Language and non-communication

This is the text of a letter which came to us (and all parents) from my children’s primary school:

Late last week there was a serious incident which was dealt with promptly beginning with ensuring the safety of children and staff. The incident was then addressed following [school name]’s procedures and Department of Education guidelines. Due to the seriousness of the incident the highest level action was immediately implemented.

I defy anyone to figure out what actually happened!

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Monash Postgraduate Conference

I’m at the first Monash Postgraduate Linguistics Conference this morning. I’ve heard about language maintenance for Indonesian families in Melbourne, 19th century letters written in Pennsylvania German, and folklinguistic concepts in Australia (amongst others). But the best paper so far was about linguistic constructions of authenticity in Pittsburgh and Malang (Indonesia)- anyone who can include mullets in a linguistics talk gets my vote. But I should declare my interest: this speaker is one of my students, so I might be biased. Overall, it’s great to see a good turnout for this event.