01x01 - Episode 1

Episode transcripts for the TV show "The Principal". Aired: October 7, 2015 to October 2015.
When a history teacher is promoted to Principal of a notoriously violent Boys' school in Sydney's south-west, his radical approach brings him into conflict and leaves his personal life dangerously exposed. But just when he seems to be making progress, a 17-year-old student is found d*ad on school grounds.
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01x01 - Episode 1

Post by bunniefuu »



Hi. Matt Bashir.

Ah! Ursula Bright. Deputy principal.

I was beginning to wonder if you'd show.

Oh, look, I'm in the middle of a funding grant submission for a PSFG, which is due today, so I'm afraid I'm still clearing the desk.

No, that's OK. I don't really use my office too much anyway.





Are you serious, man? Are you serious where you're walking?

Walk around!

Go f*ck yourself, man.

Which one of you animals did this, huh?

Oh, yeah, you're a smart-arse, eh?

Your meat tastes like shit.

You're animals! You're all animals!

Your mum's an animal.

Bashir: Morning. Morning.





What the f*ck are you looking at, Tarek?

Looking at your ugly head.


Yep. Morning.



Who the f*ck are you?

Your new principal.



Good morning.

Morning, boys.



Man: I'm so sick of hearing kids telling me that where they've come from....

I don't... I don't care. I don't care.

Seriously, mate, seriously...

Hi. I'm Matt Bashir, the new principal.


It's great to be here.


Guys! Guys!

He's gotta go.

Woman: Shh.

New principal.

Nice tie.



Uh... in case you haven't already heard, I was teaching history and was deputy principal at Greystone and Lakehurst Girls.

Actually, once upon a time I was a student here at Boxdale.

Mr Palgan here taught me maths.

I'm a sucker for a challenge.

I must be, right?

Otherwise, why would I risk having a g*n put to my head by a student, like the last principal?

This place is a w*r zone.

Student numbers are at an all-time low.

Results are way below the state average, and the department has been g*n to close this place down.

So they send us a w*nk*r in a suit.

But instead, they took a risk and they hired me, a fledgling principal and self-confessed workaholic.

This is our last chance to turn this place around.

If we want kids to change, we've got to catch them doing the right thing.

We've got to spot problems before they happen.

And we have to build relationships with their families and the community.

I am looking forward to getting to know you all and to making that happen.

You know what I'm looking forward to, Matt?

Can I call you Matt?


I'm looking forward to the day they stop throwing new principals at us, pretending it's gonna fix the problem.

If they can't fix a doorknob that's been busted for 18 months, how are they gonna fix this place?

Seriously? They don't have a bloody clue.

You're right.

They probably don't. But I do.

YOU do?

I grew up less than 10 minutes away from here. I went to this school.

Now, it might have one of the worst reputations in the state, but it's all that these kids have, it's all this community has.

You give me two weeks.

To save the school.

To make a difference.

Mr Bashir, welcome aboard. I'm Val.



And this is Hafa Habeb, our relief maths teacher.

Mr Bashir, pleased to meet you. - (MOUTHS WORDS) - Likewise.

These are the bushfires you're putting out today.

The local butcher reckons one of the kids smashed his shop window this morning, WorkCover claim over a cut finger and the canteen owner wants compensation for loss of income during Ramadan.

Hey, Rina.



Nothing else to say?

Just that he's got it in for us cos we're Muslim.

I never busted his window.

Alright, off you go. Get back to class.

Hi. I'm Matt Bashir, the new principal.

I'm the youth liaison officer, Kellie Norton.

Do you have permission to interview these kids?

Well, they're not formal interviews, but I spoke to Ursula Bright.

Is it about the butcher's window?


You going to do anything about shit bags like him?

Well, first I'd find out if there's more to him than being just a shit bag.

You want to waste your time, go ahead.

Did he say that he did it?

Of course not.

Hey, no offence, but the last sucker they sent ended up in the funny farm.

You don't get a reality check, you might be joining him.

Hey, Kellie.

Maybe lose the g*n, the cuffs, the squad car with the flashing lights, you might have better luck these boys talking to you if you didn't look like the enemy, hm?

It's turning into shit, sir. It's too thin.

OK, so just...

The sauce.

.. four careful swipes each side at 45 degrees...

Sir! - .. is all you're gonna need to get a good result.

Sir, it's not thickening, sir. It's not thickening.

The sauce is supposed to thicken. What, man?!

So if you see a chef doing that, or, you know, going like this, yeah, what's he doing?

He's showing off.


Having a wank, sir.


But don't tell him that, otherwise you're gonna lose your job.

Hey, don't turn it up, you dumb f*ck!

Tarek! Enough with the language.

He's f*cking with my sauce, sir.

Alright, let me have a look.

Tarek, buddy, look, mate, that is fine.

That's going to thicken. You'll know when it's OK.

Yeah, I can't taste anything, sir. I'm fasting, sir.

Well, use your other senses, alright? Your eyes.

Look at the consistency, alright? Your smell. (SNIFFS)

Your touch.

Yeah, touch, but don't suck, yeah?

f*ck off, Bilal, or I'll put your head through the window.

Tarek! Tarek, mate, you're hungry, we get it.

You're not the only one fasting here.

There's at least five others in this room.

The other f*g have been eating, sir.

Alright, whatever. Just put your phone away, can you, please?

Yeah, he's calling a Campsie home delivery.

Tarek! Put the phone away. Now!


OK, page 20 outlines the events that led to the uprising.

Sir, it's not even uploading.

Terry... you're still not on version 2.4, I hope.

Look, if it's a bit more than medium rare, that's fine.

I'm not going to chop your finger off for it.

Too much paperwork involved.

Kenny doesn't get jokes, sir. They go over his head.

Alright, whatever. Look, that's looking good, Bilal. Well done.


Alright, Tarek, you can give that to me.

Just gotta finish this.

Give it to me now or it's going to become mine.


Palgan: So, question for last night's homework -- does anyone have the answer?


Uh... don't know, sir.

Stand up.

What are you?

An idiot.

I can't hear you!

An idiot, sir.

Sit down.

Tarek: Did you see that, boys?

Don't give me that crap!

You're in trouble, sir.

BIG f*ck' trouble.

I didn't h*t you, OK?

I went for your phone and then you tucked it away from me.

Oi, he h*t me. These boys are witnesses.

It smells pretty good in here. What's cooking?

Did you hear what I said? He touched me.

I'm sorry, you are...?

Tarek Ahmad.

What are you cooking, Tarek?

Some gay shit.

Steak with... What's... what's the sauce?


Looks pretty good. What do you think? Hmm?

Yeah, it's... it's fine.

But that's not the issue here.

Do you mind?

No, no, no, no, no, no. Not like that.



Now... that is good.


Come on, let's go for a chat.

But I didn't do nothing.

Well, let's go and chat anyway.

What for?

Cos I wanna get the recipe.

Come on. Something's burning.

Bilal! Get back.


You were pretty upset up there.

Yeah, well, I told you. He h*t me.

That's very serious.

Did he actually h*t you?

He touched me, grabbed me, whatever.


Ask him.

I'm asking you.

He tried to take my phone. I don't know.

Why would he do that?

Maybe his was stuffed.

Maybe he wanted to see who I'm texting cos he's a f*g.

Maybe he wanted you to concentrate on what you're doing because you're good at it.

Have you thought about what you want to do when you leave school?

Centrelink. Join a g*ng.

I would have thought someone like you would aim a bit higher than that.

You're good at food tech.

What was the special ingredient you put in the bearnaise sauce, hmm?

And don't tell me that you didn't, because I can cook too and I know there was something in there.

Lemon juice.

That's probably why it wasn't thickening.

Which is maybe why you gave up and started texting?

Hmm? Maybe you thought if you'd stuffed up the sauce, if it wasn't perfect, it wasn't good enough?

No-one is perfect, OK?

Don't let that become your excuse.

Now, there's a work experience opportunity that's come up at a restaurant called Bon Gusto.

Are you interested?

Sir wouldn't let me.

Well, there's this thing called an apology, and when it's genuine, it can make a difference.


What have you done?


Sir h*t me and he came in and...

Yeah, you know the rules. Three strikes and you're out.

I didn't get sent...

It won't wash, mate.

Mr Bashir may be new to the school but he's not stupid.

Tarek, you go back to class. I'll catch up with you later.

Don't do that.

Sorry, but he's in the amber zone. Immediate expulsion.

Amber zone?


We have an established system of behaviour management which...

Which isn't working.

That kid does not need the goalposts changed.

I was trying to work out what he DOES need.

And our teachers don't deserve the sort of crap he dishes out. n't.


Sorry to interrupt, but the butcher's just dumped a cow's head in the foyer.


Mr Matthew Bashir!

Huh. Your mum told me you got a job at the school, but...

Yeah, I'm the new principal.

It was a bit intense on the first day having a cow's head dumped on my doorstep.

Matt, I've had enough, you know that?

This is my fourth window this year.

Alright, the cops don't care, the school doesn't care, the kids do graffiti all over the wall.

You know, they throw rubbish all over the floor.

They block my footpath so my customers can't come in.

They're scumbags. And look at what they turn out to be. Look at 'em.

Look at 'em. Look at 'em, how they just watch us.

Why don't you come along to the next P&C meeting and maybe we can sort this out?

Do I look like a P&C kinda guy?

You'll be president in no time.

Hey how's your mum?

She's good. Thanks for asking. She's good.

She got aches and pains and stuff like that, but she's good, you know?

How's your mum, alright?

All good.

She's a good cook.

It's not like it was around here.

It's changed.

I'm off.

TF. A board meeting.

Ok. Goodnight.



Just give him the chips. What's it to you?

I told you I'm gonna eat 'em later.

It's bullshit.

It's cos he's Shiite.

Hey, she can't stop him buying stuff.

It's a sin for me to serve you food.

Oi, you can't eat 'em now.

Karim, five hours.

Remember what Mum said?

If you're strong enough to get through Ramadan, you're strong enough to get through anything.


That's it, boys. Keep it moving.

Oi, watch yourself, mate.


C12 is that way.

Sir, Scripture's not on.

Well, then, you'll be in the study room.

Matt! Matt!

Um... thanks for helping me out the other day.

Um... do I have to fill out one of those incident reports?

No. No, Tarek calmed down pretty quickly.


He's fine. How about you?

Yeah, yeah, I'm good, I'm good.

I'm, um... Actually, I'm, um...

I'm not good.

I, um...

I'm just... I shouldn't have grabbed his phone, alright?

I lost it.

He's OK.

Um... yeah, I'm just not keeping up.

You know, it's my first year out of teachers' college and, you know, all this paperwork...

I'm afraid if I don't tick the right boxes, or if I forget to record something then I'll risk losing my accreditation.

And then the scheduling.

I mean, half the time, Ursula's got me teaching in a computer lab.

I mean, you can't cook on a computer...


We have information that Karim Ahmad's been selling dr*gs here at school.

I think we have grounds to search his locker.

-- Where did you get this information?

I don't think we should be searching a student's locker based on hearsay.

Rumour has it the Ahmad brothers have links with a local g*ng.

Well, let's see if he'll open it for us.

Those dogs should get their facts straight.

Thanks, Karim.



Mr Bashir?

b*mb thr*at.

Miss, my mother wants me to go home. She's panicking.

No, no, no, no... (SPEAKS ARABIC)

We called you guys half an hour ago.

Well, it's the second b*mb scare in three weeks.

Any idea who made the call? They used a fake Chinese accent.

It could have been anybody, inside or outside the school.

Well, we'll need a list of anyone on detention or anyone who's been suspended or expelled.

The police need information.

Yeah, we gave them a head count.

Look, if I don't get this submission to the PSFG by five, Beechley Park will get our ESL...

Is anybody missing?!

Uh... one Year 9 and two Year 10s. Trevor, is there anyone else?

Ah, yeah, George can't find Tarek.

Oh, there's your culprit. Just a hunch.

If you expect the worst of a kid, that's what you're going to get.

I told you, someone pinched the phone out of my bag.

Tell you what, mate, you need to brush up on your Chinese accent.

(SPEAKS ARABIC).. made a b*mb thr*at.

He has nothing to do with this.

Mum, stay out of it!

Well done. Have you taught him?

Mm, his father was k*lled in Syria.

It's been tough.

I'll be back in 10.



Tarek, wait.


You see I have no control over him. None.

We've got to get this sorted, Mr Ahmad.

If it happens again, you're going to be asked to pay damages.

Mr Ahmad...

His mother was a good woman, but she spoiled him.

In the camps outside Syria, they kept Tarek with her, and his older brother, he came with me.

Karim is different. He will see reason.

But Tarek, he is lost to me.

No, he isn't. He has a talent for cooking.

Did you know that?

What is his punishment?

I cannot watch him. I must work.

It'll be an in-school suspension.

He isn't lost to you.

In-school suspension? That kid will be d*ad before he's 20.

You give up on him and, yeah, he will be.

You alright?


Sit down with Karim and eat.



So you will both come to the mosque for Tarawih.

This new principal, Mr Bashir... he says your brother is a good cook.


Is this true?

I think this is true.




Recording: One new message.

Woman: Mattie?

It's your mother.

Can you call me tonight?


Recording: End of final message.

Yeah? Did you like it?

Woman: The stifado? Beautiful.


I'll bring some more around next week.

Why don't you drop it to me here at home?

(SIGHS) I'll bring it to the shop, Mum.

Oh, Mattie, please, come see your father.

He's not well.

How was knitting club?

Oh good, yes.

Oh, and you wouldn't believe, I saw Claire.

I bumped into her near that Asian grocery on Renleagh Street.

She said she'd been in Singapore for six months with work.


She looks different.

Her hair is short, you know?

Like it was when you first met.

You there? Mattie?

Who's this one here, dragging his heels?


Farid. Welcome.

Shitbox car you got there, Ahmad.

f*ck off, Parata.

Better than your f*ck' b*mb.

What about Sisi? What's his story?

His brother was k*lled in a drive-by sh**ting a few years ago.

Some drug g*ng called the Sons of Hazul were supposed to have been behind it.

Both f*ck' dogs.


Guys, can I just have your attention for a minute, please?

Thanks. You know, I came to this school with some big ideas, and they're proving harder than what I thought.

These kids don't care.

They have no pride in their school, no respect for other people.

And I went home wondering, maybe the department was right to consider tossing this place on the scrap heap.

They weren't.

Because every single one of these kids is worth something, and every one of them deserves a chance.

Now, this is where I need your help, and I won't get it if you're weighed down in mountains of paperwork and endless meetings and admin.

So I'm making some changes that are designed to help teachers do what they're trained to do, and that's teach -- inspire kids to learn.

Now, the first of these changes is to cancel this morning meeting.

You can't cancel morning muster.

Well, I just did.

People won't have a clue what's going on.

You and I can still meet, and if there's anything important we can pass it on.

How do you propose we pay Rina the extra 2.5 days to help the teachers with their paperwork?

The department has allocated some funds via the DSF scheme.

I am endlessly writing to ministers, lobbying moronic bureaucrats for a few measly dollars, and you swan in here with your d*ck and your Lebo mates like you own the place.

He's Egyptian, actually.


Dino Abbadelli, with the department.

You know, I was willing to give you a chance.

But I've seen enough to know that when this all turns to shit, you'll find yourself a comfortable transfer and these kids will be left with even less than bugger-all.

Well, it still isn't clear why you called the b*mb scare.

To get out of this dump.

You don't need a b*mb scare to do that.

You can nick off any time you want.

When you lose someone, it leaves a hole.

And nothing is ever the same.

You can cause all the chaos you want in school.

It's not going to make that hole disappear.

So what's important, hmm? Who cares about Tarek?

Who's got your back?

I don't know.

My brother. My boys.

Yeah, and what do you do for them?

The same.

Well, that's where you can make a difference.

The bonds that you share with people here, the stronger they are, the easier it's going to make that hole to bear.


I don't know what you said to the butcher, but he seems to have calmed down.

I want the shopkeepers onside.

I want everyone I can get involved in turning this place around, cops included.

Hey, what I said the other day, I probably shouldn't have.

I took this job because I wanted to do something to try to keep these kids out of jail, but it's tough, you know?

It is. You lost the bells and whistles, eh?

Looking good.

Actually, I feel a bit naked, I've gotta say.

There's nothing wrong with naked. Naked's good.

So, uh... I'm organising a community meeting and I need some help.

Can I count you in?


Hey, I was thinking, I do a bit of amateur boxing...

You box?

Yeah. It helps me sort my head out.

Anyway, I was thinking I could ask some of the blokes down at the gym to help mentor some of the more troubled kids.

Well, why don't you do it?


They're not going to take lessons from a woman.

Well, they'll have to get over it, otherwise they're not going to learn to box.

When do you want to start?

Wednesday, two o'clock?

I might have to talk a few of the candidates into skipping class to attend.

That'll be a challenge.


2pm Wednesday. Done.

Thank you.

Oh, I meant to ask, have you scheduled the next P&C meeting?


6:30 Thursday.

But no-one ever goes.




Morning. Hey, thanks.

Maybe later. Maybe later.


What's this?

P&C meeting at the high school.

I was hoping some of you guys could come along.

Isn't this your job?

'Liaison' means 'link'.

I'm the link between you guys and what's going on at the school.

No offence, I'd rather stick pins in my eyes.

f*ck' detectives.



You're a hard man to catch.

Sorry, I should have warned you, I don't really spend too much time in my office.

I had a chat with your deputy earlier.

You have a couple of dramas out your way already, I hear.

Yeah, you could say that.

Just don't go over the top, mate, OK?

The staff are concerned...

Dino, you told me that I was the boss on this.

We put you in there, Matt, because you can think outside the square, and we have every confidence in you, OK?

But given there's been a complaint about your appointment receiving preferential treatment, you need...


But you didn't hear it from me.

No way. I'm not skipping, Miss.

It's called jumprope.

I thought we were boxing.

We're training first.

Not with you.

Afraid so.

I'm not hitting a woman, Miss.

Don't worry, you won't get a chance.

Alright, we need to test your stamina.

So start off with your elbows, your knees and your ankles bent.

Keep it low to the ground, light and fast.

And if you want to get fancy, you can try some crisscross, yeah?

Alright, it's your turn, go.

Come on, if you want to get in the ring you need speed and stamina and strength.

Get jumping. Go.

Start off with some doubles, if you like.

One, two. One, two. One, two. One, two.

That's it.

Andy, nice. One, two.


That's it.

Do you shave your legs?

They're waxed.

All the Mozzies do it.

Alright, come on, hairy legs.

Show him his waxing's not making him faster.

That's it.

Nice one, guys. Remember light and fast, low to the ground.

Alright, speed it up now. See how fast you can go.

Come on.

Have a good evening. See you tomorrow.

Karim: Hello? Yeah, brother. I'm leaving school now, yeah?

Give me 10 minutes.

Yeah, alright. I told you I would, didn't I?

Where is it? The necklace?

Hold on. Get out.

Karim, where is it?

Get out, yola.

Tell Dad I'm going to be home after, yeah?

Yeah, alright, mate.



I was with Marcus, working on his bike.

You should hear it, man.

It's purring.

Have you seen Mum's necklace?

It's not in the car.

Are you sure?

Sisi's girlfriend. I seen her wearing it.

He pissed off at lunch to get Manoush.

He stole it and then gave it to her.




I said, wait.



Matt here.

Fireys put it out after a call from a bloke up the street.

Did he see anything?


Fingerprints will be hard to find.

Any idea whose car it is?

It's trashed, bro. It's gone.

Yeah, it's Z...

f*ck' hell, bro.

No f*ck' way, man.


Oh, what the f*ck?

Those f*ck' Ahmads, man. They stole it and they trashed it.

Hey, Sisi, we don't know who did it yet, OK?

They f*cking did it!


Hey, cuz. Yeah, come to school, G.


You're a f*ck' d*ad man, Ahmad, and so's your f*cking brother!

Sisi, come here. I want to talk to you.

f*ck you!

Boys! Boys, stop it!

Get out!

Let him go! Break it up!

You're f*ck' d*ad, bro!

Break it up! Break it up!

Get in here. Everyone in here now.

Tarek: He didn't do it, sir. He was with me.

Yeah, cos you guys did it together.

I was home all night. Ask my dad.

As if they're gonna ask. He probably helped.

Hey, back off. We're going to need an empty room.

Right, you lot in that room down there.

We didn't touch your f*ck' heap of shit car.

Yes, well, somebody did and now he's angry about it.

Who's this?

That's Sisi's cousin, Pig.

Oh, great. Congratulations.

Did you call him?

Call the dogs off now.

He's gonna pay for what he's done.

Hey, the car is gone! Oh, it feels good, doesn't it, huh?

An eye for an eye, hmm? I hurt you, you hurt me back?

Well, vengeance, it never stops.

It just goes back and forth and it gets bigger and bigger until it controls you.

Let me tell you something for free, right?

You, on your own, you're not that important.

What's important is your relationships with each other.

Now, you belong here.

You're not going to feel that until you start looking out for each other.

Now, you go out there and you tell your cousin you're gonna look after your problems for yourself.

We finally managed to get a decent PA for tonight.

Great. Thanks. And what about the other translator?


Uh... you weren't thinking the P&C meeting could go ahead after today's incident, were you?

Why not?

Because the school's in lockdown.

There's police tape out the front, for God's sake.

I posted notification on the website cancelling it.

You cancelled?

You get on the website and you uncancel it, OK?

And next time you're tempted to make a decision like that without consulting me, don't.



A school doesn't exist in isolation, it's part of a community.

And that community is you.

Teachers, parents, grandparents, shopkeepers, council workers, police officers.

All of you. Every single one of you.

How many parents or guardians are afraid for their sons?

Of course. You want a better life for your son, but you're afraid because his world is so different to yours.

So what do you fear the most?


dr*gs. Gangs.

He doesn't do well at school, he won't get a job.

Any fans of the Bulldogs here?


Go, the Dogs!

What if Pritchard ran out onto the field in a green and red hoodie?


A uniform shows pride and commitment to something that's greater than ourselves.

It's only a small thing, but I need your help to make that happen.

I'm not saying that these changes will be easy.

But this school is in crisis.

Sitting on the fence is only going to lead to one thing.

A sore arse.


Goodnight. Thank you.

You're a good man.

I've got a good feeling about you.

Thanks for coming.

Hey, not a bad effort.

Hey, thanks for your help.

I didn't know you went to school here.

Yeah. Yeah, I was one of those kids that you would have called a shit bag.

I did win an award once, though. Scripture.


No, I got the trophy to prove it.

Well, you'll need it. We should celebrate.

How about a drink?

Ah, I'd love to, but it'll have to be another time.

Drink? Yeah, I'm up for it. Where are we going?


The local?



Morning, boys. Farid, nice tie.

Looking good. Well done.

Hey, ah, it's Frank. Good meeting last night. Better watch out.

I might even join the P&C.

Dino here, mate. Don't you ever answer your Skype?


(DISTORTED) You know what you are, Bashir? You're scum.

I know what you're up to.

Go, the Dogs, sir.

You're late, mate. Hey, straight to the bin with that, please.

Any reason you didn't tell me that Karim was dealing dr*gs?

We searched his locker. There was nothing found.

Still worth mentioning, I would have thought.

Two years ago, a female student made a complaint against him.

What was the complaint?

Anything happens to him, it's on you.


I didn't f*cking touch his brother.

He an enemy of your brother's?


Do it.

Hey, what the f*ck, bro?

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