In my naiveté I was astounded by the way high school formals have become defined by celebrity culture. After dropping my daughter off to her friends before her end of year formal I found out that we were expected to follow her and her friends in their posh car all the way to the venue. Hundreds of parents and relations thronged the steps. The hired and borrowed cars queued up. As each one disgorged its sixteen-year old occupants a barrage of flashes went off and mums squealed at the kids who posed for the cameras.