten to add, are used to attract the attention of my dog rather than the ladies. I don't pretend to be an expert whistler and can tell you now that you'd be disappointed if you booked me in as a Roger Whittaker tribute act to help you out in your assemblies. Nevertheless, whistle blowing interests me to the extent that I appreciate that there are skills beyond the needs of the football referee and often involve the expertise used in whistle sucking. You only need to listen to a dog's squeaky toy for a minute to appreciate how much they enjoy the suck part as much as the blow part and a minute further to snatch the sodding thing out of his grasp and put it beyond reach. I'm not sure where this is going, other than to advise that the whistle suck Is less harsh than the whistle blow and might be used to advantage if teachers choose to alert their management about abuse during exams.