Acland (1909)

(page numbers in brackets)

Notes on the text

The complete report (except for the Appendices and the Index) is shown in this single web page. You can scroll through it or use the following links to go to the various chapters.

Preliminary pages (1-15)
Prefaratory note, membership, contents, reference

Chapter I (16-19)
Introduction
Chapter II (20-32)
Extent of the problem - pupil numbers
Chapter III (33-50)
Need for educational care during adolescence
Chapter IV (51-60)
Necessity for better educational foundations in the day school
Chapter V (61-66)
Waste during adolescence - educational neglect and demoralising employment
Chapter VI (67-111)
History of continuation schools and classes in England and Wales
Chapter VII (112-125)
Various methods for securing larger attendance without compulsion
Chapter VIII (126-134)
Difficulties inherent in the present voluntary system
Chapter IX (135-144)
Opinion in Britain on making attendance compulsory
Chapter X (145-159)
Compulsory attendance in Germany and Switzerland
Chapter XI (160-186)
Practical difficulties in introducing compulsory attendance
Chapter XII (187-201)
Special problem of continuation schools in rural districts
Chapter XIII (202-204)
Special needs of girls in urban districts
Chapter XIV (205-214)
Cost of adopting the Committee's recommendations
Chapter XV (215-232)
Summary of conclusions
Chapter XVI (233-237)
Short summary of principal recommendations

Appendices (238-299)
(image-only pdf file - 8.6mb)

Memorandum 1 (300-319)
by RH Tawney
Memorandum 2 (320-324)
by the Tutorial Classes Committee of the University of Oxford

Index (i-xxvii)
(image-only pdf file - 3.8mb)
followed page 324 and covered both Volumes I and II


The Acland Report (1909)
Consultative Committee Report on Attendance, Compulsory or Otherwise, at Continuation Schools

London: HM Stationery Office


[title page]

BOARD OF EDUCATION

REPORT

OF THE

CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE

ON

ATTENDANCE,
COMPULSORY OR OTHERWISE
AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS

VOL. I REPORT AND APPENDICES

(Adopted by the Committee, May 7th, 1909)

Presented to Parliament by Command of His Majesty

LONDON:
PRINTED FOR HIS MAJESTY'S STATIONERY OFFICE
BY EYRE AND SPOTTISWOODE, LTD.,
PRINTERS TO THE KING'S MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY.

And to be purchased, either directly or through any Bookseller, from
WYMAN & SONS, LTD, 109, FETTER LANE, FLEET STREET, E.C.; and
32 ABINGDON STREET, WESTMINSTER, S.W.; or
OLIVER & BOYD, TWEEDDALE COURT, EDINBURGH; or
E. PONSONBY, 116, GRAFTON STREET DUBLIN.

1909

[Cd. 4757.]    Price, 1s. 6d.


[page 3 (unnumbered)]

PREFATORY NOTE

It is universally admitted that educational questions lie at the root of many of the most important social problems. Of late, especially, improvements in the provision made for continued education after the age up to which attendance at school is at present compulsory have been widely advocated as tending to stimulate commercial and industrial progress, and as being likely to have a direct bearing on the whole question of unemployment. The Board of Education, therefore, thought it desirable to refer to their Consultative Committee the general question of attendance, compulsory or otherwise, at Continuation Schools of children from the Public Elementary Schools who have reached an age at which they are no longer under statutory obligation to attend those schools. The terms of reference are quoted in full on page 15 of this volume.

The Committee's Report is a monument of the care and discrimination which is characteristic of their labours, and deserves to be widely read and most carefully considered. The Board believe that it will be of very great service in the consideration of many difficult problems which are at present engaging the attention of all thoughtful citizens.

The recommendations contained in the Report deal with matters that are obviously too large and complex for the Board to be able usefully to express any views upon them without time for very careful consideration. But in view of the importance of the subject and of the desirability of having it widely considered at the earliest possible moment, the Board have thought it well to publish the whole Report immediately on its receipt, in order to enable all who are interested to consider both the Report itself and also the evidence on which it is based.

The Board have again to thank those persons who have appeared as witnesses before the Committee both for their


[page 4]

evidence and for their consent to its publication. The consideration of a report of this kind and the task of weighing the conclusions embodied in it are greatly facilitated by the publication of the evidence, itself, for it is through the evidence that the reader is able to approach most directly the experience of those who are in close touch with the problems under discussion.

In view of the bulk of the Report the Board have decided, for the convenience of those who will desire to study it, to publish the Report proper and the evidence in two separate volumes. The general index is printed at the end of each volume and is separately paged, the pagination of the two volumes being in other respects continuous.

8th July 1909.





[page 5]

TABLE OF CONTENTS

VOLUME I

PAGE
NAMES OF THE CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE6
ANALYSIS OF THE COMMITTEE'S REPORT7
LIST OF APPENDICES13
LIST OF TABLES14
COPY OF THE REFERENCE FROM THE BOARD OF EDUCATION15
THE COMMITTEE'S REPORT16
APPENDICES238
MEMORANDUM BY MR. R. H. TAWNEY300
MEMORANDUM SUBMITTED BY THE TUTORIAL CLASSES COMMITTEE OF THE UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD320
INDEX* To follow page324

VOLUME II

SUMMARIES OF EVIDENCE325
    A. EMPLOYERS332
    B. REPRESENTATIVES OF LABOUR391
    C. H.M. INSPECTORS432
    D. LOCAL EDUCATION AUTHORITIES439
    E. PERSONS ENGAGED IN TEACHING545
    F. WOMEN WITNESSES583
    G. GENERAL597
ALPHABETICAL LIST OF WITNESSES671
INDEX* To follow page672

*For convenient reference, a complete index to both volumes has been placed at the end of each volume.


[page 6]

NAMES OF THE MEMBERS OF THE CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE
THE RIGHT HON. A. H. DYKE ACLAND (Chairman).
MRS. SOPHIE BRYANT.
THE REVEREND JAMES CHAPMAN.
DR. R. S. CLAY.
MISS ISABEL CLEGHORN.
MISS F. HERMIA DURHAM.
DR. R. T. GLAZEBROOK.
SIR HENRY F. HIBBERT.
THE RIGHT HON. HENRY HOBHOUSE.
MR. MARSHALL JACKMAN.
MISS LYDIA MANLEY.
MR. ALBERT MANSBRIDGE.
DR. NORMAN MOORE.
MR. J. L. PATON.
PRINCIPAL SIR HARRY R. REICHEL.
PROFESSOR M. E. SADLER.
MR. D. J. SHACKLETON, M.P.
MR. GEORGE SHARPLES.
MR. A. L. SMITH.
MISS MARGARET J. TUKE
THE REVEREND JAMES WENT.

ARTHUR H. WOOD (Secretary).


[page 7]

ATTENDANCE, COMPULSORY OR OTHERWISE, AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS

ANALYSIS OF THE CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE'S REPORT

PAGE
CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTION16
(a) The urgency and complexity of the question. Adolescence and modern industrial conditions16
(b) The plan of the Report, and sources of information17

CHAPTER II. THE EXTENT OF THE PROBLEM. ESTIMATE OF THE NUMBER OF CHILDREN UNDER 17 IN ENGLAND AND WALES WHO ARE ELIGIBLE TO ATTEND CONTINUATION SCHOOLS
20
(a) The number of children under 14 years of age21
(i) The powers possessed by Local Education Authorities in determining the number of children under 14 who become exempt from the obligation to attend the Day School, and the use to which they have put these powers21
(ii) Estimate of the number of children under 14 years of age who actually obtain full-time exemption from school attendance22
(b) The number of adolescent boys and girls in England and Wales between 14 and 17 years of age27

CHAPTER III. THE NEED FOR EDUCATIONAL CARE DURING ADOLESCENCE
33
(a) The present lack of suitable mental instruction and character training during adolescence, both for boys and girls33
(b) The present lack of physical training during adolescence. The importance of remedying this34
(c) Educational changes called for by changes in industrial structure and in social outlook36
(d) The desirability, both in their own interest and in that of the community, of giving to adolescents a better educational equipment for their future duties; the fact that the greater efficiency of the workers secured by improved education enlarges (partly by improved methods of production, partly by avoidance of waste) the produce out of which both wages and profits are drawn43
(e) Brief enumeration of the methods by which this can be done50


[page 8]

PAGE
CHAPTER IV. THE NECESSITY FOR BETTER EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATIONS IN THE DAY SCHOOL51
(a) Improvements needed in the staffing and in the course of study in the Day Schools51
(b) The desirability of extending the period of compulsory attendance at the Day School. Examination of possible social and industrial objections to the raising of the school age55
(c) The need for lessening the drain on the energies of Day School pupils caused by exhausting or demoralising employments out of school hours59

CHAPTER V. THE PRESENT WASTE DURING ADOLESCENCE OF THE RESULTS OF DAY SCHOOL TRAINING THROUGH EDUCATIONAL NEGLECT AND DEMORALISING FORMS OF EMPLOYMENT
61
(a) The vital importance, in the national interest, of finding means for securing young boys and girls during adolescence from educational neglect and from demoralising forms of employment. Loafing habits among the young a frequent cause of criminal propensities61
(b) Ignorance of many parents and children as to the conditions of employment, the rates of wages, and the future prospects of various occupations, and as to the course of education required as a preparation for full efficiency in them62
(c) Insufficiency of the present efforts of teachers, Apprenticeship Committees, etc., to afford the requisite guidance. The need for Employment Registries for Adolescents63
(d) Undesirability of allowing children to cease to attend the Day School under 16 years of age, unless suitably occupied65
(e) The importance of the questions raised in Chapters IV and V, and their bearing on the problem of Continuation Schools66

CHAPTER VI. THE HISTORY AND PRESENT POSITION OF EVENING AND OTHER CONTINUATION SCHOOLS AND CLASSES IN ENGLAND AND WALES
67
(a) The history of Evening Schools in England and Wales67
(i) First period, 1711-185169
(ii) Second period, 1881-190974
(b) The Adult Schools: comparison with the People's High Schools in Denmark79
(c) Technical classes for adults, and Tutorial classes in History and Economics82
(d) The efforts of Local Education Authorities to encourage attendance at Continuation Schools and to interest employers in them85
(e) Increasing encouragement given by employers to the further education of their young work people96
(f) Educational facilities for boys employed in the Post Office100
(g) The further education of recruits in the Navy and Army102
(h) The educational needs of golf caddies and boy messengers104
(i) The movement for the establishment of Trade Schools106
(k) Statistics of Evening Schools under Government inspection in England and Wales108


[page 9]

PAGE
CHAPTER VII. DISCUSSION OF VARIOUS METHODS FOR SECURING A LARGER ATTENDANCE AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS WlTHOUT RECOURSE TO STATUTORY COMPULSION112
(a) The improvement of the curriculum and its adjustment to the needs of different categories of pupils112
(i) Boys employed in skilled industries113
(ii) Boys engaged in unskilled occupations114
(iii) Boys in shops, offices, and other commercial occupations115
(iv) Boys engaged in agriculture, horticulture. etc.116
(v) Girls engaged in domestic duties or preparing themselves for home life, or for wage-earning occupations116
(vi) Adults116
(b) The functions and opportunities of the Local Education Authorities117
(c) The influence of the Day School teacher119
(d) The co-operation of parents120
(e) What employers can do for Continuation Schools; the importance of this in any successful voluntary system of Continuation Schools121
(f) The question of grants to pupils in Continuation Schools during the last few months of their Day School career124

CHAPTER VIII. DIFFICULTIES INHERENT IN THE PRESENT VOLUNTARY SYSTEM
126

(a) The apathy of some districts, especially rural ones, and the disinclination to provide adequate menus of further education; the difficulty of removing this obstacle without administrative action on compulsory lines. The reluctance of some Local Education Authorities, except under statutory obligation, to pay for a sufficient number of specially qualified teachers and for the varied educational equipment which are needed for any thoroughly efficient scheme of Continuation Schools adjusted to the practical needs of different occupations in life

126
(b) The attitude of the majority of employers towards the educational interests of their younger work-people128
(c) The difficulty, under a voluntary system, of protecting pupils in Continuation Schools from overstrain which may arise from excessive hours of work and school131
(d) The case of children whose hours of work, though not necessarily fatiguing, clash with the hours of Continuation Classes131
(e) The weakness of a voluntary as compared with a compulsory system in impressing upon the mind of the nation and especially of parents the necessity of continuing educational care during the years of adolescence133
(f) Conclusion to be drawn from a consideration of the above difficulties134


[page 10]

PAGE
CHAPTER IX. OPINION IN GREAT BRITAIN ON THE SUBJECT OF MAKING ATTENDANCE AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS COMPULSORY135
(a) The views of witnesses who appeared before the Committee; general agreement in favour of some system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, subject to various qualifications; list of witnesses who were opposed to compulsion135
(b) Three causes which have furthered the growth of opinion in England and Wales in favour of some form of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools:
(i) The co-ordination of elementary, secondary, and technical education which under favourable conditions was made possible by the Education Act, 1902, and which has led administrators and the public generally to take a more comprehensive view of the task of national education
137
(ii) The influence of foreign examples137
(iii) The discussion of the question in Parliament138
(c) The opinion of work-people in England and Wales139

CHAPTER X. COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS IN PARTS OF GERMANY AND SWITZERLAND
145
(a) The German Empire:
(i) The extent to which and the methods by which compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools is enforced in Germany. Local option the more usual system. Compulsion not applicable as a rule to girls
145
(ii) Origin and growth of the German Continuation Schools146
(iii) The duty of the German employer in connection with the education of his younger workpeople. The Imperial Law147
(iv) The origin and extension of the compulsory system in Germany148
(v) The experience of Munich149
(vi) The new law respecting attendance at Continuation Schools in Württemberg154
(b) Switzerland:
(i) The extent to which compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools is enforced in Switzerland
156
(ii) The growing tendency to place the employer under statutory obligation to allow his younger workpeople to attend Continuation Schools157
(iii) The Recruits' Schools and their effect on Swiss education159

CHAPTER XI. PRACTICAL DIFFICULTIES IN THE WAY OF INTRODUCING COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS IN ENGLAND AND WALES AND THE METHODS OF MEETING THEM
160
(i) Educational difficulties:
(a) The early age at which most children leave the Day School, and their consequent inability to profit by the more advanced instruction which should be given by the Continuation School
160


[page 11]

PAGE
CHAPTER XI. - continued
(b) The insufficiency of the present supply of qualified teachers, and, to some extent, of accommodation and equipment, for any sudden increase of Continuation Schools161
(c) The possible recalcitrancy of some of the pupils under a compulsory system, if suddenly introduced. Would those pupils who do not come to Continuation Schools voluntarily, profit by further education?164
(d) The difficulty of organising classes to meet the varied requirements of all the occupations in each locality167
(ii) Economic difficulties168
(a) The question of reducing the hours of labour for adolescents who are attending Continuation Schools. The fatigue of the scholars170
(b) The effect which the reduction of the hours of labour of adolescents might have upon trade. How the reduction should be secured174
(c) The suggested inability of many parents to dispense with the wages which their children can earn by full-time employment in industries. The possibility of exaggerating this177
(iii) Administrative difficulties:
(a) Alternative methods for introducing compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools; the difficulties and advantages of universal compulsion by State Law and of gradual compulsion by local option. The balance of advantages in favour of local option
178
(b) The necessity for using the employer in enforcing compulsory attendance of adolescents183
(i) Parental control not effective over adolescents to the same extent as over younger children183
(ii) The danger of bringing children into early contact with the law if they are made liable for prosecution in case of failure to attend Continuation Classes184
(iii) How the employer's responsibility may be utilised184
(iv) Possible leakage of boys and girls, such as those who are either unemployed or are working at home or in domestic service186

CHAPTER XII. THE SPECIAL PROBLEM OF CONTINUATION SCHOOLS IN RURAL DISTRICTS
187
(a) The lack of appreciation of education in rural districts, caused largely by inappropriate forms of rural education in the past187
(b) The curriculum of rural schools, its relation to local environment188
(i) Subjects for a rural Day School189
(ii) Subjects for a rural Continuation School190


[page 12]

PAGE
CHAPTER XII. - continued
(c) The special difficulties of rural Continuation Schools:
(i) The difficulty of the staff; the unwillingness of young teachers to train themselves specially for rural schools. The disadvantageous position of rural teachers as regards salary and promotion. The special difficulties of small schools where there is only one teacher
191
Methods for securing better training for country teachers; objections to special Training Colleges for rural teachers; one year and third year courses of training in rural subjects at ordinary Training Colleges; the use of Agricultural Colleges; organisation of local classes in rural subjects; the help that can be given by Local Education Authorities192
(ii) The difficulty of providing Continuation Schools near the homes of pupils in sparsely populated country districts. Objections to Evening Schools for girls in country districts196
(d) Question of raising the minimum age of exemption from school attendance in country districts197
(i) The age of exemption for most country boys to be raised first to 13 and then to 14, as in the case of town boys. An exception, however, to be made for boys to be employed in agriculture or horticulture, who should be allowed for the present to leave school at 13 on condition of attending Continuation Schools three times a week during the session till they are 16 years of age, when such schools are available197
(ii) The minimum age of exemption for girls to be raised to 14. Girls employed in domestic duties at home to be allowed to substitute half-time attendance at school from 13 to 15, for whole-time attendance from 13 to 14. Such extension of the Day School period to be regarded as an alternative to attendance at Evening Schools199
(e) Voluntary versus compulsory methods of improving attendance at Continuation Schools in rural districts. The conclusion that ultimately some form of compulsion will be necessary except in districts which are very sparsely populated199

CHAPTER XIII. THE SPECIAL NEEDS OF GIRLS IN URBAN DISTRICTS
202
The continued education of girls as important and complicated as that of boys. Women's position in modern industry202
The fact that many women have no male workers to support them202
Girls in unskilled and skilled trades. The need for continued education for both203

CHAPTER XIV. ESTIMATE OF THE COST OF ADOPTING THE COMMITTEE'S RECOMMENDATIONS
205
(a) Estimate of the cost (i) to the Rates, (ii) to the Exchequer, of raising the age for school exemption from 12 to 13205


[page 13]

PAGE
CHAPTER XIV. - continued
(b) Estimate of the cost (i) to the Rates, (ii) to the Exchequer, of raising the age for school exemption from 13 to 14208
(c) Estimate of the cost (i) to the Rates, (ii) to the Exchequer, of raising the age for school exemption from 12 to 14209
(d) Estimate of the cost of enforcing compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools on all young persons between 14 and 17 years of age211

CHAPTER XV. SUMMARY OF CONCLUSIONS
215

CHAPTER XVI. SHORT SUMMARY OF PRINCIPAL RECOMMENDATIONS
233

List of Appendices

APPENDIX A.
Copy of Clause 8 of the Education (Scotland) Bill, 1907, and of Clause 10 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908, with short notes on the Bill and Act from which they are taken
238
APPENDIX B.
Summary of replies to the Consultative Committee's Form of Inquiry with regard to Continuation Schools in Rural Districts
243
APPENDIX C.
Statistics of children between 12 and 14, and young persons between 14 and 17, engaged in the various occupations
266
APPENDIX D.
Tables showing the action taken by the various Local Education Authorities in regard to the provision of Continuation Schools
269
APPENDIX E.
Table showing for a few districts the numbers of men (a) below 30, and' (b) between 30 and 40, who applied in 1907-8 to District Committees for relief
275
APPENDIX F.
Exemption from Day School attendance on condition of attendance at Continuation Schools, City of Nottingham Scheme
277
APPENDIX G.
Short statement of the law of school attendance in England and Wales
277
APPENDIX H.
Analysis of replies to an inquiry form dealing with Education and Employment
278
APPENDIX I.
Short analysis of Bills dealing with compulsory Continuation Schools introduced into Parliament during the last twelve years
282
    Mr. Samuel Smith's Bill, 1897.
    The Bishop of Hereford's Bill, 1904.
    Bill introduced in 1905 by Mr. Lambert and others.
    Bill introduced in 1906 by Sir John Brunner and others.
    Bill introduced in 1908 by Mr. Chiozza Money and others.


[page 14]

PAGE
APPENDIX K.
The views of the United Textile Factory Workers' Association on the question of half-time. The leaders' view, and the view of the rank and file
286
APPENDIX L.
Summary of the Evidence laid before the Committee in connection with the continued education of girls
287
APPENDIX M.
Hours of work of young persons in factories, workshops, etc.
291
APPENDIX N.
Statistics showing, for the administrative area of the Lancashire Education Committee, the number of children who left the Day Schools during the year ending 30th October 1908, and who joined Evening Classes immediately, etc.
294
APPENDIX O.
Scheme for the administration of Higher Education in Lancashire
297

List of Tables

TABLE A.
Tables showing population and percentage to total population (Census 1901) of areas under the respective standards of exemption provided by byelaws (England and Wales)
23
TABLE B.
Table showing estimate of the number of scholars on the registers of Public Elementary Schools at each year of age, and estimate of the probable numbers who would remain on the registers between the ages of 12-13 and 13-14 if the age of exemption were 13 and 14 respectively
25
TABLE C.
Estimate of the number of boys and girls at each year of age from 11-21 attending and not attending school during the year 1906-7
29
TABLE D.
Table showing the numbers and percentages of men and women over 15 years of age engaged in wage-earning occupations, arranged in groups of years
44
TABLE E.
Table showing numbers and percentages of scholars in Public Elementary Schools who received instruction in special subjects in 1906-7
54
TABLE F.
Statistics of Evening Schools under Government inspection in England and Wales, 1902-7
111





[page 15]

Copy of the Reference from the Board of Education

In April 1907 the Consultative Committee received a letter from the Board of Education enclosing the following reference:

To consider Clause 8 of the Education Bill for Scotland recently introduced,* and to advise as to its applicability to England and Wales; and, whether apart from or in addition to such legislative change, to consider and advise the Board of Education as to whether any means, and if so what, can be devised, in respect of rural areas and of urban areas respectively, for securing (i) that a much larger proportion of boys and girls should on leaving the Public Elementary School commence and continue attendance at Evening Schools than at present do so; and (ii) that employers and other persons or bodies in a position to give effective help shall co-operate in arranging facilities for such attendance on the part of their employees, and in planning suitable courses and subjects for the schools and classes.
It will be observed that by this reference the Board in 1907 requested the Committee to consider the means of increasing the attendance of young people of both sexes, in town and country, (whether upon a voluntary basis or by a locally adoptive system of compulsion), (1) at Day or Evening Continuation Classes as contemplated by the Education (Scotland) Bill, 1907; (2) at Evening Schools of the various types now general in England and Wales. In this report, therefore, the Committee have employed the term "Continuation School" as conveniently including these different forms of further education. When dealing with those stages of education which precede the Continuation School and lay the foundations upon which its work is based, the Committee have made use of the term "Day School". The context will show that in the following report this term is generally used as synonymous with the term "Public Elementary School", but it has been adopted by the Committee in order that their recommendations may not be understood as excluding the case of pupils who proceed to a Secondary Day School before entering upon attendance at a Continuation Class.

With some modifications, the proposals of the Scotch Education Bill, 1907, as regards Continuation Schools, were adopted by Parliament in the following year, and now form part of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908. In framing their recommendations, therefore, the Committee have had regard to the changes made in this part of the Scotch Education Bill in the course of the Parliamentary discussion, which coincided, in point of time, with the period of their own inquiry.

*i.e., the Education (Scotland) Bill, 1907. A copy of this clause, and also of clause 10 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908, with short accounts of the Bill and Act from which they are taken, is given in Appendix A, page 238.


[page 16]

REPORT OF THE CONSULTATIVE COMMITTEE ON ATTENDANCE, COMPULSORY OR OTHERWISE, AT CONTINUATION SCHOOLS

Chapter I. Introduction

(a) The Urgency and Complexity of the Question.
Adolescence and Modern Industrial Conditions.

The question which has been referred to the Committee by the Board of Education for inquiry and report is urgent and complex. In order to arrive at a judgment in regard to it, the Committee have been compelled to take a wide survey of public education. It has been necessary for them to consider how far, under the changing conditions of our industrial life, the present system of schools and classes and the existing regulations for school attendance protect the permanent interests of the community from the injury which is done to the character and prospects of individuals as well as to the civic welfare and economic resources of the nation by educational neglect during adolescence and by deteriorative conditions of early employment, The Committee find that at the most critical period in their lives a very large majority of the boys and girls in England and Wales are left without any sufficient guidance and care. This neglect results in great waste of early promise, in injury to character, in the lessening of industrial efficiency, and in the lowering of ideals of personal and civic duty.

That there is need in this country for the systematic encouragement of suitable and practical kinds of continued education beyond the now too early close of the Elementary Day School course, is the conclusion which has been reached by all those who have recently investigated the subject.*

*Viz., Mr. and Mrs. Sidney Webb in the edition of Industrial Democracy published in 1902 (London: Longmans, Green & Co.), especially p. lvi.; Professor M. E. Sadler in Report on Secondary Education in Liverpool (1904); pp. 130-32; Professor E. J. Urwick and others in Studies of Boy Life in our Cities (London: J. M. Dent, 1904), pp. 283-6; Mr. C. H. Creasey in Technical Education in Evening Schools (London: Swan, Sonnenschein, 1905), especially pp. 297-300; the London Education Committee in the Report of the Section appointed to consider the Question of Apprentices (London: P. S. King & Son, 1906); Members of the Department of Education in the University of Manchester in Continuation Schools in England and Elsewhere (Manchester: the University Press, 1907), especially pp, 689-749; Mr. Reginald A. Bray in The Town Child (London: Fisher Unwin, 1907), especially p. 201; and Mr. W. H. Beveridge in Unemployment, a Problem of Industry (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1909), especially chapters VI. and IX.


[page 17]

The same judgment has been formed by Local Education Authorities in different parts of the country, by the Distress Committees established under the Unemployed Workmen Act, 1905, by members of Apprenticeship and Skilled Employment Committees, and of Guilds of Help, and by other bodies of social workers.

But, though a serious view must be taken of the present situation, there are some encouraging features in the outlook. The first step towards an effective improvement in the existing state of things is a clear perception of the nature and extent of the mischief, and of the possibility of finding a remedy for it. There are signs of a movement of public opinion in this direction. By appeals to public opinion and by improvements in the organisation of the classes, many Local Education Authorities have considerably increased the attendance at Continuation Schools. In the industrial districts an increasing number of employers of labour and of workpeople are showing willingness to co-operate with public authorities in dealing with the question. Furthermore, outside the sphere of work of the Local Education Authorities, and independently of the efforts of employers and workpeople, much is being done by other voluntary workers to deal with other aspects of the question by means of clubs for boys and girls, by the establishment of apprenticeship committees, and by the formation of adult schools.

An account or what is thus being done in different parts of the country is given in this report.

(b) Plan of the Report and Sources of Information

In the first of the following chapters the Committee submit a statistical statement showing the extent of the problem which has been referred to them. They proceed to state the argument for increased educational care during adolescence and for increasing the present period of compulsory education. They examine some of the economic and administrative causes which impair the efficiency of the education now given in most of the Public Elementary Schools, and point out the present waste of the results of day school training through educational neglect and demoralising forms of employment during adolescence. They then review the history of Evening and other Continuation Schools in England and Wales, showing the variety of effort which has been devoted to their organisation, and the steady growth, during the last 50 years, of the influence of the State in the development of this part of public education. They proceed to summarise the chief features in the present state of Continuation Schools in this country, and to give an account of the steps taken by Local Education Authorities in different


[page 18]

parts of the country to improve attendance at such schools. They also describe the different forms of encouragement given by employers of labour to the further education of their young workpeople. The Committee then discuss various methods for securing a larger attendance at Continuation Schools without having recourse to statutory compulsion, and point out how much can be done, upon the present voluntary basis, to increase the attendance at various types of Continuation School. They are led, however, by a consideration of the difficulties inherent in a voluntary system to the conclusion that voluntary methods alone will be insufficient to deal with the whole of the problem.

The Committee next examine the growth of opinion in Great Britain on the subject of Continuation Schools, and find that its trend, both in Parliament and among administrators, teachers, and workpeople in the industrial districts, has for some time been in the direction of requiring attendance at Continuation Schools, provided that such requirement is, where necessary, accompanied by reduction in the hours of labour in order to protect young people from overstrain. The Committee then turn to the experience of those parts of Germany and Switzerland in which attendance at Continuation Schools has been made compulsory by law for some of the younger population. They point out the steady growth in those countries of the principle of compulsion in the industrial districts, and the successful application of the principle of local option to this problem in educational policy. The Committee then discuss, in the light of the evidence which they have received, the educational, economic and administrative difficulties in the way of introducing compulsion in England and Wales. They devote the two following chapters to the consideration of two special departments of the question which call for separate treatment, viz., the special needs of girls in urban districts, and the problem of the organisation of Continuation Schools in rural areas. They then submit an estimate of the cost which would he entailed by the adoption of the educational changes suggested in the preceding chapters, and the report ends with a statement of the conclusions reached by the Committee and with a short summary of the principal recommendations which they propose.

In collecting information for the purposes of their inquiry and report, the Committee have received valuable assistance from experienced witnesses in all parts of the country. A classified list of those witnesses who appeared before the Committee will be found on page 325, prefixed to the summaries of their evidence.


[page 19]

They will be seen to include -

(i) representative employers from many important industries and occupations, i.e., the legal profession, commerce, transport, mining, engineering and metal trades, building, chemical manufacture, textile fabrics, food, and agriculture;
(ii) representatives of labour, including witnesses from London, Liverpool, Bolton, Birmingham, Glasgow, Portsmouth, and Glamorgan, and the Secretaries of several important labour organisations;
(iii) representatives of Public Services, i.e., the Army, the Navy, the Scotch Office, the Post Office, and the Board of Agriculture;
(iv) representatives of Local Education Authorities, including representatives from five county authorities, five county boroughs, two boroughs, four urban districts, and two Scottish School Boards;
(v) representative persons engaged in teaching or tutorial work, including representatives of university work, technical education, and evening classes;
(vi) Inspectors of schools;
(vii) women witnesses;
(viii) persons specially qualified to give evidence on economics and sociology, and
(ix) persons specially interested in lads in miscellaneous occupations, such as district messengers and golf caddies, and in lads' clubs.
In addition to receiving oral evidence from these witnesses, the Committee have visited some of the chief industrial districts in the north of England, in the Midlands, in South Wales, and in Scotland. During these visits they have been able to see for themselves the educational work which is being done by such employers as Messrs. Cadbury at Bournville and Messrs. Rowntree at York, and have been able to discuss the problem of continued education with local employers, workpeople, teachers, members and officials of Local Education Authorities, and others. The Committee also issued three questionnaires, dealing respectively with (1) the problem of Continuation Schools in rural districts, (2) the suitable organisation of Continuation Schools for girls, and (3) the effect of education upon employment, and received several hundred replies to their inquiries.

The Committee wish to take this opportunity of recording their obligation to all those persons who have furnished them so ungrudgingly with information and guidance, especially to those who, at considerable trouble to themselves, prepared statistics and written memoranda for the use of the Committee.


[page 20]

Chapter II. The Extent of the Problem

In approaching the consideration of the problem of Continuation Schools it is important to be clear from the beginning as to the function of such schools and as to the number and ages of the pupils for whom they should provide.

The main purpose of the Continuation School is to provide, at convenient hours and under conditions compatible with the physical welfare of the pupils, further instruction for those who have entered upon the practical work of life, whether as apprentices or as independent wage-earners, or in the duties of the home. It endeavours to meet the needs of both sexes. It presupposes a sufficient basis of elementary education, but, where that is defective, attempts to supply it. The lower age limit of its pupils varies, in the main, according to the age at which, under differing local byelaws, boys and girls are released from compulsory attendance at the Day Schools. In the more advanced stages of its work, the Continuation School includes many different forms of adolescent and adult education. The higher age limit of its province is, therefore, undefined. The task of the Continuation School thus falls into two main, though not clearly demarcated, divisions - the Elementary and the Advanced. Its function is twofold: to prepare its pupils for the efficient discharge of the duties of citizenship, and to increase their adaptivity and skill in bread-winning occupations.*

As regards the ages of the pupils for whom Continuation Schools should provide, it has already been noticed that the higher age limit is undefined. For the purpose of this Report, however, the Committee have, as a rule, confined themselves to the question as it concerns boys and girls before they reach their 17th birthday. They have done this for two reasons; firstly, because 17 is the age limit mentioned in the clause in the Scotch Bill whose applicability to England and Wales has been under their consideration, and secondly, because the Board's reference appears on the whole to deal with boys and girls in early adolescence. In view, however, of the use of the general word "employee" in the last sentence of the Board's reference, without any restriction as to age, the Committee have not hesitated later in their Report to refer briefly to the problem of Continuation Schools as they affect older pupils and workers.

In endeavouring to estimate the number of boys and girls under 17 years of age for whom accommodation at Continuation Schools is required, it will be convenient to divide them into two classes, namely, those who are over 14 and are

*The Committee have adopted this definition from Continuation Schools in England and elsewhere (Manchester, The University Press, 1907), page 689.


[page 21]

therefore unconditionally free from any obligation as to school attendance, and those who, though they are below the age of 14, have obtained exemption from the obligation to attend school. It will also be important in estimating the number of such children under 14 to discover to what extent their exemption is dependent on statutory regulations, and to what extent on local byelaws which it is within the power of Local Authorities to alter without the intervention of any new legislation.

(a) The number of children under 14 years of age who, under existing conditions, are qualified to attend Continuation Schools

(i) The powers possessed by Local Education Authorities in determining the number of children under 14 who become exempt from the obligation to attend the Day School, and the use to which they have put these powers

The law of school attendance in England and Wales is very complex, and no attempt will be made here to set it out, in any completeness. It will be sufficient for the Committee's purpose to state that attendance is regulated partly by the Education Acts, partly by byelaws framed under them, partly by the Factory Acts and other Acts regulating the employment of children. As a general summary of the combined effects of these Acts and byelaws, it is sufficient to say that all children must attend school from their fifth to their fourteenth birthday subject to certain exemptions which may be obtained during the last three years of the school period. These exemptions are in practice defined mainly by local byelaws, and it is true to say, therefore, that the age at which children leave the Day School is, under the present state of the law, mainly conditioned by regulations which have been drawn up by the authorities in various localities. It rests, for instance, with each Local Education Authority to decide whether they will pass a byelaw giving special exemption at 11 years of age to children engaged in agriculture, and whether, as regards children between 12 and 14, they will grant full-time or half-time exemption, or both, and upon what conditions of attendance or attainments, always subject, of course, to the fact that the byelaws must be approved by the Board of Education, and must not clash with any Act regulating the employment of children.*

Such being in brief the powers of Local Education Authorities in framing byelaws for the exemption of children from the obligation to attend school, it is interesting to note what use has been made of them. An examination

*A somewhat more detailed account of the law of school attendance will be found in Appendix G.


[page 22]

of the byelaws actually in force* shows that 41.54 per cent of the population of England and Wales live in areas where the byelaws allow no half-time exemption at all, and that rather more than half of this population, or 24.1† per cent of the whole, live in areas where the Standard for total exemption is the Seventh. Inasmuch, therefore, as the majority of boys and girls cannot pass the Seventh Standard before they are 14 years old, the result is that over nearly a quarter of the country, attendance at a Day School is already practically obligatory up to the age of 14. Coming to those areas (covering 58.46 per cent of the population of England and Wales) where partial exemption is allowed as well as total exemption, it is found that in the case of 27.2 per cent of the population the Standard for total exemption from school attendance is the Seventh, in the case of 20.6 per cent of the population it is the Sixth, and in the case of 10.6 of the population it is the Fifth. Thus, about three-fifths of the population of England and Wales live in areas where no child, under 14 years of age, is wholly released from school attendance before he or she has reached the Seventh Standard.‡ It may be added that the Standard for partial exemption is seldom us high as the Sixth, and practically never as low as the Third. It is usually the Fifth or Fourth, with a slight preponderance in favour of the former.

As regards the special byelaw which may be adopted under the provisions of the Elementary Education (School Attendance) Act, 1893, Amendment Act, 1899 "Hobson's Act") for children employed in agriculture, it is found that nearly a quarter of the whole population of England and Wales live in areas where such a byelaw exists. But the number of children who are exempt under this special byelaw seems to be very small, not exceeding apparently 400 in the whole country, and the agricultural byelaw, therefore, has practically no effect on the number of scholars in the Day Schools.

(ii) Estimate of the Number of Children under 14 years of Age who actually obtain full-time Exemption from School Attendance

The Committee estimate that in the year 1907 there were about 211,000 children of school age who had obtained full-time exemption from the obligation to attend school and who were eligible to attend Continuation Schools as grant-earning scholars.

*For further statistics, see Table A. opposite [below].

†In a few of these areas, however, children between 13 and 14 can obtain full-time exemption for purposes of employment on an attendance qualification. This reduces the percentage of population who live in areas where no exemption can be obtained by children under 14, except by passing Standard VII, to 22.4.

‡But see qualification in previous note.


[page 23]

TABLE A.

TABLE showing POPULATION and PERCENTAGE to TOTAL POPULATION (Census 1901) of AREAS under the respective STANDARDS* of EXEMPTIONS provided by the BYELAWS (England and Wales).

A. Byelaws providing for Total Exemption only.

B. Byelaws providing for both Total and Partial Exemption.

C. Byelaws providing for the Exemption of Children employed in Agriculture.

*It must not be forgotten, of course, that many byelaws also grant full-time or half-time exemption-on an attendance qualification. See footnote on page 22.


[page 24]

This number is only an estimate, because the data for an exact figure are not available. The Board's statistics have not, since those for 1903-4, shown the number of children on the registers of Public Elementary Schools for each year of age, and there is no official record of the exemptions actually granted by Local Education Authorities. The Committee think, however, that the estimate is probably fairly accurate. The figures that are needed for the calculation are (i) the number of the children between 12 and 13 and between 13 and 14 on the registers of Public Elementary Schools, and (ii) the number of children who would have been on the registers had no full-time exemption been allowed to any children before their 14th birthday. These numbers have been calculated as explained in the notes to Table B opposite [below]. As appears from that table, the Committee estimate that for the statistical year 1906-7 there were the following numbers of children on the registers of Public Elementary Schools:

Between 12 and 13590,768
Between 13 and 14402,350
Between 14 and 1561,820

These numbers are based on the corresponding figures for children of earlier ages in previous years, and their general accuracy may be gauged from the fact that their total (1,054,938) only differs by 17,973 (or about 1.7 per cent) from the known group total for children between 12 and 15 as given in the Board's statistics, If, in the absence of any material for a more scientific division, the error is divided equally over the three years, an addition of 5,091 should be made to each of the Committee's estimates above. This would give a corrected estimate of 596,759 children between 12 and 13, and 408,341 children between 13 and 14.

Assuming then that these figures show approximately the number of children between 12 and 13, and between 13 and 14, who were actually enrolled in Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7, the next question is how many children would have been on the registers if no exemption had been granted to any children under 14. The Committee estimate that if the minimum age for exemption had been 14 instead of 12, there would have been 609,083 children between 12 and 13 on the registers, and 607,181 children between 13 and 14. These figures, again, are conjectural, but the Committee believe that the margin of error in calculating them must be very small. They represent the estimated number who would have been in school had all the known numbers of children of earlier ages in previous years continued to attend school, due allowance being made for mortality and transference to other schools. Deducting now the estimated number of children actually on the registers from the estimated number who would have been on the registers if no exemptions at all had been granted under the


[pages 25-26]

TABLE B

For explanatory notes on this Table, see page 30

[This table was printed on a fold-out sheet. It is presented here as a JPEG image (1350 x 690 pixels).]


[page 27]

age of 14, the conclusion is reached that, in the year 1906-7, there were in England and Wales 12,324 children between 12 and 13 and 198,840 children between 13 and 14, making a total of 211,164 children between 12 and 14, whose names had been removed from the registers of Public Elementary Schools. Assuming, therefore, that the numbers have not varied much since 1907, it seems safe to say that at the present time there are about 211,000* children under 14 who have obtained exemption from school attendance and are eligible for admission to Continuation Schools. As it appears that there are rather over 40,000 boys and girls between 12 and 14 in Evening Schools (see Table C, page 29), it would seem that there are some 171,000 children between 12 and 14 who have left school and are not attending any form of week-day classes.

To prevent misunderstanding, it should perhaps be pointed out that the 211,000 children referred to above do not include any partial exemption scholars. Such children retain their names on the registers, whereas the above estimate refers only to the scholars whose names are removed from the registers. Inasmuch as, for all practical purposes, it may be assumed that very few scholars attend Continuation Schools until they have left the Day School, it is sufficient in estimating the number of children under 14 who might attend Continuation Schools under existing conditions to give the number of such children who have obtained full-time exemption from school. Nor would any change that may reasonably be anticipated in connection with the laws of school attendance bring any large number of half-time scholars into the Continuation Schools. Were the age for school exemption raised or were half-time abolished, the result would be that the majority of half-time scholars affected by the change would become full-time scholars at the Day School. This would mean an addition to the average attendance in Public Elementary Schools but would not affect the numbers for whom the Continuation Schools would have to provide.

(b) The number of adolescent boys and girls between 14 and 17

The Committee now turn to the children between 14 and 17. They estimate that there are rather over two million boys and girls of this age in England and Wales, and that three-quarters of them are at present, on week-days at any rate, under no educational care.

*It is interesting to compare this figure (211,000) with the figure (210,825) given in column 7 of Table C for the "Estimated number of children not attending any Day School." This latter number, which includes children who are being educated at home, should be larger than the number of children who have actually been to Public Elementary Schools and have left them. As a matter of fact it is slightly smaller. But the relatively close approximation of the two numbers, which were reached quite independently and by different methods, goes to confirm the Committee's belief in the general accuracy of their estimate.


[page 28]

It should be said at once that, as in the case of children between 12 and 14, an absolutely correct estimate of the numbers of young persons between 14 and 17 cannot be given. The Committee believe, however, that the estimated figures given in Table C opposite [below] are quite sufficiently correct to give a reliable indication of the extent of the problem under consideration. In any case, the manner in which the figures were arrived at is explained carefully in the notes given on page 32, so that the extent of the possible margin of error may be conveniently gauged.

It will be seen from the figures in Table C that the Committee estimate that the actual population in England and Wales between the ages of 14 and 17 during the school year 1906-7 was 2,022,300. Of this number they estimate that only 267,752 were attending some form of Day School,* leaving a balance of 1,754,548 boys and girls who were not continuing their education during the day. Of this number, some 256,199 were on the rolls of Evening Schools, leaving a balance of 1,498,349 between 14 and 17 years of age who were receiving no education in any form of school, Day or Evening. In round numbers, then, as already stated, there appear to be about a million and a half boys and girls between 14 and 17, or 74.09 per cent of the whole number of that age, who at present make no attendance at schooL

It will probably be useful to make some attempt to estimate how many of these children are boys and how many are girls, and also how many of each live in urban and rural areas respectively. Judging by the Census Returns of 1891 and 1901, it appears that the number of girls between 14 and 17 is slightly in excess of the number of boys of the same age; but the difference is so small as to be negligible for the present purpose. It may he assumed then that the number of boys under consideration amounts to 750,000, and that the number of girls is approximately the same.

It is not possible to say exactly how many of these boys and girls live in urban and rural areas respectively. Assuming, however, that the population in Urban Sanitary Districts is urban, and that the population outside such areas is rural, it appears that 77 per cent of the population of England and Wales in 1901 was urban and 23 per cent was rural.† Applying these percentages to the number given above, it follows that in 1906-7 there were 577,500 boys between 14 and 17 in urban areas and 172,500 boys in rural areas who had left school altogether. The number of girls in each case may be taken as approximately the same. This estimate should of course be used with great reserve, and only as a very broad indication of the facts of the case.

*This number includes a certain proportion of the pupils in Schools of Art whose attendances were made in the evening. They cannot be separated from the attendances made by day.

†This figure is taken from the Statesmen's Year Book, 1909, p. 16.


[page 29]

TABLE C.

For explanatory notes on this Table, see page 32

ESTIMATE OF THE NUMBER OF BOYS AND GIRLS AT EACH YEAR OF AGE FROM 11 TO 21 ATTENDING AND NOT ATTENDING SCHOOL DURING THE YEAR 1906-7


[page 30]

EXPLANATION OF TABLE B

1. Down to the year 1903-4, the Board of Education gave in their statistics the actual number of children in Public Elementary Schools at each year of age. These numbers are given in that part of Table B which lies above the double line, and are taken from Table 5, 2, on page 22 of the Board's Statistical Volume for 1903-4-5. Since 1903-4 the Board have not given the numbers of children in Public Elementary Schools at each year of age, but only in groups of ages, of which one is the group 12 to 15. In order, therefore, to discover the number of children between the ages of 12 and 13, and 13 and 14, who were on the Registers of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7, it is necessary to make estimates. These estimates have been made in the following manner.

2. The known numbers of children of each age have been set out for each of the years from 1897-8 down to 1903-4, and in adjacent columns have been set out the percentages which show what increase of decrease occurs in each group of children from year to year. For example, it is seen that the 583,002 children who were between 11 and 12 years of age in the year 1897-8, and who of course constitute the group 12 to 13 in the following year, have diminished in numbers to 510,831, or a decrease of 12.38 per cent. In the following year this group of children, who will now be 13 to 14 years of age, has sunk to 218,094, a decrease of 57.31 per cent. The known percentages prior to 1903-4 having thus been calculated, percentages for subsequent years were estimated by assuming that the ascertained increase or decrease in the known percentages would be continued proportionately during subsequent years. The actual numbers of children were then worked out by reducing them from year to year by those estimated percentages of decrease. Thus, the known number of children between 10 and 11 in the year 1903-4 (633,450) is reduced by an estimated decrease of 2 per cent to give the estimated number of children between 11 and 12 in 1904-5 (620,781) and this number is again reduced by an estimated percentage of 4.7 to give the number of children between 12 and 13 in 1905-6) (591,604), and by a further percentage of 31.99 to give the number of children between 13 and 14 on the registers of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7 (402,350).

3. The accuracy of the Committee's estimates of the number of children between 12 and 13, 13 and 14, and 14 and 15 respectively can be checked by totalling them and comparing them with the known group total for the years 12 to 15. In the following table the sum of the Committee's separate estimates for the ages 12 to 13, 13 to 14, and 14 to 15, is compared with group totals given in the Board's Statistical Volume for 1906-7-8:

4. It is seen from this table that 17,973 children have got to be added to the Committee's estimates for 1906-7 to make them absolutely accurate. The difficulty is to know how to apportion this 17,973 between the three ages 12 to 13, 13 to 14, and 14 to 15. In default of any scientific basis for apportionment the Committee will divide it equally among the three, that is, they will add 5,991 to each. This would bring their estimate of children between 12 and 13 who were actually on the registers of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7 to 596,759, and of children between 13 and 14 to 408,341.


[page 31]

5. As regards the estimates of the number of children between 12 and 13, and 13 and 14 who would have been on the registers of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7 had no exemption of any sort been allowed under the age of 14, it is sufficient to say that they are reached by reducing the number of children of the next earlier age in the preceding year only by such amount as might be supposed to represent the decrease that would be caused by mortality and transference to other kinds of school.

6. It must, however, be remembered that this estimate assumes that no exemptions of any sort are allowed under the fixed minimum age. In practice, of course, the Committee are aware that no such rigid rule either would or could be enforced. In Scotland, where no exemption is allowed under 14 unless for exceptional reasons, the percentage of exemptions under 14 was found, in 1905, to amount to 4.2 per cent of the number of children attending Elementary Schools between 12 and 14. If it may be assumed that for every exemption between 12 and 13 there were six exemptions between 13 and 14, the corresponding percentages in England and Wales of what may be termed inevitable exemptions would then reduce the number at the age of 12 to 13 by about 7,000 (i.e., to 602,083), and the number at the age 13 to 14 by about 49,000 (i.e., to 558,181).

7. The following Table shows in a simple form, as the net result of all these calculations, the estimated number of full-time exemptions from school attendance in the group of children who were between 12 and 13 and between 13 and 14 in the year 1906-7, and the estimated numbers of these children who would have been retained at school until 14 had that been the normal minimum age for exemption:


[page 32]

EXPLANATION OF TABLE C

1 These estimates of population are submitted in order to give a general idea of the number of boys and girls living at each year of age. They are admittedly open to fairly large errors, and care must therefore be taken not to use them for any purpose for which exact figures are essential. The figure for each age is based on the number comprising the same set of children at the date of the Census of 1901. For instance, the estimate for the age 15-16 in 1907, depends, on the number living at the age of 9-10 in 1901, and is the estimated number of survivors of that set of children after the lapse of six years, allowing for probable increase or decrease due to emigration or immigration.

2 The estimates of the number of children in Public Elementary Schools. etc., for the individual ages, 12-15, have been calculated in the manner described on page 30. A similar method has been adopted for the age 11-12, with the exception that, there being no published figures by which to check the estimate for this age, no adjustment such as that described in section 4 on page 30 has been made. For the higher ages the figures are not estimates but are the actual numbers published by the Board of Education in their Statistics for 1906-7-8 (but see Note 3).

3 This is the number of scholars who were 16 and over. It may, therefore, include a few who were over 17.

4 The column relating to Secondary School pupils is perhaps the least reliable of the Table. The only definite information as to the number of pupils in Secondary Schools is that given in the Return of the Pupils in Public and Private Secondary and Other Schools on the 1st June, 1897 (C. 8,634, 1898). This Return does not include Wales or Monmouthshire, and is admittedly not exhaustive. It is, moreover, 12 years old, and it is certain that great progress has been made in Secondary Education in those 12 years. In the absence of definite information, the only possible course is to assume as high a figure as can reasonably be expected to represent the present attendance at Secondary Schools, in order to avoid overestimating the need for Continuation Schools. Judging from the conditions obtaining in those few places in respect of which a fair amount of information is available, it is estimated that during the 10 years 1897 to 1907 the number of pupils at the higher ages in Secondary Schools, as given in the 1897 Return, rather more than doubled, while the numbers at the lower ages increased to a less degree. Upon this supposition the figures in this column are based, allowance being made for the non-inclusion in it of Wales and Monmouth, and the whole being rounded-up to the nearest thousand.

5 This number includes a few pupils between 15 and 16 in respect of Technical Institutions, for which the figures are grouped in the Board's Statistics at the ages 15-17. The total number of pupils in Technical Institutions between these two ages however is less than 600.

6 H.M. Inspector of Reformatory and Industrial Schools has kindly supplied the Committee with the number of children of each year of age detained in Reformatory and Industrial Schools on the 31st December 1908: these statistics, though not relating to the same period as the rest of the table, have been utilised in this column. The ages of pupils in Poor Law Schools are only given in groups (7 to 12 and 12 to 15) in the Statistics of the Board of Education; consequently, in the case of such schools, only estimated figures can be given for each year of age.

7 This column relates only to schools recognised under Chapter 2 of the Board's Regulations. The figures show the number of students who attended at any time during the year. Of the whole number of such students grants were paid by the Board of Education on account of only 75 per cent. It must also be noted that students attending more than one school or class are counted separately in respect of each school or class which they attended: the number of individual students was therefore less than the number given in the table.


[page 33]

Chapter III. The Need for Educational care during Adolescence

(a) The present lack of suitable mental instruction and character training during adolescence, both for boys and girls

It is clear from the above figures that the number of children who cease full-time attendance at school between the ages of 12 and 14, and of those between 14 and 17 who are receiving no kind of school education, is very large. The first point that arises is whether these children are fitted when they leave the Day School to be transferred to their various callings or occupations without further school education.

The simplest way to approach the problem is to consider what happens to those children who leave the Day School at an early age and attend no further classes of any sort. It is sometimes urged that children who are preparing to earn their living either by purely manual labour, or by occupations in which manual labour holds at least a prominent part, are injuring their chances of industrial efficiency by remaining too long at their books. What they need, it is said, is early contact with the realities of the mill, the shop, or the desk. Thus, it is argued, did their fathers learn their trade and it is still the best method of training. A fatal objection to this argument, however, is found in the fundamental changes of the conditions of industry in recent years, of which the most important are the decay of the old system of apprenticeship, and the increasing influence of scientific knowledge upon trade conditions. In earlier days a boy who exchanged school for apprenticeship did not cease his education or his general training. Under the system at its best he was still definitely under tuition, and that of a fairly general and unspecialised kind. Above all, he was under continued discipline. He remained in statu pupillari, and his wages as yet were not such as to make him largely independent of parental control. Further, the application of science to trade was in its infancy, and the handy, unspecialised, and unscientific workman could still hold his own in skilled trades.

These conditions, with their disadvantages as well as their merits, are largely things of the past, and are not likely to be revived. The modern boy and girl find themselves in very different surroundings. The older forms of apprenticeship are becoming obsolete, and the child who passes from school to the mill or the shop finds itself faced with a double difficulty. More knowledge is required for success; yet the conditions for obtaining knowledge are harder. Personal instruction in the various processes of his master's


[page 34]

business, such as was possible in the days of the small shop and the apprentice, is generally unobtainable. At best, a boy obtains by practical experience a certain skill in one branch of trade. At worst, he is set to purely mechanical work, for which little or no skill or thought is required, and under the monotony of which his faculties, moral no less than mental, often fail to develop.

Some might perhaps say that the inability of boys and girls to cope during adolescence with the evil effects of uneducative forms of employment would be greatly lessened if they were more suitably prepared for their careers before they left the Day School. There is something in this argument, and it is one to which the Committee will return later. It is sufficient to state here that, though much more might be done for the development of character and intelligence if the conditions of the Public Elementary School were improved, the Committee consider that no training could be sufficient which came to an abrupt close at so early an age as 13 or 14, much less 11 or 12. It is impossible to suppose that any school training, however successful, would not leave many boys and girls in sore need of further discipline and training during the important years which follow the day school period. Though there is much to be said, in the case of many pupils, for some change in the subject-matter or instruction at the close of the Day School course, there is nothing to be said for the total cessation of all educational care and supervision. It is hardly too much to say that the years between 13 and 17 or 18 are amongst the most vital in the formation of character. Few boys or girls at the age of 14 can have sufficient experience of life to enable them to look ahead and realise how best to fit themselves for their futures, and much as the Day School could be made to do for them if they remained in it long enough, it can never alter the substantial fact that character cannot be stable at 13 or 14 years of age.

(b) The present lack of Physical Training during Adolescence. The importance of providing a Remedy for this

But it is not only the character and the intelligence which are still unformed when children leave the Day School. Their physical development also is far from complete, and the Committee lay emphatic stress on the need for continued and systematic care of the body during adolescence as well as during the Day School period. The majority of boys and girls in this country are left entirely without physical training after they leave the Day School, and even in the Day School physical exercises are often hindered for want of convenient opportunity. Mr. Douglas Eyre has estimated that not more than "five per cent of the youthful portion of the


[page 35]

industrial population are materially touched or assisted by anything in the shape of a well-organised recreation agency out of school or working hours."*

The Inter-Departmental Committee on Physical Deterioration, regarding physical training as the "most fruitful germ of moral and material well-being", recommended that it should have a prominent place in all Continuation Classes both for boys and girls. A similar view was taken by Dr. Kerr, who, when giving evidence before the Committee, laid stress on the importance of the physical side of Continuation School work, as tending to call into action boys' and girls' powers of spontaneous action, self respect and moral esteem. Evidence of the actual increase in the health and consequent efficiency of adolescent workers resulting from physical training was also given to the Committee by Messrs. Cadbury, at whose works gymnastics and swimming are compulsory on all boys and girls up to the ages of 16 and 15 respectively.

Upon the value of suitable physical training during the years of adolescence there will be general agreement. The question remains under what conditions such training should be given, whether to girls as well as boys, and whether it should in all cases be required. It is clear that in many cases boys and girls who have worked hard all day are not fresh enough to undertake any severe form of gymnastic training, though suitable and less tiring forms of physical exercise would be both beneficial and recreative. The Committee will deal later with the general question of the fatigue of Continuation School pupils, and content themselves with remarking here that many of the scholars who after their day's work are too tired for physical training are in many eases just the persons who stand most in need of suitable exercises to develop their physique. In any case pupils ought to be protected from a degree of fatigue which hinders their due development of mind and body at a critical period of their growth.

A course of physical training, being an important and indeed a necessary element in further education, is already recognised under the Board's Regulations as a grant-earning subject in Continuation Schools. But it is somewhat differentiated from other subjects by the following clause in the Regulations: "Managers must use all reasonable endeavour to encourage those attending classes recognised under this Division to attend also classes recognised under some other Division." The Committee understand this to mean that though the Board might pay grants in respect of individual boys and girls who took physical exercises in a Continuation School as their only subject, they would only do so on condition that

*Report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Physical Deterioration, 1904, paragraph 371.


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the classes, as a whole, were regarded as part of an educational course. The Committee feel that the condition imposed by the Board in this respect is a reasonable one. Physical training alone should not be allowed to qualify for exemption from further intellectual discipline during adolescence. At the same time the Committee think that physical exercises should take a more prominent place than at present in Continuation Schools. They consider that opportunities for physical training should be brought within the reach of all, and they would suggest an addition to the Board's Regulations which would require Managers to use all reasonable endeavour to encourage the pupils in their schools to take physical courses in addition to their other work. Every Continuation School should have a convenient place for such courses, which might either be the hall of the Day School, the village hall, or some other suitable place. At present the provision of physical training under proper conditions is often hampered by lack of a drill hall, playground, or open space.

It may be added that in addition to the regular course of physical training given in the Continuation Schools, Local Education Authorities might do much by opening, under proper care, their school playgrounds for organised games on summer evenings when the younger children have left the school premises. Municipal Authorities also should do their utmost to provide recreation grounds (where necessary under skilled supervision) in districts where boys and girls would otherwise be compelled to amuse themselves in the streets.

(c) Educational changes called for by changes in Industrial Structure and in Social Outlook*

It has been justly said that, as things stand at present, the years between 13 and 17 are the point of educational leakage. We have built up at immense expense an elaborate system of elementary education, the work of which is almost wholly confined to children under 14 years of age. We have also constructed an extensive and costly system of technical education, the work of which is for the most part confined to young people over 17 years of age. Much, however, remains to be done in filling up the gap between these two parts of our educational system. In England and Wales there are some two million young people who have passed their fourteenth birthday but are still under 17. How small a proportion of them receive the educational care and guidance which they so greatly need has already been seen. Those whose work lies among boys and girls of this age, especially in cities, lament the waste of promise and of character which they see resulting from this lack of super-

*See Mr. Tawney's Memorandum on page 300 in connection with this subject.


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vision during critical years of physical growth and widening experience. Much of the good of elementary education is wasted, and much that might be accomplished by technical education is rendered impossible by a neglect which comparatively simple improvements in our social organisation would largely remove. What these young people need is the friendly counsel which good teachers give; continued association with the corporate life of a well-organised school; and the maintenance of the habit of learning which they began to form in the elementary school but too often lose during the untended years which follow its premature close.

In the case of boys, especially those living in urban districts, the evils of educational neglect during adolescence are often aggravated by the facility with which blind-alley occupations are entered. To speak of such employment as that of an errand boy as in itself demoralising and undesirable would be an exaggeration. Many a boy, starting from humble beginnings and honourably anxious to contribute towards the support of his younger brothers and sisters, has earned his first wages in this way and has got a kind of practical education by keeping himself alert, punctual, trustworthy, and observant in the discharge of his duties. But callings like this are apt to waste the years during which a boy should make a beginning at a skilled trade. He receives for a time wages which are relatively high, considering his age and lack of special skill. He may get too fond of the life of the streets. He is in danger of a desultory habit of mind. And after a few years, when he begins to need a man's subsistence, he may find himself ousted by younger competitors, but out of the line for permanent employment in any skilled adult calling.

Changes in industrial structure call for changes in educational organisation. The decay of apprenticeship has destroyed many opportunities of industrial training for boys intending to enter the skilled trades. On a lower plane of industrial service, new developments of the factory system are multiplying opportunities of non-educative employment, both for boys and girls during adolescence.*

*This point was emphasised by many witnesses who appeared before the Committee. Reference should especially be made to the evidence of Mr. R. H. Tawney, who has reported to the Committee the results of an extensive investigation in Glasgow (p. 300); Mr. C. E. B. Russell, Manchester (p. 646); Mr. J. M. Mactavish, Portsmouth (p. 402); Mr. Cyril Jackson, Chairman of the Education Committee of the London County Council (p. 464); Mr. J. Parry Laws, H.M.I., Liverpool (p. 435); Mr. William Wilson, Secretary for Higher Education to the Lancashire Education Committee (p. 453); Professor E. J. Urwick, London (p. 659); Principal Crowther, Halifax (p. 548); and (with special reference to girls in large industrial centres) the chapter in the report dealing with the special needs of girls in urban districts, which is based upon evidence collected in London and elsewhere.


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In many works in which machinery is largely used, boys' work, or girls' work, is simply a specialised compartment which gives no kind of qualification for future skilled employment outside it. And there are also signs of an increasing tendency to substitute lower-paid girl labour for that of boys in the supervision of certain machines. The immense development of the transport trades and the extension of facilities for communication have led to a larger use of boy labour, in forms often in themselves non-educative or unsettling, and not conducive to permanent adult employment. The State itself, in several of its Departments, and especially in the Post Office, is still (in spite of increasing and praiseworthy attempts to counteract the evil by educational agencies*) undoing as employer some of the good which it has already done as educator.

Thus the economic and industrial changes of the last generation have pushed forward into adolescence the danger zone of juvenile employment. The danger zone, in the earliest days of the factory system, embraced the whole period of childhood from infancy. But in the interests of the community the State intervened and placed child labour beyond the reach of the factory organiser during a limited period of Day School training. This period of educational protection has been gradually extended, though survivals of the practice of premature employment for wages, and of the public and parental opinion which condoned it, remain in the present half-time system in the textile trades. In the Elementary Day Schools the course of training is being steadily prolonged. It is to be hoped that within a few years the period of compulsory full-time attendance at the Day School will not finish before a child's fourteenth birthday.† To such further restrictions upon the use of juvenile labour, employers and adult workpeople, who have not already done so, will doubtless adjust themselves. But there are signs that the factory system (where its operations are not held in check by the conscience of the employer or by the regulations of the State) is beginning to seize upon the improved human material turned out by the Elementary Schools at the close of the Day School course. Certain branches of machine production are being so organised as to make profitable the employment of boy and girl adolescent labour in processes which, while demanding some intelligence and previous school training, are in themselves non-educative and deadening to the mind.

*See the evidence of Mr. A. H. Norway, Assistant Secretary of the General Post Office, London (p. 633), describing the growth of institutes and educational classes for telegraph messengers. These classes are warmly encouraged by the Postmaster-General, and might, with further subsidy from the Treasury, be largely developed.

†For further discussion of this point, see p. 55.


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Unless counteracting measures are taken to check them, these developments of factory production and of the transport trades will cause grave and lasting injury to the national life. It should always be remembered that the moral and economic results of this development of the factory system may remain wholly unrealised by the shareholders who supply the capital for the business, but who, in the dividends which they may draw from it, are unconsciously responsible for draining away, by wasteful use, part of the moral and physical capital of the rising generation.

Organised efforts are needed to counteract the hurtful effects of these new economic developments. In such organised effort, State action will be a necessary factor. Not less necessary, however, will be the pressure of public opinion. The measures needed to counteract the mischief referred to above will be partly educational, partly regulative of the hours and conditions of employment. By itself, the multiplication of technical classes will not meet the need. Nor, on the other hand, is it practicable to revive forms of apprenticeship which economic changes have made obsolete. But there is need for a revival of the spirit and purpose of the best forms of the old apprenticeship. This would be secured by the statutory recognition and enforcement of the principle that every young worker employed during adolescence should, as part of his or her duties, receive suitable preparation for some adult calling. The application of this principle means the dovetailing of education into industry by a new form of the half-time or part-time system, deferred till adolescence. The Continuation Class must be fitted into the hours of employment in such a way as to keep adaptive the mind of the young worker, and to retain in freshness the habit of learning new things. But the hours of education and wage-earning employment must, when combined, leave a sufficient margin of time for rest and recreation. Educational changes of this kind can, indeed, be but gradually made. They presuppose something far beyond mere administrative organisation, viz., a new attitude of mind towards the educational needs of adolescence, and towards the interaction of education upon industry. There are many signs of such a change of outlook in this country. And the improvements of secondary education which have been rapidly going forward in England during the last 10 years, will in time (if the courses of study have a wide outlook, include much practical and constructive work, and are not fettered by ambitions to win success in written examinations) increase the number of those employers, parents and managers who have an intelligent insight into the possi-


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bilities of education as a factor in industrial efficiency and in social welfare.

Education as a sheath, protecting boys and girls during adolescence against tendencies to injurious forms of employment, is much needed in this country. The point of danger, which used to occur in childhood, has now been largely transferred to adolescence. There is peril at the close of the Day School course, and peril again at the age of 17 or 18, when the passage should be made to adult skilled employment. The first danger can only be met by the prolongation of educational care throughout adolescence. The second danger can only be met by the provision of technical classes in which younger workpeople of both sexes may acquire, during the years of adolescent employment, the skill needed to qualify them for well-paid adult occupation.

Evidence pointing to the growth of non-educative employments was given to the Committee by various witnesses. Thus, Mr. Chorlton, of Messrs, Mather and Platt, gave it as his opinion that "probably there had been an increase in recent years in the number of occupations for boys which were highly paid but which did not lead to any skilled employment". Mr. William Wilson, Secretary for Higher Education to the Lancashire Education Committee, said that "it was undoubtedly a fact that many occupations which boys entered immediately on leaving the Day School were uneducative and deteriorating in character, and many of them either offered no prospect of ultimate advancement or ceased altogether when the hoy came to need a man's wage. Such occupations were increasing. They included office boys, who perhaps developed into unskilled clerks; boys in small shops who might become shop assistants; messengers, etc. In large firms, where the work was very departmentalised, youths reached a salary of 14s. or 15s. or at the most 18s. a week pretty quickly, and seldom got beyond that, being eventually turned off. This existed to a marked extent in the linoleum industry, where the boys had to leave at about 18, unless they were content to remain as unskilled labourers. Witness was of opinion that this tendency was to be found only in the large centres of industry. The same thing was probably occurring in regard to girls; but many girls when they got to about 25 years of age went to the technical classes to learn dressmaking, millinery, etc., with a view to setting up small businesses of their own." Mr. Crowther stated that "there were quite a number of occupations in which lads got a fairly good remuneration at first, but which led to no skilled trade. This was found in connection with brickyards, dye works and the textile trade. About seven-eighths of the boys who entered the textile trade had either to leave


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before they reached the age of 18 or to remain with no prospect of ever getting more than 1 per week." Mr. C. E. D. Russell said that "the number of boys employed in workshops on work which brought high wages for the time being but did not continue beyond a certain age was undoubtedly increasing. It was not so much that new kinds of employment were being introduced as that so many specialised machines were coming into use." Lastly, should be mentioned Mr. Tawney's valuable memorandum,* which deals in great detail with the subject, but which is too long to quote here.

The view that there has been some increase in these non-educative occupations for adolescent labour is confirmed by statistical evidence. Unfortunately, however, the Summary Tables of the Census of England and Wales, 1901, do not show the occupations of males and females, under individual years of age, beyond 15.† In order that we may ascertain with precision the extent to which adolescent labour is employed in different industries, up to the threshold of manhood and womanhood, it is very desirable that in the next Census the Summary Tables should show the occupations of males and females under each individual year of age from 15 to 20.

In two occupations, however, it is possible to measure the increase of the uneducative employment of juveniles, viz., under the heads of (a) National Government; Civil Service (Messengers, etc.); and (b) Conveyance of men, goods and messages; messengers, porters, watchmen (not railway or Government).

Table A on page 42 shows that the number of messengers (boys and girls), under 15 years of age, employed by the National Government, was more than four times as large in 1901 as in 1881, and that the increase of juvenile messengers was 141.2 per cent between 1881 and 1891, and again 73.1 per cent between 1891 and 1901. Table B shows that the number of boys and girls under 15 years of age who were employed as messengers, porters, watchmen (not railway or Government service) was nearly three times as large in 1901 as in 1881. The number of boy and girl messengers under 15 (excluding railway or Government service) in 1901 was nearly as large as the total number of persons (including adults of all ages) employed in the corresponding capacity twenty years before. The number of juvenile messengers, etc., in this category showed an increase

*See page 300.

†Summary Table XXXVII., Cd. 1523, pp. 209-211, shows the occupations of boys and girls under each year of age from 10 to 14 inclusive. Table XXXV. in the same volume (pp. 200 ff.) shows the occupations of males and females between 14 and 15, but subsequently under groups of ages, the first of which extends from 15 to 20.


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of 74.6 per cent from 1881 to 1891, and of another 66 per cent, between 1891 and 1901, though the increase per cent in population during the same decennia was respectively only 11.65 and 12.17 per cent. Though the number of messengers, porters, and watchmen (not railway or Government service) has increased from 131,171 in 1881 to 185,487 in 1901, the number over 15 years of age has actually decreased from 85,139 in 1881 to 51,936 in 1901. It should be added that nearly all the persons employed in this category are boys. The girls form only 3.5 per cent of the total.

The Committee find that the reports of the Poor Law Commissioners, which were not published until their own recommendations were practically complete, confirm these conclusions from another point of view. The majority of the Commissioners report that "the results of the large employment of boys in occupations which offer no opportunity of promotion to employment as men, are disastrous. The boy, thrown out at 16, 17, 18, or 20 years of age, drifts into the low-skilled labour market or the army of unemployables." They recommend the introduction of more practical work into the Elementary School curriculum; the establishment of junior employment committees in connection with the labour exchanges; the prolongation, for boys, of the period of elementary education in the Day School; the continuance of school supervision up to 16 years of age, with replacement at school of boys who are not properly employed; and increased facilities for the compulsory technical education and physical training of young people during adolescence.*

The Commissioners who signed the minority report "regard the perpetual recruitment of the unemployable by tens of thousands of boys who, through neglect to provide them with suitable industrial training, may almost be said to graduate into unemployment as a matter of course, as perhaps the gravest of all the grave facts which the Commis-

TABLE A

TABLE B

*Poor Law Commission Report, vol. i., pp. 407-11, 630.


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sion has laid bare ... The nation cannot long persist in ignoring the fact that the unemployed, and particularly the under-employed and the unemployable, are thus being daily created under our eyes out of bright young lives, capable of better things, for whose training we make no provision. The mass of unemployment is continually being recruited by a stream of young men from industries which rely upon unskilled boy labour, and turn it adrift at manhood without any general or special industrial qualification."*

The need for a systematic provision of continued education (especially of a practical kind) is also shown by the statistics of the District Committees formed under the Unemployed Workmen Act, 1905, for the year ending March 31st, 1908. It is found by examining these figures that a large number of those who apply for relief to these Committees are young men who, though they are in the prime of life, are unfitted for any form of employment but the lowest unskilled work. "To describe these youths", says Mr. Tawney (see page 314), "and the men which they become, as 'unskilled' or 'untrained,' gives but a faint picture of the state of demoralisation which exists among some of them, and which is in fact caused by using boys of 15 simply as instruments of production which are scrapped when they are no longer remunerative - in employing them, in fact, for their 'immediate commercial utility'." The figures for a few districts are given in Appendix E, and support the view that the younger and stronger workers whose education and training are most recent, contribute a lamentably large quota to the ranks of the unskilled and unemployed.

(d) The desirability of giving to adolescents a better Educational Equipment for their future Duties

So far as boys are concerned, therefore, the Committee have no hesitation in saying that, under modern industrial conditions, the majority are not sufficiently equipped for the battle of life when they leave school. Nor have they, in many trades, any reasonable opportunities of obtaining that necessary equipment during the course of their work.

As regards girls, there is as great a need for further education, though the matter stands on a somewhat different footing. Large numbers† of girls take up some form of wage-earning employment on leaving school, so as to add their share to the family earnings. But the proportion of wage-employed to other women decreases very rapidly at about the age of 25, only about one woman in every three being so employed between the ages of 25 and 35, and only about one in five of those between 35 and 65.

*Ibid., vol. i. p. 1167,

†See Table D on p. 44.


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TABLE D

TABLE showing the numbers and percentages of men and women over 15 years of age who, according to the Census Returns of 1901, were in that year engaged in wage-earning occupations, arranged according to groups of ages.





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Turning from the number of wage-earning women to the form of their employment, it will be seen* that it falls into three categories:

(a) Skilled employment (e.g. teaching) for which technical training is admittedly indispensable, and will in any case be increasingly required.

(b) Employments (e.g. domestic service and parts of the trade connected with dress) in which the skill and wage-earning capacity of the girl might be greatly increased (to the advantage of herself, of her employer, and or the community as a whole) by suitable courses continued through adolescence, but which are at present entered upon as a rule with a deplorable lack of technical training, and with consequent depression of wage-earning power and with injurious effects upon character.

(c) Employments (e.g. some of those connected with the manufacture of food) which are in great part unskilled and uneducative. The deteriorating effects of many of these employments need to be counteracted by suitable education given at hours which would entail no undue fatigue and be so planned as to develop physique, cultivate higher standards of life and to prepare for the duties of the home.

The object of continued education for girls is therefore threefold, (i) to improve their physique, widen their mental outlook, and cultivate their sympathies; (ii) to prepare them for the skilful management of a home and family; and (iii) to equip them for efficiency in whatever wage-earning occupation they may (as is the case with rather over half of them) enter upon during the years between school and marriage, or take up as their permanent life's work. Can it be claimed that at present any of these objects is attained? Are they properly equipped when they leave the Day School, either for the wage-earning work which they will probably select, or for their subsequent duties in their homes; and, if not, are the conditions of their work or their homes such

*According to the Census Returns of 1901, the following were the numbers of women from 10 years upwards engaged in the various occupations. The occupations are here arranged according to the number of women workers engaged in them: Domestic Services (1,690,722); Dress (710,961); Textiles (663,222); Food, etc. (299,518); Teaching (172,873); Professional, omitting Teachers (121,769); Paper, Books, etc. (90,900); Metals (63,016); Other, General, and Undefined (61,503); Commercial (59,944); Agriculture (57,564); Brick, Cement etc. (33,148); Chemicals (26,702); General or Local Government (26,500); Skins, etc. (25,370); Wood, Furniture, etc. (24,592); Conveyance (18,825); Precious Metals (18,707); Mines (5,006); Building, etc. (702).


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that they can acquire this equipment in them without having further recourse to school? The evidence goes to show that they cannot. The number of girls who take domestic subjects in the Day School is still comparatively small, and the supply of Trade Schools for girls is wholly inadequate. Yet without systematic domestic training at school, most girls fail to get proper preparation for their subsequent home duties; and, through the lack of a sufficient number of well-organised Trade Schools, girls have too little opportunity of developing their manual skill and wage-earning capacity. They drift in consequence in increasing numbers into uneducative forms of employment which fail to develop intellectual interest or resource. The Committee feel therefore that both on account of the health, happiness, and efficiency of the girls themselves and for the sake of those for whose education they in time will be responsible, there is a very strong case for continuing their education through those years where they will he most receptive to its meaning, and that such education should aim both at enhancing technical efficiency and at the general development of character and physique.

As regards the general question of the educational equipment of adolescents, three questions may rightly be asked of those who advocate a great extension of educational opportunity for the rank and file of the younger workpeople in this country. First, will the education which it is proposed to give make the young people better off pecuniarily when they come to manhood and womanhood? Second, will it give them happier lives? Third, will the outlay from public funds which the proposed educational changes must involve be repaid, fully though indirectly, to the nation, through the increased economic efficiency of the community?

(1) There is no doubt that in a very large number of cases, a better educational training during adolescence will enable the individual worker to attain, in his calling, a subsequent position much more highly and regularly remunerated than that with which, in default of such continued education, he would have been obliged to be content. Through lack of guidance and training during adolescence, intellectual interests are stifled, worthy ambitions are dulled, concentration of purpose is impaired. Those very natures which are most impressionable and most capable of adapting themselves to opportunity and circumstance are the most liable to moral injury during these years of growth and change. The type of mind and character which, under favourable conditions of development, is especially fitted to excel in adaptive ness and resourceful self-adjustment to new duties, is exposed to special dangers during the years of unguarded adolescence. The changes in economic and social conditions which have produced the need for increased


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adaptiveness and which encourage the development of that quality in individuals, are also in the circumstances of modern city life multiplying distractions which weaken the will and are affording manifold opportunities of the premature independence which often demoralises character.

Thus the influence of improved educational opportunities upon the fortune of individuals is protective and selective: protective in lessening the risk of moral and intellectual failure, selective in stimulating the development of powers of mind and character which are rewarded by being given wider scope of exercise and, usually though not always, by higher pecuniary remuneration.

But the number of posts of directive responsibility is not unlimited. Will, therefore, the widening of educational opportunity, by increasing the number or candidates suitable for promotion, tend eventually to lower the rate of salaries attached to such posts and thus, throughout the gradations of skilled employment, lower the personal remuneration of individuals whose aptitude was more exceptional when educational facilities were less generally accessible? Does Capital, by promoting popular education, secure skilled service at a cheaper rate, retaining for itself most of the advantage which it would otherwise have had to share with its highly paid employees - highly paid because they could command the high rent of scarce ability? This view was trenchantly stated to the Committee by one of the witnesses. "No increase in the skill of the workers", (Mr. McTavish argued, p. 79) "would increase the number of good posts which were open to them. ... A general increase in the qualifications of the workers would merely make the competition for such higher posts as were available more severe - would force the pace. The number of prizes was not plentiful, and a greater education of the workers would not increase their number. You might cause certain individuals to rise who, but, for education being pressed upon them, would not have risen; but you would not alter the total number of individuals who rose. By educating a particular man, you might enable him to gain a certain appointment; but in doing so you barred the way for another man who would otherwise have got the appointment." The facts of economic history conflict with this generalisation. They do not confirm so discouraging a conclusion. Posts of responsibility are not predetermined in number by some iron law of markets. An increasing stock of practical ability in a nation enlarges the range of its economic activities and rapidly adds, through all the gradations of directive responsibility, to the number of well-remunerated posts which could never have existed if men had not been forthcoming to fill them. The state of


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things conceived by the witness might occur in some one branch of industry, especially if that were elaborately regulated by State authority in a manner which would not lend itself easily to outbursts of individual enterprise. But, under normal conditions of industrial and commercial effort, special ability creates its own opportunity and by so doing improves the pecuniary position not only of the exceptional leader, but also of a long series of subordinates, graded with increasing fineness of discrimination according to experience and aptitude.

But this is only one, and not the most important, aspect of a wide question. A rising level of education among the mass of the workers increases the real level of their wages, though this may not be accompanied by a rise in their nominal amount. It conduces to wise expenditure of income and to the avoidance of thoughtless or hurtful waste. In this point of view the Committee find that Mr. McTavish concurred. "A general improvement in education", he argued, "was bound to have some good effect. It brought about a desire for a higher standard of living, a more rational expenditure of wages; and a well-educated man with only 1 a week, as a general rule, spent that 1 to better advantage than an uneducated man did."

The Committee would add that, improvements in educational opportunity strengthen that power of organisation and combination which enable the workers to secure a just share of the produce of those operations in which their labour is an indispensable factor. They also make possible forms of government which give to the working class in the community an effective voice in policy and administration.

(2) A more difficult issue is raised by the question whether increased opportunities of education enhance the happiness of the mass of the people. The point was raised by one of the Committee's witnesses, and they feel they ought not to ignore it. In their opinion, all turns upon what is meant by happiness. Education may well destroy the easy-going comfort of a thoughtless mind. It may impart a desire for an intellectual or artistic occupation which the individual has not the means or opportunity of entering. It may stimulate ambitions which cannot be realised. It may increase a man's sensitiveness to the hardships and limitations of his lot. Like all great changes, it brings evil with it as well as good. But few would identify true happiness with obtuseness of feeling, coarseness of sympathy and torpor of mind. The right kind of education, working upon a character which is susceptible to its power, gives a man adaptability, self-reliance, balance of thought, sobriety of judgment. It may raise him above self-interest and


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beyond the reach of individual disappointment to a point of view from which he sees the whole of which his individual life is but a part, and may bring him to the state of mind in which he finds a real happiness in work well done.

(3) The third question is whether the increased economic efficiency of the community will repay to the nation as a whole the outlay involved in great extensions of educational opportunity to the masses of the people. From a purely economic point of view, this question may be answered in the affirmative, provided that the education is at once practical and humanising. The enhanced economic power of the community increases the production of wealth and the efficiency of its thrifty distribution. It will make possible a more scientific distribution of labour, a fairer adjustment of tasks, a more prudent anticipation of the future. It will lessen waste and, through the avoidance of waste, may enormously increase the fund of wealth available for distribution among the community.

It must be remembered that the wages fund of the country is not a fixed sum to be distributed amongst a limited number of skilled workers. Rather, it tends to increase in proportion to the skill and numbers of the workpeople who seek employment. This aspect of the question is admirably put by Mr. Charles Booth: "Every rise in the general standard of life", he says, "and every expansion of the demand for better paid and less disorganised labour, helps in the solution of the problem. Inferior ill-paid labour, and the lower classes of labour generally, exist mainly because, in comparison with other fields of employment, the number of applicants is excessive. By fitting himself for more useful and more responsible work, and by seeking it sedulously, every individual may play his part in raising the standard; and may rest assured that by so doing he will increase the demand for that better work which he seeks to supply, as well as decrease the supply of that kind of labour for which it would be well there should be no demand. Moreover, there is probably no field of honest labour needed by society that would not, if worked with a sense of responsibility, become satisfactory in itself, both socially and economically."* What is true of the material gain which may result from improved education is true also of the moral gain. The temper, the outlook, the recreations, the ideals of a nation may be so refined and raised by the right kind of training as to secure for the mass of the people a more choiceworthy life.

*Booth; "Life and Labour of the People in London". Second Series, Vol. 5, Chap. XI.


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(e) Brief enumeration of the Methods for the better Equipment of Children for their Work in Life

If, then, it is agreed that children, when they leave the Day School, are not sufficiently equipped to enable them to enter on their life's work without further education and discipline, it remains to see what practical steps can be taken to remedy this evil. Generally speaking, there are three methods, each of which may do much to secure this end, but which will be most effective when they can all be used together. (i) In the first place, the foundations laid in the Day School should be improved so as to secure that when children leave the Day School, they shall have been as efficiently trained as is possible at that age. (ii) In the second place, there should be reforms in the conditions of employment during adolescence. (iii) In the third place, the education of young persons instead of ceasing when they begin work, should be continued until such time as they can better appreciate its value for themselves. The Committee will now proceed to consider each of these points in turn.




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Chapter IV. The necessity for better Educational Foundations in the Day School

The Committee feel that some reference to the education and training given in the Day School is an inevitable preliminary to the consideration of the problem of Continuation Schools. The Day School and the Continuation School are integral parts of a whole, and it is useless to discuss the possibilities of the one without considering those of the other. The Continuation School works upon the material prepared in the Day School. Its curriculum, its methods of teaching, must be a natural development of the Day School. It must not, on the one hand, provide a mere repetition of earlier lessons, nor on the other hand must it, in its proper endeavour to be progressive, make too sudden an advance upon earlier methods. If Continuation Schools, therefore, are to be of real practical utility, if they are to make possible for their students a real advance in intelligence, it is essential that these students should have been so trained in the Day School that they are fitted to pass with advantage to the broader methods of the Continuation School. Before discussing, therefore, whether boys and girls should be induced or compelled to go to Continuation Classes, it is pertinent to ask whether their previous education fits them to profit by such further instruction.

The Committee believe that owing to various causes, such as the unsatisfactory conditions under which many teachers do their work, the early age at which many children leave school and the fact that their energies are often diminished by exhausting employments out of school hours, many boys and girls leave the Day Schools with little more than a smattering of real education. Even what they have learnt is often of an academic rather than a practical nature, and if, as often happens, they go at once into unskilled work, and have no opportunity of applying and fixing the knowledge they have acquired, they soon forget even what little they ever learned.

(a) The Improvements needed in the Staffing and the Course of Study in the Public Elementary School

The Committee feel that if it is true - and they believe that it is - that our Public Elementary Schools frequently fail to give that degree of education and training which it is their function to give, one of the main causes of such failure is to be found in the enormous size of the classes in charge of individual teachers.* Classes of 60 children or more are

*Since this section was written, the Board have issued their Circular 709, which announces their intention of making changes which will secure a reduction in the size of classes and more individual attention for scholars.


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frequently found, and though some authorities staff their schools, as regards both the number and qualifications of the teachers, more generously than is absolutely required as a minimum by the Code, there is no doubt that large and unwieldy classes are the rule and not the exception. Such a condition of things has an immense influence upon the character of the schools. Teachers cannot fail to have constantly brought to their attention the need for maintaining discipline, and it would be unfair to the teachers to blame them if in many cases the continual maintenance of discipline, from being a means, becomes almost an end in itself. A not unnatural desire for orderly quiet in the conduct of lessons, leads imperceptibly to a military precision and a rigid simultaneity of movement and expression which if long continued must prove fatal to the better forms of education. Well-disciplined children may acquire a reliable habit of exactness and obedience. But they will not learn self-reliance; their intelligence will not be quick to meet emergencies; their individuality and their powers of initiative will not be developed.

But even apart from the fact that large classes involve a harmful insistence upon discipline, they handicap the teachers in other ways. Teachers must be personally acquainted with the idiosyncrasies of individual children before they can get the best out of them, and anything approaching to personal acquaintance is impossible where numbers are so overwhelming. As has been pointed out, when teachers do not know their pupils' names, they are not likely to be able to think of them as individuals.

The Committee feel sure that could the size of classes be reduced, the resultant advantages would be well worth the extra cost. Teachers freed from the tyranny of numbers would have leisure to study their children, to learn their intellectual and moral needs, and to bring the school into more living relation with the home. The children, freed from the monotony of constant repression, and left much more to themselves for private and individual study, would discover their own needs, and be able to have them satisfied by individual attention from the teacher. Exposition, now often given in excess, would be replaced in part by constructive work, and the consequent development of each child's individual powers would lead to an increasing desire for a lengthened school life.

The Committee believe that the second main cause for the failure of the Public Elementary School to give the nation a full return for its expenditure and trouble is the inappropriateness of the curriculum. That many schools have excellent courses of study, excellently taught, is of


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course true. That there has been much improvement in recent years is also doubtless true. But if it is believed that within certain age limits the brain development of children is better secured if their hands are brought into play than if they are wholly confined to book instruction, and this view is strongly held by the Committee, then an examination of what is being done in the Elementary Schools shows how far we are from reaching any such ideal. Training in handwork is no doubt common in the case of infants in kindergarten classes. But when infants are promoted to the lower classes of the upper school, this form of training is frequently dropped and not resumed until the children become eligible at the age of 11 or 12 to earn grants for instruction in the Special Subjects enumerated in the Code, and then only in a small percentage of cases, chiefly in the larger towns. The Committee understand that the movement in favour of increasing opportunities for handwork in the Day School for children between 7 and 11 or 12 years of age is growing, and that in some Public Elementary Schools much is already done. They trust, however, that future Codes may give more specific encouragement to this most desirable line of advance. The only Special Subjects for which grants are paid under the Board's Regulations are Handicraft and Gardening for boys, and Cookery, Laundry Work, and Combined Domestic Subjects for girls, of which subjects the last four would not in any case cover the ground of Manual Instruction even if they were generally taken. As a matter of fact, even amongst the older children who are eligible under the Board's Regulations for instruction in Special Subjects, comparatively little is done as yet, as will be seen by a reference to Table E. on the following page. It appears that of those who are eligible to take each subject, only one boy in three takes Handicraft, and only one in twenty of the boys in areas which for this purpose may be regarded as rural takes Gardening. As regards girls, about one in three takes Cookery, and about one in twelve takes Laundry Work.* It should be noted, too, that these figures are based on the numbers of children who are eligible to earn grants for these subjects, namely, girls over 11, and boys over 11 and 12 respectively in the case of Gardening and Handicraft. Further, the figures include all children who were registered for instruction. They would he considerably reduced if only those children who completed the full course had been counted. The Committee feel that these figures point to a very serious defect in the Day School. They think that manual instruction should, in some form, enter into the curriculum of all

*The figures for Combined Domestic Subjects are omitted. See Note 4, on page 54.


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TABLE E

TABLE SHOWING NUMBERS AND PERCENTAGES OF SCHOLARS IN PUBLIC ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS WHO RECEIVED INSTRUCTION IN SPECIAL SUBJECTS 4 IN 1906-7

1 That is, all boys over 12 on the registers of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7 (Board's Statistical Volume, 1906-7-8 pages 28 and 330), minus the boys who were partial exemption scholars, and therefore not eligible for instruction in handicraft. They may be estimated at about 24,000 (see page 206). N.B. The Code for 1908 reduced the qualifying age for Handicraft from 12 to 11.

2. That is, the estimated number of boys over 11 years of age on the registers of Public momentary Schools in areas under County Councils. This number is arrived at as follows: the number of boys over 12 in all Public Elementary Schools in England and Wales is given as 531,171 (Board of Education's Statistics, 1906-7-8. Tables 9, pages 28 and 330). The estimated number of boys between 11 and 12 on the books of Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7, is 313,400 (see Table B, page 25, where the total number of scholars of this age is estimated at 623,100, of whom it is estimated that 313,400 were boys and 300,700 were girls). This gives a total of 844,571 boys over 11 years of age on the registers of Public Elementary Schools in England and Wales in 1906-7. Of these, however, only those in the areas of County Councils may be fairly regarded as really eligible for instruction in gardening. Judging by the figures given in Tables 18 of the above Statistical Volume (pages 37 and 339) there were about 3,000,000 children in urban areas (i.e., in London, the County Boroughs, and the autonomous Boroughs and Urban Districts) in 1906-7, as against 2,000,000 in the areas under County Councils (which include, of course, the areas of non-autonomous Boroughs and Urban Districts). In other words, out of every five children in Public Elementary Schools, it appears that on this basis two are in the areas of County Councils. The Committee take two-fifths of 844,571, i.e., 337,828, therefore, as representing approximately the number of boys over 11 in Public Elementary Schools in areas of County Councils in 1906-7. It may be pointed out that it would need a large error in this figure to affect appreciably the percentage in column 4.

3 That is, the estimated number of girls over 11 in Public Elementary Schools in 1906-7. This figure is obtained in the same way as that for boys; 844,571, in the preceding note.

4 The figures for Combined Domestic Subjects are omitted intentionally as no girl who is registered in such a Course may also be registered in a Cookery or Laundry Course during the same year. Combined Domestic Subjects therefore are an alternative course, not an additional one. In any case the number of girls who were registered for instruction in Combined Domestic Subjects in 1906-7 was only 6,436, and does not appreciably affect, therefore the figures in the above table.

5 See pages 31 and 333 of the Board's Statistics, 1906-7-8.


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schools for older scholars, as is the case already in London and some other large towns, and that this important branch of their training should not be dropped, as it so often now is, when children leave the Infant School.

There are, of course, other ways in which the curriculum of Public Elementary Schools could be improved, so as to give the scholars not only a better education during their Day School period, but one which would fit them better for further education. But the one outstanding fact is the need for more handwork in the curriculum, and the Committee content themselves, therefore, by confining attention to this one point.

The third main cause which militates against the efficiency of the Day Schools is the intermittent attendance at school of those children who may be said to be regularly irregular. Such children are unfortunately not uncommon, and cause harm in many ways. They make the smooth working of their classes difficult; they give much unremunerative trouble to the attendance officer, and they form amongst their comrades a nucleus of opposition to further education. It is to be hoped that Local Education Authorities will give increased attention to remedying this weak place in their educational fabric.

(b) The Desirability of Extending the Period of Attendance at the Day School

Assuming, then, that one method of equipping children for their work in life is to improve their education by amending the conditions under which their teachers work, by introducing more handwork into the curriculum, and by improving the regularity of attendance, it remains to be considered, whether if the Day Schools were better organised and staffed, it would not be wise to keep children in them for a longer period.

It will be seen from the evidence of the witnesses who appeared before the Committee that there is a very widespread feeling in favour of raising the minimum age for exemption from Day School attendance. Several witnesses were in favour of raising the age to 15, or ultimately even to 16. But the plan which was generally approved as more practicable was to raise the age, first from 12 to 13, and then, after an interval, to 14 - that is, to allow exemption below that age only in exceptional cases. This would involve the total abolition of half-time, a change for which the large majority of witnesses are fully prepared.

The general question of abolishing half-time and raising the age for leaving school is now being considered by an Inter-Departmental Committee which has been specially


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appointed for this purpose. It is one, therefore, upon which the Consultative Committee will not dwell at any length. It is not possible, however, to ignore it altogether in discussing the problem of Continuation Schools, though the Committee will confine themselves to those aspects of it which affect their own inquiry.

The advantages urged in favour of raising the school age are easy to enumerate. In the first place it is claimed that the educational process of the Day School is not complete before 14, and that if continued education is necessary at all, it can be more effectively secured by a prolongation of the Day School period than by any other means. The break which occurs when a child exchanges whole-time attendance at school for half-time at school and half-time at work, or for whole-time at work followed by Continuation Classes in the evening, will be postponed, to the great educational advantage of the child. Secondly, it is urged that the physical powers of children are so immature that it is injurious to give them long hours of work, however light, before they are 14 years old. This aspect of the question is dealt with at some length in Dr. Kerr's evidence on pages 624-6. Thirdly, it is urged that, even apart from questions of physical development, children under 14 are too young to take their place in industrial life, and that they should remain subject to moral influences and restraints till they are nearer an age when good habits and character may be regarded as more stable. As regards the objections which may be raised to the proposal to raise the age for exemption from school attendance to 14, they are roughly three in number. In the first place, it is objected that the raising of the school age would involve a dislocation of industry. In reply to this, the Committee would point out that the majority of their witnesses do not believe that there would be any industrial difficulty which could not be overcome. Further, it appears that the number of workers between the ages of 12 and 14 in any one trade bears a very small ratio to the total number so employed,* and that the number of children who might be affected is in itself a comparatively small one.† Lastly, over the whole of Scotland, in London, and in other parts of England and Wales, half-time has already been abolished and the age of exemption has been raised on an average to nearly 14. In support of this it may be pointed out that in the year 1906-7 there were 178,521 scholars between 12 and 14 on the Registers of the Scotch

*For complete figures on this point, see Appendix C, page 266.

†See Table on page 31, where the number of children between 12-14 who obtained full-time exemption in 1906-7, but who would have remained at school had the minimum age for normal exemption been 14, is estimated as 155,000. To this number should be added the partial-exemption scholars, who probably number about 48,000.


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Elementary Schools, and that only 7,822 children between these ages, or 4.2 [per cent] of the whole, were exempted. It may be added that in Glasgow, out of about 100,000 children on the books, only some 50 or 60, or 0.06 of the whole, are exempted under 14. In Edinburgh only 160 exemptions were allowed in 1906-7 out of some 60,000 children, representing a percentage of 0.26. The figures for London are equally encouraging. Out of 134,569 children on the roll between 12 and 14 years of age only 1,550 obtained exemption from school attendance; and in 1907, out of 135,063 children, only 1,191 obtained it. In 1908 the figures dropped to 930, or about 0.75 per cent of the total. It is found also that there are 112 Local Education Authorities in England and Wales which allow for no partial exemption in their byelaws. Of these, 19 county boroughs, 13 boroughs, 8 urban districts, as well as the County of London and a small part of Kent, have fixed the seventh standard as the standard for total exemption.

The Committee do not argue from these figures that what is possible in Scotland, in London, and in other parts of England and Wales, is necessarily possible all over the country. On the contrary, they admit that some exemptions under 14 may be inevitable, and they will deal with this point later, but they do argue that the danger of dislocating trade by raising the school age has been much exaggerated.

The second objection is that parents cannot afford to forego the wages earned by children under 14.

In a few cases it must probably be admitted that the loss of the earnings of children between 12 and 14 would cause genuine distress to their parents. In others, it would cause hardship, but only such hardship as many of the most devoted parents are prepared to undergo. Yet, as has been seen, the difficulty seems to have been met in Scotland, in London, and in other towns in England and Wales. The Committee believe, therefore, that English and Welsh parents could afford to make the same sacrifice if they wished to; provided, of course, that exemptions were allowed in genuine cases of difficulty. It should be remembered also that even from the financial point of view the parents would get some indirect compensation by the removal of the competition of child labour. It is also worth remarking that the tendency of Local Education Authorities in recent years has been to raise the standards for exemption, and it seems fair to suppose that they could not have done this had there been any serious objection amongst parents in their respective areas.

The third objection to the raising of the school age is that the education given in the upper classes of the Public Elementary Schools is not practical enough, and that boys and girls would only be marking time if they remained there.


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The Committee admit the force of this objection so far as it goes. But they have laid stress elsewhere on the need for an improvement of the curriculum of the higher standards in the Day Schools, and they take it for granted that if boys and girls are made to stay longer at school, proper provision will be made there for their adequate instruction.

The Committee may sum up their view of the situation by stating that they regard the raising of the school age and the abolition of half-time by gradual stages as the necessary basis of a sound Continuation School system. They must not be taken, however, to advocate a rigid system which knows no exemptions. They are aware that a certain number of exemptions are inevitable. If, for instance, it could clearly be shown that the prosperity of a trade or occupation in which children were permanently and beneficially employed really required that they should begin their work before 14, full-time exemption might be allowed at 13 if the Local Education Authority decided, with the approval of the Board of Education, to pass a byelaw to that effect. In agriculture, for reasons to be given hereafter, the Committee do not at present recommend the raising of the age beyond 13. In the case of girls who are needed for domestic duties at home, the Committee would allow Local Education Authorities in rural areas to make byelaws substituting half-time attendance at the Day School from 13 to 15 for whole time attendance from 13 to 14. This arrangement might be valuable in lonely districts, or where the number of girls over 14 is so small that it is difficult to organise Continuation Classes for them, and where their presence in the Day School would not disorganise the work.* In addition the Committee would allow Local Education Authorities to grant exemptions to children between 12 and 14 in exceptional cases on the usual Scotch lines. But such exemptions should be very rare, especially in the case of children between 12 and 13, and, like all others, should be subject to the same Departmental control as is provided for in Scotland by section 3 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1901.† The Committee consider that special ability or regular attendance should be regarded

*See also page 232 in this connection.

†This section runs as follows:

"It shall be lawful for any school board, where after due inquiry in each case the circumstances seem to justify such exemption, to grant exemption from the obligation to attend school to individual children over 12 years of age for such time and upon such conditions, if any, as to the amount and manner of further attendance at school until the age of 14, as the school board shall think fit; and such exemption shall exempt the parent of such child from any prosecution or other proceeding under the Education Acts for neglecting to provide for the education of such child. [Footnote continues on next page]


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as reasons for keeping children at school - not, as at present, for sanctioning their absence.

It should be added that many of the witnesses who recommended 14 as the normal age for exemption from Day School attendance suggested that any children who for exceptional reasons left the Day School under 14 should be required to attend a Continuation School up to their 14th birthday, or even beyond. This plan has been at work, apparently with success, in some Scotch districts for some time, and has been adopted, though without statutory sanction, in a few places in England.*

The Committee have no objection to this plan so long as it is carefully restricted to exceptional cases. As a general system it would be a bad substitute for a more prolonged attendance at the Day School. Whenever it is tried, care must be taken to protect the children whose attendance at Continuation Classes may be thus required, from the danger of overstrain through unduly long hours of work.

(c) The need for lessening the drain on the energies of the Day School Pupils caused by exhausting or demoralising Employments out of School Hours

No account of the foundations laid in the Day School would be complete without a reference, however brief, to the employment of children who are in full time attendance at school. The attention of the country was called to this point some few years ago by the issue of a Report upon the number, ages, and occupations of school children working for wages, and upon the number of hours worked and the pay received. In consequence of the seriousness of the facts disclosed by that Report, an Inter-Departmental Committee was formed to investigate the question, and as a result of the inquiry and

[Footnote continues from previous page] Provided that any school board granting such exemption to individual children shall keep a register wherein shall be entered the names of children so exempted, and a statement of the circumstances in which and the conditions upon which such exemption has in each case been granted.

Provided also that the Department shall have power, when it sees fit, to call upon any school board for a return of the children to whom such exemption has been granted, and of the circumstances in which and the conditions upon which such exemption has in each case been granted; and if, after due inquiry, the Department is satisfied that such exemption has been granted by any school board in circumstances which did not justify its being so granted, or that the conditions on which such exemption has been granted are insufficient, or that the attendance of scholars within the district of such school board, or any part thereof, is unsatisfactory, the Department may call upon such school board to recall such exemption, or to take steps to improve the attendance; and if the said school board fail to do so within a reasonable time, it shall be lawful for the Department to withhold or reduce the parliamentary grant made to the said school board under section sixty-seven of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1872."

*For an instance, see Appendix F.


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recommendations of that Committee, the Employment of Children Act, 1903, was passed. That Act made certain general restrictions on child labour which are universally applicable. It provided, for instance, that no child should be employed between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., that no child under 11 should be employed in street trading, and that no child should be employed in any occupation likely to be injurious to his life, limb, health, or education, regard being had to his physical condition. These powers are sufficiently wide to meet the difficulty if they were enforced, but the Act appears to have contemplated that more specific powers would be easier to work, and gave power to local authorities to make byelaws to regulate or even forbid the employment of school children in specified occupations. Advantage has been taken of these powers in a certain number of instances, and some of the worst forms of school children's employment, such as that in barbers' shops licensed premises, and street trading, have been diminished by this means.

The Committee are informed that as regards the working of these byelaws, the effect generally as regards school attendance has been to secure increased regularity, and that it would appear that the restrictions placed on employment by the provisions of the byelaws as to the hours during which children may be employed, etc., have tended to diminish the employment of children of school age. But the Committee notice with great regret that only a very small minority of local authorities have as yet made byelaws under the Act. Down to July 1907 only two County Authorities (of which one was London), 32 County Boroughs, 28 Boroughs, and 4 Urban Districts in England and Wales had made such byelaws - to which, however, must be added about 10 authorities who have Private Acts covering the same ground. The Committee earnestly trust that in the interests of school children the provisions of the Act of 1903 may become more generally adopted. In a great many cases such children are still grievously overworked out of school hours, and in consequence many of them are too tired to profit by their instruction in the Day School, and so rendered unfit for further education later on.



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Chapter V. The present Waste during Adolescence of the Results of Day School Training through Educational Neglect and demoralising Forms of Employment

(a) The vital Importance, in the National Interest, of finding means for securing young Boys and Girls during adolescence from Educational Neglect and demoralising forms of Employment. The Danger of Loafing Habits

The Committee have now dealt with what appears to them to be the very foundation of any successful system of Continuation Schools, namely, the character and length of the training given in the Elementary Schools. They come now to a matter equally vital, namely, the necessity for finding means to prevent the disastrous waste of the results of that training during adolescence, a point to which they have already made a general reference. The evils which accompany this waste are beginning to impress themselves with gathering force upon the mind of the community, and are gaining the increased attention of all who have at heart the improvement both of social and of educational conditions. They are admirably summed up in the following extract from the Annual Report of the Borstal Association, 1908.

"When a boy leaves school the hands of organisation and compulsion are lifted from his shoulders. If he is the son of very poor parents, his father has no influence, nor, indeed, a spare hour, to find work for him; he must find it for himself; generally he does find a job, and if it does not land him into a dead alley at eighteen he is fortunate. Or he drifts, and the tidy scholar soon becomes a ragged and defiant corner loafer. Over 80 per cent of our charges admit that they were not at work when they got into trouble."

This extract is quoted in the Report of the Commissioners of Prisons, 1908, and is supplemented by the following paragraph by the Commissioners themselves:"In the course of the year, Mr. Grant-Wilson, whose zeal, and enthusiasm, and capacity as Honorary Secretary of the "[Borstal] Association is beyond all praise, has called our attention to what his experience has taught him is a great defect in our social system, viz., the absence of any plan whereby lads leaving the elementary schools, perhaps with good character and good ability, can be diverted into the paths of permanent employment, skilled or unskilled, instead of being left, as they are, to take their chance in the labour market to earn what few shillings they can by casual jobs, and, in many cases, to drift, from lack of superintendence or interest in their work, into idle and loafing habits - the breeding ground of criminal propensity. We have been furnished with figures showing that, in a


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great majority of cases dealt with by the association, not only were these lads unemployed at the time of their conviction, but that they had been unemployed, except at rare intervals, since leaving school. Parliament has recognised already, and is about, we hope, to recognise still further, the principle of special treatment for adolescents when in prison, so that they may be trained, if possible, for a life of honest industry. But it may then be too late. We are tempted to ask whether it would not be a wiser policy to begin at an earlier stage."

These quotations show very clearly the nature of the evil now under consideration - an evil peculiar to adolescence, which the raising of the age at which children leave the Day School may mitigate but will not radically cure. It will be necessary first to trace rather more in detail what causes lie at the root of the trouble and what remedies can be suggested for them, for as long as they remain they are a serious barrier to educational progress.

(b) Ignorance of many parents as to the future prospects, etc., of various occupations

It seems clear that the most dangerous point in the lives of children in an Elementary School is the moment at which they leave it. All experience shows the difficulty of taking the right step at this stage, and the lamentable consequences of taking a wrong one. This difficulty is due in large part to the inability of parents to obtain the necessary information as to the conditions of employment, the rates of wages and the future prospects of various occupations, to say nothing of the course of education required as a preparation for full efficiency in them. There are of course parents whose genuine poverty compels them to accept the first offer of work for their children without regard to the future. There are others who, though under no compulsion, put their children into unskilled employment from purely selfish reasons. But there are others, and the Committee believe them to be the large majority, who would be both able and willing to accept rather lower wages at first for their children for the sake of bettering their subsequent position, but who are not sufficiently acquainted with the prospects of the various trades and occupations to be able to make a wise selection for them. Yet unless children are thus cared for at this turning-point in their lives, the store of knowledge and discipline acquired at school will be quickly dissipated, and they will soon become unfit either for employment or for further education.


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(c) Insufficiency of the present efforts of Teachers, Apprenticeship Committees, etc., to afford the necessary guidance. The need for Employment Registries for Adolescents

If, then, it is agreed that it is necessary that when children leave school they shall be transferred without a break to occupations which are as far as possible suitable to their abilities and inclinations, and which will either provide, or at least give opportunities, for discipline and training during the vital years between 14 and 17 or 18, it must be considered how this may be made possible.

To some extent of course a beginning has already been made.*

In many schools the teachers make a point of interesting themselves in securing good openings for their pupils when they leave school. In some cases they are regularly consulted both by local employers and by the children's parents, and practically form themselves into unofficial labour bureaux of great value. Apprenticeship agencies and Skilled Employment Committees† have also been started and have been of great assistance both in making suitable openings known to boys and girls and in giving them financial help at the beginning of their careers. But these efforts have not been sufficiently systematised to reach the bulk of the children. The necessary information as to local industries requires much trouble to collect, and much energy is wasted if individual teachers, local committees, and bodies of managers work in isolation from each other. What is required is more systematic organisation in each district, and a central bureau where parents, employers, teachers, and pupils could obtain the necessary information and advice.

The bureau or junior employment registry would collect, and keep up to date, information as to the wages in different industries and callings, and as to the prospects of employment in them. These materials would be at the service of teachers, parents, and others interested in the wise selection of occupations for young people. The work of the registry should receive some subsidy from public funds. But in its organisation and management voluntary effort should be utilised, and, so far as possible, its committee of management should enjoy the independence which belongs to voluntary effort. To place the work of the

*For examples, see page 89 seq.

†Nearly 20 apprenticeship and skilled employment committees have been formed in London and the Provinces. To co-ordinate their work is the aim of the Apprenticeship and Skilled Employment Association, 55, Denison House, Vauxhall Bridge Road, London, S.W. For a further account, see Continuation Schools in England and elsewhere, page 454.


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registry under exclusively public control would, in the Committee's judgment, be a mistake.*

The labours of the junior employment registry should not be restricted to children only at the point of leaving school. For many reasons it appears inevitable that a certain proportion of children must at first take employments in trades which offer them no permanent careers. It may be that the trade to which they mean to be apprenticed eventually will not take them till they are 15 or 16 years old. It may be that from stress of circumstances they may be compelled to take to any work which offers them good wages for the moment. But whatever the cause, the junior employment registry should not confine itself exclusively to placing school children at work, but should continue its work for them throughout the difficult period of adolescence. As an instance of the value of some such organisation for the assistance of boys of 15 and 16, reference may be made to the labour bureaux started by the Postmaster-General, of which a short account is given in Mr. Norway's evidence.

It may be well to note here that the Inter-Departmental Committee on Physical Deterioration had their attention called to this point and made the following recommendation: "In order to organise existing efforts [for physical education and improvement] on a comprehensive and effective basis, the Committee would like to see a central body ... in touch with municipal activity, established in every large town, and charged with the duty of supervising

*Since they determined upon this recommendation, the Committee have had before them the Report of the Poor Law Commission. If, as now seems probable, adult labour bureaux are systematically organised throughout the country, there should be a close connection between their work and that of the employment registries for children and young persons as suggested above. The provinces of the two types of bureaux cannot be sharply divided. In order to give right advice to children on leaving school, and to adolescents in the years immediately following the close of their school life, it is necessary to have full knowledge of the conditions of adult labour in the district. Again, in the natural course of things, many cases will pass from the care of the junior bureau to that of the senior. It will probably be convenient therefore if the same records, and in some measure the same staff, are made available for both. But care should be taken to associate with the work of the junior bureau voluntary workers (men and women) who are in close communication with the schools and are specially acquainted with the needs of young people. The purely administrative work of both kinds of bureau may rightly be placed under public control, and should be maintained from public funds. But, for the giving of advice to individuals, especially where warning has to be given as to dangerous or demoralising trades, and as to the want of prospect of permanent employment in blind-alley callings, it is essential that the services of voluntary workers should be retained.


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and directing voluntary agencies of all kinds and bringing them up to a minimum standard of efficiency. One extremely important field of operation for such an organisation in each town would be the collection of information as to the various kinds of employment open to young people on leaving school - the conditions of employment; rates of remuneration, and relative permanence - with a view to advising them in their choice of an occupation, and thus minimising the evil effects of the kind of temporary and casual employment referred to" in a previous paragraph.*

(d) Undesirability of allowing children to cease to attend the Day School before their 16th birthday, unless properly occupied

The Committee have already suggested the raising of the school age to 14. They are prepared to go further and recommend that no boys or girls under 16 years of age shall be allowed to leave school; even at 14, unless they can show that they are going to be properly occupied.† "Beneficial employment" is already made a condition of exemption in byelaws (though a rather more stringent interpretation of the phrase is desirable), and the Committee see no reason why the principle should not be extended further. If children have got no work to do, it is no privation to their parents to retain them at school. On the other hand, all experience seems to show that it may save them from temptations which may prove disastrous to them.

In order to give practical effect to this suggestion, it would be necessary for the Local Education Authority to extend their existing registers of school children, so as to include in them a list of children in the district up to 16 years of age. Exemption from Day School attendance would be allowed at 14, provided that the child were suitably employed. In the case of girls, employment in home duties would, of course, be counted as falling under this head. If a child under 16, who had been exempted from Day School attendance in order to enter upon approved employment, ceased to he employed, the requirement to attend the Day School would again have to be complied with, and would be enforced by the school attendance officer. It would be necessary to make special provision for the children thus brought back to school. In the classes so organised, the work of the pupils should be of a very practical character.

*i.e., paragraph 378 of the Report of the Inter-Departmental Committee on Physical Deterioration [Cd. 2175].

†This suggestion would, of course, involve a slight modification of section 22 (2) of the Education Act, 1902.


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(e) The importance of the questions raised in Chapters IV and V, and their bearing on the problem of Continuation Schools

The Committee have now discussed two out of the three methods by which the education and general preparation of children for their life careers may be improved or secured. They have advised the gradual extension of the period of Day School attendance, in certain cases even up to 16 years of age, accompanied by a further development of the curriculum and methods of instruction during a child's last year or two at the Elementary School. The object of this is to secure that so far as possible no child should leave the Day School till the foundations of knowledge and character have been as firmly laid as possible. They then pointed out the necessity for supplementing the present efforts of teachers, Apprenticeship Committees, etc., by a systematic organisation of junior employment registries, in order to guide parents and children towards a wise choice of occupation. Here the object was to secure that the foundations laid in the Day School should not be impaired by the demoralising influences of injurious employment.

These two subjects are necessarily bound up with the question of Continuation Schools. The usefulness of Continuation Schools, whether attendance at them is voluntary or obligatory, depends upon the pupils having received in the Day Schools the preliminary training which makes them fit to profit by the instruction which they will receive there. Again, from the point of view of the ratepayer, if large sums are to be expended on Continuation Schools, there must be a better guarantee that the money will be advantageously spent. This will not be the case if it is devoted to repairing the damage done to earlier education by preventable causes. It is not right that a boy educated at the public expense till he is 13 or 14 should then be exploited by individual firms and parents for their private advantage, and that when the effects of his education and previous training have been nearly lost the State should then be asked to spend further stuns on re-educating him in Continuation Schools. This is a wasteful procedure, and the causes of it, largely preventable, should be removed.

Before proceeding, however, to a detailed consideration of the methods of preventing this waste, the Committee must review the present position of Evening and other Continuation Schools and Classes in England and Wales in the light of their history. That history explains the variety of type in English further education and points to the lines along which further progress may most easily be made.


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Chapter VI. The History and Present Position of Evening and other Continuation Schools and Classes in England and Wales

(a) The History of Evening Schools in England and Wales

In no country have Evening Schools and Classes played a more important part in popular education than in England and Wales. For more than two generations they attempted to supply the defects of a wholly insufficient provision of Elementary Day Schools. They supplied the first beginnings of a system of technical instruction. They have been intimately connected with the social and economic ideals of the skilled workers. They have given scope to individual energy and have helped in training the power of voluntary organisation. On the other hand, they have been little more than an appendage to the more highly organised system of Elementary Day Schools. They have never yet been worked into a coherent system of national training. Their courses of instruction have often been wanting in thoroughness of intellectual discipline because many of their pupils had no sound foundation of elementary knowledge. The efficiency of the Evening Schools and Classes has suffered from fluctuations in popular interest, from insufficient funds and from the reluctance of public opinion to assent to drastic action on the part of the State. It may truly be said, therefore, that the Evening Schools in England and Wales have offered useful opportunities to many of those whose force of character and physical vigour have enabled them to fight their way through difficulties to positions of responsibility and leadership. But they have failed, in great measure, to touch the less strenuous or the idle, and they have been too little adjusted to the needs of the rank and file, especially during the critical years of adolescence.

For the purposes of this report it is unnecessary to enter into the details of the history of the Evening School system of England and Wales.* It will suffice to say that the Sunday Schools were, in a rudimentary way, the forerunner of the modern Continuation School. In Wales, and to a smaller though appreciable extent in England, Sunday Schools have for more than a century been attended by adolescents and adults as well as by children. The first Sunday School in Europe in which secular and even technical instruction was given, in addition to religious teaching to boys and young men, was established in Paris in 1690, by the French priest Jean Baptiste de la Salle, the founder of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. This

*This will be found in Continuation Schools in England and Elsewhere. (Manchester University Press. 1907.)


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Sunday Continuation School was opened in the parish of Saint-Sulpice, and was attended by 200 youths under 20 years of age. The course of instruction included reading, writing, and arithmetic, and (for the more advanced pupils) drawing, geometry, and the elements of architectural design. The classes continued for two hours, and ended with the Catechism and a short address from one of the Brothers. The first country in which attendance at Sunday Schools was made compulsory by law was Württemberg, which adopted this arrangement in 1739. Though the 59th Canon of the Church of England (agreed upon in 1603) required fathers and mothers, masters and dames, to send their children, servants and apprentices to Church on Sundays and holy days, to be instructed and examined in the Catechism by the minister after the second lesson at Evening Prayer, this regulation had not the force of law. But the connection between the Sunday School and the modern Continuation School is not simply a matter of antiquarian interest but a fact of direct administrative importance. Those parts of Germany which first made attendance at Sunday Schools obligatory were also among the first to adopt the system of compulsory attendance at the Elementary School on weekdays. The two requirements worked in together. And the practice of compulsory attendance at the religious lessons of Sunday Schools* persisted until the time came when public opinion realised the importance of extending the period of obligatory secular education during the period of adolescence. Thus the modern developments of the Continuation School in Germany have been closely connected with the work of the Sunday Schools. In many parts of Germany Continuation Schools still meet on Sunday, though there is a growing tendency to confine the more technical classes to other days of the week. It is not too much to say, however, that without the free use of the early hours of Sunday morning for purposes of secular or even technical instruction, the German system of Continuation Schools, which is now exerting a decisive influence upon educational opinion in France, Switzerland, and America as well as in Great Britain, could never have so quickly attained to its present development. There are some signs that in this country the earlier hours of Sunday morning may in future be more widely used than heretofore for the non-technical side of Continuation School work. The Adult Schools, which provide much instruction in citizenship, hold their principal weekly meeting before the hour of Morning Service on Sundays.

*Some of these schools provided elementary secular instruction for backward pupils, but their main purpose was religious instruction.


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The history of the growth of Evening Schools and Classes in England and Wales throws light upon their present position, explains their variety, and points out the probable course of their future development. These schools began to be an important factor in English education a little more than a century ago. In Wales they had become numerous a generation before. They were the outgrowth (especially in Wales) of the religious revival of the eighteenth century, and (especially in England) of the social and intellectual ferment which followed the Industrial Revolution. Their history falls into two periods, during the first of which (ending in 1851) Evening Schools received no financial support from Government, while during the second the amount of public subsidy and of official supervision which have been extended to them have steadily (and during the last twenty years, rapidly) increased. The record of the struggles of the Evening Schools points to the conclusion that this branch of national education can dispense neither with the self-sacrificing energy of individuals nor with the co-ordinating authority of the State. When the latter is lacking, we find an immense waste of effort in organisation and a faltering indecision in educational aims. But without the hearty co-operation of volunteer helpers and without determination on the part of the students to battle against difficulties and to overcome them, Government grants and official regulations produce but disappointing results.

(i) First Period

The first organised effort to establish Evening Schools in England was in 1711. At that time there was a considerable movement for the encouragement of schools for the poor. In this movement the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge, founded by Dr. Bray and his friends in 1698, bore a leading part. That society limited its first efforts to the education of children under 12 years of age. In 1711 it began to encourage the establishment of Night Schools for adults. A member of the society, Griffith Jones, of Llanddowror, in the course of his lifelong labours for the improvement of the religious and social condition of Wales, established between 1730 and his death in 1761 a system of Day and Evening Classes taught by peripatetic teachers and called by him "Circulating Schools", from the fact that the teachers stopped in a town or village for a few months only and then passed on, "making a continued circuit of the whole country". Nearly 4,000 of these schools were opened in thirty years. Two-thirds of the pupils were adults. The Adult Night Schools were attended twice as numerously as the Day Schools. The main purpose of the Circulating


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Schools was to teach the people to read the Bible in Welsh. Religious zeal and the spirit of nationality gave power to the movement which left a lasting mark upon Welsh education and indirectly influenced English education also. Griffith Jones' educational work was carried forward in the following generation by Thomas Charles of Bala (1755-1814), the organiser of Welsh Calvinistic methodism and the principal pioneer of Sunday Schools in Wales. Charles, who had received his early education in Griffith Jones' parish, adopted in 1785, as an instrument in his religious propaganda in North Wales, Griffith Jones' plan of day and evening Circulating Schools for children and adults. The modern Sunday School movement in England (which owed its first impetus to Robert Haikes and to the Rev. Thomas Stock, of Gloucester, who opened Sunday Schools in that city in 1780) was at first mainly, though not exclusively, confined to children under 14 years of age. But the success of Charles' labours for the better education of the adult poor suggested similar efforts in England, and the beginnings of the Adult School movement (at Nottingham in 1798 and at Bristol in 1812) were due in part to a knowledge of his work and to sympathy with its religious purpose.

But the English movement for the establishment of educational classes for young people and adult workers did not run in one channel. One branch of it, like the Welsh, was evangelical in its aims and associations. To this branch belonged the Night Schools for men and women opened in great numbers in the first part of the nineteenth century in connection with the Church of England and other religious bodies. To the same branch belonged the Adult School movement to which new life was given in 1845 by Joseph Sturge, of Birmingham, and his companions in the Society of Friends. Another outcome of it was the Young Men's Christian Association (founded 1845), the educational side of which has much increased during recent years. The other branch of the movement in England was secular, scientific and, in some aspects of its work, semi-political in tendency. The earliest outcome of the secular side of the movement was the Birmingham Sunday Society, established in 1789 for the purpose of providing scientific lectures for working men engaged in the local foundries and manufactories. The work of the society was well known to Dr. George Birkbeck (1776-1841) who was one of the Presidents of the Medical and Chirurgical Society, and one of the founders of the Mechanics' Institutions. Birkbeck was a Yorkshireman who, after studying medicine at Edinburgh, became professor of natural philosophy at what was called the Andersonian University in Glasgow, an institution founded in 1796 for the purpose of promoting popular


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education in natural science. In 1800-1803, while living in Glasgow, Birkbeck continued Anderson's work by giving courses of experimental lectures on mechanics, designed "solely for persons engaged in the practical exercise of the mechanical arts whose situation in early life had precluded the possibility of acquiring even the smallest portion of scientific knowledge." This mechanics' class in Glasgow continued for many years and in 1823 was independently organised as the Glasgow Mechanics' Institution. In the same year, similar institutions were established at Edinburgh, through Leonard Horner's advocacy, and in London at the proposal of Thomas Hodgskin and with the active help of Brougham and Francis Place.

Birkbeck, who had settled in London in 1805, attained considerable practice in the City as a physician. He became President of the London Mechanics' Institution, which served as a model for similar undertakings in Manchester and a large number of other provincial towns, especially in the industrial districts of the north.

Thus during the earlier part of the nineteenth century the English movement for adult popular education had two sides, of which the Adult Schools and the Mechanics' Institutions were respectively the typical representatives. The first were evangelical in tone and a little too humble in their educational aspirations. The second was secular and utilitarian, with an educational programme, excellent in intention but too ambitious for the attainments of the majority of the students whose needs it was designed to meet. The two branches of the movement remained remarkably distinct. The chief organisers of the one had little sympathy with the outlook of the other.

But a further difference upon a point of principle made a cross-division athwart both branches of the movement. Some of the most active leaders on both sides regarded the further education of youths and adult workers as a national concern, which should be organised by public authorities and subsidised by the State. Others, again on both sides, were opposed to such a policy, partly from a fear lest Government should interfere with their religious or political convictions, partly from a belief that dependence upon State aid would impair the energies of those voluntarily engaged in the work. The chief spokesman of the voluntaryists was Edward Baines, of Leeds, who endeavoured to strengthen the educational or financial position of the movement by the formation of Unions of Mechanics' Institutes, first in the West Riding, then in Lancashire, and afterwards in London and in Cheshire. Two of these Unions have survived to the present day; but, though successful in some of its objects, Baines' plan of local federations did not overcome the most


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serious difficulties, financial and educational, with which the Mechanics' Institutions had to contend. The party which favoured State aid slowly gained influence. So long before as 1776, Adam Smith, when discussing the question of public education in The Wealth of Nations, had hinted at a plan of State interference which would have compelled the provision of a system of general training for all the younger part of the male population. "The public", he wrote, "can impose upon almost the whole body of the people the necessity of acquiring the most essential parts of education by obliging every man to undergo an examination or probation in them before he can obtain the freedom in any corporation, or be allowed to set up any trade either in a village or town corporate." But the social and economic changes brought about by the Industrial Revolution, and in some cases already in progress at the time of his writing, so altered the industrial situation that Adam Smith's plan was never seriously considered. When trade processes were being revolutionised, it was impossible to carry out a scheme which presupposed a settled order of industry and commerce. During the first 30 years of the nineteenth century, Robert Owen's propaganda familiarised a large section of the people with the idea of bringing all education (including such Night Schools and Classes as he had himself provided for his workpeople at New Lanark) under the supervision of the State. In 1833, Mr. Roebuck moved in the House of Commons that a plan should be framed for the universal and compulsory education of the people. In the course of his speech, which had a great influence upon public opinion, he sketched a complete system of national education under the supervision of Government. The system was to include, in the towns, schools for "the instruction of persons above 14, who might have leisure from their employment during the evening, Sundays or holidays." "Such schools", he said, "would be of immense service, preventing idle habits and low and debauching pleasures from arising among the youths of the town." In 1837 William Lovett and a number of his fellow-Chartists published An Address from the Working Men's Association to the Working Classes on the subject of National Education, in which they proposed a carefully considered and comprehensive plan of public instruction under the supervision of the State. One feature of the plan was that, in addition to infant and elementary schools for children up to 12 years of age, there should be "Colleges or Finishing Schools for all above 13 who might choose to devote their time to acquiring the higher branches of knowledge." These colleges, which were to be open to both sexes, were to be "open every evening to enable the adult population to avail


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themselves of the benefit of mutual instruction, writing, singing, lectures, or any other rational pursuits or amusements". It was probably the Chartist propaganda in favour of higher education for the workers which led to the establishment in Sheffield in 1842 of a People's College, which served as a model for the Working Men's College founded by Frederick Denison Maurice and his friends in London in 1854. There was apparently among the masses of the people a general readiness for a much more comprehensive plan of national education, including provision for adolescent and adult workers, than the statesmen who controlled public affairs were willing to sanction. This and the other fact that, whenever a great change in popular education has been enacted by Parliament, those most directly affected by it have not offered any serious opposition to its enforcement, point to the conclusion that the English people is by no means as averse as is sometimes supposed to educational reforms which timid onlookers may deprecate as over-bold and premature. As soon as the inspectors, appointed by the Education Department upon its establishment in 1839, got to work, they began to report upon Adult Night Schools as well as upon schools for children. In 1844 one of the inspectors, the Rev. F. C. Cook, reported that Mr. W. Geary, a Norwich manufacturer, compelled all youths in his factory "to attend an Evening School until they arrived at the age of maturity". And in 1849 the Rev. W. J. Kennedy, another inspector, urged that Evening Schools should receive "large special assistance from the Committee of Council, derived from the Parliamentary grant for education or from an educational rate. The voluntary system", he added, "has done a vast deal, but it has nearly, if not quite, run to the end of its tether." The Government adopted this view, and in 1851 took the decisive step of making grants to Evening Schools.

The Evening Schools and Classes which, though hitherto receiving no aid from public funds, had played an important part in the educational life of England and Wales from the early days of the Industrial Revolution, were (religious classes and mutual improvement societies apart) of three main types. Some, like those in which George Stephenson learnt to read and reckon, were Elementary Schools for adult beginners. Others were, in the strict sense of the word, Continuation Schools, in which young people kept up or recovered the knowledge which they had previously acquired. Others, like the classes in Mechanics' Institutions, were engaged in imparting scientific and technical knowledge to adult workers. The experience of all these three types of Evening School showed that what was most needed in England and Wales, before Continuation School work could


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be generally effective, was a well-organised system of Elementary Day Schools, in which, during childhood, the foundations of knowledge could be firmly laid. The attempt to accomplish by means of Evening Schools the task which Elementary Day Schools alone could effectively undertake, had proved in the great majority of cases a failure, but the experience of the Evening Schools in the first half of the nineteenth century had also shown that vigorous and capable students, however inadequate their elementary education, and however laborious their calling, could derive effective help from these slender opportunities of further instruction.

(ii) Second Period

In 1851 (the year of the Great Exhibition, the lessons of which convinced thoughtful Englishmen that the country needed technical education) grants were first paid by Government in aid of Evening Schools. Two years later, on the Prince Consort's advice, the Government established the Department of Science and Art. These were the first steps towards the better organisation of Continuation Schools by means of the authority of the State.

In their first regulations for grants to Evening Schools the Government undertook to subsidise an additional certificated teacher, engaged by the Managers of an inspected Elementary Day School, provided that he were employed morning or afternoon in the Day School and also in the Evening School, but not if he taught in the morning, afternoon, and evening of the same day. In 1853 this condition was relaxed. Two years later the grants in aid of the teacher's salary were increased. In 1858 capitation grants were first given in respect of the pupils in Evening Schools. In 1859 the Science and Art Department held its first examination for teachers who desired to obtain a certificate of competency to teach in science classes. In 1860 the Education Department summarised its regulations for Evening Schools, and again increased the grants. In the following year the Science and Art Department held its first general examination in science. On the results of these examinations payments were made to the teachers in proportion to the number of their pupils who passed.* Thus

*It should be noted that Government grants both for Elementary Schools and for science and art classes were originally intended for the "children of the poor" (see Minutes of the Committee of Council on Education, 24th September 1839) or "children belonging to the classes who support themselves by manual labour" (see Revised Code of Minutes and Regulations of the Committee of the Privy Council on Education, 9th May 1862, section 4), and for "the industrial classes" (see Minute of Committee of the Privy Council for Trade, 16th March 1853, establishing the Science and Art Department).

Yet in the minds of those who promoted the notion of the Central Authority in matters of education there seems to have been (however [footnote continues on next page]


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within ten years the new machinery of Government aid for different types of Evening Schools and Classes was in full work. The Education Commission (1858-1861) which investigated the Evening Schools at this time found that their

[footnote continues from previous page] intermittently and timidly expressed) a wider ideal than this. Lord John Russell's letter of February 4th, 1839, to Lord Lansdowne, announcing the task to be entrusted to the Committee of Council on Education, of which the latter was the first Chairman, referred to the "general education of the People". And Queen Victoria's Speech from the Throne on November 10th, 1852, which announced the Government's intention to establish the Science Division of what became the Science and Art Department, spoke of "a comprehensive scheme for the advancement of the fine arts and of practical science".

The interpretation of the phrase "labouring classes" or "classes who support themselves by manual labour" raised difficulties as the work of the Elementary Schools (day and evening) extended itself more widely through the people. It was decided (Education Department Report, 1863-4, page lxvi.) that "simple policemen, coastguards, and dock and railway porters may commonly be regarded as labouring men. But petty officers in those services, excisemen, pilots, and clerks of various kinds present more difficulty, and must be judged of according to the answers to the preceding inquiries", (e.g "Does he rank and associate with the working men or with the tradesmen of the place?"). The Directory of the Science and Art Department revised to September 1869, in defining "students of the industrial classes" for the purpose of the science and art grants, included under that term (amongst others) "persons in receipt of salaries not large enough to render them liable to the income tax ..." and "small shopkeepers employing no one but members of their own family and not assessed to the income tax". While, however, the definition appeared in the Directory itself for the first time in 1869, grants had been payable for at least five years before that time in respect of students of these types, though the reference to them in the form of claim for grant (appended to the Directory) was not couched in precisely the same words as those introduced into the regulations themselves in the year mentioned.

In 1870 the Elementary Education Act did not limit attendance at grant-aided public Elementary Schools (day of evening) to any category of the population. In 1872 all scholars in public Elementary Schools (day of evening) were included among "students of the industrial classes" as eligible for science and art grants, as also were "persons in receipt of salaries of less than 200 per annum", and their children, if not gaining their own livelihood. In 1890 the income-limit of parents of students upon whom science and art grants could he claimed was raised to 400, and in 1895 to 500. In 1897 the income limit disappeared. In 1899 a Local Government Board auditor disallowed certain expenditure which had been incurred by the London School Board in respect of science and art classes in Public Elementary Day Schools and Evening Continuation Schools. In 1900 the Judges in the Queen's Bench Division confirmed the auditor's view, and decided that science and art classes in Evening Continuation Schools were beyond the scope of rate-aided (elementary) education. In 1899 the Board of Education Act had amalgamated the Education Department and the Science and Art Department. In 1902 the Education Act brought elementary and higher education under the supervision of the County and County Borough Education Committees and declared (section 22 (1)) that the expression "Elementary School" shall not include any school carried on as an Evening School under "the regulations of the Board of Education". From that time Evening Continuation Schools have been reckoned as part of "Higher Education", and are, therefore, exempt from the limitations imposed by the Judgment referred to above.


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main purpose was the supplying of the deficiency of early education. In their report they gave many illustrations of the zeal of the scholars and of the teachers. At an Evening School in Rochdale one of the assistant commissioners was taking the class in order to test its work, when the hour of breaking up arrived. He was about to stop, when one of the scholars appealed to him: "Go thou on; we want as much as we can get for our money". At Wells another commissioner found the Bishop himself (Robert John Eden, third Baron Auckland) teaching a class of navvies to read and cypher. The Commissioners in their report dwelt upon "the great and growing importance of Evening Schools as entitling them to aid from the public", and in the following year the Education Department increased the grants, withdrew the restriction upon Day School teachers taking Evening Classes, and defined the work of the Evening Schools as being "not secondary, but continued elementary education". Every scholar was, as before, to be examined in the elementary subjects of reading, writing, and arithmetic. "The object of attendance in the evening is to fix and perfect elementary knowledge." Thus the Evening Schools under the Education Department were kept in the closest connection with the Elementary Day School. More advanced Evening Classes, conducted in independent institutions, were separately recognised and aided by the Science and Art Department. Two types of Evening Class were thus maintained without any attempt to secure co-ordination between their different programmes of work.

The Education Act of 1870 maintained this distinction. It defined a public Elementary School as a school at which elementary education is the principal part of the education there given. An Evening School receiving a grant from the Education Department was reckoned as an Elementary School. Therefore its work was confined in the main to elementary subjects, and in accordance with this restriction the upper age limit for Evening School pupils was fixed at 18. This limitation began to affect the number of scholars in Evening Schools as soon as the increase of Elementary Day Schools, which resulted from the passing of the Act, caused a falling-off in the number of pupils requiring elementary instruction in the evening. From 1862 (when the number of Evening School pupils was first separately given) to 1871-2, the number of scholars in the Evening Schools steadily increased year by year. In 1872-3 the number began to decline rapidly (with a rise in 1876-7 due perhaps to a raising of the upper age limit to 21 by the Code of 1876) until 1884-5 when the number of pupils was smaller than in any year since 1866. In 1882, however, the Code had begun to make significant changes in the regulations for Evening Schools. Grants were no longer confined to


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elementary subjects, but the rule that every scholar must be individually examined in reading, writing and arithmetic was still enforced. The Recreative Evening Schools Association was established at this time by Dr. Paton, of Nottingham, in order to secure a more attractive and practical course of study in the Evening Schools, in which working men were associated with the Boards of Managers. Its work had influence upon the judgment of the Royal Commission appointed to inquire into the working of the Education Acts in 1886. The majority of the Commissioners recommended that the Evening School system should be thoroughly revised; that no upper age limit should be imposed in respect of the scholars; that special courses of study suited to the needs of the locality should be allowed; and that the rule requiring all scholars to pass in the three elementary subjects should be no longer enforced. The minority report endorsed these recommendations but also urged that physical exercises should be encouraged in Evening Schools, that elementary technical instruction should be introduced, and that efforts should he made to interest the pupils in good literature and music. The way was opened for the adoption of these recommendations by the Education Code Act of 1890, which enacted that "it shall not be required as a condition of a Parliamentary Grant to an Evening School that elementary education should be the principal part of the education then given". By the Code of 1890 scholars in Evening Schools were excused examination in elementary subjects if they produced certificates that they had been scholars in a public Elementary School and had passed Standard V in the elementary subjects. In response to these changes the number of pupils in Evening Schools rapidly rose.

But by far the most important change in Evening School education was made by the Evening Continuation School Code of 1893. The old conception of the Evening School was swept away. Attendance of persons over 21 years of age was recognised for grants. Grants were paid upon the instruction of the school as a whole, instead of upon the attainments of individual scholars. Fixed grants were paid upon all aggregate number of hours of instruction received, instead of upon average attendance. Examination by the inspector on a fixed day was abolished. Visits without notice were substituted. And a new ideal of Evening School work was suggested by a series of illustrative syllabuses of study. In consequence of these changes the numbers of pupils rose by leaps and bounds. In 1809-1900 there were six times as many students all the registers as in 1892-3.

In the meantime the Technical Instruction Act of 1889 had given educational powers to the county councils which were established in the previous year. The Local Taxation


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(Customs and Excise) Act, of 1890 placed at their disposal, at first for one year only, considerable funds available for technical and commercial education. Two co-existing local authorities were now actively engaged in the sphere of Evening School work. The question whether Evening Schools should be regarded as part of the Elementary School system, or as part of the system of secondary of technical education became acute. In 1899 the Board of Education Act unified the central authority and removed the circumstances which had in the past led to some divergence between the administrative practice of the Education Department and that of the Department of Science and Art. In the same year, Mr. Cockerton, district auditor under the Local Government Board, disallowed certain expenditure which had been incurred by the London School Board in respect of science and art classes in Day and Evening Continuation Schools. In the following year the judges in the Queen's Bench Division confirmed the auditor's view, Mr. Justice Wills, in pronouncing judgment, said that "science and art classes in Evening Continuation Schools are as much beyond the scope of rate-aided [elementary] education as in Day Schools, but in both such educational work may be carried on by the school board, provided that the whole of the funds required for it are furnished from sources other than contributions from the rates."

The difficult position produced by this judgment was temporarily relieved in 1901 by an Act which empowered county or county borough councils to sanction the carrying on by school boards for one year of any Evening School which had been started contrary to the law. But in 1902 the Education Act changed the whole situation by abolishing the school hoards and modifying the local administration of education in the hands of the county or county borough councils. By that Act (section 22 (1)) the expression "Elementary School" was expressly declared not to include any school carried on as an Evening School under the regulations of the Board of Education. Evening Schools thus became part of the system of higher education which the new local authorities had power to supply or aid.

For a time the effect of this change was to direct the chief attention of the local authorities to the more technical and advanced types of evening instruction, and somewhat to divert their thoughts from the strictly continuative and more elementary forms of Evening School work. But the Education Act of 1902 compelled the country and the local authorities to consider the different grades of education in their relation to one another and as rightly forming an organic whole. This being the case, it was inevitable that the urgency of the need for a better system of Continuation Schools should gradually


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impress itself upon the thoughts of local administrators and of the public. Hence, when the first difficulties of their task in regard to secondary and elementary Day Schools had been overcome by the new Local Education Authorities, the question of Continuation Schools quickly came into prominence. Efforts were made in a great number of districts to improve the attendance at the Evening Schools and to bring the course of instruction into closer relation to the industrial needs of the locality. The problem of unemployment drew attention to the need for a more prolonged and practical education for the future workers. Psychological investigation emphasised the importance of meeting the educational needs of adolescence. The example of Germany showed what might be done in the systematic organisation of Continuation Schools. And these various causes have produced a convergence of thought upon this part of the problem of national education.

(b) The Adult Schools. Comparison with the People's High Schools in Denmark

One of the most promising features in Continuation School work in England at the present time is the rapid increase of the adult schools. There are now about 1,400 of these schools in England (the schools for men being twice as numerous as the schools for women). The number of members in 1906 was about 82,600 (roughly, men 60,000, women 20,000, juniors 2,600. Since 1906 these numbers have largely increased. The work of the schools is entirely voluntary, non-sectarian and non-party. Members of the Society of Friends have been most active in organising the schools. The latter flourish in large cities, in towns and in villages. They meet in Council Schools, National Schools, co-operative halls, trades halls, friendly societies' rooms, and even in lofts and workshops. The usual times of meeting for the men's schools are on Sunday morning at 7.30, 8, 8.30 or 9; the women's schools meet on Sunday afternoons and week-day evenings. Most of the work is done in classes, the course of study being both biblical and secular. Short lectures on social, scientific, or historical subjects, or addresses on religious topics, precede or follow the Bible class. In the organisation of study-circles there has recently sprung up an effective co-operation between some adult schools and the Workers' Educational Association. Many adult schools have now taken premises which they open every week night for friendly meetings and games, and occasionally for classes and debates. In Leicestershire, about one-twentieth of the adult population of the manufacturing districts attend adult schools, and in some manufacturing villages a much larger proportion. The ultimate purpose of the work of the schools is defined as being "to intensify the


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social spirit by associating men together for the free study of the deeper problems of life, viewed in relation to the ideal of manhood set before them in the Gospels."

The work of the adult schools has recently been supplemented by the establishment of a residential settlement for the higher education of working men at Fircroft, Bournville, near Birmingham. This new institution is intended to be a school of citizenship. The desire of the promoters is that "the fellowship of the settlement in study, in recreation, and in common life shall broaden the intellectual outlook, strengthen the individual sense of responsibility for the common good, and deepen the spiritual life of its residents." The work of the settlement is carried on by means of lectures given by resident teachers, assisted as may be required by a staff of regular and occasional lecturers. Subjects are set for essay writing. Courses of study are arranged in the following subjects: political economy, industrial history, political and social history, growth of local government, poor law, etc., modern working-class movements, English language and literature, Bible history, nature study, elements of logic and ethics, historical, political and industrial geography, practical work (gymnastics, tool work, gardening, account keeping). The settlement began its work in January, 1909. The cost of residence, including board, lodging and tuition, is 10 per term; for periods of less than a term, 1 per week. Residents are required to take a share in the housework of the settlement, and must be over 18 years of age. In the religious and devotional life of the settlement there is great liberty. Classes will be arranged for the study of the historical, social and spiritual teaching of the Bible. No religious or theological tests are imposed, and the settlement is undenominational. Students have opportunities of attending the religious lectures at the neighbouring Woodbrooke settlement.

In this connection the Committee desire to draw attention to the similarity of the spirit of the English Adult Schools to that which has made the People's High Schools* a great moral and social power in Denmark. The Folkehöjskoler are boarding

*Full accounts of the work of the People's High Schools in Denmark will be found in Continuation Schools in England and Elsewhere (Manchester: University Press, 1907), Chapter XVII., by Mr. J. S. Thornton; Moral Instruction and Training in Schools: Report of an International Inquiry (Longmans, Green & Co., 1908), Vol. II., pp. 168-179, "The People's High Schools in Denmark", by Miss Forchhammer; Special Reports on Educational Subjects, Vol. 1, "Recent Educational Progress in Denmark", by Mr. J. S. Thornton; and Vol. 17, "Schools, Public and Private, in the North of Europe", by Mr. J. S. Thornton. The most fully illustrated account of the schools in the Danish language is Mr. A. Nordahl-Petersen's Danmarks Höjskoler i Tekst og Billeder (Arnold Jacob: Ringe: 1908).


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schools or residential colleges situated in the country districts. About 80 per cent of the students are between 18 and 25. Only a few of the students come from towns, more than half of the total number being the sons and daughters of yeoman farmers, and about one-quarter the children of crofters or small holders. Nearly all the People's High Schools are open for five months in the winter for young men and for three months in the summer for young women. The usual fee for board, lodging, and instruction is about 10 for a winter course (five months) and 5 10s. for a summer course (three months). The author of the high school idea was N. F. S. Grundtvig (1809-1872), clergyman, poet, and historian, whose aim was to make the people good citizens by educational enlightenment on the aims and methods of government and social welfare. He maintained that from 18 to 25 is the age at which mental receptivity is usually the greatest. He urged that these adult schools should provide a culture related to actual life and to the requirements of the present, a culture and enlightenment for life, necessary for those who have to take part in public life. The first Danish People's High School was founded in 1844 in North Slesvig as a bulwark for Danish nationality in the borderland. After the war of 1864, when that part of the Danish kingdom came under German rule, the school was moved to Askov. The Danish People's High Schools have been intimately connected with the national movement in Denmark. Their organisers have felt that "what Denmark had lost in outward power she must strive to gain in inner strength". The primary aim of these schools is to influence character and to inspire a high ideal of citizenship. The leaven of their influence has permeated the whole of Danish agricultural opinion. About 16 per cent of all the men and women between 20 and 50 years of age now engaged in agriculture in Denmark, have been students at the People's High Schools. It will be observed that in Danish popular education there is a break between the close of the Elementary Day School course and the period of High School study which begins not earlier than 16 years of age and generally at 18. The result of the rousing influence of the High Schools and of the increased receptivity of mind which their humanistic and social training produces has been a great readiness on the part of the Danish peasantry to adopt scientific methods in dairying, and skilful forms of organisation in marketing dairy produce. The State makes considerable grants-in-aid of these People's High Schools, but is careful to impose no strict limitation upon their methods of work or upon the subject matter of their teaching. As the Danish proverb goes, "It is no use feeding the birds if you tie up their legs with a string".


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But while the Danish High Schools serve, for the most part, the agricultural population, the English Adult Schools are almost entirely urban. An effort was made, however, in 1907, to organise in Scotland an autumn school of study for young farmers. It was held at Ardenconnel on the Gareloch from November 4 to November 29, 1907. Mr. H. Patrick Wright, Principal of the West of Scotland Agricultural College, has supplied the Committee with the following short account of this work: It was an attempt to introduce into this country the kind of instruction given in the People's High Schools in Denmark. The successful carrying out of the plan was largely due to the co-operation and assistance of the members of the Scottish Agricultural Commission of 1904, but the scheme was first proposed by the Reverend Dr. J. B. Paton, of Nottingham, and it was at his suggestion that the Reverend Rolland O. Ramsay, Secretary of the Scottish Union, put himself in communication with the members of the Commission. Much public interest was shown in the experiment, and widespread inquiries were made. Provision was made for male pupils only, but, inquiries were received from both sexes. The object of the school is to supply the link between the Elementary Schools and the Agricultural Colleges.

A list of the subjects taught, as shown in the appended copy of the time table for the second week of the course, will perhaps give the best idea of the character of the school and the kind of instruction given. The only subject not included in the appended extract is geography, which was substituted for history in the third and fourth weeks of the course.

(c) Technical Classes for Adults, and Tutorial Classes in History and Economics

Nearly half a million (430,783) students over 17 years of age entered Evening Classes in the last year (1906-7) for which statistics are available. For some years past this number has steadily grown. The demand is certain to continue and is a social fact of great importance. A noteworthy characteristic of it is the large number of women who attend Evening Classes. The majority of these classes are technical in character. They are attended by those who desire to increase their skill in the work by which they earn their living or (especially in the case of women) in those practical home arts dexterity in which increases the comfort of life and enables more advantageous use to be made of personal income. The demands made by other


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ARDENCONNEL AUTUMN SCHOOL

Syllabus for Week, 18th to 23rd November


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duties upon the time and strength of adults renders it necessary that attendance at single classes should be allowed. It would be a mistake to shut out from the opportunities of further education those who cannot spare the time for systematised courses of instruction. But the value of the latter is appreciated by an increasing number of adult students. The grouped courses now provided by many of the local education authorities are appreciated by a considerable proportion of the students and have given increased depth and thoroughness to much evening school work. The weaker side of these adult Evening Classes is the non-technical. Instruction in history, literature, and citizenship, has hitherto failed to evoke widespread interest among the masses of the people. There is as yet nothing in English educational life which corresponds in intensity to the keen intellectual and moral interest which the students at the People's High Schools in Denmark show in national history and literature. In Wales and in Ireland this spirit has been in some degree aroused; but England remains comparatively apathetic. This may he due in part to the mixed character of our population and to its consequent lack of intellectual and social unity. A further explanation of it may lie in the fact that English nationality has not for many centuries had to struggle for its life. It has not been threatened with disaster or passed through political humiliation.

But there are signs, sporadic yet remarkable, of a growing interest in these questions among adult workers or both sexes. The rise of the Adult Schools is significant of this new movement in English life. A further proof of it is afforded by the tutorial classes which have been organised in some industrial centres, under the auspices of the Workers' Educational Association and with encouragement and subsidy from the local authorities, from trade unions and co-operative societies, and from the universities, old and new. These tutorial classes have already been established in a number of industrial districts. Each class is limited in numbers to 30. It meets for two hours every week. An hour's lecture is followed by an hour's discussion in which tutorial aid is given to individual students. Every member of the class pledges himself to write a fortnightly essay for the tutor in charge. Those who join the classes undertake to complete a three years' course. These classes are the lineal descendants of those established in London and elsewhere in the early fifties, under the leadership of the Christian Socialists, Frederick Denison Maurice, Thomas Hughes, Edward Vansittart Neale, J. M. Ludlow, and others, with the help of John Ruskin, F. J. Furnivall, Lewes Dickinson, and other friends. The link between these Working-men's Colleges of the fifties and the Tutorial Classes of to-day was furnished


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by the University Extension movement which has done much, though less than its originators hoped, towards providing systematic opportunities of non-technical education for adults engaged in industrial callings. The Committee are of opinion that these tutorial classes in history, literature, economics, and political science well deserve encouragement on the part of local authorities and of all bodies interested in popular education. The fundamental purpose of such classes is to enable the workers to enter upon a wider intellectual life by means of instruction which interprets the facts of daily experience in the light of historical science and of literature. Though relatively costly to provide, such classes will well repay the outlay made upon them wherever a small group of adult students is prepared to undertake the concentrated study and intellectual self-discipline which the work involves. An admirable statement of the intellectual and social purpose of these tutorial classes will be found in the report of a joint committee of Oxford University and working-class representatives on the relation of the University to the higher education of workpeople (Oxford and Working Class Education. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1908). An appendix to that report contains a series of carefully planned courses of study in economics, recent English literature, recent English history, general English history, modern world history, and political science, together with suggestions for preliminary study.*

(d) The Efforts of Local Educational Authorities to encourage Attendance at Continuation Schools and to interest employers in them

Without recourse to statutory compulsion, many Local Authorities have succeeded in securing a remarkably high level of attendance at Evening Schools and Classes within their area. The Committee will mention now a few typical instances showing how this result has been obtained.

In the winter session 1907, the Cheshire Education Committee instituted an inquiry into the working of the Evening Continuation Schools and Technical Schools in the area under their administrative direction. The report, prepared for the Committee by Mr. J. Thomas, emphasises the importance of a more direct relationship between the Day and Evening Schools and of zealous co-operation on the part of local committees. The inquiry showed that in several urban areas there was hearty co-operation between the Elementary Day School teachers and the Evening School authorities, but that in

*See also the "Memorandum submitted by the Tutorial Classes Committee of the University of Oxford", page 320.


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rural areas little appeared to be done in Evening School work except where the teacher of the Day School was also teacher of the Evening School, and in such cases the schools in rural areas generally succeeded only where there was someone else on the spot beside the teacher, who was keenly interested in education. Mr. Thomas' report also pointed out that there was need in many parts of the area for closer co-ordination between the more advanced work in the Evening Continuation Schools and that of the Technical Institutes. Mr. Thomas found that the plan of compelling all evening students to take a complete course of work met, in all parts of the county, with much approval, and had been more or less recognised, at least as regards new students, in two-thirds of the areas under the county administration. On the other hand, he found much criticism of it. A course system which requires attendance on several nights a week was reported as having created hardships in the case of domestic servants who, as a rule, are allowed but one evening out per week. In some of the mill districts the long hours of work made insistence upon a complete course inadvisable. In one or two centres the heavy demands of the course system had greatly discouraged attendance. In Nantwich (town) four nights a week was the rule for course attendance, but this was found too many. Home work was compulsory on the part of the students at one centre only. At another, Dukinfield, a students' room had been fitted up and a supply of books placed in it so that students might do home work in comfort. Mr. Thomas was struck by finding that one point was almost unanimously urged throughout the county, viz., the need of parliamentary powers for compulsory attendance at Evening Schools between certain ages. Runcorn has adopted a quasi-compulsory method with all Day School children who are exempted under the attendance clause. One condition of exemption from Day School attendance is attendance at an Evening School for two years. An attendance officer visits the homes of all who attend irregularly. Certain employers in the county have made attendance at Evening Schools and Technical Schools a part of the conditions of apprenticeship; others have offered to pay the fees of those of their apprentices who attend Evening Schools; but the latter offer is not always taken advantage of. At Macclesfield, it is said, certain young people, who were expected by their employers to attend the Night School, gave up their employment rather than comply with this condition, although the employer proposed to pay their fees. Mr. Thomas concludes by observing that if compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools were introduced, "provision would be necessary for the 'non-intellectuals' whose stock in hand is their


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muscle; up to the present, practically nothing has been done for them".

The West Riding Education Committee held, in 1908, twenty-two conferences for the development of the work of Technical and Evening Schools in the county. In this way nearly the whole Riding was covered. Each conference was presided over by the Chairman or Vice-Chairman of the Higher Education Sub-Committee. Representatives of the County Education Committee at these conferences pointed out that, within the administrative area, only one-tenth of those who leave the Elementary Day School subsequently enrol themselves, at the first opportunity, in the Evening Schools. They appeal to public opinion and to the assistance of employers and others in lessening this serious cause of educational waste. During the conferences a number of valuable suggestions were made to the representatives of the County Education Committee, and these recommendations were embodied in a report subsequently issued by the Committee. They observe that there is very close connection between the success of an Evening School and the fact that its teachers are also on the staff in the corresponding Day School. The names of all children leaving the Elementary Day Schools are now preserved by the County Education Committee, and lists are sent in, at intervals, to the district sub-committees, with the request that they will supply lists to managers of all Evening Schools in their neighbourhood. In this way it is believed that every child, on leaving the Elementary School, will be approached with a view to his or her attendance at Evening School. The Committee have issued an open letter to young people in the West Riding of Yorkshire, urging attendance at Evening Schools and explaining the methods of their organisation.*

The critical point to which many Local Education Authorities are now directing their attention is the time when the children are about to leave the Elementary Day School. At Halifax, the chief attendance officer forwards every Saturday morning to the Principal of the Technical College, who is the organiser of the Evening Continuation Schools, a list of the scholars who have left the Day Schools during the current week. On the following Monday morning, one of the clerks from the Principal's office visits the home of each boy and points out to the parent the advantages of attending the Evening School and the serious loss which may result from allowing any considerable time to elapse before the boy takes up Evening School work after completing his Elementary Day School course. If the parent

*The above paragraph is taken from a report issued by the West Riding Education Committee.


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gives an unfavourable reply, the clerk sees the boy himself either at the dinner hour or in the evening. Though the population of Halifax is large (107,000) and somewhat extended in its area, the services of one clerk are as a rule sufficient for this work of visitation. Every effort is made to induce the boys to begin Evening School attendance at the commencement of the week after that in which they have left the Day School. During that week the clerk calls again to ascertain whether the boy has actually joined the Evening School. In the case of waverers, he sometimes calls at the home about half-an-hour before the commencement of the Evening School. Those boys who leave the Day Schools during the period of the year in which the Evening Schools are not open are visited during August. The results of this careful visitation are encouraging. During four weeks in October and November, 1907, 66 per cent of the boys leaving the Elementary Day Schools in Halifax immediately joined the Evening School. Only 12.3 per cent actually refused. Of the remainder, 9.6 per cent were working late and unable to come to the Evening School; 8.5 per cent lived too far away from the nearest Evening School; and 3.6 per cent were ill or otherwise physically unfitted for Evening School work.

In Manchester the Director of Elementary Education makes out every week a list of the children who are leaving the Public Elementary Schools. This list is sent to the Director of Higher Education, who at once sends to the parents, informing them of the Continuation School facilities in their neighbourhood, and offering free admission for the first session on condition that someone guarantees to pay the fees of the pupil if he does not attend regularly, or fails in diligence. Large numbers of boys and girls take advantage of this scheme, and about one half of those who do so return as ordinary fee-paying students in the following session.

The Lancashire County Education Committee have recently (January 1909) prepared a valuable return showing for different parts of their administrative area the percentage of boys and girls respectively, who, entering upon employment and not proceeding to a Secondary Day School, left the Public Elementary Day School during the year ended October 30, 1908, and joined Evening Continuation Classes immediately after leaving the Day School. For the whole of the administrative area, the percentage of boys who, at the close of their Day School course joined the Evening Continuation Schools without a break in their educational career was 36.4; that of girls was 21.9; and that of the two sexes together, 29.1. These figures show the relatively high level to which the Lancashire Education. Committee, with the help


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of local administrators, employers, teachers, and others in the districts concerned, have raised the initial attendance at Evening Continuation Schools without any statutory power of enforcing it.

The tables giving the detailed statistics are printed in Appendix N. Here it will suffice to add that the percentage for boys is highest in the non-county boroughs; for girls, and for boys and girls together, it is highest in the autonomous urban districts. The following summary shows the percentages in tabular form:

In some of the non-county boroughs the percentage of boys who went on straight from the Public Elementary School to the Evening Continuation School was remarkably high. Thus, the percentage in Haslingden was 73.6; in Accrington, 75.8; and in Widnes, 80.5. In the autonomous urban districts no such high level was anywhere reached, but the percentage at Chadderton was 70.2. In the case of girls, the percentages were lower, but they reached 45.7 in Eccles, 51.1 in Darwen, and 73.1 in Haslingden. Thus, in respect both of boys and girls, the percentage at Haslingden is the highest in the administrative area of the Lancashire Education Committee.

At Finchley,* a near suburb of London, the local authority have made a special effort to secure suitable employment for

*The following information is based upon particulars furnished in December 1907 to a member of the Consultative Committee by Mr. J. Frederick Alder, Secretary to the Finchley Education Committee, and Educational Adviser to the Schools.


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the boys leaving the Elementary Schools. An inquiry was made at seven schools with regard to the occupations taken up by the hundred boys who, in each case, had last left the school. The schools scheduled for the purpose included one higher elementary and two ordinary elementary schools under the district council, and four voluntary schools. It was found that of the 700 boys, 18 had gone on to secondary schools, 221 had entered skilled employments, or had become shop assistants in retail trade, 143 had become clerks in local or city offices (including architects' offices), in railway or insurance offices, or in the Civil Service, while 288 had entered unskilled occupations, from most of which the majority of them would certainly be discharged when they were a few years older. The occupations of the remaining 30 could not be ascertained. The Education Committee came to the conclusion that, after making all allowances, the proportion of boys entering what may be called "blind alley" occupations was too high. Out of the 288 who entered such occupations, 32 had become milk boys, 7 stable boys, 2 van boys, 16 telegraph boys, and 231 errand boys. The Education Committee therefore proceeded to consider what steps could be taken to reduce the number who entered unskilled employment, and how far attendance at Continuation classes might contribute to this end. They found that parents, as a rule, allow their children to take up any situation that offers, without seeking advice from the headmaster of the school as to the child's capacity, possibilities, and future prospects. They also found a tendency on the part of parents to take children away from school the moment they reached the age of 14, although they had no immediate prospects of obtaining a situation. The inquiry showed that children on leaving school are apt to give up their studies entirely. The more intelligent when they reach the age of about 17, realise the mistake they have made and perceive that they must obtain further education if they are to advance in their calling. They then take up Evening Classes, but find that they have to recover much lost ground. The Committee found that several of the head teachers carried on a labour bureau on a small scale and watched the newspapers for suitable posts for their more promising scholars, but that it by no means always followed that when an employer made application direct to a particular school his needs could be met from among the pupils in that school, as suitable candidates might not yet have reached the age of exemption and no complete record had been kept of the present whereabouts of those who had already left. The Education Committee, therefore, decided to deal with the whole question in an organised way. The Secretary of the Committee (Mr. Alder)


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was instructed to communicate with local employers and with Finchley residents having influence in the city, and to inform them that if they would send to the Education Office particulars of any vacancies on their staff, children recommended by their headmasters on account of capacity and character would be sent to them for approval. It was also arranged that the headmasters of the schools should send a letter to the parent of every child near the time of its 13th birthday, inquiring what was proposed in regard to the child's career, and offering to assist them in finding a suitable occupation for him or her. The letter is in the following form:

DEAR SIR or MADAM,

I observe that your child ......... is 13 years of age, and will therefore be leaving school in the course of another year. The Education Committee and myself are most anxious to assist you in placing your child in suitable employment at the termination of his/her Day School career, and I shall he obliged if you will inform me whether you have made any arrangement for his/her future. If you would care to talk the matter over with me, I should be very glad to see you here on ........ at ........

As a result of the interview arising from this letter, the head master fills up a form which reaches the Secretary of the Education Committee at the time when the child is 13¾ years of age, so that the Secretary of the Education Committee has at least three months in which to find a suitable occupation for the candidate. At the local education office, a register is kept in which are entered the details sent in by the head masters, together with particulars of the post where the boy of girl is subsequently employed and the conditions of such employment. Boys and girls placed in employment by this method are required by the Local Education Authority to take up suitable Evening Classes, and the co-operation of employers has been enlisted in this matter. It is intended to advertise in the City Press when the number of applicants on the local authority's register greatly exceeds the vacancies which have been reported. The system is reported to be working well. The school attendance officers have been most useful in communicating with local business men and tradesmen with a view to securing places for the children on leaving school. The Evening Classes, some of which are of a preparatory character, are well attended. Boys and girls in Standard VII or ex-VII of the Elementary Schools, who would be leaving school in the course of the year, attend the Evening Schools


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so as to lessen the likelihood of a break between the Day School and Evening School attendance.

As another illustration of the steps which may be taken by a Local Education Authority to interest employers in the Evening Schools, the Committee would refer to the action of the Edinburgh School Board. The Board temporarily detached from other service a school teacher whose duty it was to visit the employers of the city. This visitation was on an extensive scale. Nearly 500 employers were personally interviewed. The visits were received with courtesy. Details regarding the classes, the conditions of enrolment, the provision for technical, commercial, industrial and trade instruction were asked for and fully given. Many valuable suggestions were made by the employers for the improvement of the classes. An increasing number of employers consented to contribute towards the fees paid by the employees. In 1907, the fees of 760 employees were guaranteed by their firms. A considerable number of firms offer prizes and other special rewards to encourage attendance at the Evening Schools. One result of this close communication with the employers has been to strengthen the practical side of the teaching in the Continuation Schools of the city.

More recently the Edinburgh School Board have adopted a scheme for the establishment of an educational information and employment bureau. The bureau will be under the charge of a standing committee of seven members of the School Board. There will be associated with it an advisory council consisting of the other members of the School Board and of such representatives of public bodies and trade associations as the Board may from time to time co-opt, due regard being had to securing representation of the principal trades and of women's occupations. The bureau will be accommodated in the School Board offices. A director will be appointed who, subject to the committee, will organise and superintend the bureau. His duties will be to interview boys and girls and their parents or guardians, and to advise them with regard to further educational courses and the most suitable occupations open to them; to prepare leaflets, etc., giving information to scholars about Continuation School work; to keep in touch with the general requirements of employers and to prepare and revise periodically statements of the trades and industries of the district, with the rates of wages and conditions of employment; and to keep a record of vacancies reported by employers and to arrange for suitable candidates having all opportunity of applying for such vacancies.

The Manchester Education Committee, in order to ascertain how far the business firms of the city were co-


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operating with them in the work of the Evening Schools instituted an inquiry, in the session 1907-8, and found that in all 35 separate firms were paying the fees of 173 employees during the session. In order to maintain this co-operation on the part of the employers the Education Committee undertook to furnish monthly reports to the firms as to the attendance, progress, and conduct of each student whose fees they paid. Monthly reports are also forwarded in respect of 192 students in the employment of 25 separate firms who, though they have not paid the fees of their employees were desirous of being made acquainted with their progress. This system of sending regular reports to firms who interest themselves in the further education of their younger workpeople may be found deserving of imitation elsewhere.

At Liverpool, in order to secure prolonged attendance at Evening Schools, certificates are awarded providing for a three years' record of continuous work. (For a specimen of these certificates, see page 95.) The satisfactory attendance of the student at each course of instruction in succession is recorded upon his certificate which serves as a passport to the next stage of his studies. The Committee were informed that there was already reason to think that this plan would have a beneficial effect upon the work done in the Evening Schools.

In their endeavours to secure increased attendance at Continuation Schools, many local authorities are receiving valuable aid from Sunday School teachers, trade union officials, secretaries of boys' and girls' clubs and brigades and from the secretaries and members of the local branches of the Workers' Educational Association. The Manchester Education Committee, for instance, encourage and aid the organisation of Evening Continuation Classes in the boys' and girls' clubs which form an important part of the educational provision of the city. In this way the clubs are encouraged to strengthen the strictly educational side of their work, and the personal influence of the volunteer workers in the clubs is associated with that of the Local Education Authority in impressing upon the thoughts of young people the advantage of continued education.

The Gloucestershire Education Committee, in September 1908, invited the co-operation of trades unions and other associations within their area in an effort to secure the voluntary attendance at Evening Continuation Schools of boys and girls as they leave the Day Schools and enter employment. The Committee have also adopted a system of cards. Each pupil's card will serve as a certificate of character in seeking employment. It will also admit the student free of charge to the first year's preparatory course at a Continuation School. A specimen of these cards is given on page 94.


[page 94]


[page 95]


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(e) Increasing encouragement given by employers to the further education of their young workpeople

Though the great majority of employers are still indifferent to the educational needs of the young persons in their employment, there has been, during the last few years, a marked growth of interest in the subject among leading firms in several branches of industry. The movement for encouraging the more scientific training of apprentices seems to have begun in the engineering trades. It has also become strong in several other branches of industry, especially in the building trades, textile trades, printing and lithography, leather industries, plumbing, cabinet-making, plastering, house painting and decorating, and dressmaking. In 1905 the Association of Technical Institutions issued a report as to the co-operation between employers and technical institutions, giving details as to the arrangements which had been made in London and the chief provincial towns for the further education of apprentices. The circulation of this report drew public attention to the subject and led to a considerable development in this branch of technical education. In 1906-7 a further and more extended inquiry was made into the subject by the Education Department of the University of Manchester. The results of that investigation showed that in 1907, out of 16 railway companies in England and Wales, 14 enabled their employees to attend technical classes either free or at very low fees; and that seven out of the 14 excused day work, under certain conditions, to apprentices and pupils, to allow of their attending technical classes in the daytime. The technical instruction given at the mechanics' and railway institutes, established or largely assisted by some of the leading railway companies, deserves special mention, especially that of the Mechanics' Institute at Stratford (Great Eastern Railway), at Swindon (Great Western Railway), at Crewe, Wolverton and Earlstown (London and North Western Railway), at Gateshead and York (North Eastern Railway), and at Horwich (Lancaster and Yorkshire Railway). Arrangements have also been made by some of the chief railway companies with the London School of Economics, the Department of Commerce at the University of Manchester, and the Liverpool School of Commerce, whereby members of the companies' staffs are encouraged to attend lectures especially arranged to meet the needs of those engaged in railway work. Out of a total number of 34 engineering and shipbuilding firms enumerated in the Manchester University return, 18 excused day work to apprentices or pupils to allow of their attending technical classes in the daytime. Sometimes one day or one half-day in each week is allowed to these apprentices for technical education. In other cases, the "sandwich" system is adopted, the winter months being


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spent by the apprentices at the Technical School and the summer months at the works. In other cases a definite period (one term to two years) is allowed off the period of apprenticeship in consideration of attendance at college courses. Among the engineering firms, Messrs. Mather and Platt of Salford have been pioneers in the encouragement of technical education. For 31 years (1873-1905) they maintained their own Technical School at which all apprentices were obliged (unless following all approved course elsewhere) to attend regular courses of technical instruction. In view of the development of the local Technical Schools, the firm's classes have now been given up, but the obligation to attend Technical Classes is still enforced in the case of all apprentices.

Messrs. Vickers, Sous and Maxim, Limited, have established an elaborate scheme for the technical education of their apprentices, in co-operation with the Technical Department of the University of Sheffield. Similar arrangements are made in connection with the Manchester Municipal School of Technology by Messrs. Baxendale and Company, Messrs. Hans Renold, and other engineering firms in Manchester. Messrs. Clayton and Shuttleworth of Lincoln have adopted a new system of apprenticeship with a view to combining with the modern factory system the advantages of the old system of apprenticeship, under which master and man lived in close contact and youths were educated in the various branches of the trade. All deserving apprentices are given a varied shop experience and are moved from one class of work to another as a reward for diligence, skill, and proficiency. The apprentices are placed under a superintendent whose duty it is to supervise, teach, promote, and advise them. The firm maintains its own school in the works and all apprentices attend classes free, books and apparatus being provided by the firm. Officials of the firm take part in the teaching and deal with the subjects in which they are specialists. Each apprentice is given an opportunity, as far as possible, of spending a certain part of his apprenticeship at various classes of work allied to the trade to which he is specially attached. Those who show, by their efforts and natural ability, fitness for responsible positions are given special opportunities of training in the management and administration of works.

In other branches of industry, there are several striking cases of the encouragement of technical education by employers. Messrs. Brunner, Mond and Co., chemical manufacturers, of Northwich, began to encourage the attendance of apprentices at Evening Classes in 1884. A few years later, such attendance was made compulsory. It. is now obligatory on apprentices and on all youths under 19 in the employment of the firm to attend Evening School nine times out of every


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ten that the school is open. The United Alkali Company, whose works are in the same district, make it a condition that all apprentices between 14 and 18, whether bound by indenture or not, shall attend classes on three evenings in the week, their fees being paid by the company. The action of these two leading firms has had great influence in the neighbourhood. Other manufacturers have followed their example, and even in the case of adolescent workers who are under no compulsion to attend Continuation Schools there has been a marked improvement owing to the example of the others. The result is that in Widnes about 80 per cent of the boys leaving the schools in the borough begin attendance at the Evening Schools, without break, on the conclusion of their Day School course.

Messrs. Joseph Crosfield and Sons, soap manufacturers, of Warrington, require all boys in their employment under 17 (except a few boys living out of the town) to attend Evening Classes. As the hours of work end at 5 or 5.30, these attendances can be made without overstrain. The firm have it in contemplation to require all youths in their employment, under 20 years of age, to attend Continuation Classes. In addition to this, the firm arrange for every lad in their employment, and for many of the girls, to learn swimming in the town swimming baths, under a teacher sent from the works. All the expenses of this, even of the time absent, is borne by the firm.

Messrs. Johnson Brothers, dyers, of BootIe, have established in their works technical classes hearing directly upon the daily work of the employees. They have appointed a woman as social secretary whose sole duty it is to attend to matters connected with the welfare of the girls and women in the works.

Messrs. Lever Brothers, Limited, soap manufacturers, of Port Sunlight, encourage technical and commercial education throughout their works and for many years maintained a technical institute of their own, the classes in which are now carried on by the local authority.

Messrs. Cadbury Brothers, Limited, manufacturers of cocoa and chocolate, of Bournville, near Birmingham, require all their employees under 16 years of age to attend Evening Classes on two evenings a week, for two hours per evening, during the winter months. They also encourage the attendance at such classes of their workpeople up to 19 years of age. The number of employees attending compulsorily, i.e., all under 16 years of age, was, in 1906-7, 430, and in 1907-8, 542. The number attending voluntarily, i.e., between 16 and 19 years of age, was, in 1906-7, 156, and in 1907-8, 305. All the Evening Classes are held at the local schools and are under the jurisdiction of the Local Education Authority.


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Three-quarters of the scholars attending the Kings Norton and Northfield Continuation Schools are students from Messrs. Cadbury's works. Fees up to 7s. 6d. are returned by the firm to all students up to 19 years of age of whose attendance, progress, and conduct the headmaster gives a satisfactory report. All employees up to 16 years of age are also required to attend twice a week at physical training classes held in the works during work hours, one class being in gymnastics and the other in swimming. No deduction is made from the wages of the junior employees who attend the different gymnastic and swimming classes. The firm report that "the renewed energy resultant upon the attendance at these classes fully repays them for the time lost by the boys who are paid by the day." In the case of the junior girls, the majority of whom are on piece-work, it appears that the attendance at the classes does not affect the amount of wages which they earn. Difficulties as to the return home of girls after Evening Classes have been carefully met. For the supervision of the gymnastic and swimming classes during the day and evening, a body of managers has been formed at the Bournville works. This body receives grants from the Board of Education and a subscription from the Company. Under the same body of managers are ambulance classes and men's and boys' boot-repairing classes, all of which are held in the works. The total number of individual students attending these varied classes in the works in 1906-7 was 1,049. It is understood that Messrs. Cadbury have now in contemplation a plan for the extension of the educational system in their works. If this plan is adopted, all indentured apprentices would be required to attend at Evening Classes until the completion of their apprenticeship period. For youths who are not apprentices, viz., those who are in semi-skilled or unskilled departments, attendance would be compulsory up to 18 years of age, viz., as a rule, 14 to 16 at Evening Continuation School and 16 to 18 at technical or other classes such as art or music. Certain selected youths will be allowed to attend day technical or University classes; no deduction to be made from wages for the time spent at such classes.

Messrs. Rowntree and Co., Limited, manufacturers of cocoa and chocolate, York, who, like Messrs. Cadbury, devote great attention to the social welfare of their employees, encourage all their apprentices to attend Evening Classes, and allow them, for this purpose, to leave an hour early once a week. The fees of boys attending Evening Continuation Schools are refunded to them. The firm have established in their premises a domestic economy school which is under the supervision of the Board of Education. All girls under 17 in the employment of the firm are


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required to attend this school for two hours a week during work hours. The subjects taught are cookery, dressmaking, and hygiene. There are three teachers, and over 700 girls are under instruction. The classes are found to he of practical value to the girls attending attending them. The firm also encourage a large number of Voluntary Classes and other educational agencies in their works.

By permission of Messrs. Cadbury and Messrs. Rowntree, the Committee had the opportunity of seeing the classes at work, both at Bournville and York. They were impressed by the excellence of the work which was being done, by the careful organisation of the educational facilities, and by the thought which was shown for the welfare of the employees.

(f) Educational facilities for boys employed by the Post Office

The educational responsibilities of certain Government Departments towards youths in their employment have been brought under the Committee's consideration by several witnesses. The importance of this subject is great, partly because of the influence which the action of Government exerts upon public opinion, and partly because of the large number of youths engaged in Government service. The conditions of the Government service, as at present organised, make it impossible for the heads of most of the Departments concerned to retain in permanent capacities more than a small proportion of the boys whom they engage on leaving school. This is the case with several Departments, including the War Office; but the largest employer of boy labour is the Post Office. On this branch of the subject, the Committee received interesting evidence from Mr. A. H. Norway, Assistant Secretary of the General Post Office (see page 633). The Post Office employs about 17,000 boys in the United Kingdom. They are engaged in delivering telegrams and in carrying messages from room to room in the Post Office. In the ordinary course, the boys' period of service extends from 13 to 16, but many do not enter till 14, and some even join at a later age. About 40 per cent of these telegraph messengers obtain permanent employment in the Post Office, chiefly as postmen. The remainder (nearly 60 per cent) leave the Post Office service altogether, of whom, however, about a quarter would in any case be unsuitable for permanent adult employment in the Post Office, either for medical or other reasons. Thus about 10,200 boys out of the 17,000 employed by the Post Office at one time, have to leave the service when their engagement as telegraph messengers comes to an end. The Post Office authorities are taking pains to help these boys in finding suitable employment at


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the end of their term. About two years ago, labour bureaux were established to assist the boys in finding employment. The idea was suggested by experience at Derby, where applicants for employment at the railway works who had been messengers in the Post Office were preferred for engagement. This suggested the possibility of the same kind of preference elsewhere, and a circular was sent round to a number of employers in different parts of the country, in response to which some expressed the desire to engage ex-telegraph messengers when vacancies occurred in their places of business. The results of the working of these labour bureaux are reported as good, especially in London (West Postal District), Bristol and Leeds. It appears, however, that most of the boys who find engagements through the bureaux, enter, by their own preference, employments of a clerical type. Very few ex-telegraph messengers enter the army.

In order to promote the welfare of the boy messengers during their term of service, the Post Office authorities are encouraging the establishment of messengers' institutes and educational classes. These clubs and institutes sprang up, in the first instance, through the voluntary efforts of local post office officials whose interest in the boys caused them to devote much time and energy to this work. A few years ago, however, the Post Office began to give official recognition to these institutes, especially to their educational side, and the Treasury made a grant in aid which now stands at about 2000 a year. Out of the 17,000 messengers employed by the Post Office, about 10,000 have now the opportunity of joining an institute. The latter are found in different parts of London and in 77 of the large provincial towns. Membership of the institute is voluntary. A boy may remain a member until he becomes an assistant postman or leaves the service. The cost of the institutes is covered partly by voluntary subscriptions, partly by the fees charged to the boys (generally a penny a week) and partly by the Treasury grant. The educational classes in the institutes have recently been much developed. Some of them are carried on under the Board of Education Regulations and earn grants. There has been a tendency of late to transfer the educational work of the institutes to the ordinary Evening Schools, and, at the present time, the larger part of the boys under instruction are either wholly or in part taught at such schools. But in some centres the educational work has been maintained in the institutes on the ground that such an arrangement promotes esprit de corps. The attendance at the educational classes is not so good as is desired. Many of the boys and their parents show considerable indifference to educational opportunities. Where the boys attend the classes of the Local Education Authority, the Post Office pays half the


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fees, and in some places the remaining half is remitted at the end of the term as a reward for regular attendance. This experiment, however, has not been so successful as was hoped. Boys are strongly advised to attend educational classes, as it is believed that the latter form a useful part of the training of the boys, whether they remain permanently in the Post Office service or enter other employments. The records, however, of attendance at Evening Schools have not much effect upon their chances of retention for permanent employment as postmen. The authorities do not make such appointments conditional on previous regular attendance at classes. It is believed, however, that those who attend the classes are largely the more promising boys. The authorities consider that the great advantage of the educational classes lies in the stimulus which they give to messengers to qualify themselves for superior appointments, viz., as sorters, learners, and telegraphists. Of late, experimental classes have been established by the Post Office with a view to training boys in connection with the engineering department, which has its headquarters in London and branches all over the country. In these classes the boys receive practical instruction in the use of tools. Boys who do good work in these classes are given a preference for permanent employment in the department. This experiment is too new for its success to be judged.

It is clear that much more might he done to promote the educational interests of the boys engaged as telegraph messengers by the Post Office if larger funds were available for the provision of special classes and for such an increase in the staff as would enable every boy to be given opportunity, at fixed hours, for attendance at classes. In that case attendance might be made compulsory, and the hours of instruction could be sufficiently prolonged to give the boys thorough training which would form a useful preparation for future skilled employment. Since 1897, only one-half of the vacancies for postmen and porters have been available for telegraph messengers, as the other half of the vacancies are assigned to ex-soldiers and ex-sailors. In these circumstances, there seems to the Committee to be very strong reason for making further educational provision for all telegraph messengers during the period of their employment by the Post Office, and they are glad to know that the Post Office authorities have set on foot a form of organisation which could easily be developed on more comprehensive lines.

(g) The Further Education of Recruits in the Army and Navy

In the Navy elaborate care is taken to secure the continued education of boys in the bluejacket class on entering the Navy. The age for entrance as a boy is between 15¾


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and 16¾, and as a youth, between 16¾ and 18. The great majority of the seaman class enter as boys or youths. Boys, as a rule, do not enter the Navy until some little time after leaving school, the average interval being about two years. In other words, the majority lie fallow as regards school education for a year or two before entering the Navy. Professor Ewing, Director of Naval Education, in the course of his evidence before the Committee, stated that when the boys were placed under conditions of discipline they displayed remarkable aptitude in picking up their school work and in continuing it. Most boys have been in some form of paid employment before entering the Navy. The occupations before entry of the last 400 boys of whose training particulars are available were 34 per cent messengers, 31 per cent skilled labour, 10 per cent agriculture, 8 per cent domestic service, 9 per cent unskilled labour, 6 per cent clerks, or at school, or in no occupation, 2 per cent unknown. All candidates for admission to the Navy have to pass a medical and an educational examination. About 30 per cent of those who pass the medical test are subsequently rejected on the results of the educational test. When a boy enters the Navy he is sent first of all to one of the two training establishments conducted by the Admiralty. There, in the course of a fortnight, the schoolmaster endeavours to recall to his mind the education the boy has received at school. At the end of the fortnight the boys are classified according to their educational standard. The great majority, viz., 70 per cent, are placed in a standard equivalent to Standard V or VI in an Elementary School. As the schooling is as much an integral part of a boy's training as his professional duties, he is very keen to pick up education quickly in order to get advancement. Dr. Ewing informed the Committee that it is almost invariably found that the boys who are keenest on their seamanship are also keenest on their school work.

Other interesting and important parts of the educational system of the Navy concern the boy artificers and the apprentices in dockyards. For details of these arrangements the Committee would refer to Professor Ewing's evidence (p. 619). It must suffice here to call attention to the fact that the Admiralty require attendance in the case of dockyard apprentices at what are virtually half-time practical Continuation Schools. Attendance at these schools is partly in the daytime and partly in the evening. Boys in the Upper School attend on two afternoons and three evenings a week, a total of 12 hours' attendance. Boys in the Lower School attend one afternoon and two evenings a week, seven hours altogether. The evening attendance is in the boys' own time. The ordinary hours of work in the dockyards are from 7 a.m. till 5 p.m. Boys are allowed to leave at 4.30 on


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the evenings on which they attend school. The instruction generally begins at 6 and goes on till 8. It is not found that the combination of work and Evening School is too much for the boys.

The educational arrangements in the Army are much less complete, but efforts are now being made to provide attractive forms of practical instruction for the soldiers. The intellectual efficiency of the recruits appears in the majority of districts to be improving. In the agricultural areas the proportion of illiterates is still generally high. Major-General Crutchley, Director of Recruiting, in the course of his evidence given to the Committee, submitted a table showing the educational attainments of recruits enlisted in the infantry of the line in the various districts of the United Kingdom during the year ended September 30, 1908 (see p. 613). The percentage of recruits, classified as illiterate, was higher in Ireland than in other parts of the United Kingdom, and was, so far as England and Wales are concerned, highest (20.77) in District 7, which includes the depôts of Warwick, Gloucester, Worcester, Oxford, and Reading. Next in order of illiteracy was District 6, which includes the depôts of Lincoln, Leicester, Lichfield, and Derby. A Scotch District came next, followed by District 3, which includes the depôts of Lancaster, Warrington, Preston, Bury, Ashton-under-Lyne, and Carlisle. The lowest percentage of illiteracy among the recruits was found, so far as England and Wales are concerned, in District 4, which includes the depôts of Chester, Wrexham, Brecon, Cardiff, and Shrewsbury.

(h) The Educational needs of Golf Caddies and of Boy Messengers

Golf clubs are also large employers of boy labour. In England and Wales there are about 700 golf clubs, and Mr. H. S. Colt, hon. secretary of the Sunningdale Golf Club, in the course of the interesting evidence which he gave to the Committee on this subject, estimates that, roughly speaking, each club has about 20 caddies in fairly regular employment. Thus the total number of caddies regularly employed in England and Wales is about 14,000. On some courses, the bulk of the caddies are adults, but on other courses only boys are employed. Some clubs employ boys because they are easier to manage than men, and many players prefer boys because of their keener eyesight. In very few places are girl caddies employed.

It would not appear that much has yet been done in the way of looking after the educational welfare of golf caddies, nor perhaps are some golf clubs in a position to go to any great expense on behalf of their caddies, though in almost all cases something might be done with the co-operation of the


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Local Education Authorities. As an instance, however, of what can be done under favourable circumstances, the Committee would like to draw attention to the arrangements which have been made by the Sunningdale Golf Club. The Club regularly employs about. 60 boy caddies, and about 70 or 80 others occasionally. All applicants for permanent employment as caddies are required to state what occupation they hope to follow when they leave the service of the Club. This statement is entered with the applicant's name on the register, and guides the committee of the Club in looking out for a suitable place for the boy when his engagement as caddie comes to an end. The Club takes on boys as soon as they have left school. No applications for regular employment in the Club are received from any boys over 17 years of age. The members of the Club have taken pains in finding permanent places for the boys (as house, garden or stable boys, or as chauffeurs) when they give up their places as caddies. In 1908, however, the Club took a further step in its care for the caddies in its employment. It built a workshop and started a class in carpentry. Instruction is given in golf-club making. Regular Evening Continuation Classes under the Surrey Education Committee have now been started in the Club buildings. Mr. Colt informed the Committee that the numbers attending had exceeded all expectations and that it is hoped in time to build a special room for the Continuation Class, sufficient money having already been promised for this purpose. The classes are held in the evening but will not be continued during the summer months as at that time of year play goes on till late in the evening. The pupils are supposed to attend during the winter for two hours on three evenings a week. Two evenings are given to the club-making class and one evening to the general Continuation School. For further details of the plan, which is still in the experimental stage, and for instructive remarks upon the effect of employment as caddies upon the health and prospects of the boys, the Committee would refer to Mr. Colt's evidence on page 605 of this report.

The Committee received from Mr. George Manners, Chairman of the District Messenger and Theatre Ticket Company, Limited, interesting evidence as to the admission and conditions of service of messengers in the employment of that Company (see p. 339), and as to their need for further education and the possibility of meeting it. Mr. Manners explained with what care boys were chosen for the Company's service and with what watchful interest the heads of the organisation supervised the well-being and prospects of those in their service. The Committee were impressed by his statement as showing the educational and moral value of esprit de corps and of belonging to a smart and well-disciplined service.


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The nature of the employment, combined with strict discipline and a high standard of efficiency, is such as to smarten a boy up and make him intelligent, trustworthy, and resourceful. At the same time, the Committee feel that something more in the form of systematic further education would be desirable in the interests of the boys employed. Mr. Manners thought that 40 per cent of those engaged would profit by ordinary kinds of further education, but urged that if such education were made compulsory for the remaining 60 per cent, a good deal of the course of instruction should consist of manual training. He did not think that the hours of the boys' labour were so long as to make them too tired to attend school after their day's work. But a difficulty would arise from the fact that, in many cases, they live at a long distance from the office in which they are engaged.

(i) The Movement for the Establishment of Trade Schools

The Trade School or school of industry was, for many generations, the ideal of English educational reformers. From the time of Locke to that of Kay-Shuttleworth, those who had most at heart the practical welfare of the working classes desired to provide for them a course of education which would fit them to earn their livelihood by handicraft. The form of Elementary School which is native to the soil of England is the Trade School. But it has not become the dominant type. This failure has been due to several causes. The old schools of industry of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries fell into disrepute because of the wholly inadequate educational equipment of their teaching staff. When the first movement for the establishment of schools of industry had thus been checked, the industrial revolution postponed further consideration of the problem by substituting, in many trades, machine production for handwork, and by producing profound unsettlement in the conditions of English social life. When, in consequence of the social changes brought about by the industrial revolution, it became urgently necessary to provide schools for the people, most English educational reformers, to whatever school of religious or political thought they belonged, were convinced that the primary need was to teach the rising generation to read and write. Schools formed for this purpose could be much more cheaply organised than schools of industry. Thus, the Elementary Day School, with a bookish curriculum, and with practically no provision for training in practical handwork, became the accepted type of school for the poorer classes.

But, as an undercurrent in English education, the belief in the value of industrial training persisted. Had Pestalozzi's influence fully prevailed, a combination of general education


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and industrial training would have been worked out in English schools. This was the first hope of Kay-Shuttleworth. The Training School, with an Elementary School attached to it, which he established in 1840 at Battersea, with the help of a colleague, had a curriculum with a strongly practical bent. Under his influence, in 1846, the Education Department offered grants to Day Schools of Industry by the same minute which gave grants for teachers in ordinary Elementary Schools. Had this policy been maintained, the English system of elementary education would have comprised, under one Department, the industrial and more literary types of Elementary School. But in 1800 the Industrial Schools were transferred to the care of the Home Secretary, and in 1861 Mr. Lowe's revised Code discouraged practical work in the ordinary Elementary Schools, and concentrated attention on reading, writing, and arithmetic. Thus, it followed that the great development of Elementary Day Schools which resulted from the Education Act of 1870 was little influenced by the idea and experience of industrial training. The latter was relegated to a separate group of schools, associated in the public mind with penal discipline and early disgrace. Gradually, however, the insufficiency of the bookish curriculum in the Elementary Schools was realised by educational critics. The Royal Commission on Scientific Instruction, which reported between 1871 and 1875, urged the importance of scientific and practical training in all grades of education. The London School Board, with the help of special donations, and under the influence of ideas from Naas (Sweden), made a place for manual training in connection with the ordinary Elementary School. In the Industrial Schools under the Home Office, a corresponding movement was taking place for the enlargement of the too narrowly technical course by a larger measure of general training. Thus, there sprang up an interchange of influence between the two types of school, a movement which has been fraught with much benefit to English education. The experience of the Industrial Schools shows how beneficial is the effect of well-organised practical training upon brain development and character. The experience of the ordinary Elementary Schools has shown how indispensable is a well-planned course of general education for the training of the mind, and for the bringing up of a younger generation with the power of self-adaptiveness to new conditions.

Consequently, throughout English education (and the same course of thought may be observed in America and in other countries), efforts are now being made to combine these two ideals of general and industrial training. Handwork of all kinds is steadily, though slowly, forming a larger part of the Elementary Day School course. Civic and general


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instruction is recognised as having a claim to a more important place in courses of technical education. We seem to be moving towards a plan of educational organisation which would require the majority of the pupils after completing their course at the Elementary Day School course to enter upon a course of further training in day trade schools, the instruction given in which would be predominantly (though by no means exclusively) practical.

But efforts in this direction are still in an experimental stage. Interesting experience has been gained in the Technical Day Schools and Day Trade Schools for boys and girls, established by the London Education Committee in different parts of the metropolis. The Leeds Education Authority have also made important experiments in Day Preparatory Trade Schools for boys and girls. The Day Craft School at Brimscombe (Gloucestershire), the Stanley Technical Trade Schools at South Norwood, the Pre-apprenticeship School at Bootle, the Domestic Science School in Princes Road, Liverpool, and the Domestic Economy School of the Northamptonshire County Council at Dallington are all doing valuable work of a pioneer character. Their experience, which is confirmed by that of the Industrial Schools, shows that a combination of practical and general instruction for boys and girls, during adolescence, is of great value to the individual and to the community. Four difficulties prevent very rapid progress from being made in the growth of this new type of school: First, the economic changes which are taking place in many skilled employments; secondly, the cost of organising efficient Trade Schools, viz., at least 7 per head for maintenance; thirdly, the weight of the old educational tradition; and fourthly, the unwillingness of great numbers of the parents to dispense with the wages which call be earned by boys and girls in full-time employment during the years of adolescence.

(k) Statistics of the Evening Schools and Classes* under Government Inspection in England and Wales

In the years 1906-7, 21.3 per thousand of the total estimated population of England and Wales attended Evening Schools and Classes under inspection by the Board of Education. For the last three years the rate per thousand has been practically the same, viz. 21.2 in 1904-5; 21.9 in 1905-6; and 21.3 in 1906-7. These rates of attendance show the continued popularity of Evening Schools in this country.

*i.e. those recognised under Chapters I and II of the Board's Regulations for Technical Schools, etc.


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But it should be remembered that the statistics upon which they are based include many persons who failed to make regular attendance at the classes. They also count some students twice over, as a person attending more than one Evening School is counted for each school. But this error is far more than counterbalanced by the fact that the statistics are confined to Evening Schools under Government inspection and take no account whatever of the very large number of Evening Schools carried on without any connection with Government. Through the absence of complete statistics, the Committee have not found it possible to arrive at any exact comparison between the percentage of population attending Evening Schools in England and Wales under a system of voluntary attendance, and the percentage of the population attending Continuation Schools in those parts of Germany and Switzerland where attendance is in the case of a large number of the pupils required by law. But, so far as the Committee are able to judge, in no other country is voluntary attendance at Evening Schools so large as in England and Wales. Moreover, owing to the popularity of adult classes for men and women in England and Wales, the aggregate attendance of students of all ages at Evening Schools in this country seems (if the available statistics are complete) to be larger than the aggregate attendance at the corresponding type of classes in some of those districts in Germany in which (for part of the adolescent population) attendance is required by law, but where the number of adult students attending Evening Schools under Government inspection is relatively small.

The number of men and boys attending Evening Schools in England and Wales stands to the number of women and girls as about nine to six. During the session 1906-7, the last for which the statistics are available, the number of female students slightly increased, and that of male students slightly declined.

The most satisfactory feature of the statistical tables is the steady increase in the number of students in respect of whom grants are paid by Government. This means that attendance is becoming more regular and the work of the classes more systematic. The number of these students increased from 440,718 in 1902-3 to 551,968 in 1906-7. The amount of grants paid by Government increased during the same period of years from 285,126 to 361,596.

An educational weakness indicated by the statistics of Evening School attendance is the relatively small number of boys and girls who attend such Schools during the years immediately following the close of their Day School


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course. The number of pupils between 12 and 21 years of age was more than 30,000 less in 1906-7 than in the previous year.

The table on the opposite page [below] shows in summary form the chief statistics of Evening Schools under Government inspection during the last five years.





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TABLE F

STATISTICS OF EVENING SCHOOLS UNDER GOVERNMENT INSPECTION IN ENGLAND AND WALES, 1902-1907.

The following table is based upon the statistics published by the Board of Education. (Cd. 3255, 1906, Cd. 3886, 1908, and Cd. 4288, 1908.)


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Chapter VII. Discussion of various Methods for securing a larger Attendance at Continuation Schools without recourse to Statutory Compulsion

The Committee have endeavoured to show in the preceding chapter what is the present position of Continuation Schools in England and Wales, the attitude of Local Education Authorities and employers towards them, and the extent to which existing methods may be judged to have been successful. It is clear that the great proportion of adolescent boys and girls are not touched by the present system, and the Committee now turn to the consideration of the ways in which the various methods for improving the attendance at Continuation Schools may be extended. These methods may be divided generally into two classes, the voluntary and the compulsory. Of these, only the former have at present been tried in this country, and, as has already been seen, they have not hitherto, taking the figures for the country as a whole, achieved more than a moderate measure of success. Yet there are obvious advantages in voluntary methods, of which, perhaps, the most practical is that they need not wait for special legislation; and it seems very desirable, therefore, to consider first whether they have failed on account of inherent and inevitable weaknesses or merely from ill-advised or insufficient use. The Committee feel that it is not likely that Parliament will grant compulsory powers in connection with attendance at Continuation Schools until it can be clearly shown that the conditions as well as public opinion are ripe for such changes, and that the required object can be attained in no other way. It is necessary, therefore, to begin by a careful scrutiny of the way in which attendance at Continuation Schools in England and Wales can be improved by voluntary methods.

(a) The improvement of the Curriculum, and its adjustment to the needs of different Categories of Pupils

Of all the means for securing an increased attendance at Continuation Schools by voluntary methods, none will be so effective as the provision of instruction which has power to retain the interest of the pupils. To secure this, the Continuation School must be closely related to the Day School, and the curriculum of both must be suited to the needs of different categories of pupils according to their occupations. It should therefore be determined on the joint advice of education experts, employers, and representative workpeople in each calling, who should, however, bear in mind that the Continuation School should not neglect to supply that part of the intellectual or moral equipment which is not supplied by the employments in which the pupils are engaged.


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The categories of pupils who should attend Continuation Schools fall into six main groups: (i) Boys and girls employed in skilled industries; (ii) Boys and girls engaged in unskilled occupations; (iii) Boys and girls in shops, offices, and other commercial occupations; (iv) Boys and girls engaged in agriculture, horticulture, etc.; (v) Girls engaged in domestic duties or preparing themselves for home life; (vi) Adults.

A few subjects, especially those of a recreative character (e.g. class-singing, dramatic readings, musical drill, morris-dancing, etc.), may be common to all these groups; but on the whole the needs of the groups are distinct and their continued education should be correspondingly diverse. As to the curricula required the committee consider that, for the purposes of this report, it is sufficient to indicate only the broad outlines of the types of courses for each group. The circumstances of various localities, the nature of their industries, the condition of their Elementary Schools, the supply of capable directors and teachers, the attitude of employers - all these factors in the problem occur with such bewildering complexity, that no detailed scheme can be devised for universal application. Great freedom, therefore, should be left to those locally concerned in the planning of the courses of instruction for adolescents and adults.

This is especially the case when dealing with Continuation Schools for boys and girls in rural districts, and in fact for girls as a whole, whether in town of country, and the Committee think that it would be best to deal with girls and rural children in separate chapters. For the moment, therefore, they will deal mainly with the curricula of Continuation Schools as they affect boys in urban districts, and will point out subsequently to what extent the special needs of girls, and of rural scholars generally, necessitate special modifications of their own.

It should be noted here that in addition to the six normal groups, the class of backward pupils will need special treatment. Under any system, and particularly under that of voluntary attendance, scholars who have not been under any regular instruction for periods of varying length will present themselves for enrolment at Continuation Schools. Some of these will be in a backward state, and need special preparatory classes before they can take up the regular work of the Continuation School. But the chief way of dealing with this difficulty will be to prevent the waste which now results from a too early close of Day School work.

(i) Boys employed in skilled industries

It may safely be assumed that for boys in skilled trades, especially for those who hope to rise to good positions,


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instruction in the theory and principles of their own trade is indispensable. Practical purpose must hold a prominent place in their curriculum. Parents, employers, and pupils all demand it, and up to a certain point the demand is reasonable and should be granted. There need be no attempt at actual workshop training, but the needs of the workshop should be realised in the school. Such subjects as freehand and machine drawing, arithmetic, practical mathematics, physics, and chemistry, taught with a practical purpose, serve at once to fill up the gaps in the workshop training and to enlist the genuine interest of the student. But, while admitting that the predominant part of the instruction of the boys should have a utilitarian bias, there is a danger of carrying such instruction too far. For the boy's own sake, complete specialisation must not be allowed while he is too young, and this for two reasons. In the first place a good general education is the only basis upon which technical or specialised instruction can build, and in the second place it is no use so to specialise the powers of a boy of 14, 15, or even 16, as to unfit him for any occupation but the one he has learnt. It is always possible that owing to changes of trade conditions, of domicile, or of inclination, he may need to change his employment at the age of 17 or 18. What he will then need is adaptability, and that most desirable trait should not be lost to him through over specialisation at too early an age. He should be compelled, therefore, to take some general subject or subjects in addition to those which bear directly on his trade. Such subjects would be arithmetic, English, history, geography, economics, citizenship, etc. It may he noted that there is a justification for such subjects quite apart from the question of adaptability to industrial changes. The nation is not training its boys solely to make them efficient workers. It needs loyal and efficient citizens too, and is entitled to see that this aspect of the education which it provides is not neglected.

Special consideration should be given to the needs of boys who have left the Day School but who are too young for apprenticeship. For these boys the course at the Continuation School should be of a preparatory character, with much constructive handwork in it, and should aim at the general training of the mind and at the increase of adaptiveness.

(ii) Boys in unskilled industrial occupations

The Committee now turn to those who, from whatever cause, are less likely or less able to find employments in which they will he directly assisted by special education. These boys are clearly more difficult to deal with, They have not the direct incentive to work which


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is possessed by those who feel that their classes are a means to promotion and larger wages. Nor have they in most cases so great a natural capacity or ambition, and the natural anxiety to learn which goes with them. The advantages of education are most easily brought home to those who are already well educated. The absence of education is almost always accompanied by an ignorance of its benefits. If the boys in question, therefore, are to be attracted to Continuation Schools by voluntary methods, the curriculum must not only be suitable but attractive. The object will not so much be to turn out skilled workmen, as to retain boys at an impressionable age and to mould and discipline their character. While, however, technical or specialised instruction will be out of place, that is not to say that the boys in question require nothing more than the restraining influences of institutions such as lads' clubs. These clubs may, and do, fulfil a most useful purpose. But as a rule they are not educational, and they may even divert boys from educational classes by offering them rival attractions. What is required is a combination of the two. The clubs might arrange not to open on the nights when the classes were held, or to admit to the club privileges only those boys who have attended their classes in the previous week. Or the Evening School might be so arranged that on one or two nights a week lighter and more recreative attractions should be provided, such as dancing, gymnastics, physical drill, or singing. Interesting suggestions in this connection may be found in Professor Urwick's evidence and in a book called "Working Lads' Clubs" by Mr. Charles Russell and Miss Lilian Rigby. Without going further into it here, it is sufficient to sum up by saying that for the boys in question, instruction must not be too technical or too specialised, and must on the other hand be sufficiently attractive to make willing students of those whose ambition or existing knowledge do not furnish any spur to work.

(iii) Boys in Shops and other Commercial Occupations

The third general group of boys includes those whose trade is of the more commercial type. The foundation of their continued education will be of a general character, but they will in addition take subjects bearing on their own business. Thorough grounding in arithmetic, writing, and spelling is essential, and this would be supplemented by commercial correspondence, geography; bookkeeping, and shorthand, or any other subject connected with their future work. In special cases, of course, other and more specialised subjects would be required. Boys in banks, for instance, might receive instruction in the laws of banking and of


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contracts, and in economics. The sedentary nature of many commercial occupations also should be carefully borne in mind, and compensated for by opportunities for physical exercises.

(iv) Boys engaged in Agriculture, see page 190

(v) Girls engaged in Domestic Duties and in wage-earning occupations, see page 202

(vi) Adults

Hitherto the Continuation School system in England and Wales has done much more for adults than for adolescents. Its strength has lain in supplying educational opportunities to those whose Day School training already lies some way behind them. Its chief weakness consists in its failure to bridge over the interval between the Day School course and the threshold of adult life. The Committee desire that the strictly continuative part of this branch of national education should now be more effectively organised. This is the substance of the preceding paragraphs of this chapter. But the well-organised system of classes which is now urgently required for boys and girls during adolescence should not be provided at the expense of the educational opportunities which the Continuation Schools now offer to adults. On the contrary, classes for men and women should continue to form an important part of the system of further education. Such classes are of high value in national education. They have been popular for generations. They afford indispensable opportunities for self-culture. They respond to needs which are deeply felt and which, in the public interest, it is important to satisfy. The better organisation of adolescent education will not lessen the demand for adult instruction. On the contrary, it is likely to increase it and to raise the intellectual standard of the demand.

The number of students over 21 years of age in attendance at Evening Classes in England and Wales is steadily increasing. It has risen from 162,000 in 1902-3 to 240,000 in 1906-7. The variety of technological, scientific, and commercial classes provided for men and women is the most characteristic feature of our system of further education. Excellent syllabuses of instruction are published by the Board of Education, but great freedom is allowed in the adjustment of the courses to local needs. Instruction in subjects bearing upon the great manufacturing and producing industries has been well developed, especially during recent years. The commercial education of clerks is not less amply provided for. Successful efforts have recently been made in London and elsewhere to establish classes for


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employees in the grocery trade. Liberal encouragement is offered by the Board of Education to advanced and other courses of instruction in languages, literature, history, and economics. The work of the National Home Reading Union and of the University Extension Lecturers is a valuable support to other classes in these subjects, and the tutorial classes already referred to, which have recently been organised by the Workers' Educational Association, in conjunction with Oxford and other Universities, have met with encouraging success. Much of the teaching at the local Technical Institutions is given in Evening Classes, and the Polytechnic Institutes in London may be considered to be both the Technical and the University Colleges for the people.

(b) The Functions and Opportunities of the Local Education Authorities*

The points upon which experience has shown that Local Education Authorities should chiefly concentrate their attention in order to increase attendance at Continuation Schools and to improve the quality of the work done in them are the following:

(1) The improvement of the Elementary Day Schools, (a) by introducing much more practical work into the courses of study, (b) by reducing the size of classes, and (c) by increasing the proportion of fully qualified teachers, in order to strengthen the educational foundations upon which the work of Continuation Schools must be built up.

(2) The raising of the standard of exemption for Day School Attendance, and the strict enforcement of regular attendance, in order to improve the educational qualifications of the children for subsequent work in Continuation Schools.

(3) Encouragement and help given to the Day School teachers and managers in advising parents as to the subsequent employment of their children, and as to the courses of further education which will fit them for skilled occupations. Where possible this should be done by the promotion or establishment of Junior Employment Registries.

*It must not be forgotten that the Councils of all non-county boroughs and urban districts have, within fixed financial limits, concurrent powers with the County Councils as regards Higher Education, and that some of them are the Local Education Authorities for Elementary Education in their areas. The whole, therefore, of the functions of Local Education Authorities which are described in this section cannot always be carried out by a single Authority. In such cases close co-operation between the two Authorities is essential if both of them are to obtain the full results of their labour and expenditure.


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(4) Systematic visitation of parents, especially those whose children are about to leave the Elementary Day Schools, and of employers, with a view to securing continuity in the further education of the younger members of the community.

(5) Investigation of the industrial and other conditions of the district with a view to the provision of organised courses of instruction in Continuation Schools in close adjustment to the economic and social needs of the population.

(6) The organisation of advisory committees of representative employers and workpeople in each trade, with a view to securing their co-operation in the planning of courses of practical instruction, and to encouraging the attendance of younger workpeople at Continuation Classes.

(7) Systematic propaganda by means of meetings and the distribution of circulars, with a view to pressing the importance of Continuation Schools and Classes upon public attention.

(8) Careful co-ordination of the administration of all forms of education.*

(9) Co-operation with, or, where desirable, representation upon the committees of voluntary organisations which aim at the improvement of attendance at Continuation Schools.†

(10) The preparation, and transmission to employers, of reports upon the progress of their employees in the Continuation Schools.

(11) The issue of certificates of continuous attendance to regular pupils.

In the prefatory memorandum to the Board's "Regulations for Technical Schools, Schools of Art, and other forms of further education" for the year 1908-9, it is pointed out that in many districts the industrial conditions are so complex as to require special investigation before the school curriculum can be satisfactorily determined. "Where Local Education Authorities have undertaken direct treatment of the employment-relation of their school provision, they have found it possible to knit together their Day School and Evening School organisation, so that general education and specific training for an occupation may each be duly promoted." The Board note with satisfaction that "systematic surveys of the inter-connection" between industrial conditions and school facilities "are being more widely undertaken, with gratifying practical results". In such surveys the Board proffers its aid.

[The bottom left corner of this page was not printed correctly: the only visible parts of these footnotes were as follows:]

* ... see Appendix O.

† ... of such work done by a voluntary organisation, ...


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(c) The Influence of the Day School Teacher and Manager

The important part which teachers can play in transferring children from the Elementary School to the Continuation School has already been referred to. In many cases teachers take the opportunity of urging upon parents and children the advantage of continuing the children's education. This can be done in many ways. If the local education Authority, for instance, would supply handbills in which the objects of the Continuation Schools were set out in a way to appeal to children and parents, the teachers could give them to the children a few weeks before they left the Elementary School, with an explanation as to their contents and a request that they would take them home to their parents. They could at the same time encourage parents to come and see them at the school, and not only discuss the question of continued education, but also give advice as to employment.* The establishment of Junior Employment Registries, as already suggested, will greatly increase the value of the teachers' efforts in this direction. A teacher who had won the affection and respect of his scholars, and was clearly competent to give practical advice as to their everyday occupations, should have little difficulty in recruiting a large proportion of his charges for the Continuation Schools. This is, of course, especially the case where the Day School teachers are also the teachers in the Continuation Schools. They are not only keen to improve the attendance at their Continuation Classes, but are able to a large extent to obtain this result by the continuance of their personal influence over the pupils. There are, no doubt, objections to the employment of the same teacher both for Day and Continuation Schools, and these objections must he referred to more specifically later on.† But from the point of view of securing attendance at Continuation Schools the arrangement has been found by experience to have great advantages.

As regards the actual direction of the Continuation Schools, it is very desirable that the head-teachers of the Day Schools should take some part in the direction of the Continuation Schools which are attended by pupils from the Day Schools of which they have charge by day. Such an arrangement may secure a strong connection between the Day School and the Continuation School and greatly promote continuity of attendance and a spirit of esprit de corps. As regards the actual charge of a Continuation School, however, the Committee realise that it is not always wise for the headmaster or headmistress of a large Day School to incur the heavy labour of administration which the care of a Continuation School involves. They also recognise the fact that the

*For an actual instance of this, see page 91.

†See page 162.


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appointments to the responsible headships of Continuation Schools afford opportunities of recognising the services of experienced assistant-teachers, and that where the assistant-teacher in question is a member of the staff of the Day School from which the Continuation School pupils are drawn, unity of influence may be effectively secured provided that the head-teacher, though not personally responsible for the Continuation School, is strongly interested in its welfare, and exerts his personal influence in urging the Day School scholars to enter their names upon its books.

It is hardly necessary to add that the school managers are in a position to do much to extend and supplement the labours of the teachers in persuading their Day Scholars to pass on to Continuation Schools, and are already doing much in this direction.

(d) The Co-operation of Parents

So far the Committee have referred to methods which depend mainly upon the local education authority itself - the improvement of the Day School, its careful co-ordination with the Continuation School, and the various methods of utilising the influence of the teachers and of the school managers. Reference must now be made to the methods by which the interest of the parents may be aroused.

One of the most effective ways of securing the co-operation of parents is by means of personal visits either of special officers of the Local Education Authority or of managers. The spoken word will carry conviction and remove prejudices as nothing else will. At such visits the advantages of attendance at Continuation Schools will be explained, and parents will be urged to realise how much the prosperity both of themselves and their children depends upon the training received during adolescence, and upon the nature of the work in which the children are engaged during that critical time. But such visits may not be sufficient in themselves. The advantages of the Continuation Schools must be brought home to parents in a more concrete form, and this can best be done by getting them to come to the schools and see for themselves what is being done there. In some districts public meetings are held in the schools before the opening of the Continuation School session. Parents should be invited to such meetings, where they can not only hear addresses on what is being done, but can see for themselves the work of the previous session if the opportunity is taken of combining such meetings with exhibitions of students' work. Lastly, the parents' interest can be awakened by giving them some definite share in the direction of the


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schools. If some such methods are adopted, parents will come to have a genuine appreciation of what is being done for their children, and may be relied on to use their utmost endeavours to make their children regular attendants at school. For this, after all, is the special function of the parents, and it is here that their assistance will be of the greatest practical value. It is sometimes said that boys and girls quickly grow beyond parental control when they begin to take their place as wage earners, and that parents have little influence with their children after their fourteenth year. There may be a tendency perhaps in this direction. But it is one which will be much diminished if the steady influence of a good school is continued without a break.

(e) What Employers can do for Continuation Schools

The Committee now come to the question of the employer. This is perhaps the most vital part of the whole problem. The local education authority may provide the school; the teacher and the parent may create in the pupil the willingness to attend it; but it is to a large extent the employer who, under a voluntary system, can make or mar their success.

In a recent memorandum of the Board of Education it is stated that "unless the co-operation of employers exists in one form or another, neither employers nor employed will derive full advantage from the expenditure of national and local funds upon technical education". Again, "the development and strengthening of the relation which the work of the teaching institution bears to the practice and to the commercial aspects of our industries are, in the opinion of the Board, a necessary part of further industrial progress". The Committee think there can be no doubt as to the absolute truth of this position, and they have already given some account of what has been done in the past by enlightened employers.

They will now proceed to show by what means the interest of employers should be secured and into what channels it should be directed.

It is disappointing to have to confess that, so far as can be gathered from the various inquiries that have been made at different times, the majority of employers are quite indifferent to the education of their workpeople. There are, of course, many leading firms who form brilliant exceptions to the rule, and it is probable that this number is increasing. But this cannot blind the Committee to the fact that the field is still to a large extent unexplored. The reasons are not far to seek. It is only of recent years that education has begun in any way to become popular, and to be organised


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on lines which would appeal to business men. It is probably safe to say that a large number of employers are in no way hostile to education, but simply indifferent to it. Its practical results upon their own business have not been brought home to them. It is all to the good, therefore, that those great firms which have become pioneers in the education of their workpeople have defended their policy purely on business grounds. That many of them have been influenced largely by philanthropic motives as well is, of course, well known. But they have been consistent in claiming that their methods are those of sound industrial finance, and it would be idle to ignore that in an industrial community this is the argument that will have the greatest missionary success. It must be remarked, too, that it is not only in the highly skilled trades that the education of the workers has been found to increase and improve the quality of the output, nor is it only technical education that has been demanded. It has been found by experience that even in factories where the work is comparatively unskilled and monotonous, the continued education of the employees has had a marked effect upon the work. The manual dexterity of the workers may not be touched. But they become steadier and more sell-reliant; their self-respect increases; their physique improves by better ordered lives; their pride in their work is increased. The result is two-fold; the employer profits by diminished waste and improved work; the worker profits by his ability to earn larger wages, by the knowledge of how to spend them better, and by increased happiness and health.

If, then, these results are no longer a matter of theory, but have been proved to be commercially sound by business men, it can only be supposed that if they were put before employers in a suitable way many more would be willing to lend them support than is at present the case. In practice it has been found that this is so, and that those Authorities which have endeavoured to get into contact with employers have found a good number of them willing to co-operate. It is suggested, therefore, that Local Authorities who as yet are not in touch with local employers, should call preliminary conferences between themselves and representative employers, and lay before them the facts of the case. They should point out to employers the many advantages which they and their workpeople might derive from close cooperation with the Education Authority, and suggest to them practical ways in which this object may be achieved. In the first place, the employers must have some recognised method by which they can make their wants known. It has been suggested that this can be done successfully by the formation of advisory committees, on which both


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employers, workpeople, and the Local Education Authority shall be represented. At the meetings of such committees the curriculum and general organisation of the Continuation Schools could be discussed, and both employers and workpeople could make suggestions as to their improvement. It is not only in helping to adjust the Continuation School to local needs that employers could be useful, but still more in giving practical criticisms on the special courses given in the schools in subjects of which they were themselves experts. Where, however, the assistance of the employer is most invaluable is in securing the regular attendance of his young workers at the school. It is here that the sympathy of the employer is vital. He can exert an influence on the attendance at Continuation School which under a voluntary system is unequalled by any other. His object can be obtained in many ways, of which the following have been tried in actual practice and found to answer well.

By far the most effective weapon at the service of the employer is to make regular attendance at Continuation School an absolute condition of employment. This appears, at first sight, a strong step to take, and where tried in actual practice, it has been found in some cases to give rise temporarily to some slight ill-feeling. In one large firm, a few of the young employees tried at first to make trouble at the classes, but an intimation from the head of the firm that the order was going to be strictly enforced soon had its effect, and it is now stated that it is popular both with pupils and parents. There are other firms where the same policy has been adopted, and in most cases, so far as the Committee are aware, it has been successful. It is clear, however, that so long as the adoption of such a policy is voluntary, it must have one obvious limitation, namely, that young persons who do not like the conditions will seek elsewhere for employment. In places, therefore, where there are many competing firms, the policy would probably be unworkable, as any individual firm which adopted it might experience considerable difficulty, anyhow at first, in securing a sufficient number of good workers.

When, therefore, this form of voluntarily-inflicted compulsion is for any reason impracticable, resort must be had to less drastic methods of persuasion. Various methods now actually in use may be recommended, of which the following are the most important:

Employees who are attending Evening Schools may be exempted from working overtime; a further step is to allow them time off during the afternoon before - or during the morning after, an attendance at a continuation class.

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Employers may pay the fees, wholly or partially, of their employees who attend classes or examinations. A plan which is frequently adopted, is to refund the fees to workers who make a certain percentage of attendances at their classes.

Prizes may be given to regular attendants, either in money, books, or instruments.

Scholarships at Technical Schools, and even at Colleges for Higher Education, may be given to a certain number of employees.

Employees who have shown their anxiety to get on by regular attendance at Evening Schools for (say) three years, may be allowed two afternoons a week to attend Technical Classes, without deduction of wages.

Special opportunities for promotion may be given to employees who attend classes, e.g. in engineering works a few places in the drawing office may be thrown open to such lads.

Extra wages may be given to apprentices for good marks, such marks depending partly on regularity at continuation classes, partly for good conduct there, and partly on examination results.

Masters' trade associations may contribute to the funds of special classes.

(f) The Question of Grants to Pupils in Continuation Schools during the Last Few Months of their Day School career

There is a further point to which the Committee would call the earnest attention both of the Board of Education and of the Local Authorities. It has already been pointed out that, in the majority of cases it is almost essential to secure that children should proceed straight to the Continuation School when they leave the Day School. But there is a practical difficulty in the case of children who leave the Day School at a time when the Continuation School session has already begun, and a still greater one when it is far advanced. Boys or girls who leave the Day School, for instance, in November, miss the beginning of the Continuation School course. If they leave the Day School later in the session, they are placed at an even greater disadvantage in the Continuation School. The present alternative lies between their joining the Continuation School when the courses have already begun, or having no school or class to which they can go during the rest of the session. Many in consequence slip out altogether, and others lose touch with educational work and are very difficult to secure again. It is obvious that the Continuation Schools cannot so organise themselves as to meet the needs or boys and girls who leave the Day Schools in successive


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weeks all through the session, though much could be done by arranging Preparatory Classes for late comers, with more individual instruction. But another way of meeting the difficulty is to allow all Day School pupils who will leave school during the Continuation School session to attend the Continuation School during the last few months of their Day School career. This has already been tried by a few Authorities.

There are two objections to such a plan. The first is that children might be overworked by attending Day and Continuation Schools at the same time. There is, no doubt, something in this. But the Committee feel that the risk would be minimised if the work done by such pupils in the Continuation School were carefully selected so as to differ as much as possible from the work done during the day. Or it might he possible to arrange for the scholars to be freed from part of their Day School work. In any case, the period of double work would be short and the slight risk of overwork during a few months would be as nothing compared with the subsequent advantage secured to the pupil.

The other objection is that many Local Education Authorities are not prepared to make special arrangements in their Continuation Schools for scholars on whose behalf they can get no grant. By the terms of Art. 4 of the Regulations for Technical Schools, etc., a student may not be registered for purposes of grant while still in attendance at any school or course of instruction where his attendance is recorded for the purpose of a grant under any other Regulations of the Board. The Committee hope that in view of the importance of preventing a gap between the Day and Continuation Schools the Board may see their way to repeal this Article and to allow the attendances of scholars to be registered for purposes of grant both at Day Schools and at Evening Schools during a limited number of months at the end of the Day School period.

But even so, there will always be a considerable number of children leaving the Elementary Day Schools during the summer at a time when, under present conditions, few Continuation Classes are held. It deserves consideration, therefore, whether there is sufficient reason for so strictly limiting Continuation School work to the six winter months. If Continuation Classes could remain open uninterruptedly, except during the Day School holidays, throughout the year, the continuity of Day School and Continuation School attendance would be facilitated, staffs of special teachers could be continuously employed, and, by an adjustment of the period of technical classes to the seasonal conditions of different industries, more economical use could be made of accommodation and of plant.


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Chapter VIII. Difficulties inherent in the Present Voluntary System

The Committee have now enumerated the principal methods by which attendance at Continuation Schools can be improved without having recourse to any form of statutory compulsion. They feel, however, that there are a number of serious difficulties inherent in any such voluntary system and they will now turn to a consideration of them.

(a) The Apathetic Attitude of some Districts towards Continuation Schools

The first serious disadvantage of a voluntary system of Continuation Schools is that in districts where the ratepayers of the Local Education Authority are hostile or apathetic nothing may be done at all. It may be true that at one end of the scale there are places where almost every available child is attracted to some form of continued education, and where the Continuation Classes are marked with enthusiasm and success. But there is no guarantee at present that these favoured conditions will become universal. On the contrary, it seems impossible to doubt that improvement in some places will be indefinitely delayed. The attitude of Local Education Authorities generally towards the question may be seen by a reference to the figures given in Appendix D, which show that in many districts the number of Evening Schools* and scholars is far below what it should be, especially in rural areas.

The Committee would like to have shown, had the necessary statistics been available, the number of children between 12 and 14, and between 14 and 17, who are at Day or Evening Schools in each area, and the proportion of these numbers to the aggregate population at those ages in the districts concerned. But the materials for such a calculation do not at present exist. In default of this the Committee have taken the percentage of evening scholars to day scholars as the most convenient basis of comparison available for their use. But it should be observed that the percentages do not show the actual proportion of the population receiving some form of continued education. Their sole use is as a standard of comparison. And even from this point of view they are open to the objection that they may present in a too favourable light the educational position of those areas which have a low exemption standard for Day School education.

*The Table relates only to the "other Schools and Classes for further education", of which the statistics are given in Table 110 of the Board's Statistics, 1906-7-8.


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It will be seen that the percentage of Evening Scholars to Day Scholars is highest in the County Boroughs of Bolton, Bury, Burnley, and Halifax, where it lies between 25 and 30 per cent. But even in these towns a considerable number of boys and girls attend no Evening Classes after they leave the Day School, and it will readily be seen, therefore, how small the corresponding percentage is for the country as a whole, and in a large number of districts how insignificant. Thus, taking the Administrative Counties first,* there are no less than 23, or about 37 per cent of the whole, in which the percentage of Evening Scholars to Day Scholars lies between 0 and 5 per cent. It sinks, in the case of the Isle of Ely, to 0.3 per cent, in West Sussex to 0.8 per cent, in Montgomeryshire to 1.2 per cent, in the East Riding to 1.6 per cent, and in Pembrokeshire to 1.9 per cent. In 43.5 per cent of the counties the percentage lies between 5 and 10. Thus in about 80 per cent of the counties the percentage lies between 0 and 10. In only 12 counties does the percentage lie above 10, being between 10 and 15 for Bedfordshire, Middlesex, Surrey, Worcester, Yorks (West Riding), and Flint; between 15 and 20 for Cheshire, Lancashire, Glamorgan, and the Isle of Wight; and between 20 and 25 for the Isles of Scilly and Buckinghamshire.† The average percentage for the whole of the Administrative Counties is 8.5.

In London and the County Boroughs the percentages show a considerable improvement, as might be expected, but even here the majority lag a long way behind the best. In only three County Boroughs, Dudley, Hastings, and West Bromwich, does the percentage fall below 5; in 25 it lies between 5 and 10, in 26 between 10 and 15, in 12 between 15 and 20, in four between 20 and 25, and in the four already mentioned between 25 and 30. The average percentage for London and the County Boroughs is 14.9.

As regards the number of teachers in Evening Schools, the table of statistics would appear to be more favourable. The figures do not, of course, give any indication as to their qualifications; but it is worth noting that the average size of their classes would seem to be reasonably small.

It is important to make it plain here that the poor attendance at Continuation Schools in some districts is not due only to the apathy of the Local Education Authority in devising methods for persuading adolescent boys and girls to attend their schools. It is, in some cases, due to the fact that they do not provide the schools for the pupils to attend. The Committee consider that a remedy should be found for this, and that Local Education Authorities for Higher Education

*London is included with the County Boroughs for this purpose.

†As to Buckinghamshire, however, see note on page 268.


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should be placed under a more definite obligation to provide Continuation Schools than exists at present.* With this object they recommend that sections (1) and (2) of clause 10 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908,† should be adopted, mutatis mutandis [with the necessary changes], for England and Wales.

(b) The attitude of the majority of employers towards the educational interests of their younger workpeople

It is impossible to read the evidence which was given before the Committee without being struck by the sympathetic attitude of large numbers of employers towards the education of their younger workpeople. Witness after witness gave instances of employers who made arrangements to enable such workers to obtain further education, and of some who went so far as to make attendance at Continuation Schools a condition of employment. A somewhat detailed account of a few typical instances has been given in an earlier part of this report. Many witnesses also assured the Committee that the interest and co-operation of employers were growing year by year. Yet there can be little doubt that, taking employers as a whole, the large majority do at present stand aloof. There appear to be two main reasons for this, apathy in the great majority of cases, deliberate policy in others. As regards the merely apathetic type of employer, there is every reason to believe that many of them would give their help if they were rightly approached. Many instances of this have been brought to the notice of the Committee. Well-organised appeals to employers have frequently met with encouragement. Employers in Birmingham, for instance, have done very little in the past; but the starting of an employers' committee is said by Mr. Sayer to have been successful. "Many leading employers attended and were favourably inclined to the movement." A circular issued by the Workers' Educational Association to Birmingham employers also showed that most employers were quite ready to assist when the need for their help was brought home to them, and Mr. Sharkey's figures show that no less than 75 to 80 per cent of the employers agreed to form committees to work in co-operation with the employees in order that the question of education should

*The obligation imposed on Local Education Authorities in connection with the provision of higher education is defined in the Education Act, 1902, s. 2 (1), which begins as follows: "The Local Education Authority shall consider the educational needs of their area and take such steps as seem to them desirable, after consultation with the Board of Education, to supply or aid the supply of education other than elementary, and to promote the general co-ordination of all forms of education ..."

†The Clause is given on page 241.


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be taken up more thoroughly. Other cases have been referred to already by the Committee, and encouraging symptoms of the same nature are common elsewhere.

There is, however, another section of employers which is deliberately unwilling to recognise the educational claims of their younger workers. They either do not or will not see that any advantage can accrue either to themselves or to their workers from any form of continued education, and they refuse to make any arrangements by which such education may be rendered more accessible to their workers.

These two classes of employers constitute an undoubted difficulty in a system of voluntary attendance at Continuation Schools. The apathy of the former may, no doubt, be overcome by organised propaganda; but such a propaganda must have behind it some motive power. This, under a voluntary system, must come from zeal and public spirit, which, however, do not exist everywhere in sufficient measure to overcome local inertia. As regards those employers who are deliberately opposed to a general system of Continuation Schools, something may be done even under present conditions to lessen their opposition. Many can be argued into seeing that it is to the actual advantage not only of the worker but also of the employer that a better training should be given to young workpeople. In certain trades, such as engineering and building and the manufacture of jewellery and furniture, this is already fairly generally acknowledged, and there is evidence to show how much educational work is being done or encouraged by certain employers in these and many other trades. But it should be realised that what holds good in many highly skilled trades applies also, though in a less degree, in many others where the mechanical skill of intelligence of the worker would not at first appear to be so material. It was obvious, for instance, to some of the members of the Committee who visited Messrs. Cadbury's works at Bournville that much of the work done by the boys and girls was purely mechanical. Yet Messrs. Cadbury informed the Committee that, in their opinion, it is economically advantageous to employers to encourage their younger employees to continue their education, except in the case of certain trades which make an unfair use of the human material employed by them. "Increase of education amongst workpeople led to increased output at the works, and to avoidance of waste. It also led the employees to aim at bettering themselves and to avoid pursuits and amusements which impaired their efficiency." Messrs. Cadbury admitted, of course, that "owing to the care they took of their people they were able to get a very high class of labour, and that their experience therefore was perhaps


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a little abnormal. They had no doubt, however, that their methods were economically sound, and that though they might entail a larger initial capital expenditure on land, premises, etc., they would pay the employer in the end. They pointed out, however, that the results were not very tangible or obvious at first sight, and that many employers liked to see a quick and clear return for their money. Employers were too apt to forget that better circumstances amongst the working classes led to a much greater general consumption of manufactured goods and therefore increased the employers' sale." Other opinion of the same kind can be found in the Committee's evidence. Thus, Mr. Guthrie, of Liverpool, said that "the more intelligent employers now recognised that it was to their own advantage to encourage the attendance of their young workers at Continuation Schools". Mr. Shann said that "In the case of employers of skilled labour, and of a great amount of unskilled labour, it would be fair to tell them that they would actually benefit from the increased intelligence of their workpeople, even if they had to make reduction in their work hours without reducing their wages. Intelligent workpeople reduced waste of time and material." Mr. Hewit, speaking of the educational work of the Calico Printers' Association, explained that its "sole object was to secure by special training the best workers, and so to improve the work."

It is only fair to point out, however, that there probably are cases of employers who might not be directly benefited by the further education of the rank and file of their workpeople. Messrs. Rowntree, for instance, who have done much for the education of their workers, doubted whether the firm itself obtained any purely financial advantage from parts of their educational scheme, though they thought that "If similar methods were employed continuously and universally the physique and intelligence of the working classes would improve, and employers would thus obtain better labour." But that, as Mr. Rowntree pointed out, is looking rather far ahead, and it is not to be expected that most employers will take so remote a contingency into consideration as a business proposition.

In conclusion, therefore, the Committee consider that, in spite of the great advances that have already been made, and in spite of the improvement that can reasonably be looked for in the future (especially through the development of secondary education) as regards the interest which employers take in the continued education of their younger workers, there would always remain a great mass of employers whose necessary co-operation in educational work would not be secured under a voluntary system.


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(c) The difficulty, under a voluntary system, of protecting pupils in Continuation Schools from overstrain which may arise from excessive hours of work and school

A further difficulty which arises under a voluntary system may be stated as follows. It is urged that many scholars in the Continuation Schools are too tired by their work in shop, office, or factory, to profit by instruction in Continuation Schools held when their work is over, and that under a voluntary system it is impossible to enforce any arrangement by which their hours of labour should be reduced. It must of course be admitted that owing to the social and industrial difficulties involved in readjustments of the hours of labour, no great advance in this direction is likely to be made without some degree of statutory regulation. If therefore it can be shown that under existing circumstances the great majority of adolescent workers are really too tired to profit by the instruction which they do or might receive in their Continuation Schools, it must be admitted that this is an evil which a voluntary system is, in itself, powerless to remedy.

The evidence given before the Committee shows quite clearly that large numbers of scholars who attend Continuation Schools under the existing system are not too tired to profit by the instruction which they receive there. Of those who do not at present attend such schools many stay away, not on account of fatigue, but, on the contrary, from the unwillingness to sit still which comes of exuberant health and spirits. But it is not less clearly shown by the evidence that a great number of young people (both boys and girls) are tired out by their day's work and that though, in spite of this, many of them come to Continuation Schools, they are too tired to derive much advantage from the instruction they receive there. How large is the proportion of over-tired scholars is a matter to which the Committee must revert when they are discussing the practical difficulties of introducing a compulsory system. It seems sufficient to state that it is considerable, and that it is virtually impossible to provide a remedy for this evil without further statutory limitation of the hours of work.

(d) The case of Children whose Hours of Work, though not necessarily fatiguing, clash with the Hours of the Continuation Classes

A somewhat similar difficulty occurs in connection with children whose hours of work, though not so long as to exhaust their energies and strength, are yet so long or so


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inconveniently arranged as to make it impossible for them to get away to attend a Continuation School. As a few instances may be mentioned the case of railway van boys, who are kept late at work during busy times; boys at work on lorries or vans attached to big warehouses; boys in shipping offices, and in counting houses where accounts have to be made up after the shops are closed; boys used in trades connected with the fitting out and repairing of ships - work, that is, which, on account of their size, only boys can do, and which cannot be delayed or postponed without very serious loss and inconvenience; boys in the provision trade; errand boys in small shops; girls in dressmaking shops during seasonal pressure. These are but a few instances of employments in which children, though not necessarily overworked, are employed at times which clash with the hours of Continuation Classes. The question is whether arrangements can be made, without serious dislocation of trade that would injure the workers as much as the employers, either to let these children off work at an earlier hour or to free them during the day time, so as at one time or the other to give them sufficient leisure to attend a continuation class.

The Committee have little doubt that, with more goodwill and better reorganisation of work, many boys who are now kept late at work could be freed at an earlier hour. The arrangement of Day Continuation Classes at times convenient to youths engaged on night shifts would meet another class of difficulty. In a few cases, however, the Committee are inclined to think that real difficulty may be found in fixing regular times at which boys can be freed from work. Such an instance is referred to in section 3 of Mr. Hurry Riches' evidence. He shows there that for certain work in the repairing of ships the employers must be able in emergencies to rely on the attendance of boy workers at any time of day or night, and he adds thai he knows of no way in which this difficulty could be met. No doubt there are other cases where similar obstacles would have to be faced before the boys in such trades could be given an equal chance with boys in other trades, and even under a compulsory system such cases would have to he considered with the utmost care. In other cases there might he no special difficulty in arranging things to the convenience of the boys engaged, if competing firms would only agree to act together. If all the shops in a town agreed to dismiss their errand boys at a particular hour, the public would soon accustom themselves to the change; and no loss would fall upon individual shop-keepers. So long, however, as a few firms refuse to agree to such a self-denying ordinance, the remainder are prevented by motives of self-defence from


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handicapping their own business. Lastly, there are the cases where, though there is really no difficulty, indifference either on the part of the employer or the boy, or the absence of any well-organised school facilities, effectually hinder any real progress.

The Committee recognise the fact that increasing interest taken in the question by local authorities, parents, and employers, will lead to facilities for attendance at Continuation Schools being given to many young people whose present hours of duty clash, regularly or intermittently, with the times at which Continuation Schools are usually held. But it is improbable that voluntary concessions on the part of employers will suffice to remove the whole of this serious difficulty.

(e) The weakness of a Voluntary System in impressing on the public mind the necessity for Educational Care during Adolescence

It has already been noted that, under existing conditions, particular sections of the community fail to appreciate, or even to be aware of, the need for continued educational care during adolescence. The Committee have shown how many local authorities, employers and parents, appear to be oblivious to this need, and they have stated their opinion that, though the voluntary system is capable of great evolution before its possibilities are exhausted, yet the point of exhaustion will be reached before the complete needs of the community are met. There is, in fact, behind the voluntary system no motive power strong enough to carry it right through to the final solution of the problem. The only power which could achieve this result under a voluntary system would be a strong and healthy public opinion. But it is the weakness of the voluntary system, not only that it has not got this public backing, but that it is not likely to create it. There are perhaps a few national duties, such as the provision of hospitals, which are more or less adequately and generally supported by purely voluntary efforts. But such duties have behind them a very instant and impressive appeal to the public conscience, an appeal which Continuation Schools can hardly claim to possess. The Committee believe, indeed, that interest in education is growing, but they believe it needs some strong public stimulus before it meets the full requirements of the case. This stimulus can, they believe, only be given by a full public recognition of the national importance of the care of adolescence, and this public recognition can best be secured by means of an Act of Parliament.


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The apathy of certain strata of the population which at present remain untouched, even in districts which are otherwise educationally progressive, could hardly fail to be roused at last, and parents and children alike, who, at present, through ignorance or indifference, are oblivious to their own interests, would have the matter brought home to them in a manner they would understand.

(f) Conclusion to be drawn from a consideration of the above difficulties

These considerations point, in the Committee's judgment, towards the conclusion that a purely voluntary system would in any case fail to secure the continued education of the whole, or indeed of the greater proportion, of the younger population throughout the years of adolescence. In the following chapter they will endeavour to estimate the extent to which public opinion is already favourable to the idea of compulsion.





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Chapter IX. Opinion in Great Britain on the subject of making Attendance at Continuation Schools compulsory

(a) The views of witnesses who appeared before the Committee

It has already been pointed out that any advance in securing a larger attendance at Continuation Schools must depend to a great extent upon public opinion. Bearing this in mind, the Committee have made a point, since the summer of 1907, of collecting evidence with a view to ascertaining, among other things, the trend of opinion among employers, workpeople, local administrators, and teachers in different parts of England and Wales upon the advisability of making attendance at Continuation Schools obligatory on young people during the years of adolescence.

Eighty-nine of the witnesses who have given oral testimony to the Committee have dealt with this question of compulsion. Out of the 89, as many as 60 have declared themselves in favour of the principle of compulsion in some form or other, the remaining 29 being, in different degrees, opposed to it. Thus, among this large and representative body of witnesses, there is a majority of two to one in favour of the general principle of compulsion. The same majority holds good if the witnesses are classified according to the part of Great Britain in which they reside. Out of 62 English witnesses, 41 were in favour of compulsion in some form; out of 16 witnesses from Wales, 11 were in favour of compulsion in some form; and out of 11 witnesses whose evidence was taken in Scotland, eight were in favour of compulsion in some form.

Many of the witnesses, however, on both sides, attached important qualifications to their judgment. On the one hand, out of the 29 referred to above as being against compulsion, four based their objection to it not on the ground of principle, but on the present unripeness of public opinion. Another, Mr. E. W. Greg (member of the Lancashire Education Committee), was only opposed to compulsion in the case of those categories of young work people who have to work in mills or workshops before breakfast. He informed the Committee that in his judgment Continuation Schools were "not only useful but absolutely necessary for office boys, messengers, boys in post offices, lift boys in hotels, newspaper boys, and boys in other jobs of that sort." Another important witness, Principal Griffiths of the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire, stated that if the Continuation Schools were made satisfactory and if methods of persuasion failed, he would he prepared to allow a local authority to enforce attendance. Mr. Herbert


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Thompson (member of the Cardiff Education Committee), while opposed at present to compulsion in the case of boys, "did not see any particular difficulty in making attendance at Evening Schools in Cardiff compulsory in the case of girls, other than that which would arise with domestic servants". One witness from the Welsh colliery district (Mr. A. C. Willis, Chairman of the Abertillery Education Committee) stated that if the hours of labour in coalmines were sufficiently reduced he would give his entire support to a system of compulsory attendance at Evening Schools. And one of the foremost workers among lads (Mr. C. E. B. Russell, Hon. Secretary of the Heyrod Street Lads' Club in Manchester) declared that "if it were possible in certain places to reduce the hours of labour by the time spent in Evening Schools, compulsion" (failing voluntary arrangements which he preferred) "might there be applied with very great advantage".

On the other hand, among the 60 witnesses reckoned above as being favourable to compulsion, 11 held that some statutory limitation of the hours of labour of young people should accompany any legal obligation to attend Continuation Schools. Three others emphasised the importance of allowing local authorities to grant exemption from obligatory attendance at Continuation Schools in the case of any young people who were likely to suffer from overstrain. Two others favoured compulsion as an ultimate, but not as an immediate, measure. Another thought that the raising of the age of full-time exemption from the Day School to 15 would be preferable to enforcing attendance at Continuation Schools. Another, while strongly in favour of boys being compelled to attend Evening Schools, thought it neither necessary nor desirable to enforce such obligation in the case of girls. Another (Mr. Austin Keen, Secretary of the Cambridgeshire Education Committee) held that while "something might be done in the direction of requiring country boys to attend Evening Schools until the age of 16, such a requirement would have to be accompanied by some reduction of Day School attendance." He, therefore, proposed "that boys should be allowed to leave the Day School at 12, on condition of attendance at Evening Schools until the age of 16." He thought that "compulsory Evening Schools could not be introduced in rural districts without some such reduction in respect of Day School attendance; but that, with this concession, the farming classes generally would support the scheme".

The Committee feel it right to draw attention to the fact that among those who declared themselves opposed, at any rate under present conditions, to the enforcement of attendance at Continuation Schools were several local


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administrators to whose judgment great weight should be attached. Among these were Mr. Kenrick (Chairman of the Birmingham Education Committee), Mr. Oulton and Mr. J. W. Alsop (Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Liverpool Education Committee), Dr. William Garnett (Educational Adviser to the London County Council), Mr. J. H. Reynolds (Director of Higher Education, Manchester), Mr. T. Crowther (Principal of the Municipal Technical College, Halifax), Mr. William Wilson (Secretary for Higher Education to the Lancashire Education Committee), Mr. Preston (Chairman of the Lancaster Education Committee), Miss Margaret Ashton (Member of the Lancashire Education Committee and of the Manchester City Council), Mr. Morgan Williams (Member of the Glamorgan Education Committee and of the Rhondda Evening Schools Committee), and Mr. R. S. Allan (Chairman of the Glasgow School Board).

(b) Three causes which have furthered the growth of opinion in England and Wales in favour of some form of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools

(i) The co-ordination of education which, when the new conditions were skilfully used, was made possible by the Education Act, 1902

The evidence summarised in the preceding paragraphs points to the conclusion that in many parts of Great Britain there is a rising tide of opinion in favour of instituting some form of compulsory attendance at Continuation Classes. This significant growth of opinion has been furthered by three principal causes. Firstly, so far as England and Wales are concerned, the establishment (under the Act of 1902) of the new education authorities charged with the duty of co-ordinating all forms of elementary and secondary education within their area has led administrators and the public to take that more comprehensive view of the task of national education which has long been habitual in Scotland and in parts of the United States. The wastage of intellectual promise and the weakening of half-formed character which result from a premature close of systematic education have come more distinctly under general observation, and this has coincided with the introduction of the means to combat it.

(ii) The influence of foreign examples

Secondly, educational opinion throughout Great Britain, as well as in Massachusetts and France, has been deeply impressed by the example of those public authorities in


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many parts of Germany and of Switzerland which have grappled with the social and educational problems of adolescence. Just as, a hundred years ago, the work of Fichte and Pestalozzi helped in impressing upon all thoughtful minds in Great Britain the urgent need of reforms in the elementary education of the people, so, at the present time, the example of several of the States of the German Empire and of many of the Cantons of Switzerland is bringing home to us in Great Britain the growing need for continued educational care beyond the present limits of the Elementary Day School course. The outcome of German and Swiss experience in this matter is reviewed in the following chapter.

(iii) The discussion of the question in Parliament

Thirdly, the ripening of the desire in Great Britain for an improved system of Continuation Schools has been hastened by a series of Bills upon the subject which have been introduced during the last 12 years in the two Houses of Parliament.

Five of these Bills (1891, 1904, 1905, 1906, and 1908) refer to England and Wales; the others (1907 and 1908) refer to Scotland. The names of the Members printed on some of the Bills show that the proposals met with a measure of support in all political parties. But only one of the Bills became an Act of Parliament, viz., the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908. The first four Bills (1897, 1904, 1905, 1906) were based upon the principle of enforcing attendance, under certain conditions, at Evening Schools. In the Bills introduced after that date, day as well as evening Continuation Classes were contemplated. In the latest Bill (1908) it was proposed that no compulsory Continuation Class should end later than 6 p.m. All the Bills contained provisions which would have imposed new statutory obligations upon employers. In the first four Bills special treatment was proposed in the case of boys and girls engaged in agricultural or horticultural employment. A special feature of the Bill of 1904 (the Bishop of Hereford's) was the proposal that attendance at a Secondary School or Bible class, up to 30 hours in any one year, should be reckoned (if the parent so required) as equivalent to one-third of the minimum number of hours of compulsory attendance at a Continuation Class. The latest Bill, introduced by a group of Liberal and Labour Members in 1908, is the most drastic of the series. It proposed to abolish every kind of exemption from school attendance up to the age of 14, and to require all young persons between 14 and 17 years of age to attend Continuation Classes not ending later than 6 p.m., for not


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less than six hours a week, apparently throughout the year. A further analysis of these different Bills will be found in Appendix I of this Report.

Of all the parliamentary proposals which have been made for the enforcement of attendance at Continuation Schools, the most important are those which have been enacted by the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908. Clause 10 of that Act requires every School Board to make suitable provision of Continuation Classes, with special reference to the craft and industries (including agriculture and the domestic arts) practised in the district, and including instruction in the laws of health and opportunity for suitable physical training. School Boards have power to require attendance at Continuation Schools up to 17 years of age. The hours of attendance at such Continuation Schools must not, when added to the hours of employment, exceed in any one day or week the period of employment permitted for a young person by any Act of Parliament. A penalty is imposed upon any employer who fails to observe this requirement, or employs a young person at the time when he or she is required under any local byelaw to attend a Continuation Class. Employers are also required to notify to the School Board the name of young persons in their employment to whom the local byelaws may refer, and the particulars as to the hours during which such young persons are employed by them.

(c) The opinion of workpeople England and Wales

The attitude of the leaders of the workpeople towards attendance at Continuation Schools has been uniformly sympathetic and of late years increasingly fruitful in practical results.

As an instance of their general attitude, it may be mentioned that Mr. Arthur Henderson, M.P., the Chairman of the Labour Party, and Mr. J. Ramsay Macdonald, M.P., its then Secretary, were amongst those who recently signed a published letter advocating compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools up to the age or 17, subject to certain conditions as to the length of working hours.

An important work in providing further education has been done by the co-operative movement. Many Co-operative Societies (notably the Rochdale Pioneers, and Societies at Oldham, Preston, St. Helen's, Barnsley, York, Rugby, Coventry, Ipswich and Grays) have been liberal in their provision of Evening Classes of other educational facilities for their members and the public. The Central Education Committee of the Co-operative Union has given valuable guidance and aid to the educational activity of Co-operators.


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Since the passing of the Education Act of 1902, a large proportion of the Evening Classes previously organised by Co-operative Societies have been transferred to the care of Local Education Authorities.

The educational efforts of trade unions and working-men's clubs have been not inconsiderable, though less systematic, and have varied with local opportunities and local circumstances.

The local branches of the Independent Labour Party and the Social Democratic Party frequently organise educational courses for their members on their own premises, and in some cases make applications, either direct or indirect, to Local Education Authorities for the establishment of classes to meet the needs of their members. There has been no opposition on the part of these bodies to voluntary attendance at Continuation Schools, and they have not been slow to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the Workers' Educational Association for increasing the facilities for adult education. The Workers' Educational Association, with its fifty branches, has in many places taken active steps to increase voluntary attendance at Continuation Schools. The trend of opinion in working-class organisations, however, is in favour of the provision of Continuation Schools by public authorities, and by them alone.

As regards compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools the great majority of working men witnesses who gave evidence to the Committee were in favour of the principle. But with a few exceptions they made their approval conditional upon some further statutory limitation of the hours of labour in the case of those who would be required to attend. The majority of those desiring statutory limitation would be content with a reduction of hours of labour equal to the time spent in the Evening School. The opinion of Mr. Philip Snowden (see page 414) is an exception. "The combined hours", he said, "of work and schooling should not exceed eight hours, and of this time a fair share should be given to the schooling." He said later that only four of five hours should be given to industrial occupation. One South Wales miner was of opinion, that if the Minors' Eight Hours Bill became law, compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools would not be a hardship, whilst another was emphatically of the contrary opinion.

An extensive inquiry made on behalf of the Committee confirms the conclusions, drawn from the oral evidence. One of a series of questions widely distributed among boys and men employed in a variety of trades, asked whether attendance at Continuation Schools should be required in the case of all boys (whose health would allow it) up to 17 years of age. Two hundred and two answers were received to


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this question. Of these, 169 were in the affirmative; but there was general assent to the further condition that some limitation of present working hours would be necessary as an accompaniment of compulsion (see Appendix H). It seems safe to say that this is the view which is supported by the Labour Party us a whole.

Mr. G. N. Barnes, M.P., speaking in the House on the 5th of May, said: "For his part, and he thought he could speak for the whole of the Labour Party, they were opposed to the principle of compulsion being applied to a boy of 17, unless, in some way or another, that boy was going to be guarded from overstrain".

But the oral evidence which has been given to the Committee on behalf of workpeople has come in the main from those who represent the leaders, and the written evidence has come largely from those who are interested in educational work or who have been themselves in attendance at Continuation Classes. It is necessary, therefore, to consider to what extent the mass of the work people are prepared to support the views of their leaders and most advanced members upon the subject of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools during adolescence.

The popular sentiment in favour of education seems to be growing. It is felt that improved educational facilities conduce to the public welfare and to the benefit of the rising generation. On the other hand, the growth of opinion favourable to compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools is checked by opposition from three quarters. In the first place, there is a strong feeling amongst the rank and file that such compulsion ought to be accompanied by statutory reduction in the hours of adolescent labour, and that it would be cruel to force children, tired after their day's work, to attend school in the evening. Secondly, there is a section amongst the working men which regards the raising of the age of exemption from regular Day School attendance as the most needed educational reform. They urge that at present children leave school far too soon, and that they will gain more by being kept at the Day School to 16 than from any system of compulsory Continuation Schools if superimposed upon the present truncated system of Day School attendance. They are afraid lest the acceptance of the principle of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools should prove a barrier to the working out of more necessary reform in lengthening the period of attendance at the Day Schools. But, in the third place, both these hopes, viz., of the raising of the Day School age and the statutory limitation of the hours of adolescent labour as a concomitant of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, are held in check by the determined opposition of great numbers of workpeople to any


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change in the law which they think would curtail the wage-earning opportunities of children and adolescents and thus affect the family budget. This opposition is strong in the ranks of skilled operatives. Thus in the textile districts there has recently been a decisive vote* in opposition to proposals approved by the men's own leaders for the abolition of half-time employment under 13 and for the raising of the age of exemption from attendance at the Public Elementary Day School. This vote reveals a state of mind amongst the rank and file of the textile workers, which is unlikely to be sympathetic to proposals for extending the period of compulsory school attendance in Continuation Classes up to the age of 17, on the ground that any such enactment, if accompanied by a considerable reduction of hours of employment, would lessen the wages now earned by many young people during adolescence and would thus affect the family income.

A distinction must be made, therefore, between resolutions passed at such meetings as those of the Trade Union Congress and the real attitude of the average labour mind. While it is safe to assume that the Trade Union Congress resolution represents the ideals of those workpeople who voted for it, and has a distinct effect on public opinion among the workers, such a resolution must not be taken as an index of the practical measures which working men as a whole are actually prepared at the moment to accept. It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that, in regard to education, many workpeople have two distinct points of view. As citizens and voters they are inclined to treat it as a matter of general public welfare, the cost of which will be paid out of the Imperial Exchequer rather than out of local rates. At other times, when they think of their immediate interests as parents and wage-earners, they show themselves antagonistic to any educational reform which they think entails reduction in the wages of adolescent labour.

Thus, to sum up, the opposition to proposals for introducing compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools proceeds from different sections of working men and from different points of view. On the whole, there seems to be a steady growth of opinion in favour of a prolongation of the period of attendance at the Day School and of requiring attendance at Continuation Classes, provided that the hours of labour for young people are reduced in proportion. But any such reduction of wage-earning opportunities will be bitterly resented by great numbers of parents, and those by no means always the poorest. The number of working men, however, is growing who realise with increasing clearness that improved education, which will enhance the adaptive power of the rising generation, is indispensable to their welfare and

*See Appendix K.


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that a wise restriction of adolescent labour would probably increase the demand for the services of adults and thus prevent a reduction in the family income.

It may be added that the attitude of enlightened employers who have insisted upon attendance at Evening Schools as a condition of employment is, theoretically, opposed by workpeople as an infringement of their liberty; but when it becomes better understood that the action of employers has the education of adolescents for its real object, workpeople are not likely to oppose a fair scheme to that effect.

The relations between the Local Education Authorities and the representatives of the workpeople are satisfactory and, in many instances, cordial. These friendly relationships have obviated many difficulties which might otherwise have arisen in the organisation of technical classes in the industrial districts. At one time trade union feeling was distinctly unfavourable to technical education. The latter was suspected of being a device of the employers to increase, largely at the cost of public funds, the supply of young workmen sufficiently skilful to take their place in a skilled industry, and so numerous as to reduce the wages of labour. But the Local Authorities, by bringing together representatives of the employers and of the workpeople in the task of educational administration, have not only helped in removing this suspicion, but have brought the experience of those who are best acquainted with the needs of each branch of industry to bear upon the organisation of courses of technical instruction. The appointment of representatives of the workpeople upon the Technical Education Committees has given them confidence in the intentions of those bodies, and has removed much of the opposition which plans of technical instruction used to provoke. Employers and representative workpeople, though acting together in educational administration, form the habit of looking at questions of technical education from a common standpoint, and with regard to the benefit of capital and labour alike.

This change in feeling has made it possible for the Local Education Authorities to develop, with some rapidity, but without serious opposition, the industrial and commercial departments of Continuation School work. This policy meets the wishes of the majority of the students, and is designed to promote the economic interests of the district concerned. It is evident that practical instruction, though of an unspecialised and preparatory character, will form an increasing part of the plan of study in the closing years of the Day School course and in that of the Continuation Schools. But the presence of representative workpeople upon the organising committees will prevent the technical side of Continuation Schools from being over-emphasised. Those who best


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understand the wishes of the workpeople know the strength of the demand (however little formulated it may he in words) for that kind of further education which gives a wider outlook upon life and affords a training for citizenship. The social aspects of the Continuation School problem are even more important than the purely educational. That the schools should humanise their pupils is an indispensable condition to their being able to impart true economic efficiency. It is a narrow conception of Continuation School work which prescribes a jejune literary course as a preparation for commercial life and a bald technical course as a preparation for industry. The most thoughtful among the working men realise that what is needed is a course which combines the humanising element with the technical. It is satisfactory to find that the Local Education Authorities are, as a rule, willing to adopt this view when it is pressed upon them; and that reasonable requests for classes in citizenship and in historical or literary subjects are seldom refused. Considerable numbers of enlightened students have already pledged themselves to undertake a course of study in citizenship extending over three years and conforming with the regulations of the Board of Education. In order to stimulate the further demand for such facilities it is desirable that workpeople should be allowed considerable freedom in choosing their own subjects of study. Such freedom is being given, with favourable results, in many districts where representatives of the workpeople have been invited by the Local Education Authorities to serve on joint committees for the planning of courses of study.

By volunteer work, organisations of workpeople have in many places increased the attendance at Continuation Schools. They have also pointed out that, under present conditions of working-class housing, rooms for quiet (and, where possible, assisted) study are essential if adults are to make the best use of the opportunities afforded by Continuation Schools. Some Education Authorities, acting alone or in conjunction with free library authorities, have already taken steps to meet this need.

As regards rural districts, there is no organised opinion amongst country workers on the subject of continued education. It is understood, however, that organised workpeople in towns refuse to admit any distinction between attendance at Continuation Schools in country areas and town areas other than those imposed by conditions of distance from the school and the size of schools. They desire for the child in agricultural districts as long an attendance at school as for the child in town areas. They of course desire also that the curricula of country schools shall be planned with a view to rural industries.


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Chapter X. Compulsory Attendance at Continuation Schools in parts of Germany and Switzerland*

(a) The German Empire

(i) The Extent to which, and the Methods by which, Compulsory Attendance at Continuation schools is enforced in Germany

In no country (whatever may be true of individual towns) is attendance at Continuation Schools during the years of adolescence yet enforced with the same thoroughness as is the case with children at the Elementary Day Schools. But in parts, at any rate, of twenty-two out of the twenty-six constituent parts of the German Empire, attendance at Continuation Schools is now compulsory for some of the younger population, during a period of time (which varies in length in different districts) immediately following the conclusion of the Elementary Day School course. The four States in which no machinery exists even for the local enforcement of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools contain only 2 per cent of the population of the Empire.

The extent to which attendance at Continuation Schools is obligatory varies in different parts of Germany, and even in different parts of the same State. In nine States (including 89 per cent of the population of Prussia), and in Alsace-Lorraine, attendance is compulsory only in those towns or districts where it is imposed by local byelaw.† It will be understood that compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools is still the exception in Prussia, though the large cities are rapidly adopting the permissive Act which enables them to enforce such attendance within their own areas. In twelve States, including Bavaria, Saxony, Württemberg, Baden and Hesse, attendance is compulsory by State Law,

*This section is largely based on the following work: Continuation Schools in England and Elsewhere (Manchester University Press, 1907), Chapters XYIII-XX; Dr. Georg Kerschensteiners Grundfragen der Schulorganization (Leipzig: Teubner, 1907), and the same writer's The Compulsory Continuation Schools of Munich, a lecture delivered in Scotland in 1908 and printed in pamphlet form by the Aberdeen School Board; Mr. A. A. Snowden's "The Industrial Improvement Schools of Württemberg", in Teachers' College Record, Vol. VIII., No. 5, November, 1907 (Columbia University Press, City of New York). Reference may also be made to Miss Florence Barger's Continuation School Work in the Grand Duchy of Baden and in Canton Zurich (Board of Education, Educational Pamphlets, No. 6, 1907).
For information on the Danish High Schools, see page 80.

†In the Prussian provinces of Posen and West Prussia, attendance is compulsory by State Law. On December 1, 1900, the population of these provinces was 3,450,983. The population of the rest of Prussia was 31,021,576.


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but for periods varying in different localities, and not equally for both sexes. In the remaining four States (which include Hamburg and Lübeck) attendance at Continuation Schools is still wholly voluntary, but, in the case of Hamburg and Lübeck, considerable. The Committee has not been able to find complete official statistics showing what percentage of the population is actually in attendance at Continuation Schools of all types in different parts of Germany. Speaking generally, it appears that much more attention is paid to the continued education of recruits for the skilled trades than to that of boys who will enter the ranks of the labourers.

Thus, in the main, compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools in Germany is enforced by a method of local option. Those States, or provinces of States, which have enacted a general law enforcing attendance at Continuation Schools contained, in 1900, only 36.5 per cent of the total population of the Empire. The alternative method of leaving the question of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools to the discretion of the locality concerned, operates over regions of the Empire which, in 1900, contained 61.5 per cent of the total population. There are no available figures showing what proportion of the adolescent population of Germany actually falls within the scope of compulsion, whether the latter is enforced by State Law or by local byelaw. It is clear, however, that public opinion over a great part of Germany (but more in the industrial centres than in the country districts) has declared itself decisively in favour of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, and is showing itself increasingly favourable to the extension of the principle.

Comparatively little has yet been done to enforce attendance at Continuation Schools in the case of girls. Attendance is obligatory for girls as well as boys in Bavaria, Württemberg, Saxe-Meiningen, Waldeck, and in some parts of Prussia. But in all other cases compulsion applies to boys only.

(ii) Origin and Growth of German Continuation Schools

The German Continuation School sprang from the Sunday School. In many Sunday Schools religious instruction was combined with instruction in reading and writing. Attendance at such Sunday Schools was made compulsory for young people of both sexes in Württemberg in 1739 and in Bavaria in 1803. But the regulations for compulsory attendance were never strictly enforced, any such enforcement being out of the question owing to lack of teachers and of school accommodation. The modern development of the German Continuation School began in the Kingdom of Saxony. In 1835 the local authorities in Saxony were given statutory


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power to enforce attendance at Continuation Schools. Twenty-four years later these powers were withdrawn. The reason for their withdrawal was that attendance at Elementary Day Schools had now become universal and was held by public opinion to secure a sufficient degree of popular education. But, about 1867, the tide turned once more. It was felt on all sides that the education of the masses of the people must be extended beyond their 14th year. Accordingly, in 1873, Saxony once more passed a law enforcing attendance at Continuation Schools; and, in the next year, the example of Saxony was followed by Baden, Hesse, Saxe-Weimar, and Mecklenburg-Schwerin.

(iii) The Duty of the German Employer. The Imperial Law

Of capital importance in the development of the Continuation School in Germany is the duty which the Imperial Law throws upon the employer of giving to his younger workpeople the necessary time for attendance at such Continuation Classes as the local education authority may prescribe. This duty is imposed by three sections of the Imperial Law of Industry of June 1, 1891, extended by the further law of June 30, 1900. These sections run as follows:

Section 120. Employers of labour are required to grant to those of their employees* under 18 years of age who attend a Continuation School arranged by the Government or by the local authority the necessary time for school attendance as prescribed by the authority in question. Classes are only allowed on Sundays if they do not interfere with attendance at Divine Service.

Section 142. By the byelaw of a District or Town Council attendance at Continuation Schools can be made compulsory for male persons under 18 years. The regulations necessary to enforce compulsory regular attendance at such schools may be fixed by the local authority, and the duties of pupils, parents, guardians, and employers may be so defined as to ensure the regular attendance, the discipline and the orderly behaviour of the pupils. Those pupils are relieved from the attendance at such compulsory schools who attend a guild or "Fach" school, provided that such a school is recognised by the superior administrative authority as equivalent in status to the said Continuation School.

*Since 1900, this expression includes male persons, female' clerks, and female apprentices.


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Section 150. A fine of 20 marks (1) or, if this is not paid, imprisonment up to three days for every offence, is imposed upon anyone contravening any of the above regulations.
German opinion is increasingly unfavourable to the plan of holding Continuation Classes in the later hours of the evening. In Bavaria the State Law forbids any Continuation Classes to be held after 7 p.m. The new Continuation School law of Württemberg, which comes into force in 1909, prescribes that, after a transitional period of three years, compulsory instruction in Continuation Schools shall end not later than 7 p.m.

(iv) The Origin and Extension of the Compulsory System in Germany

The German system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools began in those districts where the small workshop was still holding its own. But it has gradually spread to the factory districts and has now been successfully applied in many great centres of the textile trades. For example, at Plauen, attendance at Continuation Schools is now compulsory for boys and girls to the end of their 16th year. Attendance is compulsory for boys to the end of their 17th year at Chemnitz, Crefeld, Elberfeld, Barmen, Meerane, Augsburg, Berlin, and Forst. It is compulsory for boys to the end of their 18th year at Colmar and Mülhausen. Factory hands within the age limits of compulsory attendance leave the mills early in order to attend the Continuation Classes between the hours of 5 and 7 or 8 p.m. at Colmar, Elberfeld, Meerane, and Augsburg. Continuation Classes are held during work hours for shifts of younger mill-hands at Mülhausen, Plauen, Barmen, and Chemnitz. The amount of attendance required at Continuation Classes is three lessons a week at Mülhausen and Meerane; four lessons a week at Colmar, Chemnitz, Crefeld, Elberfeld, Berlin, and Forst; and six lessons a week at Plauen, Barmen, and Augsburg. The system of compulsory attendance is reported as working satisfactorily, and as meeting with the approval of employers and workpeople, at the following textile centres: Colmar, Mülhausen, Chemnitz, Crefeld, Plauen, Elberfeld, Augsburg, and Forst. At Barmen there was grumbling at the beginning (1905), but the arrangements are now reported to be working smoothly. At Meerane, where the plan of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools was introduced after a great struggle, the position is now satisfactory, and the local education authority hope that further concessions will shortly be made by the employers. At Berlin, where compulsory attendance began in 1905, the system is working fairly well,


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but it is still too soon to form a final judgment upon the results.

(v) The Experience of Munich

In the more recent development of the German Continuation School, an honourable part has been played by the city of Munich. The industries of the city are various. Brewing predominates, but the leather and glove trade, the manufacture of machinery, the making of furniture, the production of metalware, printing, lithography, and painting on glass are all important. There is a famous brass foundry. Many workmen are employed in the building and allied trades. But the workers are mostly engaged in small workshops. The factory system is comparatively undeveloped. The city has a strong artistic tradition and a vigorous habit of communal life. No one has done more to develop a satisfactory system of Continuation Schools than the city Superintendent of Education in Munich, Dr. Kerschensteiner. He described, in the course of a lecture delivered in Scotland in 1908, at the invitation of the Aberdeen and other School Boards, the steps by which the present system of compulsory Continuation Schools in Munich had been built up.

In 1877 the city organised two types of Continuation Schools, one for apprentices and the other for journeymen and master-workmen. The Continuation School for apprentices gave from five to eight hours of instruction per week, and was compulsory for all boys in Munich between the ages of 13 and 16. It was organised as all extension of the general education of the Elementary School. No regard whatever was paid to the pupil's trade. The instruction was given for five hours on Sunday and for three hours on one afternoon during the week, the subjects being reading, writing, arithmetic and drawing. At the Continuation Schools for journeymen and master-workmen attendance was optional, the subjects of instruction being drawing, painting, modelling and chasing. The schools gave no practical instruction in the management of a cost book, in the preparation of specifications, or in book-keeping. They paid almost exclusive attention to draftsmanship. They ignored the fact that while the economic conditions of the present time require that the worker should have a technical and commercial training, the social conditions as imperatively demand for him a civic training. Through these imperfections in their course of instruction, the Continuation Schools for journeymen and master-workmen were practically a failure. They often misdirected the pupils' energies, turning a good decorator into a moderate artist, and a good joiner into a second-rate designer of furniture. Nor was the general compulsory Continuation School more successful in its


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educational achievements. Its pupils regarded it with indifference; the masters looked upon it as a burden; the teachers believed it to be a waste of effort. Few of the apprentices who had passed through the compulsory Continuation School thought of making use of the further opportunities offered by the trade schools.

Consequently, during the years 1890-1900, the general Continuation Schools for boys were replaced by Trade Continuation Schools modelled upon those of Leipzig, Vienna, and the Grand Duchy of Baden. It was now possible to enrol apprentices from the same trade in the same class, and to adapt the course of training to the actual needs of the pupils. These were great improvements, but Dr. Kerschensteiner was still dissatisfied. The more that he studied the Continuation Schools in other parts of Germany, in Switzerland, and in France, the more clearly did he see their incompleteness. As a rule, the instruction was given in the evening when the pupils were tired and the teachers worn out. Though the schools endeavoured to make the trade of the pupil the focus of interest, yet in some way the institutions lacked the breath of life. A few masters, and here and there a trades council, showed a somewhat languid interest in the Continuation Schools. But the true bond of union between the school and the workshop was still lacking. Sufficient emphasis was not laid on the side of practical work. Moreover, it was forgotten that the boy should be educated to become not only a good worker but also a good citizen. The claims of training for citizenship were treated as wholly subordinate to the need for instruction in drawing and arithmetic.

Dr. Kerscheusteiner's next step, therefore, was to make practical work rather than the study of text-books and oral teaching the chief work of the Continuation Schools. It was found that the interest aroused by this practical work was transmitted to the allied branches of the course of study, viz., drawing, book-keeping, arithmetic, and a knowledge of materials and machines. It was also determined to make a carefully devised scheme of manual instruction part of the curriculum in the highest classes of the Elementary Day School, so that the work of the latter should lead up to the practical work of the Continuation School. The next point was to enlist the interests of employers and trade guilds, the latter being (like the Mediæval guilds) groups of master-workmen, not (like the British trade unions) bodies of wage-earners. These master-workmen had observed that their apprentices were taking an increased interest in their work owing to the instruction they received in the practical Continuation Schools. They were, therefore, prepared to take a sympathetic and active interest in the Continuation


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Schools. The city authorities invited the master-workmen to inspect the Continuation Schools, and consulted them in the choice of foremen and journeymen as teachers. The local authority also invited the opinion of the master-workmen upon the syllabus of instruction, and as to the arrangement of the time-table. In return, the master-workmen were expected to supply models, tools, and machinery, to provide a good deal of the raw material, to make attendance possible for the apprentices during a suitable part of the day, and to put pressure upon the apprentices to attend. The local education authority found that the more familiar the employers became with the work of the schools, the readier they were to make sacrifices in their behalf.

The good-will of the employers being thus secured, it was next possible for the city education authority to deal with the very great difficulties which arose as to the proper time for instruction. Each apprentice is now required to attend a Continuation School from seven to nine hours per week, according to the trade. There are also voluntary classes for further practical training and for gymnastics. No attendance is compulsory in the evening after the workshops are shut. As a rule, the local education authority requires attendance for two afternoons per week, from 4 to 7, or on one afternoon and one morning in the week. There are in Munich Trade Continuation Schools, where apprentices go at 7 a.m., and remain till 6 p.m. In 12 out of 50 Apprentice Schools, part of the instruction is given early on Sunday mornings, but this practice is falling into desuetude, as the trade guilds have shown themselves ready to give an increased amount of time for the attendance of apprentices at Continuation Classes during work hours on week-days. In fact, the more the employers realise the advantages of the Continuation Schools, the more willing are they to comply with the requirements of the local education authority. The latter, in return, pays close attention to the social and economic requirements of each trade. More instruction is given in the dull season than at the busy time of year. For example, builders and decorators receive twelve hours of instruction, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. every week, from October 15 to March 15. During the rest of the year, instruction is limited to three hours on Sunday morning. The goldsmiths and the confectioners receive no instruction during the month of December, and the hairdressers are free during the Carnival. In every case the hours of instruction are fixed by an understanding with the representatives of the trade concerned. But the fundamental rule is, that every apprentice must attend a Continuation School during the whole time of apprenticeship, or until the completion of his 18th year.


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Short courses are also arranged for workmen temporarily out of employment, a plan which prevents the temporarily unemployed workman from losing his skill in his craft.

During recent years, the proportion of Technical Continuation Classes held on Sundays at Munich has greatly declined. In the present year, 1908-9, out of 50 Technical Continuation Schools for apprentices and skilled workmen, 38 meet only on week-days. The total number of hours of instruction given in these classes during the year amounted to 133,500. Of these only 7.5 per cent were on Sunday. The 12 trades which still hold part of their Technical Classes on Sunday morning are chimney-sweepers, gardeners, glaziers (including glass and china painters), jewellers, musicians, painters and decorators, paper-hangers, saddlers and trunk-makers, shop assistants, smiths and wheelwrights, tile-layers, watchmakers . In these cases the Sunday classes form, in the aggregate, 32 per cent of the total number of hours devoted to technical instruction. With these exceptions, the only Technical Classes now given at Munich on Sundays are those for labourers and men out of employment.

A striking result of the Munich system of Continuation Schools has been the growth of esprit de corps in each trade. The young apprentices become acquainted with one another, and find in their fellow pupils comrades and critics. The teacher is generally a foreman or journeyman in the pupils' own trade. At a later stage teacher or pupil may possibly become trade rivals, but in the Continuation School the elder workman endeavours to develop among his juniors the qualities which will make them skilled workmen in their calling. Comradeship in the Continuation School imparts a sense of professional unity and of pride in the maintenance of an ancient tradition of industrial skill. Both pupils and teachers are conscious that the Continuation Schools enjoy the confidence and sympathy of the trade guilds and that this part of the education of the city is dovetailed into the practical tasks of life.

In the field thus carefully prepared, the inculcation of a sense of civic responsibility becomes less difficult than heretofore. The spirit of the Continuation Schools helps the apprentices to recognise the degree to which the interests of the individual coincide with those of the community, and to understand the obligation of the individual to the State. This attitude of mind prepares the pupil to profit by systematic instruction in the history of his trade and in the story of the development of the modern State. One hour a week for three or four years is given in the Continuation Schools to this branch of instruction. "The historical methods", writes Dr. Kerschensteiner, "reveals, step by step, the mutual dependence of all sections of humanity, traces the


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deep-seated relationship between different professions, peoples, and States; and teaches the pupil the right limits of self-interest and the obligations imposed upon him by membership of a State. A great number of the trade schools find here a wide field of exploration. Consider the history of such important trades as those of the goldsmiths and the builders; consider the textile industries, the mechanical industries, and the oldest of all industries, agriculture: what a wealth of illustration their history affords us! But all this instruction must be simple in its character and based on illustrations from concrete example. Thus the apprentices are led to consider not only their personal position and the position of their trade, but that of their native country, and finally the complicated conditions of international intercourse. Thus they slowly learn the truth of the maxim that the meaning of life is not to rule but to render service: service to one's neighbour, service to one's calling, service to one's native country, service to truth and justice."

In Munich, business people and employers in general no longer complain in any way of the compulsory Continuation School system. It is true that many of them regard it as a burden, but those who are liberal-minded feel that it is a burden which ought to be borne. Speaking generally, public opinion among employers, workpeople, and apprentices alike is entirely favourable to the compulsory Continuation Schools. The appreciation of the apprentices is proved by the fact that a large number of them continue to attend Continuation Schools voluntarily when their period of compulsory attendance is over. No difficulties have been found in regard to order and discipline in the Continuation Schools through the presence of unruly pupils attending unwillingly. The greatest interest is taken by the pupils in the various classes. There are always some lazy pupils, but there have never been fewer absences without excuse than during the last five years. In general, there is no need of regulations to enforce attendance. The pupils come willingly and gladly. If a pupil does play truant he is made to appear before the education authority and cautioned. If the offence is repeated a money fine is imposed, and, if need be, the offender is imprisoned.

In the year 1906-7 the number of pupils in the compulsory Continuation Schools for apprentices in Munich was 7,333, the population of the city being about half a million. The cost per pupil in the compulsory Continuation Schools for apprentices was, in 1906-7, 3 16s 6d. No fees are charged. The number of pupils at the voluntary Continuation Schools for master-workmen and journeymen was 2,500, the cost per pupil being 6 3s 8d.


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In Munich, attendance at Continuation Schools (or at some other course of instruction accepted as equivalent) is compulsory up to the sixteenth year, attendance during the last year of this period being excused in the case of girls who have completed an eighth year of attendance at the Elementary Day School. In the city there are two types of Continuation School for girls, one optional and the other compulsory. The latter provides a course of three hours a week extending over three years. The voluntary Continuation School provides from six to ten hours of instruction per week. In both voluntary and compulsory Continuation Schools for girls all instruction is given before 6 p.m. No fees are charged. The schools prepare for household duties, for the management of the home, and for the work of the mother as educator of young children. They also give instruction on the position of women as citizens. A girl in a Continuation School at Munich is practically instructed in a wife's duties. She learns how to train children and also visits the crêches, orphanages and other charitable institutions of the city. The number of girls in the compulsory Continuation Schools at Munich in 1906-7 was 7,202. The cost per pupil was relatively small, amounting to 5s 4d per head. But in the voluntary Continuation Schools for girls and women the cost was 1 19s 3d per head, the number of pupils being 1,817.

The following statistics show the extent to which compulsory attendance at some type of approved school is enforced in the case of girls in Munich up to the sixteenth year. The estimated number of girls, ages 13, 14, and 15, in the autumn of 1907 was 13,250. The number of girls who were in attendance at approved schools, or who had otherwise completed the educational course required by the law, in the winter 1907-8, was 11,902. The difference, 1,348 is accounted for by (a) 1,053 girls, age 15-16, who by attending the elementary day school up to 14 had obtained exemption from Continuation School attendance on the completion of their fifteenth birthday; (b) about 200 girls belonging to the upper classes who were receiving instruction at home; the remainder, about 95, represents the number of girls whose attendance is unaccounted for.

(vi) The new law of Attendance at Continuation Schools in Württemberg

The high-water mark of State legislation (as distinct from city organisation) in regard to Continuation Schools in Germany has been reached by the new School Law of Württemberg which comes into effect on April 1, 1909, some parts of the Act having become operative on January 1, 1907. The Bavarian city of Munich remains


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at present without a rival in the thoroughness with which it has adjusted its Continuation Schools to the industrial, commercial and domestic needs of its younger citizens; but no other State in the German Empire has gone so far as Württemberg in requiring a systematic provision of Continuation Schools throughout its dominion.

The kingdom of Württemberg is in area a little smaller than Yorkshire and Lancashire combined. But its population (2,169,480 in 1900) is more than half a million less than that of the West Riding alone. The Swabian Alps, the watershed between the Neckar and the Danube, stretch across the kingdom from east to west, and in the deep valleys of this mountainous region there are many industrial towns and villages. The industries of Württemberg are as diversified as its landscape and show the skill and intelligence of the population. Primarily, however, Württemberg is an agricultural State, and nearly half of its population is engaged in the cultivation of the land. Nearly two-thirds of the area of the kingdom is under cultivation, the greater part of the rest being forest, mostly owned by Government. For many generations Württemberg has been famous for its high standard of education, its national university at Tübingen being one of the chief seats of learning in Germany, and its capital, Stuttgart, having a famous polytechnic and many other celebrated educational institutions.

In contrast to the neighbouring kingdom of Bavaria, seven-tenths of whose population are Roman Catholics, nearly seven-tenths of the population of Württemberg are Protestants. In the industrial struggle, Württemberg is placed.by its geographical position at some disadvantage. Its rulers, therefore, have spared no effort to enable its population to excel in those branches of industry wherein skilful and scientific workmanship may hope to command success in distant markets. To so high a point has elementary education been carried that, according to recent official returns, there is not an individual in the kingdom above the age of 10 unable to read and write. Attendance at Continuation Schools was made compulsory in 1895 for girls up to 16 and for boys up to 18 years of age, and now the chief efforts of the Government are bent towards making vocational training throughout adolescence an effective part of the education of all the young people in the kingdom.

For purposes of administration in Württemberg, the smallest local division is the commune. Of these there are 1,905. Only 37 of the communes have a population of over five thousand; 113 contain between two and five thousand people; the remaining 1,755 have a population of less than two thousand. It should be added that in Württemberg, even in the rural districts, there are very few isolated dwellings.


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These facts throw light upon the bearing of the following provisions of the new law.

Every commune in Württemberg in which for three successive years at least 40 male workmen under 18 years of ago have been engaged in commercial or industrial pursuits, will in future be obliged to provide an Industrial or Commercial School, and to maintain the same so long as the number of workmen under 18 does not fall below an average of 30 during three successive years. The ordinary type of school will be an Industrial School, but, if the needs of the community require it, a Commercial School will have to be established in addition. In the case of very poor communes, the State Ministry may sanction the postponement of the building of an Industrial School for a period of 10 years; but in all cases a general Continuation School must be provided.

Every youth under 18 years of age engaged in industrial or commercial pursuits, is obliged by the new law to attend the Continuation School for three years after the completion of the course in the Elementary Day School. This course usually ends at 14 years of age. Communes may make attendance at the Continuation School compulsory for a fourth year (i.e., to 18) if they so desire.

Attendance at other approved technical schools will be accepted as equivalent for attendance at the Continuation School. Each employer will be obliged to forward to the principal of the Industrial School the name of every male worker under the age of 18 who enters or leaves his employment. The employers are also required to set such younger workpeople free for attendance at Continuation Schools at the prescribed hours, and to see that their attendance is punctual and regular. Parents and guardians are also placed under statutory obligation to secure the regular attendance of the young people at Continuation Schools. The penalty inflicted upon employer, parent or guardian for any violation of the law of compulsory school attendance will be about 17s, or three days imprisonment, for each offence. Pupils who fail in regular attendance will be liable to a money fine or to imprisonment in the school gaol. The law permits communes to establish Industrial Schools for girls or to provide girls' departments in the other Industrial Schools. A commune may make attendance at these schools compulsory for all girls under 18 years of age who are in employment.

(b) Switzerland

(i) The extent to which Compulsory Attendance at Continuation Schools is enforced in Switzerland

Each of the 25 cantons in Switzerland has its own educational system, and decides for itself the limits as


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to age and attainments within which the Federal Law as to compulsory attendance shall apply. Thus the characteristic of the Swiss educational system is cantonal variety within a framework of federal unity. The federal constitution of 1874 requires education throughout Switzerland to be obligatory, free, and under the supervision of the canton. It further enacts that the public schools must be so organised that they may be attended by children of all religious beliefs without interference with freedom of conscience. The Federal Government, however, prescribes, and itself conducts, a universal examination for recruits on their entering the army at 20 years of age. Federal grants are given for industrial, agricultural and commercial education for both sexes, and also for domestic training and various forms of technical instruction especially suitable for girls and women. Since 1903, federal subventions have been given to cantons to help them in fulfilling their obligations in regard to elementary education. These subventions may be spent in the improvement of Public Elementary Schools, including Continuation Schools.

In 19 out of the 25 cantons of Switzerland, attendance at Continuation Schools is (in some districts, at any rate) obligatory for boys up to 17 years of age; and, in one canton, it is obligatory for girls also. Those cantons in which the principle of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools has thus been (at any rate, partially) adopted, contain 88 per cent of the population of Switzerland. But it should be remembered that in many of the cantons which are included in this category the enforcement of the principle is local and not co-extensive with the cantonal area.

The cantons in which attendance at Continuation Schools is wholly or in part obligatory for boys are the following: Zürich, Uri, Zug, Freiburg, Solothurn, Basel Town, Basel Land, Schaffhausen, Appenzell-i.-Rh., Aargau, Thurgau, Ticino, Vaud, Valais, Neuchâtel, Bern, Appenzell-a-Rh., St. Gall, and Grisons. In the first 15 of these compulsory attendance is enacted by vote of the canton; in the last four, by vote of the commune.

Attendance is obligatory for girls as well as boys in the canton of Freiburg, and also for girl apprentices in Zurich and Basel Town.

(ii) The Duty of the Swiss Employer

The Continuation Schools of Switzerland, like those of Germany, are divided into two main categories - elementary and technical. The general tendency is towards an increase in the number of those specialised Continuation Schools


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which prepare young people for skilled employment in industries and commerce, and for efficiency in the discharge of domestic duties. Swiss, like German, opinion is increasingly in favour of the principle of placing the employer under statutory obligation to allow his younger workpeople of both sexes to attend Continuation Classes at times prescribed (with due regard for the convenience of the trades concerned) by the local education authority. This trend in economic thought and practice is illustrated by the Apprenticeship Act of the canton of Zurich, which became law on November 21, 1905, and by the Apprenticeship Act of the canton of Basel Town, which became law on June 14, 1906. The first named of these is, the more extensive in its operation. It defines an apprentice as "any minor, male or female, who wishes to learn a definite trade in a workshop or industrial establishment, in a technical school, or in a commercial business". It declares it to be "the duty of the master to give the greatest possible attention to the physical and mental well-being of the apprentice, and to educate him or her in the principles and skill required for the business, on the following system: The employer shall, either in person or through the medium of a suitable substitute, conduct the training of the apprentice. ... Where there are industrial, commercial, or general Continuation Schools situated at or near the master's place of residence, the apprentice shall be bound to attend the school or that part of it which will be of use in advancing his technical training. The master shall allow him time, amounting to at least four hours a week, for such classes as are held during his hours of work. Time spent on such instruction shall be regarded as part of the legal hours of work. The apprentice shall also be allowed the time necessary for religious instruction. ... The right to keep apprentices may be withdrawn by the State Council from persons who are repeatedly found guilty of gross neglect of duty towards the apprentices entrusted to them, or if there is evidence showing them to be morally unsuited for educating apprentices. ... Every apprentice shall undergo an examination at the end of his period of apprenticeship as a test of his technical knowledge and skill. The State Council shall draw up the necessary forms of procedure for the conducting of the examinations and for the appointment of examiners. The expenses of the examination shall be borne by the State. Every candidate who succeeds in passing the apprenticeship examination shall be furnished by the State Council with a certificate on the conclusion of his period of apprenticeship."


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(iii) The Recruits' Schools

Numerically speaking, however, the most important compulsory Continuation Classes in Switzerland are those known as Recruits' Schools. These, as the name implies, are intended for youths only. In Switzerland, young men are called up about their twentieth birthday for military training, and must then undergo an examination in reading, writing and arithmetic and in a knowledge of the Swiss Constitution. Originally designed for the purpose of excluding the unteachable from the army, the Recruits' Schools examination has now become (not wholly for good) a test of the primary education of the cantons. Every year the Federal Government publishes a list, arranged in order of merit, of the results of the recruits' examinations in the different cantons. The fact of this publication has made the recruits' examination a powerful incentive to cantonal rivalry in the sphere of elementary education. Valais, for example, has been so sharply spurred by this educational competition that, during the 20 years between 1886 and 1906, it has risen from the twenty-fourth place among the Swiss cantons to the tenth. Attendance at these Recruits' Schools is compulsory for youths in 10 cantons, viz., Lucerne, Schwyz, Obwalden, Nidwalden, Zug, Freiburg, Ticino, Vaud, Valais and Geneva. The length of the compulsory course in the Recruits' Schools varies in different cantons. In Lucerne, for example, it covers two consecutive years, in each of which 40 hours of tuition are given. No class contains more than 40 pupils. Two-thirds of the lessons are given in winter, and the rest immediately before the opening of the recruiting season. In winter, instruction may not be given on Sundays or church holidays. In summer, lessons may be given on those days, but not during the hours of morning service. If the school is far from the homes of the pupils, evening classes are forbidden. Compulsory classes for recruits are held in the daytime in other cantons also. Thus it is not unusual for the traveller who happens to be in one of the larger mountain villages in Valais, during August, to meet youths trooping up to the schoolroom on Saturday afternoons, each with a blue note-book under his arm.



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Chapter XI. Practical Difficulties in the way of introducing Compulsory Attendance at Continuation Schools in England and Wales, and the methods of meeting them

The position to which the Committee's argument has led them may now be summarised as follows. They have showed that, in their opinion, there is an urgent need for extended educational care for adolescent boys and girls, and that there are obstacles which make it exceedingly improbable that such further education will be either offered or made use of universally so long as attendance at Continuation Schools and, to some extent, the provision of such Schools, remain voluntary. The Committee have endeavoured to estimate to what extent the country is ripe for the introduction of a measure of compulsion and have come to the conclusion that public opinion is becoming more and more favourable to some such change. Lastly, they have shown to what extent compulsory methods are in actual use in Germany and Switzerland. They will now proceed to enumerate the practical difficulties which stand in the way of the introduction of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools in England and Wales, and endeavour to show to what extent, and in what manner, they may be overcome.

These difficulties may conveniently be grouped in three categories - educational, economic, and administrative. The Committee will deal with them in turn.

I. EDUCATIONAL DIFFICULTIES

(a) The Early Age at which Children leave School, and their consequent inability to profit by the more advanced instruction which should be given in the Continuation Schools

It has already been pointed out that the foundation of the Continuation School system is laid in the Day School, especially in the higher classes, and that children who leave the Day School at an early age, or who receive unsuitable or insufficient instruction during the latter part of their school course, are not fitted for the kind of instruction that ought to be given in the Continuation Schools. The introduction therefore of a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools would, under conditions now operative in many districts, result in a large influx into the Continuation Classes of students not fitted to profit by the instruction which they should receive there. This difficulty, however, need only be a temporary one. It is an objection not to a compulsory system in itself, but to its premature introduction.


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The Committee believe that the raising of the age for exemption from Day School Attendance and the introduction of more practical work into the course of Elementary Day School studies are highly advisable in themselves and certain to make all public expenditure upon Continuation Schools much more remunerative, as well as facilitating the administration of the Continuation School system as a whole. But they must not be understood to mean that they are essential preliminaries which must be dealt with before it is any use trying to improve the attendance at Continuation Schools. On the contrary, in one sense, the earlier children leave the Day School the more necessary it is for them to attend some form of further education, and it would be quite possible therefore to make attendance at Continuation Schools compulsory without altering the law of attendance at the Day School. What is really essential is that there should be no gap between the Day School and the Continuation School, as, although such a gap may not in some cases be educationally undesirable, it leads to many scholars being lost altogether for further education. So long as the direct transition from Day to Continuation School is assured, the universal raising of the school age to 14, though eminently desirable, is not absolutely essential to the success of the Continuation Schools. The Committee believe, however, that such success cannot be attained completely, or economically, until the pupils come to the Continuation Schools with their characters more formed and their intelligence more trained, and that (pending the general raising of the school age) Local Education Authorities who wished to adopt for their area a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools would not get full advantage from their expenditure on such a system, until the bye-laws of the district were amended so as to abolish half-time and grant total exemption only on passing Standard VII.

(b) The lack of a sufficient number of Qualified Teachers and Suitable Premises

A second difficulty is the question of the supply of teachers.

At the present moment the Continuation Schools are largely staffed from the ranks of the Elementary School teachers, and this plan has many great advantages.

It secures good discipline; it forms a useful link between the Day School and the Continuation School; it keeps the pupils in the latter under the continuous influence of teachers to whom they have long been known. Moreover, the fees paid for Continuation School work are often an important addition to the Day School teacher's income.

So far then as the general direction of the ordinary Continuation School is concerned, and so far as its course of


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study carries forward to a further point the subjects taught in the Elementary Day School, it is not only convenient but preferable that the services of the Day School teachers should thus be used. Unfortunately, however, the strain of such double employment impairs the freshness of many of the teachers and in some cases is actually prejudicial to their health. Dr. James Kerr, Medical Officer (Education) to the London County Council, stated in his evidence before the Committee that he had traced much of the nervous disorder and many of the cases of nervous breakdown which he had found among teachers, to their having undertaken Evening School work in addition to their Day School tasks. He held, therefore (and his opinion is shared by many others), that no Elementary School Teacher should be allowed to undertake Evening School work in addition to full duty in the Day School.

The Committee, while concurring in Dr. Kerr's judgment that in the interests of the Continuation Schools and of the teachers themselves care should be taken to prevent such cases of overstrain, are satisfied that many teachers are well able to discharge the double duty with unimpaired efficiency and success. They do not think it desirable, therefore, to recommend any hard and fast rule forbidding such double employment. If the matter is carefully watched by the Inspectors and Medical Officer of each Local Education Authority, there is no need, in the majority of cases, to curtail a freedom which many teachers value and which they put to excellent use.

In London, arrangements have recently been made to allow certain Evening School Teachers relief from part of their Day School duties. But the experiment is too recent to allow a judgment to be formed as to its administrative difficulties and as to its effect upon the freshness and buoyancy of Evening School work. It is clear, however, that such an arrangement, where it can be conveniently introduced, will make available for the Evening Schools the services of many teachers who could not undertake it in addition to their Day School duties, and that it will conduce to the vitality and educational interest of the Evening Schools by affording to the teachers ampler time for special preparation and more opportunity of outdoor exercise. But the extent of the difficulties caused by the double employment of teachers in Day and Evening Schools may easily be exaggerated. All over the country, in towns as well as in rural districts, excellent work is being done in the Evening Schools by teachers who also undertake full work in the Day School. It should be remembered that, at present, Evening Schools are practically confined to the winter months and that, during those months, teachers


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rarely give more than two or three evenings a week to Evening School work. If it were laid down by the Code that no teacher should, on any one day, teach through the morning and afternoon periods of the Day School and in the Evening School as well, there would he a surplus of teachers during the summer months, unless the Evening Continuation Schools remained open, except in holidays, continuously throughout the year. Such an arrangement, however, is not at present in contemplation, and the Committee are therefore led to the conclusion that, while care should be taken to prevent individual cases of overstrain, no drastic interference with the present methods of employing the Day School teachers' services for Evening School work is desirable or necessary. Such being the case, they consider that, so far as the general studies and direction of ordinary Evening Schools are concerned, no serious difficulty will be found in securing a sufficient number of teachers if attendance at Continuation Schools is made compulsory by law, especially in view of the fact that a considerable number of teachers are available besides those actually employed in the schools. Compulsory attendance would, in any case, be introduced by gradual stages, and the demand therefore for a large number of new teachers would not come all at once. With reasonable forethought, the gradually increasing demand could be met as it arose.

With regard, however, to the Technical Classes in Continuation Schools, the case is different. For giving instruction in many of these subjects, the Elementary Day School teachers are not qualified by their studies or experience. For this purpose, the Local Education Authorities must engage special teachers with practical qualifications. All over the country, a considerable number of special teachers are already employed, but if attendance at Continuation Schools were made compulsory and if (as would be necessary) a considerable part of their curriculum were so arranged as to bear closely upon the needs of the different industrial and other occupations, Local Authorities might find considerable difficulty in securing the services of a sufficient number of experienced and competent teachers. It by no means follows that a man who is master of his craft or calling will be successful in imparting a knowledge of it to others. It is desirable therefore that Local Authorities should furnish opportunities by means of which practical experts of this kind could obtain instruction in methods of teaching and in the presentation of their subject. Conversely, many Day School teachers, already skilled in the art of teaching, can, without serious difficulty, acquire sufficient knowledge of some technical subject, e.g. gardening,


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to give efficient instruction in it to their pupils. By means of such further training - pedagogical in the case of the practical expert, technical in the case of the already experienced teacher - the difficulty of finding a sufficient number of recruits for a widely extended system of Continuation Schools could he satisfactorily overcome.

An analogous difficulty is that of premises. In many cases the premises of the Public Elementary School will be suitable for Continuation Classes, at least for that part of them which consists of non-technical instruction. In other cases, where simple workshops or laboratories are needed, these could be added to the Elementary School, or those already in existence could be made suitable for older scholars and for more advanced instruction by complementary equipment. The difficulty in fact will be mainly one of money; and could be met within a year or two if financial considerations could be ignored. But it would not be reasonable to require so large an outlay to be incurred all at once. Nor would the result be satisfactory, as no one would have time to learn by the mistakes and experience of others. On account of premises and equipment, therefore, as well as on account of the supply of teachers, the introduction of a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools should be by gradual stages.

(c) Possible Recalcitrancy of some Pupils. Would Pupils who do not come to Continuation Schools voluntarily, profit by further Education?

Several of the witnesses laid great stress on the great advantage of having none but willing students in Continuation Schools. Thus, Mr. Reynolds "preferred to keep the schools in a high state of usefulness for those members of the community who could use them to advantage". He felt confident that "the earnestness and discipline of a school which was attended by pupils who voluntarily made some sacrifice to attend was most valuable, and would not exist in a compulsory free school". Mr. Crowther, of Halifax, was of opinion that "boys responded to a system based on personal interest and friendship much more than they would to a mechanical and official system of compulsion. Under compulsion the system would necessarily become more stereotyped; the teacher would cease to take the same amount of personal interest in the boys, and the spirit of voluntary effort in the scholars, which was now so effective, would be partially eliminated." Mr. Oulton, Chairman of the Liverpool Education Committee, said that "the attendance of reluctant pupils would be injurious to the willing ones, while the former would themselves gain no appreciable good out of the teaching".


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The Committee find, however, that in those cases in England in which attendance at Continuation Schools is now enforced by employers of labour (e.g. at Widnes, where, Messrs. Brunner, Mond & Co. and the United Alkali Company require such attendance on the part of their younger workers; in the Bourneville works of Messrs. Cadbury; in the works of Messrs. Rowntree at York; and in the Admiralty Dockyard Schools, where the apprentices attend school for 11 hours each week, partly in the afternoons and partly in the evenings*), there is no want of personal interest in the scholars and no recalcitrancy or disorder. When Messrs. Brunner, Mond & Co. first made attendance at Evening Classes compulsory, there was "some trouble in the class-room, some of the unwilling ones throwing things about to the subversion of discipline. But this was stopped by summoning a meeting of the parents of the youths, who were told that the firm intended to employ no boy in future who did not regularly attend the Evening School at Winnington, or other place, and they were recommended to inform their sons that the matter was no joke, for the firm had determined to have the new regulation properly carried out. From that time forward no difficulty of that kind occurred, and the arrangement is now very popular with pupils and parents." The Committee quite agree that were boys and girls brought back to school after an interval of freedom, there might be considerable difficulty in securing their regular attendance and their attention. But if compulsory attendance when introduced were made applicable only to each successive batch of children as they qualified by age for exemption from Day School attendance, and if such children always anticipated this extension of their educational course, the Committee think that any disorder in the Continuation Schools would be in the highest degree improbable. The pupils would come on to the Continuation Schools immediately after the close of their Day School course, and would doubtless show themselves as amenable to school discipline as they had been during the later years of their Day School career. Further, the idea that a compulsory system of Continuation Schools involves a mechanical system of organisation and any discouragement of voluntary keenness for study is due to a misunderstanding of what would happen and (in such a city as Munich) actually has happened. In Munich, Dr. Kerschensteiner reports, "the greatest interest is taken by the pupils in the classes: of course, there are always

*See Dr. G. J. Parks on Existing Compulsory Continuation Schools in England ("School World", January 1909) and Report of a Conference with Local Employers convened by the Bootle Education Committee, June 1907.


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some lazy ones, but the general interest in the work is shown by the fact that there have never been fewer absences than during the last five years. The apprentices, especially, approve the system, because the schools are grouped according to trades. Their appreciation of the system is proved by the fact that a large number of them continue to attend the school voluntarily when their period of compulsory attendance is over."*

It has also been urged that under a system of voluntary attendance at Continuation Schools the most intelligent industrious, self-denying, and energetic young people spontaneously select themselves for further education, and that this results in the expenditure upon Continuation Schools being concentrated upon those who are most likely to profit by it and by their enhanced efficiency to repay the State for its outlay upon their technical training. The Committee do not find that this theoretical supposition is confirmed by the facts. They have been impressed by the failure of the Continuation Schools to attract some of the cleverer and brighter pupils and by the consequent waste of ability through lack of educational supervision at a critical age. They find that where the parents are poor, the children (and not least the more intelligent of them) are often compelled, upon leaving the Day School, to enter occupations which, in the absence of such restrictions upon hours of labour as a compulsory system of attendance at Continuation Schools would entail, afford no proper opportunity for continued education. The Committee would also point out that the argument summarised above would almost equally hold good against enforcing attendance at the Day School between 13 and 14 (now done in progressive districts with admittedly excellent results) as against enforcing attendance at a Continuation Class in the years immediately following the Day School course. The argument also presupposes a degree of foresight and self-determination in young people of 14 years of age which does not in point of fact coincide with their native capacity or with their aptitude for further development under educational discipline. Moreover, under a general system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools with the elaboration of alternative courses which it would entail, young people of exceptional industry and strength of purpose would have even more opportunity than at present for obtaining the special kinds of further instruction especially appropriate to their needs. From the point of view of the community, the economic value of such exceptional individuals would be increased under a more effective system of general training for the masses of the

*Continuation Schools in England and Elsewhere, p. 545.


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people, owing to the fact that their activities would be less clogged than at present by the intellectual inertia of their fellow-workers.

Granted, however, that the unwillingness of the students to learn can be overcome, it is urged that many of them are unable to learn even if they want to. It is frankly said by some that it is of no use to educate mediocrity; that there are boys and girls whom it is pure waste of money and energy to attempt to educate, and that those who wish to give such children genuine assistance should send them to recreative clubs, which are more suitable for them. So far as this means that there are a certain number of children to whom the education given in the ordinary Continuation Schools would be useless, the Committee agree with it. They would even go further and admit that in places where the number of backward or stupid children of 14, 15, and 16 is not large enough for them to be taught separately, it is difficult to know how to fit them into a Continuation School without disadvantages to the other classes. Yet their claim on the community is as great as, or even greater than, that of those who are fitted by superior intelligence or physique to profit by further education. They are the least qualified physically, morally, or mentally to go out into the world and fight their own battles. As Mr. Cyril Jackson says in his evidence, "they require to be under discipline a little longer; their characters need strengthening, and their interest ripening, even if by continued attendance at school they do not acquire knowledge of the fresh subjects of instruction". That instruction can be given which would improve the equipment of even the least efficient pupils the Committee have no doubt. The difficulty lies in providing special instruction for a small special class, and this is but one instance of a further difficulty to which the Committee must now refer.

(d) The Difficulty of Organising Classes to meet the varied requirements of all the Occupations in each Locality

Several witnesses, though not opposed on principle to compelling attendance at Continuation Schools, laid stress in their evidence upon the difficulty of organising classes which would bear closely upon the special needs of every branch of local trade. They pointed out that such organisation would involve a great number of separate class-rooms or workshops and of specialist teachers, and that though experience on the subject is rapidly accumulating, we are not yet able to lay down with full confidence the details of the course which would be most beneficial for the younger workers in each branch of trade. The Committee recognise that this difficulty


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is a serious one. They would point out, however, that the practical work best adapted to the needs of the junior students in Continuation Schools would be of a preparatory and general, not of a highly specialised character. It would, therefore, be less difficult to obtain for such classes the services of competent instructors. Moreover, it is to be hoped that in the future classes of young people engaged in some trades may, when necessary, be excused for attendance at Continuation Classes at hours in the daytime not seriously inconvenient to their employers. Such an arrangement, by allowing different classes to be taken successively in the same room and under the same instructor, would enable economical use to be made of the available accommodation and of the services of the specialist teachers. Again, in planning the course of study for each branch of trade, the Local Authority would avail itself of the advice of a committee representing the employers and the workpeople in the calling concerned. The combined experience of these practical assessors and of the staff of the Local Education Authority would enable suitable curricula to be framed, and modified from time to time in the light of further experience. Participation in the work of such a committee would have the further result of stimulating the interest of employers and representative workpeople in the educational facilities provided for the young people in their district.

II. ECONOMIC DIFFICULTIES

The Committee have now dealt with what appear to be the main educational difficulties which must be cleared away before attendance at Continuation Schools can advantageously be made compulsory. They have shown that, in their opinion, these difficulties are by no means insuperable. They can be removed by careful foresight and skilful organisation, so long as time is given for the gradual and orderly development of those means of education which are at present lacking in sufficient fulness.

It is when the Committee turn to the social, economic, and industrial difficulties attendant upon compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, that the real complexities of the problem begin to assert themselves. It is one thing to agree in principle that it is to the advantage of the community as a whole that the intelligence and the character of its boys and girls should be developed and strengthened. But education takes time, and the difficulty is to find this time. Have the children who would use the Continuation Schools sufficient leisure under existing industrial conditions to enable them not only to attend continuation


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classes but to attend them profitably? If not, can their hours of labour be shortened, and, if so, at whose expense? Are employers to pay them the same wages as they paid for the longer day, and, if so, can they support the additional charge? Will their temporary loss be compensated for by the subsequent increase in skill of the workers? Or are the wages to be reduced in proportion to the reduction in the hours of labour, and, if so, can the parents afford this contraction of their income? The matter was put succinctly by one of the witnesses who appeared before the Committee. If the hours of labour are not reduced, he said, the pupil objects. If the hours of labour are reduced, but not the wages, the employer objects. If the hours of labour and also the wages are reduced, the parent objects.

Again, apart from the question of wages, is it possible to reduce the hours of labour for children between (say) 14 and 17 without dislocating trade? And if not, how will it benefit children to be better equipped for their employment if the trade for which they are being trained is so hampered by their absence that it dwindles, and loses its power of giving work?

The Committee have felt from the first that it is indispensable to face these questions before advising the Board as to the applicability of the Continuation School clauses of the new Scotch Education Act to England and Wales. They have therefore kept these questions in view during their examination of the witnesses who have appeared before them. Much interesting and valuable information, collected in this way, is contained in the evidence appended to this report. The main conclusions which have forced themselves upon the mind of the Committee in the course of their inquiry, are that it is of vital importance to the welfare of the nation to secure extended opportunities of general and practical education for young people during the years of adolescence, and that the changes which are necessary to secure such opportunities must be undertaken in spite of the serious difficulties which they would involve. That the difficulties are not insuperable; that the advantages of the reform will far outweigh the inconveniences which will inevitably attach to them; and that the interest which has already been aroused in the question, and which is certain to increase, will assist those who are responsible for educational policy in overcoming inertia, ignorance, and opposition, is the general trend of the evidence which the Committee have received.

In the following sections, they proceed to a detailed consideration of the chief points of economic difficulty which are raised by a proposal to make attendance at Continuation Schools compulsory. They would point out, however, that


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only in the course of practical administration will it be possible to accumulate the experience necessary for a complete and detailed solution of some of the practical difficulties involved.

(a) The question of reducing the Hours of Labour for Adolescents who are attending Continuation Schools. The fatigue of the scholars

It will be noted that nearly all these economic difficulties originate in the assumption that a reduction of the hours of labour must accompany the compulsory attendance of children at Continuation Schools. If it were agreed that no such reduction were necessary, the whole problem would be enormously simplified.

The Committee must state, therefore, the grounds for their belief that in the case of many trades a reduction is required, and estimate to the best of their ability the extent to which it is needed and the best methods of securing it.

The argument for a reduction of hours is based, of course, upon the fatigue of the scholars, a matter to which the Committee have already briefly referred, and one upon which there is great diversity of opinion, as a perusal of the evidence laid before the Committee will show.

On the one hand, it is seriously urged by many persons competent to form an opinion that large numbers of pupils now in the Evening Schools are too tired by their day's work to profit by the instruction they receive. It is further urged that this evil would be greatly aggravated if any strong form of persuasion were used to get into the schools boys and girls who at present prefer to stay away. Many even of those now in the school are really too tired to learn, and the proportion would be higher still if the whole number of growing lads were swept into the schools.

An examination of the evidence given before the Committee will show that this view is not uncommon. Mr. Greg, a member of the Lancashire Education Committee, said that he was a constant visitor of an evening at a lads' club, and his conviction was that the majority were too tired to learn. Mr. Crowther said that at Halifax the hours of work of some boys were so great that their attendance at Evening Schools would entail the risk of overstrain, while they would be too tired to profit by the instruction. Mr. Postlethwaite said that with the existing hours of labour in the spinning mills in his district, effective work in Evening Schools was impossible. Mr. Philip Snowden said that it "would be nothing short of cruelty to compel boys and girls to attend Evening Schools, even for only two or three nights a week, after their long and arduous toil during the day, which often extends to


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10 or 12 hours". Mr. George Lansbury thought "it was expecting too much of boys and girls to ask them to get their education in the evening after an ordinary day's work". Other witnesses took much the same view, being of opinion that at least some boys were too tired to go to Evening Schools at all, and that many were too tired to get full advantage from what they were taught. As regards girls, Miss Ashton thought that it was most injurious for girls to go to school in the evening, especially those who had domestic duties at home in addition to their work, and the majority of the women witnesses agreed that as a rule girls were too tired, under existing conditions of labour, to get much profit out of Evening School work.

This is a strong body of evidence, coming as it does mainly from persons who have had much practical experience of boys and girls at work and at school, and who are certainly not opposed to continued education in itself. But on the other hand the evidence given before the Committee on the other side is considerable. Mr. Chorlton, representing Messrs. Mather and Platt, considered that boys in his works were not too tired for evening work, and in view of the great interest taken by this firm in the continued education of their employees, his opinion must be allowed great weight. It is important to mention, however, that boys in this firm only work 48 hours a week. Mr. Falkner, from Messrs. Armstrong and Whitworth, was of the same opinion. Mr. Lee, representing a large firm of cotton spinners, said his experience was that boys and girls were not so tired after their day's work as to be unable to take advantage of the instruction given in Evening Schools. Mr. Brew, representing another engineering firm; Mr. John Willett, of the International Navigation Company; Mr. Anderson, a plumber and sanitary engineer; Mr. Stockdale, Secretary of the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical Institute; Dr. Dyer, Chairman of the Evening Schools Committee of the Glasgow School Board; Alderman Morgan, of the Cardiff Education Committee; Mr. Hurry Riches, President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers; Mr. Hennings, Mr. Jones, and Mr. Frankland, responsible teachers of London Evening Schools; Mr. Gill, M.P., Secretary of the Bolton Operative Spinners' Association; Mr. Winterburn, representative of the Trades Council on the Liverpool Education Committee - these witnesses, and many others, were of opinion that under existing industrial conditions, boys could as a rule attend Evening Schools with advantage to themselves and without risk of overstrain. It is only fair to add that the opinion of these witnesses was, of course, based on their experience of voluntary attendance, and further that most of them stated that though a reduction of the hours of labour was not in their opinion essential, it


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would no doubt facilitate and improve the work of the Continuation Schools, and many agreed that, in default of such reduction, exemption from the obligation to attend Continuation Schools should be granted to weakly children after medical inspection. As regards girls, most of the men witnesses said they were hardly in a position to give an opinion.

It is not easy to arrive at any conclusions from such conflicting evidence. It is not as if the evidence on each side were given by a separate class of witness; employers, representatives of labour, teachers, and education officials are all found on each side of the argument. Divergent testimony is given in one or two cases even as regards the same trade in the same district. In view of the great importance, however, of arriving as nearly as possible at the truth of the matter, the Committee have given considerable thought to it, and are of opinion that the following conclusions are substantially correct.

They believe that large numbers of the boys and girls now in attendance at Evening Schools are not too tired to profit by the instruction which they receive there, in spite of the fact that many, probably most of them, do a good day's work before they go to school. They attribute this to several reasons. A considerable number are favoured with a good physique, or with reasonable hours of work, or with work which is not exhausting. It is known, for instance, that large numbers of scholars now in Continuation Schools are employed by firms who take an interest in their welfare. Such firms naturally attract a better class of worker in the first instance, and improve them still further by seeing that they work and learn under the best conditions.

Moreover, if boys and girls were not attending school, they would often be exhausting themselves in other ways. Several witnesses called attention to the fact that it was by no means only the day's work which unfitted children for evening classes. It was often the foolish and careless way in which they spend their leisure hours. They loaf about the streets, or spend their evenings in the heated atmosphere of music halls, go to bed much too late, and in similar ways wear out their youth and strength unnecessarily by ignorance of the laws of health. It follows that attendance at Continuation Schools, so far from always causing undue fatigue, is often the cause of improved physique.

The Committee believe, therefore, that many boys and girls who now attend Continuation Schools run no risk of overstrain by doing so, and that many of those who absent themselves under the present system could well be added to their number. Further, they believe that though the pupils in Continuation Schools would no doubt profit more by receiving


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the same instruction during the day, many can and do derive much advantage from their evening work even under present conditions. On the other hand, they are also of opinion that many adolescents are so worn out by their work during the day that even if, from a desire to improve their position, they do attend a Continuation Class, they do not profit much by their instruction, and that to compel attendance at such Classes on the part of tired students would be both cruel and useless. It does not seem possible to arrive at anything like a just estimate of the proportion which the number of these tired children hears to the whole, nor, perhaps, for the present purpose, is it very important to do so. Even were it admitted that the proportion was a small one, the actual number of children would be very large. It must be remembered, too, that in addition there are the children whose hours of work, though not necessarily very exhausting, are continued very late in the afternoon or evening, and who could not attend Continuation Schools unless their work hours were reduced or re-arranged. Moreover most girls, in addition to their wage-earning work, have home duties which, though they may involve much further fatigue, it would be difficult to stop or interfere with. Such duties must never be forgotten when the hours during which most girls are at work are being estimated.

If, therefore, it should be decided to introduce a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, these children constitute a difficulty which cannot be ignored. There are only two ways of dealing with them. The first is to leave their work hours untouched, but to permit an extensive use of exemptions from compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools. But this means that just those children would be excluded from this part of the national system of education whose position shows them to be most in need of it, and the Committee could not acquiesce in such a solution. The second method is to reduce their hours of labour to such a point that they would be sufficiently fit to profit by the instruction they would receive at Continuation Schools. In the interests of the children and of the community at large, this is, in itself, the preferable method. The Committee will endeavour, therefore, to point out how this reduction should be effected, and to estimate the nature and extent of the difficulties which such a proposal would involve.

The Committee feel that the fixed point from which to start any argument about the reduction of the hours of labour is the fact that the Continuation Classes must be finished early enough to allow the pupils to get home in time to secure a reasonable amount of sleep. It appears to be the general medical opinion that eight hours sleep is desirable


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for young people of this age. The hours at which Continuation Classes are held should be adjusted to this requirement. Boys and girls, therefore, who have to get up at 5 a.m. so as to get to the mill by 6.0, should be freed from school not later than 8.0 p.m., i.e., their classes should begin at 6.0 p.m. Office boys, errand boys, and others, who have not to get up so early, might attend later classes without interfering unduly with their sleep. The Committee doubt, however, if in any circumstances it can be really profitable for boys or girls to begin classes later than 7.0 p.m., or work at them beyond 9.0 p.m.

The second fact upon which the Committee would lay stress is that for every pupil attending a Continuation School there should if possible be secured an interval of at least an hour and a half for proper rest and food between work and school. It is desirable to secure this in all cases, however light the work upon which the pupils are employed. Where the work is exhausting, and has begun at an early hour, a longer interval may be necessary. That some such regulation of hours is necessary is clear from the evidence given to the Committee by teachers.

Many Evening School students, especially growing girls employed in business, have a quite inadequate time for a proper meal between work and school. But in this matter no regulation should be indiscriminately enforced. Much depends upon the nature and the cleanliness of the employment as well as upon the physique of the pupils, and upon whether the school they wish to attend is near their home or place of business. Young people, for example, who live at a great distance from their place of business and whose hours of office work are fairly short, may prefer to get their evening meal without going home, and to begin Continuation School work at a time which will enable them to reach home at a reasonably early hour.

(b) The effect which the Reduction of the Hours of Labour of Adolescents might have upon Trade. How the Reduction should be secured

The Committee realise the vital importance of securing for all members of the community fuller opportunities for physical and educational development during adolescence. Legislation to secure this would in their opinion be a natural and legitimate development of principles that have now been accepted by most schools of thought and politics in this country.

It is not possible to acquiesce in a system under which children are worked such long hours during their period of greatest receptivity that they are permanently deprived of


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their proper equipment for life. This is a wasteful process which, even putting it on the lowest ground, the community cannot afford. Trades which make such unfair demands upon childhood and adolescence should be compelled by law to reorganise on lines which safeguard the interests of the nation as a whole.

But in view of the important part which is played in the trade of the country by boys and girls between 14 and 17, the Committee realise how imperative it is to proceed with great caution in interfering with existing industrial conditions. The figures in Appendix C show for each group of trades what proportion of workers in them are adolescents, and give some idea of the numbers of workers who would be affected by any reorganisation of the hours of adolescent labour. But it must be remembered that the dependence of adult labour upon the continued presence of juvenile workers during the whole working day varies much in the different trades. It may happen, for instance, in a trade where the work is done by squads of men with a boy to each squad, that the work of several men would be upset if the boy were removed at any time during work hours for attendance at Continuation Classes.

How far in this and in many similar cases the substitution of adult for juvenile labour would be possible is an economic and practical question which must be settled for each trade separately. The employment of adolescent workers in double shifts, each working half-time and attending school for the rest of the day, might in some trades be practicable; but the general enforcement of such a rule would involve a revolution in existing economic conditions which the Committee cannot regard as feasible. The only solution in many trades will be to secure such moderate reduction of the working hours of all employees, adult and adolescent, as will enable the latter to attend Continuation Classes at hours not entailing undue fatigue. The present tendency towards shorter hours of labour by mutual consent of employers and workers encourages the hope that by gradual stages this reform, stimulated by the action of the Local Education Authorities, may be effectively secured. Simpler conditions exist in trades which employ very large numbers of adolescent boys and girls but in which the adult labour is less dependent on that of the younger workers. In these cases the hours of labour of boys and girls could be rearranged with comparative ease so far as the interests of the adult workers were concerned.

On the general question, the Committee have been drawn to the conclusion that though the immediate effect of a lessening of the hours of adolescent labour might entail some loss in the children's wages and a slight curtailment


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of profit, the whole of the loss would subsequently be recovered through the increased efficiency produced by longer and better education. The introduction of a system of compulsory Continuation Schools in a particular district would, for a time, impose upon that district a double burden, by requiring a larger expenditure on education and by temporarily decreasing its productivity through the withdrawal of some part of its juvenile labour. Such a sacrifice, however, would be justified not only in the interests of the whole community, but also in the interests of the district itself, seeing that the latter would, after a few years, more than recoup itself through the enhanced efficiency which the improved course of education would secure.

On this subject, the Committee would refer to the evidence given to them by Professor Chapman, who laid stress upon the fact that the "further education of the people would have an enormous effect upon the efficiency of the rising generation, and would almost at once quite remove the slight depreciation in wages and profits resulting from a raising of the age for school attendance". He added that in his opinion the change would, after a few years, result in a considerable rise in both wages and profits, a rise which would far more than offset the amount lost in the first place. The degree to which the initial loss would fall upon profits and wages respectively would depend, in Professor Chapman's judgment, upon the relative degrees in which men's labour or machinery could severally be substituted for the labour of children. The substitution of men's labour for boys' labour, by increasing the demand for men's labour, would tend to shift the initial loss on to profits. On the other hand, the substitution of machinery for children's labour, by increasing the demand for capital, would tend to shift the loss on to wages. It would be impossible to say with certainty which of these two tendencies would be the stronger. But Professor Chapman thought that, in any case, the initial loss would be only slight and temporary, possibly so temporary and insignificant as to be practically inappreciable.

Reduction of the hours of juvenile and adolescent labour, accompanied by improved education of young people, would indirectly affect the problem of adult unemployment by making the workers generally more adaptable. Professor Chapman pointed out that there is at present a relative oversupply of unskilled labour and this is keeping back the introduction of more complicated machinery. If an employer felt that he could get an adequate supply of intelligent labour, he would be much more likely to try experiments with machinery. His difficulty at present lies in the unadaptability of many of the workers. The fact that they


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are so slow to learn is owing largely to their defective education during childhood and adolescence.

As regards the manner in which, when necessary for educational purposes, the hours of adolescent labour should be reduced, the Committee may say generally that, in their opinion, it should be done by the Local Education Authorities* enacting bye-laws suitable to the circumstances of the different industries of each area, and not by any general statutory reduction. Local bye-laws would be able to make allowances for the special needs and customs of local trades, and to adapt the demands of education with the least possible friction to the requirements of business. They should be framed so as to secure for all pupils the opportunity of combining their education with the necessary amount of sleep and rest, while trying to meet at the same time the customs and requirements of their trades. It goes without saying that the Medical Officer of the Authority should be consulted both in the framing and in the carrying out of such bye-laws.

It follows from this that the Committee do not recommend for adoption in England and Wales the words of the Education (Scotland) Act which deal with this question. The method adopted in that Act is to limit during adolescence the hours of work and school combined to the number of hours of work permitted for young persons by any Act of Parliament. This plan appears not to meet some of the greatest difficulties of the situation. In the first place, it provides no safeguards for the large number of young persons of both sexes engaged in callings (e.g. in domestic service) in which the hours of employment are not regulated by Act of Parliament. Secondly, in other trades it bases a system of restrictions for educational purposes upon regulations made from an entirely different point of view.

(c) The suggested inability of Parents to suffer any diminution of their Children's Wages

It may be argued that with whatever caution the hours of adolescent labour are reduced, and however temporary the adverse financial effect may be expected to be, some immediate diminution of adolescent wages must follow, that this may involve a severe hardship on parents who cannot dispense with any part of their children's wages, and that in consequence large numbers of working-class parents will object to a proposal which involves any such reduction.

That there would be some temporary diminution of children's wages consequent upon the reduction of their hours of labour seems probable, though, as has been seen, Professor Chapman thinks it would be only slight,

*See footnote on page 178.


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and might possibly be insignificant. That many working class parents would object even to a slight decrease in their income is also, unfortunately, probable; but the Committee are inclined to think that it may be easy to lay too much stress on the force of this objection. They have already pointed out that many parents who are not in any actual need feel unable to resist the temptation of securing the largest immediate profits out of their children. But even in the case of parents whose dependence on their children's wages is genuine, it is not difficult to exaggerate the hardship which would be involved. Taking it at its worst, it would seem fair to assume that as a rule the reduction of wages would at most be proportionate to the reduction of the hours of labour. Children would not be expected to attend Continuation Schools for more than five or six hours a week at the outside, and if a corresponding deduction from their work hours were made, this would only involve a loss of about an eighth or tenth of their weekly wage. The Committee do not believe that in practice the loss would be even as heavy as this, certainly not in the case of piece-work. But assuming that it might be, it would be necessary to appeal to the parents on the ground of the ultimate gain both to themselves and their children. The greater part of the gain perhaps would accrue to the children, who would not only have a healthier and happier childhood but would have their future prospects of efficiency and their wage-earning power as adults greatly enhanced. But the position even of the present generation of parents could not fail to be improved by the more secured future of their children, and the Committee have already shown that this opinion is already held by most of the labour leaders and by an increasing number of the rank and file.

III. ADMINISTRATIVE DIFFICULTIES

(a) Universal Compulsion by State Law versus Local Compulsion by Bye-laws

Before discussing the difficulties which would have to be solved in the actual administration of a law dealing with compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, it is important to point out that the framers of such a law would have to decide whether they would at once make attendance at Continuation Schools universally compulsory, or whether they would rather leave it to each Local Education Authority*

*In the case of non-county boroughs and urban districts, it might be a matter of some difficulty to decide upon the powers of the County Authority and the Minor Local Authority in making bye-laws for compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools. The point would require very careful consideration. In any case, the views of both Authorities would have to be very carefully considered by the Board of Education before any proposed bye-laws were sanctioned.


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to adopt it or not as they thought best for their own district. Each plan has its special advantages and difficulties, and the Committee feel that they ought to consider these and point out where in their opinion the balance of advantage lies.

If it is assumed that continued education of a suitable kind is an advantage to all boys and girls up to their 17th year, it would appear at first sight, that the best law would be one which made attendance at Continuation Schools universally compulsory at the earliest possible date. Under such a law the opportunities for proper education would be secured by every boy and girl. The indifference of their parents and the apathy of their Local Education Authority would alike be powerless to deprive them of the educational facilities which the State determined to put at their disposal. Such a law would also, by imposing similar conditions on all districts alike, avoid the difficulties that might arise if the younger workers in one district were placed under greater restrictions than those of a neighbouring area.

These are great and solid advantages, and were they practicably attainable in the immediate future the Committee would have no hesitation in recommending the adoption of a universally compulsory system, allowing, of course, a reasonable interval during which the necessary preparations could be made, and arranging that compulsion should apply after a certain date to all children as they became exempt from Day School attendance. But there are serious practical objections to such a course. It would provoke the maximum of hostility to a change which must in any case arouse some opposition, and so endanger its success from the start. That there would be opponents to any scheme of compulsion may be taken for granted, and it would be unwise to adopt a policy which would offer the greatest exposure to effective attack. The Committee believe that opinion in the country as a whole is not ripe yet for any such general scheme, and that to be content with nothing short of universal compulsion would mean deferring any advance for an indefinite period. They therefore consider that the prudent method of advance is by the less ambitious path of local option. This, of course, is the principle of the new Scotch Act.

They are well aware of the objections to such a plan. In the first place it does nothing for children who have the misfortune to live in the district of an apathetic Local Education Authority. Secondly, it does not ensure that contiguous areas, even if homogeneous in population and perhaps competitive - in industry, would be treated alike. It might happen, for instance, in fact it probably would happen, that the Local Education Authority of a progressive industrial town would pass bye-laws making attendance at Continuation


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Schools compulsory. It may be assumed for the moment* that the principal method for enforcing these bye-laws would be by penalising any employer who did not arrange the work of his younger employees in such a way that they could attend their classes, or who employed any young person who did not produce periodically the necessary certificate of attendance at the Continuation School. But if the area so affected were adjacent to that of an Authority which would not adopt a similar bye-law, difficulties would at once arise. An employer in the first area might take up an attitude hostile to compulsory Continuation Schools, with its restrictions on his business, and might give preference of employment to boys and girls resident in the neighbouring area where no restrictions as to continued education were enforced. This would have two bad results. It would place many boys and girls in the progressive area at a disadvantage, and would actually encourage the neighbouring area to retain a lower educational standard. This is not an imaginary difficulty, as most of the big industrial centres are now provided with so excellent a system of trams and trains that it is becoming more and more possible for workpeople to live outside the limits of the educational area within which their work lies.

A corresponding difficulty would arise in the case of young persons, resident in an area which required attendance at Continuation Schools, who preferred to seek employment in a neighbouring area where the educational conditions attached to adolescent employment were either less stringent or did not exist. In such a case, the employer within the progressive area would be put at a disadvantage in competition with employers in the less progressive district. The employer in the latter would be able to employ young persons for longer hours or for uninterrupted periods and therefore perhaps at greater immediate profit to himself; while young people resident in the progressive area, who desired to evade its educational obligations would prefer to enter the service of employers whose work lay beyond its borders.

It is clear, therefore, that proper safeguards must be found to secure progressive areas from being penalised in this way for their educational efforts or from being discouraged from adopting a higher educational standard from fear of injuring the prospects of the employers or the young people resident in their district. The Committee are of opinion that the way to meet the difficulties is as follows: (i) When a Local Education Authority adopt a bye-law making attendance at Continuation Schools compulsory in their area, they should have power to forbid employers whose

*For a fuller consideration of the point which is here assumed, see page 184.


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works are situated in their area to employ any workers under 17 who do not comply with their educational requirements. This would safeguard effectively all the younger workers resident in that area. As regards those who lived outside it, the new bye-law would only injure them if it imposed on them educational obligations which they might have no opportunity of fulfilling in their own area. But this difficulty would be met if all Authorities for Higher Education were under statutory obligation to provide Continuation Schools, as has already been recommended by the Committee. Boys and girls who worked in an area where attendance at Continuation Schools was a condition of employment but who resided in an area where no such obligation was enforced, would at least have the right to claim that Continuation Schools should be established for them in their own area and so would be able to qualify for employment elsewhere. Even so, difficulties might occur occasionally. The obligation placed upon Local Education Authorities to provide Continuation Schools would have to be enforced as reasonably as the obligation to provide Public Elementary Schools, and it would not be reasonable to expect an Authority to establish a Continuation School for a very few scholars. In cases therefore where the provision of Continuation Schools could not reasonably be demanded, arrangements would have to be made whereby residents in small outlying districts could attend classes in the area where they were employed, the Authority which provided such classes charging an agreed sum per head to those Authorities from whose areas the pupils came. This might sometimes be inconvenient to individual pupils, whose classes would be far from their homes. But the system as a whole would seem to be the best which is possible under a system of partial and optional compulsion. At least it would not penalise a district which was educationally progressive, and individual cases of hardship could no doubt be met by special exemption. Care should in every case be taken to do nothing that would check the growing tendency of workpeople to live further away from the congested parts of industrial centres.

(ii) To meet the second difficulty it is necessary to find some means of preventing young persons, resident in a progressive area but employed in another, from evading the educational requirements imposed by the first. The Committee propose therefore that a Local Authority should have power, not only to impose statutory obligation upon employers within its own area, but also upon all employers who take into their service young workers resident in its area. The bye-laws, in fact, must apply to all adolescents of Continuation School age who either work in, or are resident in, its area. It is true that if this plan were


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adopted, and if Local Authorities of two contiguous areas each adopted bye-laws which required attendance at Continuation Schools, a young worker resident in one of the areas, but employed in the other, would come under the operation of two sets of bye-laws. In case of such discrepancy, the Committee think it necessary that he should be subject to the more stringent of the two bye-laws. In that case his attendance should be watched, and if necessary enforced, by the officer of the Local Authority whoso bye-law was the most stringent in its requirements. The latter Authority would also be responsible for prosecuting the employer in the case of a contravention of the local bye-law of the district in this case.

A further difficulty which arises in this connection is that an area which adopted a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools would be incurring considerable expenditure in educating boys and girls who might subsequently migrate to areas where a compulsory system had not been adopted. This is true, and must remain true so long as local option led to variety of educational requirement. As a partial solution of the difficulty, the Committee would suggest that it is worth considering whether Government grants might not be paid on a higher scale in districts where attendance at Continuation Schools was made compulsory. Some such arrangement would appear to be a reasonable one and would greatly facilitate the introduction of the new system.

The Committee may sum up their view of this question by saying that while they quite appreciate the difficulties of a system of local option in the matter of continued education, they feel that such difficulties are not insurmountable, and that this system offers fewer initial obstacles than that of universal compulsion by general statute. They hope that some districts would take early advantage of the rights conferred on them by a permissive law, and would serve as practical working examples of the feasibility of the new experiment. Their action would work as leaven and in time extend its influence over the whole country. It has already been mentioned that the new Scotch Act is framed on these lines, and the Committee consider that they should he followed for England and Wales.

It should be added that Local Education Authorities which make bye-laws enforcing attendance at Continuation Schools should not be obliged to make them applicable to all young persons under 17 years of age in their area. On the contrary they should be given considerable powers of discrimination and should be encouraged to make separate bye-laws to meet the needs of various classes of young people. In some cases, especially in the areas of Administrative


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Counties, it would probably be found desirable to confine the operation of the bye-laws to particular parts of the district in which local opinion was ready for the change. In other cases, the organisation of one or two large industries might make it possible to make an early beginning by introducing bye-laws applicable only to employees in those trades. Again, the needs of boys and girls are often different, and Local Education Authorities should obviously have the power of making separate bye-laws for them. Further, the age to which the bye-laws apply need not in every case be the same, nor need it always be the outside limit. In this respect the Committee would follow the wording of the Scotch Act which gives the School Board power to make attendance at Continuation Classes compulsory "until such age not exceeding 17 years as may be specified in the bye-laws". In a word, each Local Education Authority must have power to introduce a local compulsory system with due regard to the special circumstances of the district, and should not be hampered in improving the attendance at Continuation Schools of large numbers of the young workpeople in its area because it may be impracticable for the moment to adopt a locally complete scheme.

(b) The necessity for using the Employer in enforcing the attendance of Adolescents at Continuation Schools

The Committee have assumed above that if it were decided to adopt a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools in any district, it would be necessary to enforce such attendance by means of the employer. They must now give their reasons for this assumption.

It may be taken for granted that many boys and girls will not come to school unless some effective form of compulsion is applied. But it must be remembered that the methods which suffice for securing the attendance of pupils in the Day Schools will not be applicable to the Continuation Schools. In the first place, the methods used in connection with the Day School are based on the assumption that parental authority can be asserted over boys and girls up to the end of the Day School age. The parents of Day scholars therefore are held responsible by law for their attendance, and are made liable for punishment if they neglect to do their duty in this respect. But it was the experience of many witnesses who appeared before the Committee that parental authority diminishes very quickly when children, especially boys, pass from the Day School and begin to go to work. They then take the position of wage-earners in the family, and they expect their new position to be one or much greater freedom. It seems clear then that parents cannot be held responsible for their school attendance


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to the same extent as in the case of younger children, and this appears to be acknowledged in the new Scotch Act. Whereas parents under the English Education Acts and Bye-laws are bound to cause their children between 5 and 14 to attend school unless there be a reasonable excuse for their non-attendance, parents of children who should attend a Continuation Class in Scotland are only made liable to penalties under the new Scotch Act for "wilful default" or for "habitually neglecting to exercise due care". To this extent the Committee would like English parents to be made responsible also, in areas where compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools may he enforced. But it must be recognised that compulsion exercised through parents call not be universally effective, and that any attempt to press it unduly will not only be unsuccessful but will have a prejudicial effect upon home conditions. It would lead to strained relations between parents and children, and to an increase in the number of children who even under present conditions prefer to leave their homes at an early age and lodge elsewhere. Every effort, of course, should be made to secure the co-operation of the parent, as already mentioned. But this co-operation should as far as possible be a voluntary one and should not be turned into hostility by laying on parents a legal burden which in many cases they are unable to bear.

The Committee are also of opinion that it would be inadvisable, save in exceptional cases as mentioned at the end of this section, to make the pupils themselves liable to legal measures for non-attendance at Continuation Schools, as it is undesirable to bring boys and girls into early contact even with Juvenile Courts. The Committee cannot think that children's attendance would be accompanied by much educational profit if it were secured by these means.

The Committee feel therefore that valid objections may be raised to making young people or their parents primarily responsible to the law for failure in the required attendance at Continuation Schools. No such objection can, in their opinion, be urged to the course of throwing such initial responsibility upon the employer. This is done to a considerable extent in the Scotch Education Act, 1908. But the Committee are inclined to doubt whether the obligation laid by that Act on the employer is sufficient. By its provisions employers are bound to supply the School Board on demand with the names of all workers of continuation school age whom they employ, and they are forbidden under penalty to employ them at times when their attendance is required by local bye-law at a Continuation Class or for a number of hours which, when added to the time required to be spent at such Continuation Class, causes the hours of employment


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and of school taken together to exceed in any day or week, as the case may be, the period of employment permitted for such young persons by Act of Parliament. The Committee think that these proposals are inadequate. The employer's duty ends when he has notified to the School Board the names of his young workers and has so arranged their hours of work as not to interfere with their school hours or to exceed certain limits laid down in the case of protected industries. The control of the machinery for enforcing attendance would presumably be in the hands of the School Board. But it is not clear what powers the School Board could use, supposing non-attendance in the case of a young person whose employer had fully complied with the duties laid upon him by the Act, and whose parents could not be charged with "wilful default" or with "habitually neglecting to exercise due care". The Act does not appear to provide machinery which would deal conveniently or promptly with such a case, or which would by continuous pressure prevent such cases from frequently arising. To secure such machinery in England and Wales the Committee would throw a further duty upon the employer. They propose (as is in some measure actually done by the Scotch Act) that a statutory duty should be thrown upon all employers of young persons of both sexes not exceeding 17 years of age (including those employed in offices, shops and domestic service) to supply the Local Education Authority on demand with the names of all such young persons, and also to enable such persons to attend Continuation Classes at hours and for periods prescribed by the bye-laws of the Local Education Authority (1) of the area in which his place of business is situated, and (2) of any of the areas in which any of his younger workers may reside. But, in addition to this, they propose that regular attendance at Continuation Classes (where such attendance is required by local bye-law) should be an absolute condition of employment in the case of such young persons either resident or working in the area. As evidence of regular attendance at a Continuation School the Local Education Authority should have the duty of providing all young persons with cards upon which the headmaster of their Continuation School would (at intervals of, say, a fortnight) record their attendances as required by the bye-law. These cards would provide the necessary evidence of attendance. By periodical examination of these cards the employer should be required to satisfy himself that the prescribed attendances were being made by each of his younger workers, and he should be subject to a penalty if he continued to employ any one who failed to make the prescribed attendances. The penalty imposed upon him in case of default should be


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substantial enough to prevent its being worthwhile for him to disregard this legal obligation.

The Committee do not think that their proposal would cause any trouble which employers might not reasonably be called on to bear. A similar arrangement is already in force in the ease of half-timers under the Factory Acts.

The Committee are aware that even so there might be a number of children who could not be reached through employers, and over whom their parents could exert no effective control. A large number of such children would probably be street sellers. The Committee would meet this difficulty by prohibiting all street selling by boys and girls under 17, except in the case of those who were formally licensed by the Local Authority, and this licence should be valueless unless accompanied by a recent card of attendance showing that the holder was making the necessary attendances at the Continuation Schools. Any licensed boy or girl found engaged in street selling without such attendance card, should have the licence revoked. This object would be easily attained by empowering Local Education Authorities to make regulations to the above effect under section 2 of the Employment of Children Act, 1903, their powers under that section being extended to apply to all young persons up to the age of 17.

It is possible that even with these precautions there might still be a leakage of scholars, though the Committee believe it would be a small one. Boys and girls, for instance, who were out of employment, and some girls working at home or in domestic service, might be difficult to reach. But some such leakage is inevitable under any system. Even in the case of Day scholars, where in many respects the conditions for enforcing attendance are more favourable, there is a certain amount of failure and truancy. The main thing is to secure that the system covers the large majority of the children, and the Committee believe that their proposals do this. Whether in the last resort it might be found advisable to take proceedings against boys and girls themselves in cases of habitual truancy where neither parents nor employer could exert the necessary influence, is a question which the Committee think can only be left to experience to decide. That the individual truants would be benefited by the process is very doubtful, as already pointed out. But action against them might serve as a useful deterrent in other cases and assist in bringing home to the public at large the fact that there would be no faltering in enforcing the new system.


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Chapter XII. The Special Problem of Continuation Schools in Rural Districts*

The problem of Continuation Schools in rural districts differs so materially from that in towns that it has seemed better to the Committee to treat it in a separate section . But it must be remembered that though the distinction between big towns and sparsely populated rural districts is so great as to involve a distinction in kind, there lie between the two extremes' many gradations where the distinction is only one of degree. In the immediate outskirts of some even of the largest towns, and within easy communication of them, completely rural conditions have survived; in other cases rural centres have become so populous that as regards educational facilities they may more appropriately be considered as towns. Into the special circumstances of each of these intermediate cases it is impossible to go. The Committee will deal here with what are generally accepted as purely rural districts, leaving their observations to be applied and varied according to special local circumstances.

(a) Lack of Appreciation of Education in Rural Districts

Taking then the question of Continuation Schools in purely rural districts, it may be said at once that it presents great and peculiar difficulties of its own. In the first place, the appreciation of education as a practical factor in ameliorating the conditions of country life and work is, to say the least, too little developed. It is not too much to say that many parents and employers, as well as many Managers of schools and others interested in the welfare of the rural population, frequently consider that education, that is education as they know it, is not a good practical introduction to agricultural pursuits, and they would therefore oppose strongly any attempt to raise the age for attendance at Day School and are rather sceptical as to the advantages of making Continuation Schools compulsory. They believe that village boys who stay long at school get a distaste for the country and take the first opportunity of migrating to a town. Such apprehensions are no doubt to some extent justified under present circumstances, and the result is a national loss that cannot he regarded with equanimity. The last thing that the Committee want is that country children should be shut out from opportunities of bettering their condition in life; but they believe that it is to the permanent advantage of many country children, as well as to the nation as a whole, that they should remain usefully and healthily employed in the country instead of

*In this connection see Appendix B.


[page 188]

being absorbed into urban occupations. While, however, they believe that education in country districts has often excited the opposition of many who are genuinely interested in the well-being of the rural population, and while they believe that public opinion in many such districts would not at present be in favour of any radical changes in the law of school attendance, they also believe such opposition is largely due to the inappropriateness of much of the education given in country schools, and that it would eventually be disarmed by an acceptable reorganisation of the school curriculum. Here again, as in the case of the town problem, the question of Continuation Schools is found to be very closely related to that of the Day Schools. Compulsory Continuation Schools in rural districts will not be within the range of practical politics until public rural opinion is more favourable than it is at present, and the most effective way of reconciling such opinion will be through the medium of the Day Schools. If farmers and other country employers can once be persuaded that the best interests both of themselves and their work people are genuinely fostered by the work of these schools, their opposition will die away and the main foundations for Continuation Schools will be laid. At the same time the children themselves will be more fitted by their work in the Elementary School to profit by the instruction in the Continuation School. Country tastes are largely formed in early childhood. It is during this period that the ways of birds, beasts, trees, and flowers present themselves in their most attractive guise, and it may be doubted whether true insight into Nature's secrets can ever be attained by those to whom they are a sealed book at the close of the Day School age. The essential preliminary, therefore, to any improvement of Continuation Schools in the country is the development of the children's natural instincts for country life. By such development not only will the children be fitted for further rural instruction, but their parents and local employers also will be brought to give their willing support to it.

(b) The Curriculum of Rural Schools

It may be said at once that the main difficulty connected with the curriculum of rural schools is not so much the selection of the subjects as the provision of teachers qualified to give instruction in them, and in practice the qualifications of the teacher must, of course, largely condition the time-table. It will probably be more useful, however, in the first instance, to discuss the curriculum of the rural school on the assumption that the necessary teachers will be forthcoming. The special question of the training of teachers for rural subjects will be considered later.


[page 189]

The first essential of the rural curriculum is that it should be closely related to the rural environment. This is true equally of the upper classes of the Day School and of the classes in the Continuation School, and forms the link which should prevent the transition from the former to the latter being an abrupt one. It also removes much of the difficulty from the problem of the teacher in the Continuation Schools, for if the teachers in the Day School are properly qualified to give instruction in the right subjects to boys and girls of 12 and 13, they should be able without much difficulty to prepare themselves to give similar, if slightly more advanced, instruction to pupils of a slightly advanced age.

If it is agreed that the actual subjects chosen must be related to local environment, it follows that in view of the widely differing conditions of various parts of the country no rigid time-table can he suggested as in any way generally applicable. For some sample schemes suitable to a few typical localities the Committee cannot do better than refer to the short memorandum on "Rural Education", published by the County Councils' Association, and also to Mr. Dymond's admirable "Suggestions on Rural Education", recently published by the Board of Education. In that volume various schemes and syllabuses, both for the upper classes of the Day School and also for the Continuation School, are given in considerable detail, and the Committee feel that it would be waste of time to go over the same ground again. It may be convenient, however, if the Committee quote here the list of subjects suggested in Mr. Dymond's work for the upper classes of rural Public Elementary Schools. As regards the curriculum of the Continuation School, Mr. Dymond has been good enough to supply the Committee with a short summary of the subjects which he recommends as a basis for the average school time-table, and it may be convenient if the Committee quote this shortened list of suggested subjects. In the case of any one school, of course, only a few subjects from this list would be necessary, and some of these, such as land-measuring, hedge-layering, etc., would have to be taken during the day time.

(i) Subjects suggested by Mr. Dymond for Rural Day School

English literature, history, geography, singing, physical exercises (for all pupils).

Rural science (plant and soil), practical gardening including fruit culture, bee-keeping, handicrafts including carpentry, rural hygiene, arithmetic applied to mensuration and mechanics, book-keeping and commercial correspondence (for boys).


[page 190]

Domestic economy and hygiene, cookery, laundry work, dairying and poultry keeping, accounts, needlework including dressmaking (for girls).*

(ii) Subjects for Rural Continuation School
Fundamental Subjects for Boys and Girls:
Arithmetic;
Drawing;
Rural Science.
Practical Subjects for Boys:
Wood-work, Forge-work, and Rural Carpentry;
Allotment cultivation and fruit culture;
Basket-making and other rural handicrafts.
Practical Subjects for Girls:
Domestic Economy, including -
Hygiene;
Cookery;
Laundry-work;
Needlework; and
Housekeeping Accounts.
(Home industries, such as lace-making, not connected with rural occupations, are not suggested, efforts to introduce them having had little permanent success.)

Short Courses by Staff Specialists for Boys:

Seed judging and testing;
Manipulation of farm implements;
Land measuring and surveying and other agricultural subjects;
Hedge-layering and other subjects of manual farm training.
Short Courses by Specialists for Boys and Girls:
Dairying;
Poultry-keeping;
Milking and management of milk.
Cultural-Recreative Subjects for Boys and Girls:
History and Geography;
Rural Economics;
Literature and Dramatic Recitation;
Physical Training;
Music and Singing;
Wood Carving (for Boys);
Art Needlework (for Girls),
*The Committee would like to add to Mr. Dymond's list such subjects as the care of children, marketing, and home nursing, for girls; and they see no reason why, when circumstances permit, girls should not also learn gardening, especially as regards vegetables and fruit, bee-keeping, fruit-preserving, and other pursuits of a similar nature, which, besides being educative, enable them to add to the interest and comfort of their homes.


[page 191]

(c) The Special Difficulties of Rural Continuation Schools

(i) The Difficulty of the Staff

Of the serious difficulties which are special to country districts, perhaps the most important is that of the teacher.

A teacher versed in country lore is needed for a country school. But the training of teachers for the special work of country schools is almost in its infancy. The commonest complaint of the country Manager is that the majority of teachers receive the same type of training, and that the least successful are allotted to the country schools. Many authorities, not unnaturally perhaps, pay smaller salaries in small schools, and as the small schools are generally the country schools, it means that country teachers are on the whole worse paid than town teachers. Country schools, also, are often in remote and isolated districts, which have few attractions to any teacher who is not thoroughly imbued with a love of country pursuits. These objections to country schools naturally weigh heavily with most teachers, and make them unwilling to label themselves exclusively as country teachers at the beginning of their careers. They prefer to follow a course of training which will prepare them for the schools where they will have the best chances of promotion and good salaries, and in the past these, no doubt, have been, as a rule, urban schools. It is worth noting, however, that. since the passing of the Education Act, 1902, it has been found practicable to secure the interchange and promotion of rural teachers in county areas to an extent that was impossible when these areas were divided into small school districts. It is to be hoped that County Authorities will endeavour to develop this movement so far as they can, so that teachers who begin work in small schools in isolated districts may always feel that promotion is open to them if they work satisfactorily. In some counties this method of promotion is already at work. In the case of Council Schools of course, no difficulty arises, and even in the case of Voluntary Schools it is found that many Managers while retaining their rights under the Act of 1902 are ready, when making new appointments, to select teachers from a list of applicants kept by the County Authority.

A further difficulty in the organisation of the teaching staff of rural Continuation Schools, in so far as that depends upon the service of the teachers in the Elementary Day Schools, lies in the sex of the teachers. Many village schools are too small to require the full-time service of more than one adult teacher. Where there is only one teacher and she is a woman, a difficulty may often arise in providing courses of practical instruction for boys and young men of 13 years and upwards, on the lines suggested


[page 192]

in Mr. Dymond's curriculum. Where on the other hand, the only teacher is a man, a corresponding difficulty arises in providing practical courses in domestic subjects for girls. The remedy does not lie in any wholesale abolition of the small village school. A small school well taught and intimately associated with the life of the village, has a distinctive educational value. Doubtless, when financial considerations allow, there should be two adult teachers in any village school in which both boys and girls are educated beyond 12 years of age. But where such enlargement of the staff is impossible, the difficulty must be overcome by the appointment of outside teachers for special branches of the work, both in the higher standards of the Day School and in the practical classes of the Continuation School. In such a practical subject as gardening, this is already done in a great number of schools. It should not, of course, be assumed that a woman is necessarily disqualified by her sex for giving practical instruction to youths, but the variety of practical courses needed for boys and girls in a well organised Continuation School is so wide that no one teacher can meet the whole of the need. The establishment of central higher-standard Day Schools (i.e. for older children only) and Continuation Schools (day and evening) connected with them, for the common use of three or four villages, might to a considerable extent overcome the difficulty of the teacher. But this plan raises a new difficulty on the side of the pupils, so far at least as evening attendance is concerned, as only the minority of those who should attend Continuation Schools would voluntarily go a long distance at night, while in the case of girls it would be undesirable to encourage their doing so.

The difficulties, however, in the staffing of practical Continuation Schools in the rural districts are by no means so great that they cannot he surmounted. Practical experience has shown that in rural counties Continuation Schools can be successfully organised even over wide areas where the population is scattered.* Even without the establishment of central schools and with but sparing employment of outside teachers, much good may be done by utilising to the full the services of the present staff of the Day Schools. The curriculum may not cover all the needs or all the pupils, but may be very serviceable to many of them. Where there is

*In the following Administrative Counties there is at least one Continuation School to every three Public Elementary Schools: Bedfordshlre, Cambridgeshire, Cornwall, Cumberland, Lancashire, Parts of Kesteven, London, Surrey, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Cardiganshire, Denbighshire, Flintshire, and Glamorganshire. Hertfordshire and Somerset also are on the borders of this list. For further details see Appendix D, page 269.


[page 193]

only a woman teacher, she may do a good deal in the way of practical domestic training for the girls, and supplement this by classes in general subjects useful for boys also.

How to secure teachers with the necessary training in rural subjects is a problem which raises many very difficult questions. Young teachers, as already pointed out, are not willing, anyhow under present conditions, to specialise as country teachers, and in any case it is open to argument whether specialised courses of training for country and urban teachers are educationally desirable. The problem is not peculiar to this country. It has given rise to many interesting experiments in the United States and in Canada, and is dealt with at some length in one of the most interesting of the Educational Pamphlets issued by the Board of Education.* Discussing the question whether the training of rural teachers should be distinct from that of town teachers, the author writes: "On the one hand is the argument that the circumstances of country and city life are so different, that only by specialisation can teachers in either case be adequately prepared to deal with them. On the other hand is the argument that the underlying facts of all environment are the same, and that teachers trained to interpret them intelligently need in either case the same attitude of mind and the same essential basis of knowledge." Various systems of distinct training for country teachers are then described, and the Report continues as follows: "These examples of a separate training for rural teachers are open, however, to the objection that they divide the profession in two. It is perhaps hopeless to expect that any large number of competent teachers will, on entering upon their career, have the nerve to cut themselves off permanently from city life by undergoing an exclusively rural school training. Furthermore, since city and rural populations are not permanently distinct, the rural school teacher must educate many children to play their part in the life of the city, and it is not inconceivable that a different race of city teachers might so train city children that a return to country life would not be debarred them." In face of these difficulties the Committee are not prepared to recommend the general establishment of special Training Colleges for rural teachers. For the present, at all events, the rank and file of teachers must continue to be trained together in Training Colleges of the ordinary type. But in such colleges, and especially in those that are situated in comparatively rural surroundings, great care should be taken to see that instruction in the more rural side of the

*Educational Pamphlet No. 13, "The Problem of Rural Schools and Teachers in North America".


[page 194]

curriculum, while, of course, never allowed to oust the general subjects from their proper position, is made as thorough and attractive as possible. It is worth noticing that this is the system adopted in France, where many of the rural schools reach a high level of efficiency. In that country some six or seven out of every ten teachers spend three years at college, during which time agricultural instruction is compulsory for all students alike.

It is, of course, possible under the Board's present regulations for students at any English Training College to receive instruction in Botany or in "Rural Science", and if they pass a successful examination in them at the end of their training, to secure a special mention of the fact on their certificates. But the introduction of Rural Science as a Training College subject is both new and optional. The first examination in it was held in 1908, and the Committee understand that of all the students in training in England and Wales only nine women offered themselves for examination in this subject, of whom seven passed, but without gaining a mark of distinction. It is to be hoped that as the subject becomes better known, more students will take it up, and Local Education Authorities could do much to promote its adoption if they would make it known that, other things being equal, they will give the preference to teachers who have passed in it.

While, however, the normal course of training must suffice for the moment for the majority of students in Training Colleges, the Committee would much like to see a few Training Colleges recognised by the Board of Education which have a special course with a rural bias. If a high standard of qualification were required from the start, such colleges might reasonably hope to attract able young candidates who preferred country conditions, and to train teachers who would be qualified to take the best posts in important country centres.

The above remarks apply, of course, to what are known as Two-year Students. It must not be overlooked, however, that the regulations for the training of teachers for Elementary Schools contain special provisions to meet the case of teachers who are unable either to take the two-year course or to find time during this period for special attention to rural subjects. Trained certificated teachers may take a third year of training either at the college where they were originally trained or at some other institution approved for the special purpose by the Board. Under the first alternative teachers might under the present regulations spend a year at college studying rural and practical subjects. Under the second, they might go for a similar period to an institution such as


[page 195]

an agricultural college, for which facilities are now being arranged by the Board.

In the prefatory memorandum to the Training College Regulations for 1908 occurs the following note: "The Board are prepared to recognise for grants any Third Year or One Year Student taking an approved Year's Course in Nature Study, or Agricultural, Horticultural or allied subjects, suitable for teachers or intending teachers whose tastes or opportunities will probably lead them to take teaching posts in Rural Schools. The Swanley Horticultural College for Women has already been approved by the Board for this purpose." The Committee trust that teachers will make such use of the opportunity provided by the Board that this excellent scheme may gradually be extended to cover arrangements with Agricultural Colleges in many parts of the country.

As regards untrained certificated teachers, they also are eligible for a year's training at college, though it must be admitted that the subjects which they would be required by the present regulations to take at college are not specially applicable to rural teachers. The Committee, however, would suggest that the Board, who have already made it possible for trained certificated teachers to obtain a year's course in rural subjects, should follow up this arrangement by extending its possibilities to untrained certificated teachers also. No doubt the question of the expense to the teacher is a serious one. But the Committee would hope that Local Education Authorities would be ready to give scholarships or maintenance allowances to teachers who proved by their actual work in country schools that they would profit by a year's special training in rural subjects.

It may be added that for teachers who are unable for one reason or another to take advantage of any of these suggestions, much can still be done by the organisation of classes in rural subjects for teachers who have already taken appointments in country schools. It has been found that where such classes are started, teachers attend them with great willingness and fit themselves to give very efficient instruction in rural and practical subjects, not only in the Elementary School but in the Continuation School as well. An interesting example of what can be done in this way is given in Mr. Keen's evidence on page 445. Such classes would also enable teachers who had received special agricultural instruction at a Training College, to keep up and extend their knowledge of subjects especially useful to such schools.

The Committee would add that apart from the question of the competence of the local teachers, there is a danger of working them too hard in places where the Day School staff


[page 196]

is so small that the only available teachers for the Continuation Schools have already been working all day in school. This risk of overpressure may be to some extent relieved by visiting teachers for special subjects. Where such outside assistance is not available, all that can be done is so to restrict the scope of the Continuation Classes that no unfair strain is put upon the Day School teacher. As the nature of the classes must be conditioned by the abilities of the teachers, so their extent must be conditioned by their physical powers.

Before concluding their remarks on the difficulties of staffing rural Continuation Schools, the Committee would like to point out that apart from the question of their training, much can be done by Local Education Authorities to make the lot of rural teachers more attractive. The need for a better system of promotion has already been mentioned. The question of salaries is equally important and it is much to be hoped that something may be done to make the salaries of the country teachers approximate more nearly to those of towns. The importance from the national point of view of maintaining a high standard of efficiency and attractiveness in country schools cannot be overstated, and it is much to be hoped that local authorities will do their utmost to remove the financial disabilities under which rural teachers now labour.

(ii) The Difficulty of the Distance

The second special difficulty in connection with rural Continuation Schools is the difficulty of distance. In many parts of the country the population is housed in scattered hamlets, and the distance even to the nearest school is considerable. Boys, however, who are employed in country pursuits do not have long hours of work during the winter months and the evidence before the Committee leads them to believe that such boys are not as a rule too tired to walk a reasonable distance to a Continuation School, and to profit by instruction when they get there. As to what is a reasonable distance, the Committee would not like to lay down a hard and fast rule; but they incline to think that though a few boys would voluntarily walk long distances to a school, the majority could hardly be compelled to go more than two miles. This fact points to the same conclusion as was reached by a consideration of the difficulties of the teacher, namely, that in any successful system of extended rural education, there must be a Continuation School in practically every village. As regards girls, the difficulty is not only one of fatigue but of prudence. Even if they could walk to a Continuation School a mile or two from their homes, it is obviously inexpedient that they should be


[page 197]

out late in country lanes. It is also to be remembered that the daughters of the agricultural classes do not as a rule remain at home much after their fifteenth year. In the case of girls, therefore, in purely rural districts Continuation Classes, if held in the evening, must be regarded as in many cases neither desirable nor practicable. Yet some form of continued education for them is eminently desirable. The Committee are therefore led to the conclusion that the case of girls must be treated differently from that of boys, and that the difficulty will as a rule be best met by a readjustment of the compulsory Day School period as suggested in the next paragraph.

(d) The Question of Raising the Minimum Age for Exemption from School Attendance in Country Districts

In considering this question a distinction must be made between the case of boys and girls.

(i) As regards country boys, they must he divided into those who intend to take up agricultural or horticultural employments, and those who do not. As regards the latter, the Committee see no reason to differentiate them from town boys, and they would recommend that their age for exemption from Day School attendance should be raised first to 13 and subsequently to 14. As regards boys to be employed in agricultural pursuits, the case is somewhat different. It is urged in some quarters that boys cannot hope to succeed in such occupations unless they begin at an earlier age, and that the special provisions of the Education Act, 1899, (Robson's Act) admitted the force of this claim. It will be remembered that, down to the date of that Act, all children could obtain exemption from school attendance at the age of 11 on fulfilling the necessary conditions. The Act provided for an additional year of compulsory school attendance for all children, but made it possible for local bye-laws to be framed under which children engaged in agriculture should take their additional year of school in two halves instead of as a whole. There was no intention, however, of allowing such children to have a shorter period of education than others. The idea was rather that by arranging for them to attend school for two successive winters after the age of 11, their educational life was being prolonged to the same extent as that of other children, without, however, causing any hardship to local agricultural industries. Analogies of the new plan were drawn from Switzerland, where, as was pointed out, it is a common arrangement in some cantons for children only to attend school during the winter months when most agricultural work is stopped.

The Committee have examined the evidence at their disposal and have found that the special facilities for


[page 198]

agricultural half-time provided by Robson's Act have been rarely used, and that where used the results have generally been discouraging. Experience shows that, when boys return to the Day School after having been absent on the farms or in the fields for long periods at a time without any school discipline, their influence on the younger children in the Day School is undesirable, and that their presence often raises difficult questions of discipline. In Switzerland those difficulties are not unknown, though the complications of the system are lessened where the whole school is closed during the busy agricultural months.

On the genera! question the Committee do not think that the evidence proves it to be necessary for boys to begin farm work so early as 11 years of age. As a matter of fact, it is believed that less than 400 boys are actually employed under the Robson Act in agricultural operations under 12 years of age. The number of boys between 12 and 13, who were given in the Census Returns of 1901 as being employed in agriculture is also small, amounting to only 0.27 per cent of the total number of agricultural workers.* From these facts the Committee draw the conclusion that no injury would be done to agricultural interests if all wage-earning employment in agriculture during school hours were abolished under 13.

This view is confirmed by the 184 replies† to their question whether the adaptability of country boys for agricultural pursuits would be impaired by requiring full-time attendance at the Day School up to 14 years of age, provided that the curriculum were suitable. To this question they received 63 replies in the affirmative, and 131 in the negative. It is only right, however, to point out that no fewer than 80 of these latter were from teachers. If the teachers' replies were deducted in each case, there would remain 42 affirmative answers and 51 negative ones. In reply to a further question whether it was desirable that full-time attendance at school should be required in all cases up to 13 years of age, and, after an interval, to 14, the Committee received 192 replies. Of these 163 (including 90 teachers) were in favour of raising the age to 13; 132 (including 80 teachers) were in favour of raising it later to 14, and only 29 (including 6 teachers) were against it being raised at all.

So far, therefore, as the age for school exemption is concerned, the Committee are led to the following conclusions: They do not think it is necessary that any country boys should be allowed to obtain even half-time exemption before the age of 13. They think, further, that

*See Appendix C, page 266.

†See Appendix B, page 243.


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if suitable training, as suggested above, were given in the Day Schools, educationalists and farmers might agree in course of time that it was to the general interest of the country-side to add yet another year to the Day School period. The Committee do not think that half-time attendance at school on the plan of the Robson Act has proved of practical advantage to the boys, and they would recommend as a concession to agricultural opinion that all boys who can show that they are to be employed in agriculture or similar occupations should be allowed full-time exemption from the Day School at 13 on condition that they attend a Continuation School at least twice a week during the session till they are 16 years of age; it being understood of course that where this system is adopted, the Local Authority must, where possible, provide a Continuation School within reasonable distance of every village. It should be made clear, however, that these conditions would only apply to the special case of boys while employed in agricultural pursuits. Other country boys earning their livelihood in shops or in callings common to country and town, would come under the same conditions of school attendance as town boys.

(ii) As regards country girls, the Committee think that the age for exemption from Day School attendance should be raised to 14, but that girls engaged in domestic duties at home should he allowed to attend the Day School half time from 13 to 15 in lieu of full-time attendance from 13 to 14. Such partial attendance would be educationally beneficial to the girls and would not interfere with the assistance which their parents generally require from them at that age. The courses of study which they would take during their last year or two at school would of course have to be carefully thought out. Suitable subjects have already been suggested on pages 189-190.

(e) Methods of improving Attendance at Continuation Schools in Rural Districts

The Committee think it desirable that in the country as in the town all young people should remain under some form of continued school supervision up to their 16th or 17th birthdays. In the case of girls, however, owing to the isolation of many of the houses and the loneliness of the roads, any general system of attendance at Evening Schools would be undesirable except in cases where the homes are close to the school. This fact precludes the Committee from recommending any universal system of compulsory attendance at Evening Schools for girls in country districts and they believe that for the same reason Local Education


[page 200

Authorities would be well advised not to enforce (except in favourable circumstances) such attendance in the case of girls, even if under an adoptive Act they possessed the power of doing so. To meet the needs of country girls the Committee have therefore recommended an immediate extension of the compulsory Day School age to 14 (with an appropriate curriculum) with an alternative which would require half-time instruction at the Day School from 13 to 15. In country districts, however, in which it was possible to arrange Day Continuation Classes for girls, local authorities should have power to require attendance at such Day Classes up to 16 or 17 years of age in the case of all girls, including those who might remain full time at School till 14.

In the case of boys, many of the difficulties are less serious. The great majority should stay full time at the Day School until they are 14 years of age. From 14 to 17 most of them (those who live far away from a school being left out of account) would get nothing but good from regular attendance at a Continuation School two evenings a week during the winter months. The Committee propose, therefore, that the Local Education Authority should have power to enforce within these age limits such attendance at Continuation Schools as it may think wise. In the case, however, of boys exempted for agricultural work from full-time attendance at the Day Schools at 13, the Committee recommend that attendance at the Continuation School should be made compulsory up to 16 at least.

But whatever may be done in regard to compulsion, it is clear that the attendance at rural Continuation Schools may be greatly increased by voluntary means. The staffing of country Day Schools can be improved, and the subjects in the higher classes can be made more practical, in the ways suggested above. These improvements will greatly diminish the difficulties hitherto experienced in organising Continuation Schools in country villages to meet local requirements. But, as in the case of town schools, there is a certain number of pupils whom voluntary methods will never reach, and in country districts this number may be expected to be proportionately larger than in the towns. The Committee cannot believe that it is right to leave these unwilling pupils without further educational care, and they consider that in time it will be necessary to extend the principle of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools or classes to most country districts. The difficulties, however, inherent in country conditions are greater than those in towns, and the time allowed for preparation must be correspondingly longer. It must be remembered also that local conditions vary greatly, not only in different counties, but in different parts of the same county, and that no uniform


[page 201]

system, therefore, can be imposed on county areas. The Committee believe, therefore, that it will be wiser to begin in country districts, as elsewhere, by giving Education Authorities power to make local bye-laws, requiring such attendance at Continuation Schools as may be found practicable in each locality.

It must in any case be realised that in some rural districts the organisation of Continuation Schools for all boys and girls must always remain impossible. Where the population is so scattered that the utmost possible multiplication of small centres leaves many boys beyond a reasonable distance from the school, it is hopeless to try to enforce their attendance in every ease. The Committee suggest that in such districts those boys who live far from a Continuation School, and who will not be employed in agriculture should be freed altogether at the age of 14 from any obligation to attend school, so long, of course, as they reside outside the radius of a Continuation School. As regards those who are to be employed in agriculture, the Committee feel that, however undesirable such a state of things may be in theory, it is necessary to acquiesce in an arrangement by which boys whose homes are more than two miles from any centre at which it would be reasonable to require the Local Educational Authority to provide a Continuation School should be freed altogether from school attendance when they leave the Day School at 13.

While feeling compelled to admit, however, that certain boys and girls may live at such distances from the nearest Continuation School that they cannot be compelled to attend, the Committee must not be understood to imply that such children are outside the pale of the Local Authority's activities. Efforts should be made to secure their voluntary attendance, and, when possible, scholarships or travelling allowances should be offered which would make such attendance more practicable.



[page 202]

Chapter XIII. The Special Needs of Girls in Urban Districts

It may be said at once with regard to the need for continued education for girls, that the problem is as important and at least as complicated as in the case of boys. AIl sorts of social and economic questions enter into and obscure the issue. Of the girls who leave our Elementary Schools large numbers go out to work,* and the probability is that the great majority of the remainder work at home. It is these girls who are to be the mothers of the future generation of workers, and the problem is how to train them so that from efficient workers they may grow to be wise mothers of healthy children.

The fact also that in this country there are over a million more women than men cannot be overlooked. This means, not only that many are, as widows with children dependent upon them, required to be wage earners, but also that a considerable number must in any case expect to be dependent on their own resources. It is not possible to foretell what will happen in individual cases; some may prosper, and others fall on evil days. It is in all cases necessary that the training during childhood and adolescence should be directed to equip each as far as may be against possible contingencies.

The question of the continued education of the girl workers cannot be considered without reference to the industrial conditions under which she works and lives. It is impossible to overlook the fact that in very many directions industrial development has been, and is, proceeding at the cost of the exploitation of our girls as well as of our boys, and that to this in large measure are due the unemployment, sweating, and physical deterioration with which we are now confronted. If among the ranks of the unemployed more men are to be found than women, more women than men are to be found patiently, because helplessly, acquiescing in the conditions of sweated labour. These women are paying the penalty for their lack of early training, and if the girls of the present generation who leave our Elementary Schools to become wage-earners are to be saved from these evils, continued education of a practical kind must be put within their reach.

But the evidence adduced before the Committee, together with the very long hours of labour of girls shown in the schedule appended,† conclusively prove that in the case of most girls Continuation Classes are not desirable without some reduction of the hours of labour.

*See Table D, p. 44.

†See schedule of hours in Appendix M, page 291.


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The legal limit of hours for young persons is 10½ hours per day (one half-day in the week), i.e., a twelve hours' day of work, less 1½ for meals. These hours may be worked between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. in the textile trades, 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., and in some cases 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. in the non-textile trades. When working hours begin at 6 a.m. or 7 a.m. an additional interval for breakfast is allowed.

Though the full 10½ hours day is not worked in all trades, except in busy seasons, it is customary in many. A 9 hours working day, exclusive of meal-times, is usual. In large towns (and especially in London) the worker seldom lives near her place of work, and a journey of from 30 to 45 minutes has on an average to be added to each end of the working day. Many girls, on returning home in the evening, are in addition required to assist in the domestic work of the home.

The unskilled trades, with their offer of good initial wages, attract a large proportion of girls into their ranks. In these not only are the hours of work heavy but the work is generally purely mechanical and degrading in its monotony. The most receptive years of a girl's life are, therefore, too often wasted in acquiring a certain amount of manual dexterity which is of no permanent use to her, which is often deadening to the mind, which will not aid her in the performance of her domestic duties if she marries, and which she will very likely find superseded and of no marketable value if later she drifts back into industrial work. The young worker under these conditions not only soon forgets what she has learnt at school but loses also her power and desire to learn. Moreover, so few ladders exist between the lower and upper grades of industry, and the work within the factory is so much sub-divided, that there is little hope of the worker unaided being able to better her position.

Continued education, therefore, both general and technical, is needed for these girls. The aim of the general part of the instruction should be to counteract the deadening influence of their monotonous work and to give them a wider and more refined ideal of life. The aim of the technical side should be to prepare them for the domestic duties that are likely to be required of them, and to provide means by which those who wish may have the opportunity of climbing to a higher industrial level. Both sides of the instruction could be given at Continuation Classes, and Local Education Authorities should have power to make attendance at such classes compulsory. But, as already noted, in the majority of cases the hours of labour of these girls are very long, and the Authorities would have to reduce them before compulsory attendance at Continuation Classes could be properly or usefully enforced.


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So far the Committee have dealt with the lower grades of industry. When they turn to the skilled trades, which open a wide and important field for the woman worker, the problem is a rather different one. Entry into these trades can only be achieved by those who are able to make some sacrifice of initial wages. They have to learn their trade. Intelligence and skill of hand are required, and a thorough preliminary training is necessary for the production of the efficient worker. These trades are for the most part recruited by girls from the upper standards of the Elementary Schools, among whom are many who have great aptitude for handicraft trades. Workroom conditions, however, rarely provide means for a thorough training in craftsmanship, and the workers' abilities are too often but half developed. There is no uniform system of training. Though apprenticeship, generally of an informal character, still exists, yet for the most part the training given is partial and the young worker is expected to "pick up the trade" as best she may. As in the case of boys, the result of this general lack of training is the production of too many inefficient half-trained workers. The half-trained worker in a skilled trade is in as bad, if not worse, case than the unskilled worker.

For the girls in these skilled trades, therefore, continued education, both technical and general, is as necessary as for those in unskilled trades. The technical training necessary can best be supplied in the Day Trade or Apprenticeship Schools in which the pupil receives a thorough grounding in the technique of her trade, while at the same time continuing her general education before she enters the workroom. This is likely to prove the more thorough and satisfactory method, and is capable of wide extension. But it is difficult for more than a minority of the girls to afford the postponement of wage-earning which attendance at such schools involves. For the remainder, as well as for the girls in the lower grades of the skilled trades, such as the young errand girl, the "trotter", or the apprentice learner, it will be necessary to provide instruction, both general and technical, in Continuation Schools. Local Authorities should have power to make attendance at such schools compulsory, and to enforce a reduction of the hours of labour when they are excessive. It would be preferable on account of the long hours which are usual in skilled as in unskilled trades to hold such classes in the daytime, if possible, and the fact that afternoon classes are already being attended on a small scale (by voluntary act on either side) without causing serious disorganisation of the workrooms concerned, gives hope that the compulsory extension of such classes might at any rate be enforced in some trades and localities without undue inconvenience to the employers.


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Chapter XIV. Estimate of the Cost of adopting the Committee's Recommendation

The Committee are aware that the burden of education rates has been much felt during the last few years and that any proposal which involves an increase in expenditure is sure to be carefully scrutinised on the financial side. They feel that it would be advisable, therefore, to endeavour to make some estimate of the additional cost that would be incurred if the recommendations contained in this Report were carried out.

They believe that it is possible to give figures which may, within reasonable limits, be both reliable and useful. But two warnings as to their use are specially necessary. In the first place, it is impossible to forecast how many Local Education Authorities would avail themselves of an Act which permitted them to enforce compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools. It is only possible, therefore, to assume that all Authorities would do so, and to remember that the estimate of the cost involved on this assumption is a maximum which in practice would probably not be reached, anyhow for a considerable period of time. Secondly, it must be remembered that even if the total cost for the whole country were known, it is impossible for the Committee to estimate what proportion of the burden would fall on any one locality. In some places the existing teachers and the existing accommodation might suffice for the new scholars, and the Local Authority, while incurring no additional expenditure, would receive an increased grant. In other places the new scholars might require new premises and additional teachers, which would involve a greater outlay than would be met by the additional grant. Into these local estimates, however important they may be in themselves, the Committee cannot go. They can only estimate what the additional cost to the Imperial Exchequer will be, and to some extent what the additional cost will be to the Local Education Authorities as a whole.

The recommendations of the Committee, the cost of which it is proposed to estimate here, are three in number, viz.: (i) the raising of the school age to 13; (ii) the subsequent raising of the school age to 14; and (iii) the compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools of boys and girls from their 14th to their 17th birthdays. The Committee will take each of these points separately.

(i) The Cost of raising the School Age to 13

It is estimated that were no children in Public Elementary Schools granted exemption from school attendance under the age of 13 except on the conditions now allowed under the


[page 206]

Scotch Education Acts, there would be an addition of 5,324 to the number of children now on the registers of Public Elementary Schools (see page 31). This would correspond, allowing for 5 per cent* of absentees, to an average attendance of about 5,000. This number, however, is exclusive of the number of partial-exemption scholars who would be affected. What this number is it is difficult to say exactly. The most reliable information which the Committee can obtain points to the conclusion that at any one moment there are about 48,000 children between 12 and 14 years of age who are partially exempt from the obligation to attend school, and that the large proportion of these, probably four out of every five, are between 12 and 13 years of age. This means that at present there are at any one moment 38,400 half-timers between 12 and 13 years of age, and that if in future no half-time exemption under 13 were allowed, these 38,400 children would become liable to attend school full-time instead of half-time.

For the purpose of calculating the increase in the cost to the rates this transformation of 38,400 half-time scholars into 38,400 full-time scholars would be equivalent to an increase of 19,200 children on the registers, or, if it may be assumed that whole-time scholars would be less regular in their attendance than partial exemption scholars, to an average attendance of, say, 18,200. But for Exchequer purposes it should be remembered that grant for an additional average attendance is already allowed in respect of partial exemption scholars. Consequently the increased cost to the Exchequer due to this transformation of half-time scholars into full-time scholars would not be equivalent to that which would be payable in respect of 18,200 additional children in average attendance. The additional average attendance allowed for grant in respect of all partial exemption scholars in 1906-7 was 10,230. For reasons given above, four-fifths of this, approximately 8,200, may be assumed to have related to children between 12 and 13, and must therefore be deducted from the number of children (viz. 18,200) on whom the additional Exchequer grant must be calculated. The additional cost to the Exchequer, therefore, of changing 38,400 partial exemption scholars into whole-time scholars should be calculated on all addition of 18,200 - 8,200, i.e., 10,000 children in average attendance. If, therefore, the additional average attendance due to the 5,324 new whole-time scholars be added to that which is due to the transformation of 38,400 half-time scholars into whole-time

*Taking the scholars of all ages in England and Wales, the average attendance in 1906-7 was about 10 per cent less than the number on the registers at the end of the year. In view, however, of the greater regularity of attendance amongst the older scholars it will probably be safe to assume that in their case the difference is not more than 5 per cent.


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scholars, the Committee estimate that for the purpose of rates there will be an additional average attendance of 23,200 (i.e., 3,000 + 18,200), and for purposes of grant there will be an additional average attendance of 15,000 (i.e., 5,000 + 10,000).

The average grant for children in Public Elementary Schools in England and Wales in the year 1907-8 may be taken as 41s. [2.05]* The average cost per child for education in Public Elementary Schools in the year ending March 31st, 1907, may be taken as 60s. [3]† It follows that the amount per child which has to be found out of the rates is the difference between these two figures, viz. 19s. The following table will show the increased expenditure involved by raising the school age to 13, if the above figures are taken as the basis for calculation:

Maximum additional cost to the Imperial Exchequer in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects), viz. 15,000 at 41s. a child30,750

Maximum additional cost to the rates in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects), viz. 23,200 at 19s. a child
22,040

Maximum additional cost to the rates and Exchequer combined, in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects)
52,790

It must be understood that the average figure 60s. given above includes no expenditure out of loans nor in respect of

*"Excluding grants for special purposes, the average grant for England and Wales in respect of the year 1906-7 was 40s. 10d." (Mr. Trevelyan in the House of Commons, March 17, 1909). The Committee understand that this sum includes Annual, Fee, and Aid Grants, and Special Aid Grant, for Public Elementary Schools only, and that it does not include grants for Special Subjects, as to which, see page 210.

†See "Statement as to Expenditure by Local Education Authorities on the Maintenance (as distinct from Administration and Loan Charges) of Public Elementary Schools for the year ended March 31st, 1907". Cd. 4406. The average figure for the whole country is 64s. 10d., for the counties (excluding London) 57s. 4d., for London 94s. 3d., for the County Boroughs 64s. 7d., for the Boroughs 60s. 4d., and for the Urban Districts 64s. 9d. In view of the enormous number of children in London and of the fact that nearly all London children already remain at school till 14, it seems fairer to exclude the London figures in calculating the cost of a scheme which on the whole only affects the rest of the country. For this purpose 60s. seems a fairer figure to take as the average annual cost of maintenance per child in Public Elementary Schools.


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loan charges, nor any expenses on administration and inspection. What additional expenditure on loans and loan charges would be needed, it is impossible to say for the reason given above. The loan charges for England and Wales in 1906-7 amounted to 2,442,523* in respect of 6,003,772 children,† i.e. they came to about 8s. a child. If it could be assumed that the average would remain the same for the 23,200 additional children under consideration, this would mean an additional annual loan charge of 9,280. But the charge would fall so unequally on the various Authorities, that in this case an average figure is apt to be misleading.

As regards administration and inspection, it is probable that no serious increase in the cost would be caused by the addition of so small a number of children. In any case, however, it would be impossible to estimate it, and it is only mentioned here in order that it may he quite clear what the Committee's figures include and what they omit.

(ii) The Cost of raising the Age of Exemption from 13 to 14

It is estimated that were no children in Public Elementary Schools granted exemption from school attendance under the age of 14, except on the conditions now allowed under the Scotch Education Acts, there would be an addition of 149,840 to the number of children between 13 and 14 now on the registers of Public Elementary Schools (see page 31).

This would correspond, allowing a 5 per cent deduction for absentees (see footnote on previous page), to an average attendance of about 142,300. This number, however, does not include partial exemption scholars. As was pointed out above, the number of such scholars between 13 and 14 may reasonably be taken as one-fifth of 48,000, i.e. 9,600. The transformation of these children into whole-time scholars would be equivalent to an increase of 4,800 children on the registers, or to an increase of children in average attendance of, say, 4,600. In calculating the increased cost to the Rates the whole of this increase must be regarded. But in calculating the increased cost to the Exchequer due allowance must again be made for the fact that grant for an additional average attendance is already allowed in respect of partial exemption scholars. As seen above, this additional average attendance in 1906-7 was 10,230 for all partial exemption scholars, of which one-fifth, namely 2,046, may be taken as relating to children between 13 and 14. This number must be deducted from the number

*See Statistics of Public Education, 1906-7-8. Part II, pp. 35 and 101.

†See ibid. Part I, pp. 23 and 325.


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of children in average attendance, viz., 4,600, on whom the additional grant is to be calculated. The additional cost therefore to the Exchequer of changing 9,600 partial exemption scholars into whole-time scholars must be based on an additional average attendance of 4,600 - 2,046, i.e. 2,554, or in round numbers 2,500. If therefore the additional average attendance due to the 149,840 new whole-time scholars between 13 and 14 be added to that which is due to the transformation of 9,600 partial exemption scholars of similar age into whole-time scholars, the Committee estimate that for the purpose of rates there will be an additional average attendance of 146,900 (i.e. 4,600 + 142,300) and that for the purpose of grant there will be an additional average attendance of 144,800 (i.e. 2,500 + 142,300).

If the same figures of cost per head are taken as were adopted in the previous section, the financial result of this increase may be seen in the following table:

Maximum additional cost to the Imperial Exchequer, viz. 144,800 at 41s. a child296,840

Maximum additional cost to the rates, viz. 146,900 children at 19s. a child
139,555

Maximum additional cost to the rates and Exchequer combined
436, 395

It should be remembered the above estimate is based on the assumption that the raising of the age to 14 would apply equally to all children, subject only to such an amount of individual exemptions as might correspond to that which is now usual in Scotland. But the Committee do not at present recommend that boys employed in agriculture should be kept at school beyond 13, all boys between 13 and 14 who are, of would be, so employed must therefore be deducted from the above estimates. What their number would be, however, it is impossible to estimate. According to the last Census Returns there were in 1901 16,584 boys between 13 and 14 engaged in agriculture, but this is no guide to the number who might be so employed under the new conditions. The Committee can only call attention to the point, and leave it to experience to show what the actual reduction in numbers might he.

As regards loan charges, 146,900 children at 8s. [40p] a child would cost 58,760. But, as explained above, this figure must be used with the utmost caution.

(iii) Cost of raising the School Age from 12 to 14, i.e. the sum of the two preceding paragraphs

Having given separate estimates of the cost of raising the school age from 12 to 13, and from 13 to 14, the Committee


[page 210]

think it may be convenient to give in a single table the sum of these two estimates, viz., an estimate of the cost of raising the school age from 12 to 14.

Maximum additional cost to the Imperial Exchequer in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects), viz. 159,800 children at 41s. a child327,590

Maximum additional cost to the rates in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects), viz. 170,100 children at 19s. a child
161,595

Maximum additional cost to the rates and Exchequer combined, in respect of maintenance (exclusive of grants for special subjects)
489,185

In the above calculation, it has been thought advisable to omit all reference to grants for special subjects, as it is very difficult to estimate the average grant per child now paid for such subjects. The numbers of children who were qualified to earn such grants is not accurately known,* nor do the Committee know what was the amount of grant actually paid for each. Assuming, however, that the figures given in Table E are sufficiently accurate for this purpose, and that the amount of grant for special subjects paid in the financial year 1906-7 was about 93,000, which the Committee understand was the case, and assuming further that of the additional children who would be qualified to receive instruction in special subjects were the school age raised to 14, the same proportion of children would earn grants for such subjects, the Committee estimate that the grants for these subjects would be increased by about 13,000. But the Committee consider that if children are to be kept at school till 14 years of age, a far larger proportion both of boys and girls must take these special subjects, and, if this were the case, no doubt this estimate of 13,000 would not really cover the outlay of the Imperial Exchequer. What the cost to the rates would be there is no reliable basis for calculating. The Committee must content themselves, therefore, with leaving the additional cost involved by the instruction of larger numbers of children in manual work as an unknown quantity. They have mentioned it merely to make it plain why it is not included in the tables given above.

*See Table E, page 54.


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(iv) The Cost of attendance at Continuation Schools if made compulsory for all Young Persons between 14 and 17 years of age

The Committee have recommended in their report, not that attendance at Continuation Schools should be made universally compulsory, but that Local Education Authorities should, at first, at any rate, have the power of making such attendance compulsory in their own areas. It is obviously impossible to foretell how many Authorities would avail themselves of such a power, and the Committee cannot, therefore, estimate how many additional pupils in Continuation Schools there would actually be under the provisions of a permissive Act. All that is possible is to assume that in practice all Local Education Authorities would avail themselves of their powers. An estimate based on this assumption would, no doubt, be excessive; but it might be useful as showing the limit of expenditure which would eventually be incurred, either if all Local Education Authorities voluntarily enforced compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools, or if so many did so that it became possible to make the system universally compulsory by Statute.

Assuming, then, that all young persons between 14 and 17 who at present are not making, on week days, at any rate, any attendance at school, would be added to the number of scholars in Continuation Schools, the Committee estimate that the additional scholars would number 1,500,000. The Committee confine themselves to young persons between 14 and 17 for the following reasons. They omit the children under 14 because they believe that, with the possible exception of the boys mentioned on page 197, the proper place for them is in the Day School, and they have already estimated the cost of keeping them there. Should it happen that the system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools were adopted before the school age was raised to 14, the following estimates would, of course, have to be revised accordingly. The Committee have omitted all persons over 17, as the reference from the Board of Education hardly appears to include them, and, in any case, there could


[page 212]

hardly be any question of submitting them to continued compulsory education.

When, however, the Committee turn from the number of young persons who would be affected by a system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools to the average cost per head of such attendance, considerable difficulties beset them.

In the first place, while it is obvious that there are wide differences in the cost of the various forms of continued education for which grants under the Board's Technical Regulations are paid, the Committee are not aware of any official statistics which give the details of the cost of each such form, nor would it appear that such statistics, could well be obtained, in view of the fact that various forms of schools and classes are often combined in one institution. The following figures are taken from (1) the Board's Statistical Volume, 1906-7-8, Parts I and II; (2) the Return for Higher Education in England and Wales (Application of Funds by Local Authorities) for the year 1906-7, and (3) from figures supplied to the Committee by a few Local Authorities. The Committee are quite aware of the difficulty of applying any average drawn from these sources, but they hope that their conclusions may serve to give some indication of the facts of the case.

The gross expenditure of all Local Education Authorities in 1906-7 on all forms of further education for which grants were paid under the Board's Regulations for Technical Schools, etc. was 1,395,344. The total registered number of students who attended schools and classes under these Regulations at any time of the year was 793,266.* The average gross cost, therefore, of such students was, in round numbers, 1.15s. 0d., assuming the above figures to be reliable. Inasmuch as the cost of educating these students would not have been appreciably greater if their attendance had been regular, it seems reasonable to take this figure as representing the actual average cost of the instruction which was provided. Assuming, then, that if 1,500,000 additional young persons were to attend Continuation Schools under the Board's Regulations, they would attend the various kinds of schools and classes in the same proportions as the

*It should, of course, be remembered that students attending more than one School or Class are counted separately in respect of each School or Class which they attend, and that the number of individual students therefore is less than that given above.


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voluntary students do at present,* and that the average cost per student would remain the same (viz. 1. 15s. 0d,), the total cost of these additional students would be 2,625,000. What proportion of this additional cost would fall on the Imperial Exchequer and what proportion on local rates, the Committee cannot estimate. The incidence of so great an increase in educational expenditure is a matter which would obviously require the most careful consideration.

The Committee have endeavoured to check the above estimates by figures obtained from a few Local Education Authorities. But, in view of the fact that the figures vary considerably, and that it is impossible to gauge the value of the instruction which corresponds to the various figures supplied, they feel that it would not be safe to make any generalisations from them.

The Committee would like to repeat here that the above estimates are based on the assumption that compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools is made universally compulsory. If, as the Committee recommend, such attendance is only locally compulsory at the option of the Local Education Authorities, the estimates must in practice be very greatly reduced. Even an additional annual expenditure of 2,625,000 does not appear to be a large sum compared with the incalculable benefits which the Committee believe it would confer on the youth of the country. In fact, from the financial point of view, it would appear to be a very remunerative investment. But in practice even this figure would not be reached, anyhow for many years. It would be fairer to suppose that the immediate cost to rates or Exchequer would be very small, and that the figure suggested by the Committee represents the maximum to which the country is committing itself, assuming that the system of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools spreads and eventually becomes universal.

It must, of course, be understood that the above figures are for "maintenance" only. It is impossible to give any idea of what the provision of premises for a large increase in Continuation School pupils would cost.

*The Committee think this assumption a reasonable one. It may be well to point out, however, that the average cost per scholar in schools for evening teaching only would be considerably smaller. The total gross expenditure of all Local Education Authorities on "Schools and Institutions for evening teaching only", as given in the Return quoted above, was 1,117,910. Taking this heading to include "Schools of Art" and "Other Schools and Classes for further education", it appears that the number of pupils attending them during any part of the year was 779,195. The average gross cost, therefore, for students at such Evening Schools was 1 8s. 8d. or, in round numbers, 1 9s. 0d.


[page 214]

In conclusion the Committee must repeat that they are quite aware that their estimates as to the cost of a compulsory system of Continuation Schools are largely conjectural. But they do not on that account believe them to he useless. They believe that the introduction of any such scheme would inevitably lead the public to ask what they were committing themselves to, and that the estimates which they have prepared will make it possible to give an approximately correct answer to such a question.





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Chapter XV. Summary of Conclusions

The Committee find generally that there is urgent need for improvement in the educational conditions under which, in this country, boys and girls grow up from childhood, through adolescence, to adult responsibility. There are at any moment some 170,000 children between 12 and 14 years of age in England and Wales who have left school and are not attending any form of week-day classes (page 27). Large numbers of other children, while still at the Day School, are engaged in wage-earning occupations which injure their physical development and prevent them from deriving full benefit from such education as they receive (page 59). Out of the two million children in England and Wales who have passed their 14th birthday but are still under 17 years of age, it appears that only one in four receives on week-days any continued education (page 28). The result is a tragic waste of early promise. Through lack of technical training, hundreds of thousands of young people fail to acquire the self-adaptiveness and dexterity in handicraft which would enable them to rise to the higher levels of skilled employment. Through lack of suitable physical training, their bodily powers are insufficiently developed and their self-control impaired. Through lack of general training, their mental outlook remains narrow, their sympathies uncultivated, their capacity for co-operation in civic welfare stunted and untrained. In the meantime, modern industry in some of its developments is exploiting boy and girl labour during the years of adolescence. An increasing number of "blind-alley" employments tempt boys and girls, at the close of their Day School course, by relatively high rates of wages which furnish opportunities of too early independence, but give no promise of permanent occupation and weaken the ties of parental control (pages 33-46).

Such, very briefly, are the grounds on which the Committee base their belief that educational care during adolescence is urgently needed in this country. They will now submit for consideration a more detailed summary of the main conclusions to which they have been drawn by a review of the evidence received in the course of their inquiry.

(1) The Committee believe that the foundations of an improved system of Continuation Schools must be laid in the Day School. In many town schools the classes are too large to permit teachers, however successful and devoted, to pay a due degree of individual attention to the different needs of the children committed to their charge. Much also remains to be done in improving the staffs of the Elementary Schools by securing the services of a larger proportion of


[page 216]

fully trained teachers. The Committee welcome, therefore, the changes recently foreshadowed by the Board of Education with a view to reducing the size of the classes and improving the qualifications of the teachers. Again, owing partly to the fact that unwieldy classes are so frequent in our Elementary Schools, we have formed the habit of attaching undue importance to exposition by the teacher, and have assigned too small a place to those forms of educationally practical work which train the hand and eye and develop the constructive powers. Much remains to be done in fostering the habit of individual and private study among the older scholars in the Elementary School (pages 51-55). Further, by the better provision of playing fields, organised games, and other means, it would be possible to encourage throughout our elementary education those out-of-school activities which are indispensable to the due physical development of the scholars, and to the corporate life of any school (page 36). Care must also be taken to secure the better attendance of those boys and girls who are regularly irregular at school (page 55).

(2) These, in broad outline, are the changes in the Public Elementary Day Schools which the Committee are led to regard as necessary if the schools are to have their rightful influence upon the character of the rising generation. But they also deem it a matter of urgent importance that steps should be taken to prolong the school life of those pupils who at present pass at a premature age out of the atmosphere of school discipline and instruction, and from the teacher's care. The Committee, who in reaching this conclusion have been materially influenced by the example and experience of Scotland, believe that the time is now ripe to raise throughout England and Wales the limit at which children can obtain any exemption from attendance at the Day School to 13 years of age, and they suggest that Parliament should fix a not distant period at which this age of exemption would be yet further raised to 14, subject to the limitations mentioned below (pages 55-59). They reckon that the raising of the school age to 13 would involve a net addition of some 5,300 to the number of children now on the registers of Public Elementary Schools, and that a further extension to 14 would involve the addition of about 150,000 more.* These numbers do not include the scholars now partially exempt from school attendance, who may probably be estimated as numbering some 48,000 children between 12 and 14 years of age (page 205). The Committee do not believe that the change would cause any considerable inconvenience to trade, as the total number of workers

*See table on page 31.


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between 12 and 14 engaged in all occupations according to the last Census Return was only 1.43 per cent of the whole number of workers of all ages (page 266). Further, nearly a quarter of the population of England and Wales live in areas where the average age for leaving school is already nearly 14 (see page 22). It would still, of course, be necessary for Local Education Authorities to have power to grant exemptions in exceptional cases, though the Committee would like to see this power controlled by the Board of Education as is done by the Scotch Education Department under Section 3 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1901 (page 58). The Committee agree, also, that the special conditions of agricultural employment render it desirable to hasten slowly in those parts of the country which are predominantly rural, and although desirous of seeing the level of age raised to that of the towns, they content themselves with recommending that the age of exemption should not at present be raised above 13 in the case of boys to be employed in agriculture (page 197).

(3) The Committee are impressed by the social evils resulting, apparently in the great majority of cases, from the present system of half-time in the textile districts. They are gratified to learn how strong is the feeling among many employers, among practically all the leaders of the workpeople's organisations, and among an increasing number of workpeople themselves in those districts, that the present law on this subject should be materially changed (pages 142 and 286).

(4) A serious drain upon the energies of many Day School pupils is caused by exhausting or demoralising employments out of school hours. This prejudicially affects the pupils' training in the Day School and impairs their capacity for the continued education which should follow it. Many children are grievously overworked out of school hours, and, in consequence, are too tired to profit by their instruction in the Day School, and are rendered unfit for further education later on. To lessen this evil the provisions of the Employment of Children Act, 1903, should be more generally adopted. It is much to be regretted that at present this Act is little used (page 59).

(5) The Committee suggest (a) that no children under 16 should he allowed to leave the Day School unless they could show to the satisfaction of the Local Education Authority that they were going to be suitably occupied, and (b) that such exemption should only continue so long as they remained in suitable employment. It would be necessary to make special provision for children thus retained late at school or brought back after an interval of employment. The Committee


[page 218]

further think that it is desirable that the term "suitable or beneficial employment" should be more strictly interpreted by Local Education Authorities than is at present the case. The Authority should have equitable regard to the probable effects of such employment upon the character, physique, and prospects of the children, to the needs of individual cases, and, especially in the case of girls, to the just claims of the home (page 65).

(6) These proposals would entail upon Local Education Authorities the necessity of extending their existing registers of school children, so as to include in it a list of all young people resident within their area, together with a record of their occupation (page 65). This register would be indispensable in checking attendance at Continuation Schools in any district where such attendance were made compulsory.

(7) The Committee consider that even if the age for school exemption were raised and the conditions of Day School work amended as they propose, further discipline and education would be necessary. Nothing can alter the fact that character cannot be stable at 13 or 14 years of age, nor can children have learnt by that time how to apply their knowledge to their work in life. But the Committee find that at the present moment only a small minority of girls and boys between 14 and 17 receive on week-days any further school education after leaving the Day School. Exact figures are not procurable, and in any case it should be remembered that an undefined number of evening and other classes are not enumerated in official records; but the Committee have made a calculation which they believe to be approximately correct. They estimate that there are rather over 2,000,000 boys and girls in England and Wales between 14 and 17, and that 75 per cent of them are receiving, on week-days at any rate, no school education (page 28).

(8) In addition to the national waste which is indicated by these figures, the Committee would lay especial stress on the considerable proportion of boys and girls who, on leaving the Elementary School, enter forms of employment which discourage the habit of steady work, lessen the power of mental concentration, give no systematic training for a skilled trade, and are therefore economically injurious to the community and deteriorating in their effect upon individual character. These forms of employment are for the time relatively highly paid, at rates of wages which tempt needy or grasping parents, and flatter a young person's desire for early independence. But these wages do not increase in proportion to the needs of the worker when he reaches man's estate, and in some cases even the employment itself, owing to the inability of some trades to employ as adults more than


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a small proportion of their younger workers, ceases at the very time when the boy begins to need and to demand a man's subsistence. The Committee have some reason to fear that such forms of employment, profitable perhaps (though not always) to the individual employer, but certainly detrimental to the interests of the community as a whole, are increasing in attractiveness and variety, if not actually in number, especially in urban districts.

The Committee feel that children employed in such occupations are in urgent need of further discipline and instruction which would counteract the deadening influence of their daily toil, and give them that adaptability which goes so far in helping young people over changes of occupation, and in preventing them from sinking at an early age into the ranks of the unemployed. It is clear to the Committee that the lack of continued educational care during the years of adolescence is one of the deeper causes of national unemployment (pages 33-43).

(9) Much, however, of the present waste of early promise and of industrial skill may be traced, not simply to the conditions of employment, but to the lack of knowledge and of due forethought on the part of parents and of the children themselves (page 62). The Committee gladly recognise the fact that many experienced teachers, and in some cases bodies of local managers, evince a strong personal interest in their pupils and spare no pains in advising their older scholars and the parents of such scholars in the choice of an occupation; but they often suffer, as do the parents themselves, from lack of the special knowledge necessary to a proper discharge of this important duty. The provision of such advice, at perhaps the most critical period in the life of a boy or girl, needs to be more systematically organised than is at present the case, and to be made, so far as possible, universal. To supersede the personal interest of the teacher and the friendly co-operation of the managers would be a grave error. But it is found that the teacher's influence may be strengthened, and that his knowledge of trade conditions may be helpfully increased, by the work of agencies such as the Employment or Apprenticeship Committees which have now been established in many districts of London and in other parts of the country. It deserves consideration, however, whether, in some towns at any rate, public opinion is not ripe for a further extension of these useful forms of organisation. In such cases the Committee recommend the establishment of a Junior Employment Registry, the officers of which should collect, and keep up to date information as to the wages in different industries and callings, and as to the conditions and prospects of employment in them. From such a registry teachers, parents, school managers,


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and voluntary workers among the poor would be able to obtain accurate information which would enable them to guide children wisely in the choice of employment, and (what is not less important) to advise them as to the course of further education which would best enable them to attain a higher grade of efficiency and to become qualified for the more responsible grades of employment. The Committee consider that the work of such Junior Employment Registries should receive subsidy from public funds, but they hold not less strongly that in their organisation and management voluntary effort should be utilised, and that so far as possible their committees of management should enjoy the independence which comes from voluntary effort. If, as now seems probable, adult labour bureaux are systematically organised throughout the country, their work should be closely connected with that of the Junior Employment Registries. Full knowledge of the conditions of adult labour in each district is necessary for those who would give right advice to children on leaving school, and to young people during the years immediately following their Day School course (pages 63-65).

(10) The Committee have derived encouragement from a consideration of the recent growth of Continuation Schools and of cognate educational efforts in many parts of England and Wales. The rapid improvements which have been made are due to many and varied agencies. The advice given by the Board of Education, the work achieved in certain districts by their inspectors, the experiments made by the more progressive local educational authorities, the co-operation of many employers, the increasing interest of workpeople, teachers, and managers, the growing attention paid to education by organisers of boys' and girls' clubs, the efforts of the Workers' Educational Association, and the assistance of other local organisations, are all assisting the improvement of Continuation Schools and Classes.

But though much has been done, the task which remains is great. In order that it may be further advanced, it is necessary that local authorities, employers, workpeople, managers, and teachers should all realise what are their respective functions and do their best to develop them to the utmost.

The points on which experience has shown that Local Educational Authorities should chiefly concentrate their, attention in order to improve the attendance at Continuation Schools and the quality of the work done in them, are the following:

(a) The improvement of the educational foundations laid in the Day School.

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(b) Encouragement and help given to Day School managers and teachers, in advising parents as to the employment and education of their boys and girls during adolescence. Where possible this should be done by means of Junior Employment Registries.

(c) Systematic visitation of parents, especially those whose children are about to leave the Elementary Day Schools, and of employers, with a view to securing their co-operation in the further education of the younger members of the community. The officers in charge of this work to be very carefully selected.

(d) The organisation of advisory committees of representative employers and workers in each trade and the investigation of the industrial and other conditions of the district, with a view to the provision of evening and other classes in close adjustment to the economic and social needs of the population and to the improvement of the attendance at such instruction.

(e) Systematic propaganda by means of meetings, the distribution of circulars, etc., with a view to pressing the importance of Continuation Schools and Classes upon public attention.

(f) The careful co-ordination of the administration of all forms of education.

(g) Co-operation with voluntary organisations which aim at improving attendance at Continuation Schools. (See pages 117, 118.)

As regards employers, their most effective method of improving attendance at Continuation Schools is to make such attendance a condition of employment. Where such a plan is impracticable, employers might -
(a) exempt workers who are attending Continuation Schools from working overtime, or allow them to leave early on class clays or come to work late on the following day;

(b) refund the fees, partly or wholly, of employees who make regular attendance at Continuation Schools;

(c) give prizes, scholarships, special opportunities for promotion, or extra wages, to employees who are regular in their attendance at Continuation Schools;

(d) give extra wages to apprentices for good marks which depend partly on regular attendance at Continuation Classes, partly on good conduct there, and partly on examination results;

(e) assist Local Education Authorities by advice as to the instruction given in the Continuation Schools;

(f) contribute to the funds of special classes (pages 121-124).


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The special functions of the teachers are -

(a) to give advice to the older scholars in the Day Schools as to their choice of occupation;

(b) to encourage their attendance at the Continuation Schools, and to guide them as to their courses of instruction;

(c) to assist in promoting unity of influence and continuity of instruction between the Day School and the Continuation School (page 118).

The functions of School managers in this connection are very similar to those of the teachers.

The parents should be invited to visit the Continuation Schools, and should be urged to realise how greatly the prosperity, both of themselves and their children, depends on the training received during adolescence. In their capacity of workers, the chief practicable method by which they can co-operate in improving the attendance at Continuation Schools is by sending representatives to district advisory committees organised by the Local Education Authorities. The evidence which the Committee have received from representatives of labour shows clearly the growing readiness with which such assistance is given (page 120).

(11) The curriculum should aim at providing a good general education which equips men and women for intelligent citizenship as well as at supplying workers with that technical knowledge which they cannot sufficiently obtain in the ordinary course of their occupations, and with that adaptability which appears to be one of the most valuable possessions of work people under modern industrial conditions (page 112). The claims of girls should be considered as fully as those of boys (page 43). Furthermore, great stress should be laid on the necessity of providing opportunities for physical training; and certain kinds of recreative occupations should be regarded as a useful element in Continuation School work (pages 34-36, 113).

It should also be remembered that in the sphere of continued education there is ample scope for the assistance which is provided by varied voluntary effort, and that Continuation Schools and classes are not, and by no means need be, confined to those under the immediate direction of any public authority.

(12) The influence which can be exercised by the teachers in the Day School in turning the thoughts of the elder pupils and their parents towards the proper choice of employment and of appropriate courses of further study, has already been mentioned. But the influence of the teachers does not end here. It is probable that the Day School teacher will always take a prominent part in


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the instruction of the pupils in Continuation Schools, and the Committee consider that no serious interference with this arrangement is necessary or desirable, though care must be taken to prevent overstrain, and to see that teachers come fresh to their Continuation School work. Local Education Authorities would do well to arrange short courses of lectures in which the best methods of teaching and organisation in Continuation Schools could be explained. Courses of instruction would also be valuable to those persons who, so far as their practical knowledge is concerned, are well fitted to give technical instruction, but who need a course of training in the best methods of imparting their knowledge to others (pages 161-164).

(13) The improvement in the attendance at Continuation Schools which would follow from the adoption of the methods proposed above is not a matter of theory. The active co-operation of Local Education Authorities, teachers, employers, and workers has in many places secured a much improved degree of attendance. The Committee feel that the possibilities of thus raising the attendance at Continuation Schools generally throughout the country, and especially in urban districts, have by no means been exhausted, and they are confident that the general adoption of methods whose success has been proved by experience would have correspondingly fruitful results elsewhere.

At the same time the Committee have been led to the conclusion that, though a voluntary system of attendance at Continuation Schools may have advantages of its own, and though the voluntary organisation has not yet reached in all districts the stage beyond which no further progress is possible without recourse to compulsory powers, voluntary methods alone will not solve the whole of the problem. Under the present system certain obstacles will always stand in the way of complete success. In some districts, especially in the more rural ones, the Authorities themselves are apathetic, and are disinclined (partly on financial grounds) to find the means for continued education (page 126). In other districts, even where the Authorities are educationally progressive, voluntary methods are powerless to overcome the apathy of certain sections of the population, and to secure the further education of those children who, through the ignorance or inability of their parents, or their own indifference, are oblivious to their own interests. The majority of employers, though by no means consciously hostile to the educational interests of their younger workpeople, are at least indifferent to them, even though closer care for those educational interests might enhance their own profit (page 128). The pupils themselves are often too tired by their labour in shop, office, factory, or street to profit by


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systematic instruction in Continuation Schools, nor can their hours of labour be effectively reduced without further statutory regulations imposing upon all employers the duty of enabling their younger workers to attend Continuation Classes at hours fixed by the Local Education Authority (pages 130, 170). Furthermore, the fact that the legal obligation to attend school now ends with childhood tends to create an impression in the mind of the nation that continued educational care is not necessary during adolescence (page 133).

The Committee have, therefore, come to the conclusion that a compulsory system will ultimately be advantageous. They are confirmed in this conclusion by the fact that public opinion in this, as in other countries, is ripening in favour of extending the period of compulsory education so as to cover the whole or part of the period of adolescence. The terms of the new Scotch Education Act, the Continuation School Bills which have been introduced by private members in both Houses, the recent recommendations of the Poor Law Commission, the elaborate organisation of Day and Evening Continuation Classes in different parts of Germany and Switzerland, the movement in France for the extension of educational opportunities during the years following the conclusion of the Day School course, are all signs of a far extended movement of thought upon the subject which has been under consideration by the Committee (pages 135-144).

(14) The Committee, however, do not forget that there would be many practical difficulties in the way of a general introduction of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools in this country, and that it would be unwise to attempt to force upon the nation a universal measure of compulsion for which public opinion in many districts was insufficiently prepared. It must be remembered that the enforcement of attendance even at the Day School is a much more recent thing in England and Wales than in Germany and Switzerland. A premature attempt, therefore, to secure in this country a universal extension of this principle, might result in arousing hostility which more gradual advance would not provoke (page 178).

The Committee would prefer therefore to follow in this connection the general principle of the new Scotch Act. They would make it the duty of every Local Education Authority to make suitable provision of Continuation Classes so that further education may be available for all young persons who demand it from the time they leave school up to their 17th birthday. Such duty should include the obligation to make provision for instruction in the laws of health and for opportunities of suitable physical training


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(page 127). The Committee, however, while recommending that all Local Education Authorities should be under a statutory obligation to make provision for such Continuation Classes as may reasonably be required, do not recommend that attendance at such classes should be made universally compulsory. They prefer to recommend that such attendance should only be made compulsory when the Local Education Authority adopt bye-laws to that effect (pages 178-183).

(15) The Committee proceed to describe the methods by which, under such a system of local bye-laws, the principle of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools might be effectively applied.

(a) All employers (including the heads of shops and offices, and employers of domestic servants) should be placed under statutory obligation to enable their younger workers of both sexes under the age of 17 to attend Continuation Classes for such periods of time, and at such hours, as might be prescribed by bye-law adopted by the Local Education Authority of the district with the approval of the Board of Education. Further, it should be their duty to supply to the Local Education Authority on demand the names of all such young persons (page 185).

(b) In framing such a bye-law, the Local Education Authority would be well advised to confer with representatives of the employers and of the workpeople in each trade with a view, partly to planning the most suitable curriculum, partly to determining the length of course needed by the younger workers, and the times of day or seasons in the year in which their attendance could be required with least embarrassment to the convenience of the employers and with least risk of physical overstrain to the pupils themselves. Such conferences would enable the Local Education Authority to avoid unnecessary disturbance with the conditions of industry, and would enlist the co-operation of a considerable number of employers and workpeople (pages 117, 122, and 177).

(c) It would perhaps be found desirable in some cases at first to confine the operation of the bye-law to particular parts of the district in which local opinion was already ripe for the change. In districts where considerable numbers of boys or girls were engaged in large and well-organised trades, it might be found convenient to make a beginning by introducing bye-laws applicable to the younger workers in such trades. Separate sets of bye-laws also for boys and girls are almost sure to be found desirable. Further, the age to which the bye-laws apply need not in every case be the same, nor need it always be the outside limit. In this respect the Committee would follow the wording of the Scotch Act


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which gives the School Board power to make attendance at Continuation Classes compulsory "until such age not exceeding 17 years as may be specified in the bye-laws". Lastly, new regulations requiring attendance at Continuation Schools should be made applicable only to those young people, who, after a date fixed in the bye-law, would reach the age of exemption from Day School attendance (pages 182-3). In this way, the new system would come gradually into operation, each batch of children on leaving the Day School coming within its scope. No child who had already obtained exemption under existing bye-laws should be affected retrospectively by the new bye-law.

(d) Each Local Education Authority, as suggested above, should keep a register of all young people within its district and a record of their employment. It would be the duty of the officer of the Local Education Authority to keep these young people under observation and to satisfy himself that they were receiving further education, whether in Day School or Continuation Class, up to the minimum prescribed by the bye-law.

(e) Every pupil in Continuation Schools would be furnished by the Local Authority with a card upon which the head teacher of the Continuation School would periodically record his or her attendances. It would be the duty of the young person's employer to satisfy himself from time to time by an inspection of these cards that the conditions of the bye-law were being complied with, and to produce evidence to that effect to the officer of the Local Education Authority when required. Any employer contravening these regulations by continuing to employ any young person who failed to make the Continuation School attendances required by the bye-law would be subject to a penalty. The penalty should be made sufficiently large to make it not worth the employer's while to evade his obligation (page 185).

(f) If the parents of a young person subject to the bye-law should, by wilful default or by habitually neglecting to exercise due care, conduce to the commission of an offence under the bye-law, they should also be liable, on summary conviction, to a sufficient penalty (page 184).

(g) The Committee believe that most young persons who were placed under an obligation to attend Continuation Schools could be reached through their employers or their parents. Of the remainder, a large proportion would probably be street sellers. The Committee would meet this difficulty by prohibiting all street selling by boys and girls under 17, except in the case of those who were formally licensed by the Local Authority, and this license should be valueless unless accompanied by a recent card of attendance showing that the holder was making the necessary attendance


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at the Continuation Schools. Any licensed boy or girl found engaged in street selling without such attendance card, should have the licence revoked. This object would be easily attained by empowering Local Education Authorities to make regulations to the above effect under section 2 of the Employment of Children Act, 1903, their powers under that section being extended to apply to all young persons up to the age of 17 (page 186).

(h) It is possible that even with these precautions there might still be a small leakage of scholars. The Committee do not recommend that as a rule proceedings should be taken against boys or girls themselves, as it is undesirable to bring them into early contact with the law. In cases of habitual truancy, however, where neither parent nor employer could exert the necessary influence, action against them might serve as a useful deterrent in other cases and assist in bringing home to the public at large the fact that there would be no faltering in enforcing the new system (page 186).

(16) Under this system of local option, circumstances might arise in which, in two contiguous districts, the Local Authority of the one might adopt a bye-law requiring attendance at Continuation Schools, while the other might impose less stringent requirements, or even refrain from adopting any bye-law at all. Many juvenile workers, however, resident in the first might have their place of employment in the second, or vice versa. In such cases each young person would come under the operation of conflicting conditions of attendance. It would therefore be necessary to prescribe that in that event he or she should be subject to the more stringent of the two. If the district in which the young person resided had the more stringent regulations it would be necessary for the officer of the Local Authority to ascertain from the employer in the neighbouring district that the conditions imposed by the first Authority were duly complied with. Again, if a young person worked in a district with a more stringent bye-law than that adopted in the district of his residence, it might happen that there would not be available for him within the district in which he resided Continuation Classes of the type required by the more exacting Authority. In that case arrangements should be made for the young person to attend Continuation Classes near the place of his employment (the cost of such instruction being met by the Local Authority of the district in which he resided) until such time as the latter made the necessary educational provision within its district (pages 180-2).

(17) In order to protect adolescent workpeople from the danger of overstrain through the double pressure of wage-earning and educational duties, the bye-law should provide, when necessary, for reasonable curtailment of the hours of labour of young people. In making a bye-law to this effect,


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and before allowing exemptions to individual scholars on the ground of fatigue, the Local Authority should take the opinion of their medical officers. A period of rest between work and school is also required. The Committee have reason to believe, however, that a very large number of young people are employed under conditions which do not render it impossible for them to attend Continuation Classes. But it is important that in all cases such Classes for adolescents should end at a reasonable hour, in order that the hours of sleep which adolescents require may not be injuriously curtailed by educational claims. For instance, a boy or girl who has to rise at 6 a.m, should not be kept at an Evening School later than 9 p.m. In the case of many trades it would be often possible, with the co-operation of the employers, to secure the attendance of batches of younger workers at classes held in the daytime or in the early evening (pages 170-4).

The Committee recognise the fact that in many cases reduction in the hours of work of young people might result in some disorganisation of trade and in interfering with the employment of adult workers. They believe, however, that by co-operation between the Local Authorities and representative employers and workpeople in each trade it will be possible to lessen these difficulties. In any case full investigation of the best means of adjusting the requirements of each trade to the new educational conditions would be necessary in order to cause the least possible dislocation of work and interference with wages and profits (pages 174-7).

The Committee believe, however, that the pecuniary loss entailed by the gradual introduction of compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools would in most cases be insignificant. They believe also that the additional expenditure from public funds entailed by the more systematic organisation of Continuation Schools, and the financial sacrifice which the adoption of the compulsory system would entail upon some individuals, would be far more than recouped, and at no distant date, through the increased economic efficiency of the workers, and by the enhanced adaptiveness to new conditions, which would result from a continued and more practical education (page 176).

(18) In the above conclusions the Committee have confined themselves almost exclusively to the educational needs of young persons under 17 years of age. They have done this because the Board's reference directed their special attention to this part of the problem. But they must not be understood to suggest that the Continuation Classes in any district should be confined to pupils of this age.

On the contrary, they think that the maintenance of the present system of technical and general classes for adults,


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which has always been a characteristic feature of English education, meets an important need. They believe, moreover, that the ultimate effect of more systematic attendance at Continuation Schools during adolescence will cause an increased number of adults to desire further opportunities of more advanced instruction.

(19) The above conclusions may be taken generally as applying to all young persons under 17 years of age, whether they are boys or girls, and whether they live in urban or rural districts. The Committee will conclude, however, by adding a few paragraphs in which they explain to what extent their general conclusions should be modified in the case of girls in urban districts, and of boys and girls in rural areas.

Special Conclusions as regards Girls in Urban Districts
(See pages 202-4)

(20) The need of continued education for girls in urban districts is at least as important as for boys, and the question how to meet these needs is of at least equal complexity. Of the girls who leave the Elementary Schools, a small proportion would appear to remain at home to help in domestic duties. The larger number go at first into some form of wage-earning employment so as to add their quota to the family earnings, though the proportion of wage-employed to other women decreases very rapidly about the age of 25. The object, therefore, of continued education for girls is threefold: (i) to improve their physique, widen their mental outlook, and cultivate their sympathies; (ii) to prepare them for the skilful management of a home and family; and (iii) to equip them for efficiency in whatever wage-earning occupation they may enter upon during the years between school and marriage, or take up as their permanent life's work.

Industrial development is now proceeding in many directions at the cost of the exploitation of girl labour. To this in large measure are due sweating, physical deterioration, and subsequent unemployment. The patient but helpless misery of great numbers of women under the conditions of sweated labour is largely caused by their lack of suitable training during girlhood. The Committee have been led to the conclusion that continued education suited to the physical and other needs of girls cannot be effectively secured without statutory or other reduction of hours of labour when they are excessive, combined with the systematic provision of practical and general instruction by public authority. It is convenient to draw a distinction between the lower and higher grades of women's industry. In the case of many unskilled girl workers it is indispensable to secure for them shorter hours of work,


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combined with compulsory attendance at Continuation Classes at suitable times. The course of instruction in these classes should have both a general and a technical side. The aim of the general part of the instruction should be to give the girls a more refined ideal of life, to cultivate their sympathy, and to train them in the appreciation of beautiful things. On the technical side, a double aim should be kept in view, viz., their preparation for domestic duties and the imparting to them of the industrial skill by means of which they may rise to a higher level of industrial employment. In the case of girls who intend to enter the skilled trades, Continuation Schools should similarly keep in view the need for general culture as well as technical preparation. The best form of instruction is that given in the Day Trade or Apprenticeship Schools, in which the pupil receives a thorough grounding in the technique of her trade while at the same time continuing her general education before she enters the workroom. But it is difficult for more than a minority of the girls to afford the postponement of wage-earning which attendance at a Day Trade School involves; for others it will be necessary to provide a system of classes, attendance at which should be compulsory. In their course of study general and technical instruction should be combined. The hours of labour when necessary should be so curtailed as to enable adolescent girls to attend such classes at convenient hours. The fact that afternoon classes of this type are already being attended on a small scale encourages the hope that the gradual extension of this system will not be found to entail undue inconvenience to the employers concerned.

Special Conclusions as regards Rural Districts.
(See pages 187-201)

(21) While most of the Committee's conclusions refer generally to the whole country, it is recognised that the conditions of urban and rural districts differ considerably. Continued education of the right kind, however, is as much needed in the country as in the towns, and the Committee have arrived at the following conclusions as to rural areas.

As regards attendance at Day Schools, they think the age for exemption should be raised at once to 13 for all children, including those engaged in agriculture. In coming to this conclusion the Committee are influenced by the fact that experience seems to show that in actual practice children are not needed for agricultural work before this age. In the year 1901 there were, according to the Census Returns, only 2,948 boys, and 64 girls between 12 and 13 employed in agriculture, and these numbers included not only half-timers, but also those who were in full-time attendance at school, and were only employed out of school hours. As


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regards boys exempted from 11 to 13 under the special provisions of the Robson Act, the Committee are informed that the number is negligible, not amounting in any one year to more than three or four hundred. The Committee believe, therefore, that the age of exemption can safely be raised to 13 in rural areas with advantage to the children, and without injuring the agricultural interests on which their parents largely depend. The Committee further believe that for most boys and girls in country districts the age should shortly afterwards be raised to 14. But this advance must be accompanied by a considerable increase in the number of qualified teachers in country schools, and by the introduction of a more practical curriculum. Otherwise, boys and girls will only be marking time during their last year. The Committee, moreover, though desirous of seeing the level of age raised to that of the towns for all children, content themselves with recommending that the age of exemption when raised to 14 for the generality of children should not, anyhow at first, be raised above 13 in the case of boys employed in agriculture.

As regards Continuation Schools, country districts no doubt labour under special difficulties. In urban districts it is possible to organise Continuation Classes which are within reasonable distance of large numbers of pupils, whereas in rural districts the catchment areas round each centre are very sparsely populated, and furnish such small numbers of pupils, that Continuation Classes become proportionately more costly. Again, the question of staffing Continuation Schools in the country presents considerable difficulties. The comparative smallness of teachers' salaries in small country Day Schools, the reduced chances of promotion, and the isolated life, tend to keep the best teachers in the towns. There is, therefore, no large staff of qualified Day School teachers upon whom to draw for the Continuation Schools, and peripatetic teachers from headquarters are very costly. Furthermore, many country homes must always remain beyond the radius of Continuation Classes, however numerous; boys cannot be compelled to walk more than two miles to their Evening School, and it is very undesirable to allow girls to attend at all when attendance involves walking through lonely country lanes after dark.

In spite, however, of these rather untoward conditions, experience has shown that with keen and progressive methods much can he done even in rural districts, to organise Continuation Schools, and to secure a good attendance at them. But as in the case of towns, there is a residuum of children who will not attend voluntarily, and of employers who will not voluntarily make arrangements for their younger workers to be free to go to Continuation Classes. Opinion in most country districts does not appear


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to be as ripe for changes in the laws of school attendance as in the towns, but the Committee are of opinion that Local Education Authorities in rural areas should at least have the option of enforcing compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools if they desire to do so. Where they do so, they should have the same powers of making bye-laws for the reduction of the hours of labour of their scholars as has been proposed earlier in this Report.

As regards girls in rural districts, the Committee would give Local Education Authorities the option of substituting half-time attendance at the Day School from 13 to 15 for whole-time attendance from 13 to 14, but only for the sake of home-duties and not for wage-earning work, and only where properly organised instruction can be given to such girls. Country girls do not leave home, as a rule, till they are 15, and they are much needed by their parents when they get old enough to help in the house. They could be spared, however, for two of three hours a day, and their attendance half-time at school till 15 would probably be, in many cases, the easiest and most practical way of continuing their education. They should devote part of this time at school to practical subjects like sewing and cookery and general domestic work, and part to general subjects.

While making this suggestion primarily for the country districts, the Committee are of opinion that there might be other districts where it might be useful.

As regards the curriculum of country schools, while a good general education should be the object to aim at for all boys and girls, the subjects should be largely illustrated by examples familiar to country children, and practical subjects such as wood and metal work, gardening, fruit culture, beekeeping, etc., should be added.

The fact that so many country schools are staffed by teachers who are insufficiently qualified in these subjects makes it difficult to teach some of these subjects thoroughly to the older children. It is to be hoped that Local Education Authorities will at once set about an improvement in this direction, and arrange that a larger proportion of qualified teachers, carefully instructed in rural subjects, shall be appointed in country districts. Such authorities also greatly help the progress of Continuation Schools in their areas when they organise classes in practical subjects for rural teachers, and when they arrange schemes of promotion, under which the teachers in isolated districts may expect to be moved to larger schools if their work is satisfactory. It is also desirable that teachers should not suffer financially by taking country posts. The attention of teachers should also be called to the opportunities now afforded under the Training College Regulations for taking a year's training at an Agricultural College.


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Chapter XVI. Short Summary of Principal Recommendations

(For convenient reference the chief recommendations of the Committee are briefly summarised under the following heads. But to avoid possible misunderstanding it is hoped that the abridged recommendations here given will be read in the light of the statement of conclusions on pages 215-232, and of the evidence submitted and reviewed in the earlier sections of this Report. The Committee trust that these recommendations will not be quoted without this warning.)

1. Inasmuch as the foundations of a successful system of Continuation Schools must be laid in the Day School, the Committee recommend that increased attention should be given to the connection between the Continuation School and the Public Elementary School in order that there may be less discontinuity of attendance, and that by the improved equipment of the pupils increased expenditure upon Continuation Schools may be fully remunerative. With this object in view, the education given in the Day School should be improved by reducing the size of classes, by increasing the proportion of qualified teachers, and by introducing more manual work (including domestic subjects in the case of girls), and by improving the regularity of attendance (pages 1-55); further, the Day School period should at once be extended both in town and country by the abolition (except, as stated below, in individual cases) of any form of whole-time or half-time exemption from school attendance under the age of 13. After a short interval all exemptions from Day School attendance should be forbidden, except as stated below, to children under 14 years of age (page 55). The Committee, however, although desirous of seeing the age raised to the same level in the country as in the town, content themselves with recommending that the age of exemption should not be raised, at first at all events, above the age of 13 in the case of boys to be employed in agriculture (page 197).

In rural districts the Local Education Authority should have the option of allowing girls whose assistance is required at home for part of the day to attend the Day School half-time from 13 to 15 instead of whole-time up to 14, but only for the sake of home duties and not for wage-earning work, and only where properly organised instruction can be given to such girls (page 199). This suggestion is made primarily for rural districts. If experience showed that it worked well in practice, it might be possible to extend it to urban areas.


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The Local Education Authority should have the power of granting in special cases exemption from Day School attendance, but only subject to Departmental control similar to that provided for Scotland by Section 3 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1901 (page 58).

In this connection, and in view of the complexities and difficulties which surround the existing laws regulating the attendance of children at school, the Committee recommend that Parliament, when next considering any Bill dealing with education, should take the opportunity of codifying the whole law of school attendance.

2. Exemption from full-time attendance at the Day School in the case of boys and girls under 16 years of age should only be allowed when the parents or guardians can show that the children in question are to be suitably employed, and while they continue to be so employed. It might be necessary to arrange special classes for the pupils thus retained at school or recalled after an interval of outside employment (page 65).

3. Junior Employment Registries should be established to give skilled advice to parents, managers, and teachers in the selection of suitable occupations for the children between the time when they leave the Day School and their 17th birthday, and in the children's choice of such further courses of instruction as will help in qualifying them for future skilled employment. These registries should be subsidised from public funds and should be closely related to any system of adult Labour Bureaux which may hereafter be established (page 63).

In order that the extent to which adolescent labour is employed in different industries may be ascertained with precision, the Committee strongly recommend the Board of Education to take the necessary steps to secure that the Summary Tables of the next and future Censuses should show the occupations of males and females under each year of age, up to 21. At present, the occupations of boys and girls are shown under each year of age from 10 to 15, but subsequently under groups of ages only. As the first of these groups extends from 15 to 20, it is not possible to determine with accuracy the growth or decrease of adolescent labour in certain industries from period to period (page 41).

4. As regards teachers, it will be very desirable to interest the Day School teacher in the work of the Continuation School and it will often be necessary to employ them in giving instruction there. It will also be advantageous to provide that head teachers in the Day Schools shall be able to take part in the direction of the Continuation School or group of Continuation Schools to which their pupils go.


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Care must be taken, however, to prevent overstrain in the case of teachers who teach both in Day and Evening Schools.

Local Education Authorities should establish classes in which persons who are already teachers should be trained in the more specialised parts of the work of the Continuation School, and in which experts in such subjects may be trained in the art of teaching (pages 118 and 161).

5. Apart from the better preparation both of the pupils and of the teachers for the Continuation Schools, much can still be done to enhance the educational efficiency of Continuation Schools, and to improve attendance at them, upon the present voluntary basis. Effective encouragement from employers of labour (page 121); systematic visitation of the parents of children who are about to leave the Day School (page 117); the personal influence of the Day School teacher (page 118); propaganda among workpeople (page 118); close co-operation on the part of the Local Education Authority with the Managers of Boys' and Girls' Clubs and other voluntary agencies (page 118); the better adjustment of the courses of instruction to the needs of local industries (page 112); and the provision of systematic classes in history, literature, and economics for adult students (page 116), are the chief means of securing such improvement.

Boys and girls also should be encouraged to attend Continuation Schools during the closing months of their Day School course if they cannot join the Continuation School at the beginning of the session by any other means, due precautions being taken to prevent overwork. In such cases the Board of Education might consider whether they could not pay grants in respect of children's attendance both at the Day School and at the Continuation School (page 120).

6. Though much might still be achieved, however, by the above methods, apart from legislative changes, the Committee believe that so long as Local Education Authorities are under no absolute obligation to provide Continuation Schools, so long as adolescent boys and girls are under no obligation to attend them, and so long as employers are under no obligation to enable their younger workpeople to attend classes at convenient hours, large numbers of young persons in England and Wales will remain without the education which they sorely need. The Committee proceed, therefore, to explain the manner in which, and the extent to which, they recommend that compulsory attendance at Continuation Schools should be enforced.

7. In order that further education may be available for all young persons who demand it, it should be the statutory duty of the Local Education Authority of each county and county borough to make suitable provision of Continuation Classes for the further education of young persons, resident


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in their district, from the time they leave the Day School up to their 17th birthday, and to keep a register of all such young persons with a record of their occupations (page 127).

8. It should be lawful for the Education Authority of any county or county borough to make bye-laws (subject to confirmation by the Board of Education) for requiring the attendance at Continuation Classes, to an age to be fixed by the bye-laws, but not exceeding 17 years, of any young persons resident or working in their district who are not otherwise receiving a suitable education. Bye-laws should be distinct for boys and for girls. It should be left to the discretion of the Local Education Authority (a) to frame bye-laws (1) for one sex only, (2) for part or parts of its district, (3) for those engaged in particular trades or occupations in that district, and (b) to determine the age or ages up to which the bye-laws should be applicable within the limit of 17 years of age (pages 178-183). No young persons should be required by such bye-law to attend a Continuation Class held more than 2 miles from his or her place of residence (page 196).

Any bye-law requiring attendance at Continuation Schools should apply only to boys and girls who obtain exemption from Day School attendance after the adoption of the said bye-law (page 165).

9. It should be the statutory duty of every employer of any young person under 17 years of age (a) to enable him or her to attend Continuation Classes for such period of time and at such hours as may be required by the bye-laws of the Local Education Authority of the district in which such young person either works or resides, and (b) to supply the names of all such young persons to the Local Authority on demand. Further, in order to secure the regular attendance of pupils at Continuation Schools in areas where such attendance is made compulsory by bye-law, all employers, in such trades or parts of the district as the bye-law may specify, should be forbidden under penalty to employ or continue to employ any young person under 17 years of age who failed periodically to produce a card attesting his or her attendance at Continuation Classes in conformity with the terms of the local bye-law (pages 184-5).

10. The Local Education Authority should have power to fix, after consultation with representatives of the employers and of the work people in each trade, the hours and seasons at which the compulsory Continuation Classes should be held. With a view to protecting young people from overstrain, the Local Education Authority should have the further power of prescribing the limit of hours which may not be exceeded in any day or week, as the case may be, by employment and further education combined. Such


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restriction should be adjusted to the different conditions of the various trades and callings concerned (page 177).

11. As regards curriculum, the Continuation Schools should give effective training for the duties of citizenship and should have reference to the crafts and industries practised in the district, including agriculture, when practised, and the domestic arts. Prominence should be given to practical and manual instruction in the courses, but the claims of general education should not be disregarded (page 112). On every ground the course of instruction should also include systematic physical training (page 34).

For the planning of courses of instruction, and for their periodical adjustment to the needs of the district, Local Education Authorities should establish advisory committees including representatives of the employers and workpeople in each calling and of persons experienced in teaching (page 122).

12. It deserves consideration whether, in view of the cost of a fully organised system of Continuation Classes, and of the national character of the work, Government grants for Continuation Schools might not be paid on a higher scale to those Local Education Authorities which adopted bye-laws prescribing compulsory attendance (page 182).

ARTHUR H. D. ACLAND,      
Chairman.

ARTHUR H. WOOD,
      Secretary.




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Appendices (image-only pdf file - 8.6mb)


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Memorandum
BY
Mr. R. H. TAWNEY, Lecturer on Economics at the University of Glasgow, on the question of Compulsory Attendance at Continuation Schools

The question whether it is or is not desirable to make Continuation Schools compulsory, how best compulsion may be applied, and what the economic effects upon the employment of young persons in industry would be, can only be answered after a brief examination of the circumstances in which they are at present employed. If it can be shown that unemployment in manhood is in part caused by lack of facilities for obtaining adequate teaching during youth, the case for compulsory training is obviously strengthened. Moreover, the attitude of employers and employed towards the proposal to make evening school attendance compulsory depends upon the view which they take of the efficacy of the present system, in so far as any system can be said to exist. The following notes will describe the conditions under which different classes of youths are employed in Glasgow, will examine the connection between want of training and future unemployment, and will suggest that, while desirable on other grounds, compulsory Continuation Schools are essential in order to give the industrial training which many youths do not at present obtain in their daily occupations.

The information contained in the following notes was gathered from visits paid to about 100 employers in Glasgow and its neighbourhood, The industries of Glasgow which employ the largest number of boys may be seen from the following table, which is based on the last census report.


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Further, information as to the career during boyhood of 100 tradesmen and 150 labourers (mostly men now in distress) was obtained from various agencies in Glasgow. It shows the movement from trade to trade during boyhood and how large a number of boys are employed in occupations which give no industrial training.

The boys employed in industry fall into broad divisions: (I) Learners or apprentices who are employed, not for their immediate commercial utility, but in order to maintain or increase at a future date the supply of skilled workmen in the industry (e.g. the Apprentice Mason, Joiner, or Fitter, etc.).

(II) Boys who are not being taught a trade with a view to their practising it as men, but who are employed for their immediate commercial utility on some simple operations. These must be carefully distinguished from Boy Learners, and may be called Boy Labourers (e.g. Rivet Boys, Loom Boys, Shifters, Drawers off, etc.).

These two classes of boys are in fundamentally different positions. Class (I) is obtaining such instruction as the industry affords, whether that instruction be good or bad. Since most employers in most trades look far enough ahead to be desirous of maintaining a steady supply of skilled adults they usually are at some pains to give their learners as good a training as the circumstances of the industry allow. In connection with this class the question is: How far is the present method of training apprentices or learners satisfactory, and how far does it require to be supplemented? Class (II) is obtaining no instruction at all of any kind, good or bad, such as will qualify the boys in it for future employment when they leave their present occupation and seek work elsewhere. If this class can be shown to be large, it is hardly necessary to ask whether a compulsory system of training is desirable for it, as its desirability is obvious.

I. The Training of Apprentices or Learners

The characteristic of the training by means of apprenticeship, which has been traditional in this country since the middle ages, is that the boy is at once learning and working. He gets his education by being allowed to execute operations which have a market value. The obvious advantage of such a system is that the boy receives a training which is practical and which is acquired in the atmosphere of business, not of school. Employers sometimes complain that the manual training given at Elementary Schools is "play". It makes the boys careless with tools and fills them with theories


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which have to be knocked out of them. Workshop training teaches the valuable lesson that a thing is no use unless it will sell. The disadvantage of the apprenticeship system is that the boy's training is liable to he interrupted, narrowed down, and even altogether destroyed, by changes in the organisation of industry over which the individual employer has small control and the boy none at all. It is the prevalence of such changes, the continual introduction of new methods, processes, and machinery, the subdivision and specialisation of labour, the instability of business conditions caused by severe competition, which make unsatisfactory a training which is given solely in the workshop, and which make it necessary in the interest of the boy's future career that such training should be supplemented by a knowledge of principles acquired in a school. The most important of the changes which have gone far to destroy the value of training received through apprenticeship may be summed up under the following heads:

(a) In the majority of industries, at the present day, employers do not take boys as apprentices until they are 15 or 16. The industries at which apprentices are taken at 14 are painting, plumbing, printing (compositors), and iron moulding; the period of training is in these trades seven years. Most other industries take boys for five years and apprentice them nearer 16 than 15 years of age. Thus the rules of the Masons' Society do not allow boys to be taken as apprentices before 15. The rules of the Breadbakers' Society do not allow them to be taken before 16. The agreement between the Federation of Shipbuilding Employers and the Boilermakers' Society does not allow apprentice riveters to be started in shipyards before 16, and, in practice, owing to the great strength required for riveting, apprentices often do not start before 18 years. Apart however from these fixed rules, most of the employers who gave information as to the age at which apprentices should start thought 16 was young enough. In the case of engineering, building, joinering, baking, and sawmilling, 15½ to 17 years may be taken as the normal age for starting apprenticeship. Now, since most working-class lads leave school at 14, the fact that they are not taken as apprentices till about 16 means that a gap of about two years usually intervenes between the time when they leave school and the time when they settle down to learn a trade. During these two years they are engaged in temporary occupations which are no preparation for their future careers, which impose no responsibility or discipline upon them, and which are often of such a nature as to encourage them in youth to purely casual labour. The following table of the occupations entered on leaving school by boys who afterwards became


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tradesmen will show how almost invariably lads' enter these stop-gap occupations.

As I shall show later some of these occupations are harmful in themselves, apart from the fact that they give no kind of industrial education. But what I wish to emphasise here is that it is a very serious thing that so many lads, on being released from the discipline of school, should enter occupations which are purposeless in the sense of being no preparation for future life. The existence of this gulf between the Elementary School and the beginning of any kind of industrial training which makes it necessary for them to enter these occupations, is an obstacle at the very outset of their careers; it prevents many from ever beginning to get any adequate training at all and diverts the less firm of purpose into low-paid, casual, or otherwise undesirable employments. In the words of an engineer who was formerly a teacher, "In the two years between 14 and 16 a boy forgets most of what he has learned at school"; unless the school age call be raised (which would be best of all), compulsory Continuation Schools are essential if only to see that a boy does not lose his education before he even starts working at the trade by which he is to live.

(b) The growing specialisation of processes makes it increasingly difficult for a boy who enters a workshop as an apprentice or learner to obtain a knowledge of the trade which he means to follow, sufficiently general to make him a good all-round workman who can adapt himself to different classes of work and the varying needs of different firms. He tends to become unduly specialised at a very early age, with the result that if he is displaced from his particular job, he finds more difficulty in getting another than he would if he knew all sides of his trade. The nature of this excessive specialisation can best be realised by contrasting engineering firms which take pains to give an all-round training with engineering firms where early, and, I think, premature


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specialisation prevails. A is an electrical engineer employing altogether 191 journeymen and 85 apprentices; of the engineers, 48 are fitters and 19 turners; of the apprentice engineers, 33 are fitters and two turners. All the boys are learners; they do not specialise early as fitters or as turners, but learn both fitting and turning, being moved on to as many different machines as possible so as to give them a good all-round training. Eighty out of 85 apprentices employed in all departments attend Continuation Schools, and the firm encourages them to do so by moving the boys with the best records on to the jobs where they learn most. Much the same system is adopted by another firm, whose boys start in the fitting shop; then go to the machine shop, where they are promoted gradually from one machine to another; then spend their last year at fitting. A boy thus obtains a good all-round training, and finally is qualified to take a job either as a fitter or as a turner.

In a considerable number of shops, however, boys are specialised either as fitters or turners and do not learn both sides of the trade. Thus one firm states: "Boys are kept as a rule in their own departments. They are not taught; they are made to work." Another: "Boys are specialised from the beginning; to shift a boy proficient in one department to another would not pay." Some firms again distinguished between boys who are to get a general all-round training and boys who are to be kept to one department of the work. Thus, in a locomotive works employing about 4,000 men and turning out an engine per diem, there are three classes of apprentices: (a) Premium apprentices (i.e. lads who wish to occupy the higher positions in industry); these pass through all departments, moulding, pattern shop and drawing office. (b) Privilege apprentices. These are lads who, either because they are exceptionally clever and keen or because they are the sons of old employees, are moved from one department to another and learn fitting and erecting, turning, boiler mounting and possibly enter the drawing office. (c) The ordinary apprentices who, of course, form the vast majority. They are apprenticed either as fitters, as erectors, or as turners; for in this firm specialisation is carried so far that fitting and erecting, which are almost almost always combined, are here separated. On entering the works the lad who is going to be a fitter goes straight to the fitting shop and learns nothing else; a lad who is going to be a turner goes to the machine shop and does not learn fitting. Moreover, within the machine shop specialisation has proceeded still further. There are a large number of machines which are worked, not by men who have served their time and acquired a general knowledge of machinery (i.e., qualified turners), but by youths who are


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kept to a single machine, who become capable at that particular kind of work, and who, unless exceptionally clever, do not get a general knowledge of machinery or become competent to work a lathe. These specialised machine-minders form a growing proportion of the total number of mechanics employed in engineering works, owing to the continual invention of simplified machines adapted to the particular class of work done by particular firms; and some employers state that the "engineer" of the future will be a specialised machine-minder at 22s. to 28s. [1.10 to 1.40] a week, instead of the man who has served his time and who earns in Glasgow 36s [1.80]. The machine-minder may be either an adult labourer or a boy. At present the Society in the trade does not allow lathes to be worked by any but qualified engineers. But on drilling, milling, slotting, punching, band-sawing and screwing machines it is quite common to employ these specialised machinists who have had a few days' or even a few hours' training, and who are not competent to work any machine save that to which they are specialised. This tendency to narrow down the education of the learner to a single process, and thus to lessen his opportunities of obtaining a general all-round training is not confined to engineering. The same thing has happened in the case of the boys employed in woodworking industries where much machinery is used. Thus a timber merchant employing sawyers in one department and cabinet-makers in another, states: "There is no regular training system; a boy learns incidentally and is only shifted from one machine to another when the shop needs it; there is thus a tendency for boys to become specialised on one machine." This firm gave as an instance of the length to which specialisation had proceeded the fact that one of its employees was the best producer of wooden rings in Glasgow but could not make a wage at turning a table leg, and adds "that with the exception of a few old men who were trained under the apprenticeship system, the foremen are the only men with all-round skill". Again, in the case of breadbaking it is stated that "all-round men are not trained in Glasgow shops", and that the best men "come in from the country where the training is more efficient because the division of labour has not proceeded so far". Master masons say that "country-bred men are the best", on account of the fact that they have had a better all-round training. In plumbing, painting and carpentering, it is stated that some employers engage a large number of apprentices by whom they get work done cheaply and who are only half-trained. Thus some years ago there was a strike of plumbers, caused (as I am informed by an employer) by the fact that certain employers doing a low class of work would send a large number of half-trained


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youths with only one or two journeymen to execute it, with the result that men were displaced, and that the boys had no chance of learning the trade properly.

The motive to this further and further specialisation of all kinds of work, including that of boys who are ostensibly learners is, of course, cheap production for a wide market. In the words of an engineering manager, "To put an apprentice on a valuable machine means waste of money unless he is specialised to it, and in all trades the longer a boy is kept at one process, the sooner does he begin to be economically profitable." The effect of this system is to make it hard for the boy thus trained to find work outside his own narrowed niche. Thus the Secretary of the Brass Moulders' Union states: "In some shops the work is highly specialised and the boy is kept at single processes, e.g. he may learn only to make flanges. The result is that when he comes into a shop were a different class of work is done he does not know now to set about it and so cannot get work, or keep it if he gets it. These untrained workers recruit the unemployed. I know a young man who has for this reason been through seven jobs in six weeks." An employer says: "Few men can now do more than make one special part of the particular class of tool we make. This has caused the work to be produced quicker and cheaper, but it tends to make the workers in a sense unskilled and very dependent on the fluctuation of that kind of work." Another employer, speaking of the difference between lads who go through several departments and those who are specialised, says of the former: "When they come in they can take up a position either as a fitter or a turner, and therefore have a better chance of regular employment." The District Secretary of the Amalgamated Society of Engineers says of a particular firm which employs several thousand men making a particular kind of machine; "It is a reception home for young bakers and grocers; Boys go to it from other occupations and are put in the mechanics' shop to do one small part of a machine. They serve no apprenticeship. They are paid by the piece and are really in the position of labourers working automatic machines. When these boys leave they are not competent engineers, and find it difficult to get work elsewhere, except perhaps in a similar capacity in motor shops."

If it were necessary, further evidence from workmen and employers could be adduced to the same effect. But it is obvious (1), that under modern conditions specialisation is inevitable; (2) that the less all-round training a youth receives the less the openings available to him if his particular job is lost, as it may very well be. At his own line he may


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earn higher wages than the all-round man. Outside it he is helpless, because the range of work within which he is useful is narrow and he has never learned to adapt himself to different positions. Specialisation, which commercial exigencies make inevitable, has made the workshop training, taken by itself, inadequate.

(c) The apprenticeship system is unsatisfactory, because the control which an employer can exercise over his apprentices is, under modern conditions, so small. The Indenture system is not found, as far as I know, in any trade except building, in which apprentice masons are bound under a signed indenture for a period of five years. Indentures are, however, of very little practical value. Even, if a boy who runs away is taken before a magistrate, and the magistrate orders him to return, he comes back unwillingly and is more trouble than he is worth. Thus a large builder and contractor says: "We find the greatest difficulty in getting boys to apply themselves. They stay away frequently in the morning and run away after two or three years to get employment in country districts. Yet there are plenty of prospects in the trade; we cannot get sufficient competent foremen though they earn from 3 to 5." No doubt employers are always disposed to look back upon their own youth as a time in which all boys were virtuous; but there is abundant evidence to show that the very small control which is all that can under modern conditions be exercised over apprentices by employers, has destroyed a great part of what was valuable in the old system. In the case of shipbuilding, the apprentice riveters are notorious for their had habits. They are piece-workers; two apprentice riveters make up a squad with a holder-on and rivet boy. Hence, as a shipyard manager says, "they come and go as they please. They are as bad as the men at staying off and stopping the work of the squad". This is confirmed by a writer in a monthly report of the Boilermakers' Society to which riveters belong, who points out how demoralising to the boys is the want of discipline. "From their very entry into the trade most of the bad time-keepers are taught to be casual workers. Taken from the rivet fire irrespective of their character, education or environment, they are put to the tools to do piece-work, given work that is of a casual character on account of its being piece-work, allowed to leave the firm whenever work is not ready, having in fact five years' training as casual workers ... Would any employer treat his own son in such a manner?" It is interesting to notice that in a letter to the last number of "Shipbuilding", Mr. Cummings, the General Secretary of the Boilermakers' Society, has suggested that Continuation Schools should be made compulsory.


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(d) Even when apprenticeship gives a good training in the trade as it exists at the present day, it is not by itself an adequate preparation for industrial life, for the reason that the methods of production in nearly all industries are liable under modern conditions to be revolutionised by discoveries and technical improvements such as the introduction of machinery or of different machinery, to contract owing to competition, and to fluctuate under the alteration of commercial prosperity and depression. Now apprenticeship as a system of training was developed when industry was stable, methodical and regular, and is not suited to an age when it is unstable, changing and irregular. A boy undertakes to serve seven years or five years in order to acquire a trade. But after his skill has been laboriously acquired, it may at any moment be rendered entirely unnecessary by changes in the organisation of industry. The greater his skill in one particular class of work the less easy does he find it to take to another. What is required in addition to manual dexterity is general industrial knowledge and intelligence, which will enable him to adapt himself to changing industrial conditions. But such general adaptability is not given by apprenticeship. Hence apprenticeship is apt to be a risky investment, and not to repay the sacrifice of time and money which it involves.

To sum up: Apprenticeship by itself does not give a training which fits boys for modern industrial conditions. It begins too late and therefore leaves them during two critical years without any serious occupation. It specialises them to too narrow a range of work. It does not discipline them mentally or morally. It does not prepare them to fend for themselves when displaced from the particular position which they occupy. To supplement these deficiencies it is desirable to make compulsory education in the principles of different trades. Before, however, going on to discuss this it is necessary to refer to the large class of boys who are neither learners nor apprentices, and who, though they are often overlooked, constitute at once by far the most serious part of the problem of boy labour and the chief argument for the establishment of compulsory Continuation Schools.

II. BOY LABOURERS

The second class of boys employed in industry consists of those who are not apprentices or learners, but who are being employed solely with a view to the present utility of their labour. The following figures show the occupations entered on leaving school by 150 lads who afterwards became labourers.


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Attention is particularly called to the fact that of the above list of occupations there are a large number in which boys are employed from 14 to 19, but which offer no permanent position at man's wages. They differ from the so-called "skilled trades" because the work performed by the boy, instead of being in the nature of training, is a specialised compartment for which his sole qualification is the fact that as an instrument of production he is cheaper than a man. Examples of this kind of worker are those boys who call themselves labourers pure and simple, of whom a considerable number, 30 out of 150, were in existence at the early age of 16. They are engaged in all kinds of work, some are general labourers, some in foundries, some in saw-mills, some as builders' labourers, some at the Docks. The majority of them, however, are entered above as "in factories or works, not as apprentices or learners", and are employed as loom boys, doffers[*] or shifters in weaving factories, rivet boys in boiler shops, oven boys in bakeries, "drawers off" in saw mills, packers in soap works, machine-minders in furniture factories, labelling bottles in mineral water factories, turning the wheel for rope-spinners, and in numberless other such positions, in which they are performing some simple operation, often as an assistant to a man.

In connection with these positions in factories or works, some of which have been enumerated, three facts should be noticed which are of importance in connection with the question of unskilled and casual labour.

(1) They usually give no kind of industrial training, either special or general, such as to enable a boy to find a fresh situation when he leaves them. From the point of view of the boy they are not an avenue into a future career; they are a blind alley leading nowhere. From the point of view of the employer, the class of work done is a species of light unskilled labour, which does not require either the intelligence asked in a boy who is learning the trade, or the strength demanded from an adult unskilled workman, and which therefore can be

[*Doffers removed full bobbins or spindles from carding machines.]


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done by a sort of boy labourer. Thus the work of a loom boy consists in assisting men at the loom, seeing that the supply of yarn does not run short, giving in broken ends, cleaning looms, and generally waiting on the weaver. In some factories no men labourers are employed, and the boys then do all the unskilled work; they do not obtain any knowledge which would enable them to do weaving, for which a formal apprenticeship is necessary, nor are they fitted for anything else. In a similar position as this, large numbers of boys are employed in soap-works, packing, wrapping and filling soap-powder packets. Again the boys tending machines in the biscuit department of a bakery are neither apprentices nor learners, and though they may acquire a certain rough handiness in dealing with machinery, it is only of the most rudimentary kind. A large number of boys are employed in saw-mills as what are known as "drawers off," whose duty it is to carry wood to and from a machine which is worked by a man and generally act as his labourers. Much the same is true of cloth-finishing works, where a great many boys are employed taking cloth to and from the drying machines, and watching machines under the supervision of a competent man. All these different instances, which could probably be multiplied indefinitely were an extensive inquiry made, are cases in which the boy's work is simply a specialised compartment which gives no kind of qualification for future employment outside it.

(2) Not only are the boys in these occupations receiving no industrial training, either general or special, but the vast majority of them will be dismissed at manhood, or whenever they begin to ask for an adult's wages. This is not because they are inefficient workers, or for any other personal or accidental reason. It follows regularly and inevitably from the way in which the work is distributed between boys and men. The absolute impossibility of their being absorbed as men in the occupations which they started as boys is shown clearly by the following figures of the number of boys and men employed in certain businesses. In order to prevent all risk of identifying the firms concerned, the actual figures are not given; but the proportion between boys and men - the only point of importance - is the same as that really existing:

(1) A Weaving Factory - men 120, apprentices 6, loom boys 120. (2) Soapworks - men 98, boys 114. (3) Bakery, Bread-making - men 96, boys 8; Pastry-men 60, boys 7; Biscuits - men 12, boys 41. (4) Contractor, Lorries - men 148, boys 50, Tracing - boys 9; Vans - boys 10. (5) Sawmills - Machine shop - men 78, boys 64; Turning-men 30, boys 4; Chair shop - men 38, boys 14. (6) Finishing Company, Store Mills - men 40, boys 40; Drying-men 28, boys


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26; Raising - men 10, boys 18; Pressing - men 96, boys 10; Odd hands - men 18, boys 2.

It will be seen that in the first two cases the number of boys actually exceeds the number of men employed. A workman employed in the weaving factory estimates that 5 per cent of the boys employed stay with the firm as men, and that of those who leave, 75 per cent do so because it is impossible to find work for them at men's wages. He insists on the irreparable damage that is done to the boy's future, and says he would dissuade any boy he knew from undertaking the work. That is in no way the fault of the employer concerned; on the contrary, he is well known to go to trouble and expense to increase the comfort of his employees. It is simply because the work is of a character which can be done by boys, and therefore boys, being cheaper than adult labourers, are employed to do it. This particular class of boys, loom boys, doffers or shifters, is to be found in greater numbers in Dundee than in Glasgow; it may therefore not be inappropriate to quote the remarks on this subject contained in the Report of the Dundee Social Union, which confirms strikingly the opinion here expressed as to the effect upon unemployment of the type of unprogressive boy labour: "The demand for men's labour would have to be three times as great to provide work for all these lads (i.e. who are in the jute industry) and a number whose parents have sent them to mill or factory as children are turned adrift at the age of 17 or 18. A few of them became skilled workmen in other trades. (But even) if a boy is not too old to become an apprentice to some trade, he may earn half, or less than half his accustomed wage. (Apprentices in most trades start at 6s. and rise after five years to 12s. or 14a.; hence, after three years, a boy may be earning half what he could get as a labourer.) Some boys become labourers in other trades, others enter the Army ... a number leave the town to seek work elsewhere, while others live from hand to mouth as casual labourers,* or join the ranks of the permanently unemployed." The evil is, of course, aggravated in Dundee by the fact that most of the adult workers are women, with the result that there are fewer places for adult men. But the cases quoted above are sufficient to show that it exists in very many different kinds of business. Take, for example, the case of the (2) Soapworks; in these

*For a similar account of the fate of boys formerly employed in "laying on" and "taking off" paper in London printing houses, see Toynbee Record, "Report on Boy Labour". These printers' boys' were stated to enter the Army and take to the Docks; a large number of printers' labourers were found in the Whitechapel Casual Ward in the course of an investigation made into the previous employment of the men there.


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the boys actually exceed the men and they work in different departments; there is no movement from one to the other because a strong full-grown man is needed to do the man's work (as a matter of fact they are mainly immigrant Irishmen). None of the boys, the Manager states, stay beyond 20. The position of lorry boys in (4) has already been examined. The officials of the Carters' Union state that there is an enormous leakage of lorry boys into other occupations, and the figures show that this may be so. In the case of the Saw-mills (5) and the Cloth Finishing Company (6), the boys do not actually exceed the men in number. But it is plain that even were there absolutely complete mobility between all the departments, a large number of the boys employed would have to leave the trade at manhood. As a matter of fact, 80 per cent are estimated to leave at manhood in the one case, and 95 per cent in the other.

A general application may be given to the examples quoted above, if one considers for a moment what are the causes determining the demand for boys in different occupations, and in particular how the demand for boy learners differs from that for boy labourers. The considerations which determine the number of boys taken on by (say) an engineering firm, or by the bread-baking department of the bakery described above (3), are fundamentally different from those which settle the number of loom boys, rivet boys, or boys in the biscuit department. of the same bakery. In industries requiring much dexterity or intelligence, the number of boys entering the trade is determined, not by the demand for such work as they could do if they were immediately set to a single specialised operation, but by the estimated future demand for journeymen. Even where no formal agreement exists as to the proper proportion of apprentices to journeymen, as it does in the case of bread-baking, this is the criterion to which both employers and workmen habitually appeal when the former are claiming that the number of apprentices shall be increased, and the latter that it shall be diminished. Real learners are always an expense, and as long as boys are taken on with a view to teaching them so that they may recruit the trade, there is no temptation for employers to take on more than are required for this purpose. Hence a boy who enters, for example, a machine-making or bread-making establishment, will, if he is moderately intelligent and fortunate, find a place in it at a man's wage. If he leaves, he leaves because the trade does not suit him personally, not because it is unable to absorb all those who enter it as boys, but when there is no need to recruit a supply of thoroughly trained journeymen, or where many departments of the work are such as can be done by the relatively cheap boy instead of by the relatively expensive


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man, there is always a force at work tending to increase the employment of boys without any reference to the openings in the industry which there will be for them when they reach manhood. To put it concretely, the number of lorry boys, or loom boys, in Glasgow bears no relation to the number required for recruiting lorry men or weavers, or to anything more remote than the number of cart-tails and looms now in existence, and the number of boys who can be induced to sit on the one and serve the other. In the words of an employer, "boys are employed for their present commercial utility. That "utility", which is to be found in the fact that the wages of an adult labourer in Glasgow is 16s. to 20s., while that of a boy (e.g. loom boy) is 8s. to 12s., ceases at manhood; and with its cessation, employment ceases as well. But, as has been already pointed out, he has learned nothing which will qualify him to do any other kind of work. What then can he do? He can do nothing, but fall back on the possession of two arms and two legs, and either enter the Army (see the report of the Dundee Social Union), or increase the over-supply of labourers, and therefore the irregularity of employment in the low-skilled labour market.*

The figures given on page 12 show how large a proportion of these boys "employed in factories and works" ultimately become labourers. But this may perhaps be seen more clearly if the occupations entered on leaving school by 100 labourers, chosen at random, be compared with those of the same number of tradesmen:

Out of 30 learners or apprentices 23 became tradesmen, 7 became labourers.
Out of 84 messengers or milk boys 51 became tradesmen, 33 became labourers.
Out of 20 van or lorry boys 9 became tradesmen, 11 became labourers.
Out of 5 trace boys 2 became tradesmen, 3 became labourers.
Out of 9 labourers - became tradesmen, 9 became labourers.
Out of 48 in factories or works 12 became tradesmen, 36 became labourers.
Out of 4 miscellaneous 3 became tradesmen, 1 became a labourer.
*An excellent example of the different prospects of the "boy" learner and the "boy" labourer is given by comparing the breadbaking and biscuit departments of the bakery mentioned above. Eight apprentices (five years' apprenticeship) are held, with the approval of the employer, to be sufficient to recruit 96 journeymen bread-bakers, yet in biscuit-making 41 boys to 12 journeymen are employed. Some of these boys recruit the eight apprentices; of the remainder, it is said "some go to other trades; the rest drift into casual employment."


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III. The relations between boy labour and unemployment may be seen by looking at the applicants for relief to the District Committee in Glasgow. The figures show: (a) The usual preponderance of unskilled labourers. (b) A. large number of men who apply one year after another and who are regularly out of work (out of 2,199 men investigated in 1906-7, 20.9 per cent had applied to the Committee in previous years). (c) A large number of young men among the applicants. During the last three winters (1904-5, 1905-6, 1906-7), 3,273 men under 30 years of age applied for relief to the Glasgow District Committee.

The explanations of this permanent unemployment or casual unemployment (as distinct from unemployment caused by seasonal or cyclical fluctuations of trade) is to be found in the existence of a supply of low-skilled labourers in abundance greater than is needed to satisfy the demand for that particular class of work. This surplus is continually being recruited by youths who at manhood leave the positions which they had as boys, and, having no industrial qualifications, are obliged to take to unskilled labouring. In order to do away with this casual employment it is necessary to cut off as far as possible the stream of boys entering the unskilled labour market. This would be done were the State to aim at prescribing, as a condition of full employment, a minimum of industrial efficiency, in the same way as it has prescribed a minimum of general education. The effect of such legislation would be to enable youths to distribute themselves over the whole field of industry according to the demand for their services, making an infinitesimal addition to each trade, but greatly relieving the congested ranks of unskilled labour.

But it would be much more than this. To describe these youths, and the men which they become, as "unskilled" or "untrained", gives but a faint picture of the state of demoralisation which exists among some of them, and which is, in fact, caused by using boys of 15 simply as instruments of production which are scrapped when they are no longer remunerative - in employing them, in fact, for their "immediate commercial utility". One symptom of this demoralisation is the inability of boys to remain in one job for more than a year or even a few months at a time. When the stimulus and restraint given by the desire to learn are absent, the only incentive is that of immediately higher wages, and these boys move from job to job with a mobility which is positively nomadic. Here are some specimen copies from inquiry forms:

(1) T. T., Apprentice labourer, and the son of a brass finisher, left school at 11, and is 20 years of age. He gave the following particulars of his first 6 places: (a) Delivering milk, at 4s. a week, stayed 3 months, left because of a


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quarrel. (b) Message boy, 6s. and uniform, 6 months. (c) Message boy, 7s., 2 months; sacked for destroying instead of delivering messages. (d) Message boy, 5s., 7 months; found work too heavy. (e) Van boy, 8s., over a year; left because of a "row." (f) Weaving mill, working with drawer and serving him with yarn, 8s. 6d., 2 years; mill failed. He was not asked for further particulars. Note that he went through 6 places in less than 5 years and learned nothing.

(2) H. B., at present a labourer, and son of a moulder, left school at 12, and is 20 years old. He gave particulars of the following 6 places - his first 6 employments: (a) Van boy, 5s., 3 weeks; left because "fed up." (b) Van boy, 7s. 6d., 4 months; left because "tired of job". (c) Lorry boy in brewery, 5s., one month; left because "tired of job". (d) Message hoy, 6s. 6d., one week; left because he was hurt, and, was idle for 6 months. (e) Driving van, 8s., 6 weeks; left, because "he did not get enough for driving horses" (the substitution of boys for men as drivers is one of the complaints of the Carters' Union). (j) Saw-mills, "drawing-off machine," 9s., 3 months; left because he wanted "more money", and went to be a "trace boy".

(3) M. A. (a C.O.S. Case), at present a biscuit-cutter and son of a plumber, is 23 years old, and left school at 13. He gave the following particulars as to his first 6 employments: (a) Message boy, 5s., 2 months; left to go to biscuit factory. (b) Cleaning biscuit pans., 5s. 6d., 4 months; "Left to go to G. D.'s for more money". (e) Oven boy, 11s., 7 months. "Left to go to L.'s for more money". (d) Oven boy, 12s., 18 months; left for more money. (e) Assistant, brakesman in bakery, 15s. one year; left for more money. (f) Brakesman, 16s., for 4 months; after that returned to L.'s (a bakery); then went to labour in a mason's yard at 22s. a week; then went to Giffnock quarries at 26s., where he stayed for 4 weeks; then became a crane driver at 26s. a week; then went back to L.'s. And all this before he was 23 years old.

(4) M. O., a storeman, and son of a joiner, is 24 years old, and left school at 14. He gave the following particular's of his first 6 employments; he is exceptional in having begun to learn a trade: (a) Van boy 2s. a week, and 3 meals a day; "Got another job". (b) Message boy, 4s., 6 months; "Work too heavy". (c) Taking samples round for Metal Polish Company, 6s., one year; "Left to get bigger pay". (d) Taking samples round for another Metal Polish Company, 8s.; left because "father advised him to begin a trade". (e) Apprentice, engineer, 6s., 2 years; left because "pay too small as an apprentice". (f) Labouring, 18s., 1½ years.; left because he could not agree with his foreman.


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(5) T. G., Casual labourer, son of retail shoemaker, is 27 years of age and left school at 14: (a) took rolls to customers for a baker, paid 2d. in the 1s., 6 months; left "to better himself". (b) Lorry boy, 7s., 1 year; "Wages too small". (e) Clothier's message boy, 5s., 3 months; left "to get more wages". (d) Bottle-washer in brewery, 10s., 12 months. (e) Saw-mills, working a saw, 12s., 8 months; left for "slackness of work". (f) Ice store, 24s., 8 months. At the age of 27 he had never earned more than 24s., and never remained in a place more than a year.

(6) H. B., a labourer, 24 years of age. Gave following particulars: (a) Drove trace horses for saw-mills, 10s., 5 months; "Sacked for galloping horse". (b) Pottery, packing, 12s., 2 weeks; "Lazy and chucked it". (e) Foundry moulding (not apprentice), piece-work, 2s. 8d. a week; "Couldn't make enough". (d) Iron roofing works, at punching machine; 14s., 6 months; "Fed up". (e) Selling Guides to Glasgow Exhibition, 30s., 6 months. (f) Saw-mills again, "German saw," 12s., 4 months; sacked. And so on till now, without definite employment in the last 6 years. He was able to count up and actually gave names and addresses of employers in 50 or 60 different jobs he had been through.

It would be possible to multiply indefinitely cases such as have been given above, showing the utterly undisciplined life led by these boys. The same facts are put in another way by some statistics kindly supplied me by the Chief Constable of Glasgow as to the "number of youths between the ages of 14 and 21 charged with theft and other offences inferring dishonesty, including those remitted to the sheriff court during the year 1906."

(a) Total number charged (boys under 21), 1,454.
(b) Messengers, Street Traders, Hawkers, Labourers, Carters, Rivet-heaters, 1,208 or 83.7 per cent
(c) Tradesmen in 20 trades, 110 or 7.5 per cent
(d) Miscellaneous (Soldiers, Schoolboys, Waiters, etc.), 136 or 8.8 per cent
Yet the total number of boys under 21 employed in (c) of course far exceeds those employed in (b).

At the present moment these boys are probably the most neglected class in the community. To poor parents they are often commercial assets to be realised as soon as the law allows. Organised workers, with left-handed kindness, prevent them from overcrowding some trades, and indirectly intensify the struggle in others. Employers, with the best intentions in the world, cannot possibly be expected to point out to lads who are clamouring to sweep their shops, clean their machines and run their messages, that their services will cease to be acceptable as soon as they demand a man's wage. The only way of preventing them from recruiting the ranks of low-paid irregularly employed adult workers, is to make their labour


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scarce and dear by law, and to insist on their obtaining an industrial education in a Trade School.

Evening Classes

The following questions naturally arise in connection with Evening Schools. (a) Whether they should not be made compulsory. The total number of students attending Evening Schools in Glasgow for the session 1905-6 was 22,899. Since the published School Board Report does not distinguish students of different sexes, or state their ages and occupations, it is impossible from published reports to say what of all youths between 14 and 20, or of youths between 14 and 20, in any one trade are attending evening classes. The following figures may give a rough idea of the proportion of youths in two highly skilled trades attending evening classes.

These figures are very rough, e.g. some apprentice masons may be attending, not building construction, but other classes. Conversely there are certain to be a good many boys attending classes in workshop mathematics who are not employed in the metal machine group. As they stand they suggest that even in the trades demanding the highest technical skill comparatively, a comparatively small portion of the boys employed attend evening classes.

An indication of the attitude of employers towards Evening Schools is given by the answers returned to our question, "Do you encourage apprentices or other employees to attend Evening Schools or other classes?"


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The answers given were sufficient to show that the majority of employers recognised that Evening Schools helped their business. In most cases however, "encouragement" does not mean much. It varies from putting the notices before the boys, to paying half or full fees, rewarding attendance by promotion or money prizes, and even, as in one case, making it a condition of employment. On the whole it seems true to say that the more anxious an employer is that his boys should attend schools, the less satisfied is he with the present system. Again and again have we had statements such as, "Paid fees but boys would not attend"; "Gave money for fees to boys, but they spent it and did not attend"; "Classes good, but not generally taken advantage of"; "Very uphill work", and so on.

It must be remembered that these despairing answers come from firms who employ the most highly skilled and intelligent workmen, and who are willing to go to trouble and expense in order that their apprentices may attend evening classes. When one turns from these to occupations in which the boys are not learners but labourers, the very idea that it is any use their attending evening classes disappears. "You do not want a Professor to work a machine" fairly expresses the sentiment of some employers, while it simply does not occur to boys who are not acquiring any industrial qualifications in their daily employment that they ought to acquire such qualifications outside it, to provide for the time when they ask men's wages and leave their present position. Yet, as has been shown above, it is precisely for these boys that industrial education is most necessary, because without it they obtain no qualification for employment in manhood. A voluntary system may catch the apprentice, but it cannot catch the labourer. For the self-interest of employers is enlisted on the side of technical education for apprentices. But no one has any interest in seeing that the "mere labourer" attends school - no one, at least, except the public, who at present supports him with relief.

(b) Assuming that the principle of compulsion is accepted, the question arises whether, if it is to be effectual, it should not be accompanied by a reduction of hours for all boys under 17. Several employers have said to me that at the end of the day boys are too exhausted to attend classes. This was stated by a textile manufacturer employing loom boys, by a boiler-maker employing rivet boys, and by others in different trades. Teachers say the same thing. "The night school system is murder on those who have to go", says one. His pupils are mostly apprentice engineers. Some leave him at 10 o'clock. They go as far as Rutherglen, getting home at 11 o'clock; by 6 o'clock they have to be


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down at Clydeside, which means leaving home soon after 5. Another teacher says, "Boys are pumped out before they get to the night school"; another, "Night school pupils are often very sleepy"; another, "'You cannot get children to take an interest in the night school after a hard day's work". That it is impossible for boys in some occupations to get any good from continuation classes, without a shortening of hours, can be verified by anyone who goes round a boilershop and watches the riveters and rivet boy at work.

Compulsory evening classes without a reduction of hours are better than nothing, but a reduction in hours would make them twice as beneficial, especially to the boy labourers who need them most.

It is a question, therefore, whether after clause (1) of section 8 of the Scotch Education Bill, 1907, should not be inserted the words, "Provided that on the days on which attendance at evening classes is required, the hours of work of young persons under 17 shall not exceed six per diem exclusive of the hours spent at the evening classes, or 10 per diem inclusive of hours so spent*."

*The above memorandum was written in 1907. Provision for the reduction of hours of labour in certain trades for pupils in Continuation Schools was made in the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908.







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Memorandum
SUBMITTED BY THE
Tutorial Classes Committee of the University of Oxford
Summary of the Work done by the Oxford Joint Committee from January to April 1909

A statute was passed through the Convocation of the University of Oxford on October 27th, 1908, empowering the University Extension Delegacy to form a committee consisting of working-class representatives in equal numbers with members of the Delegacy. The Joint Committee* thus constituted desires to submit to the Consultative Committee of the Board of Education a short account of its first session's work, in the belief that the experience obtained by it of the desire of workpeople for higher education and of the difficulties by which their studies are beset should be given due weight in the formulation of any proposals which may from time to time be put forward for the further development in England of "Continued Education".

During the session 1908-1909 classes were conducted by the Joint Committee at the following places:

ChesterfieldOldham
GlossopRochdale
LittleboroughSwindon
LongtonWrexham

The number of teachers employed was three, one taking five classes, one taking two, and one taking one. Each course of lectures consisted of 12 classes, and each class lasted for two hours, an hour being given up to the lecture and an hour to discussion. The subjects studied were Industrial History (except at Swindon) and Economics (at Swindon).

The students were almost entirely manual workers, with a slight intermixture of school teachers and business men.

*The following are the Members:

UNIVERSITY MEMBERSWORKERS' REPRESENTATIVES
The Dean of Christ Church (Chairman)D. J. Shackleton, M.P. (Vice-Chairman)
Prof. H. H. Turner, F.R.S.W. H. Berry
Prof. M. E. Sadler, M.A.C. W. Bowerman, M.P.
A. L. Smith, M.A.Richardson Campbell
S. Ball, M.A.J. M. Mactavish
L. L. Price, M.A.A. Wilkinson
W. Temple. M.A. (Hon. Joint Secretary)A. Mansbridge (Hon. Joint Secretary)


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Their age and occupation are shown in the following tables:

TABLE I

TABLE II
Occupations

It will be noticed from the above tables that over half of the students (60.5 per cent) were under the age of 34. This is a highly satisfactory feature, both because it proves the interest in education taken by the younger generation of workpeople, and because a student who enters the classes when he is comparatively young is more likely to profit by them than one who is advanced in years. Nearly all the students, as to whom particulars are available, were workpeople in the narrower sense of manual workers, 59.1 per cent being drawn from three groups of trades, engineering, textiles, and building, and the rest being scattered over a large number of different occupations. Of those who are not usually classified as "workpeople" the majority belonged to working-class families and were engaged in occupations (for example, as shop assistants) which, though distinguished by convention, are not in practice distinguishable from those employing artisans and labourers. It is gratifying, further, to note that many of the students are members of working-class organisations, such as trade unions and co-operative societies, as well as political organisations of a predominantly working-class character, and that several of them take a prominent part in the work of their societies in an official capacity. In short, the personnel of the existing eight


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Tutorial Classes may be said to be recruited almost entirely from the younger and more energetic members of the manual working-classes, who are keenly alive to civic questions and desire to improve their knowledge of them by impartial study.

The attendance of the students at the classes was highly satisfactory. All of them seem to regard the class as a serious engagement to which all others - except such as were absolutely unavoidable - must be postponed. Particulars are set forth below.

TABLE III
Attendances

Chesterfield96.3 per cent of possible attendances.
Glossop*83 per cent of possible attendances.
Littleborough†77 per cent of possible attendances.
Longton‡Average attendance of 28 out of 38 entered.
Oldham87.5 per cent of possible attendances.
Rochdale§Average attendance of 28.9 out of 37 entered.
Swindon89 per cent of possible attendances.
WrexhamAverage attendance of 27.5 out of 30 entered.

The paper work required from the students was the essay per fortnight, or 12 essays in the course of the session. It is not possible to present in tabular form the paper work done. But the tutors report that essays have been written with regularity, and that students who were unavoidably prevented (for example, by illness or overtime) from finishing them in the course of the session, are availing themselves of the six weeks after the end of the session allowed by the committee to make up the required number. The essays varied in quality, as was natural in view of the dissimilar practice and experience of the writers. But nearly all improved very greatly in the course of the session, while some reached a very high standard indeed, and would bear comparison with those done by first-class students in the Final Honour Schools at Oxford. Many of the students have expressed to the

*If the defective attendance of three who were compelled to retire and four admitted late be omitted, the percentage of actual to possible attendances at Glossop was 93.5.

†If three who retired before the class began, and one who retired after four attendances, be omitted, the percentage of actual to possible attendances at Littleborough was 93.

‡The Longton Secretary writes: "At the beginning of the session in October, 38 students were in the class. Before Christmas eight of these ceased to attend, owing, in six cases at least, to unavoidable causes. The chief reason was unemployment."

§The Rochdale Secretary writes: "I am satisfied that the absences have been due to illness, trade unions or professional duties, sickness at home, and similar unavoidable causes."


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teachers the great advantage which they are conscious of deriving from regular practice in putting their thoughts upon paper.

While the Joint Committee is of opinion that the experience obtained from the eight Tutorial Classes now in existence is most encouraging, it is met by certain grave difficulties which spring from the conditions of English educational and industrial organisations, and to which it thinks attention should be directed. (i) The deficient previous education of some of the students makes it very difficult for them to express themselves on paper. It sometimes happens that between the time when a student left the elementary school as a child, and the time when he enters the Tutorial Class as a man, his school equipment has become rusty, with the result that he finds difficulty in regular reading and writing and in giving a coherent shape to his ideas. There is an urgent need for bridging the gulf between the elementary school and manhood in some way. (ii) The prevalence of overtime and unemployment is a terrible handicap to the working-class student. Overtime, sometimes carried on night after night, exhausts his strength and leaves him neither time nor energy for serious study. Again and again keen students have reluctantly been obliged to put off writing papers because they have reached home so late as to have leisure only for a hasty meal.

The greatest single obstacle to the extension of adult education by means of evening classes is to be found in the long hours of labour. How small a guide the nominal hours in any trade are to the actual hours worked is shown by the following return obtained from an engineer who is a member of the Longton Tutorial Class:

In this instance, if the student had worked the normal hours, he would have worked for 636 hours in the course of the 12 weeks. In reality he worked 848½ hours, or 212½ in


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excess of the normal hours, and that at a time when trade was stated to be unusually depressed. It is a noteworthy fact that this particular student wrote in those 12 weeks nine papers, or three more than were required of him, in addition to doing some statistical work which was of benefit to the class as a whole. But in the case of less robust constitutions the strain of prolonged overtime, superimposed on hours which are already often too long, is crushing, and we desire to record our opinion that much of the apparent indifference of some classes of workpeople to higher education, as well as much physical debility, is due to the nervous exhaustion induced by systematic overwork. We do not presume to offer any suggestion as to how this great evil should be met, but until it is met the continued education of five-sixths of the nation will be attended by very serious difficulties, and we desire respectfully to raise the question whether it is not desirable that a public inquiry should be made into the prevalence of overtime and its effects upon continued education.

Unemployment is a different, but not less serious, obstacle to the work of the Tutorial Classes. This again can be illustrated by the experience of Longton. In the words of the secretary of the class, "The chief reason (for students abandoning the class) was unemployment; some of the students being reluctantly compelled to give up the class owing to their seeking work elsewhere ... Long hours of labour, overtime, anxiety and restlessness caused by uncertainty or want of employment, lack of facilities for home study, all these are factors which militate against achieving the fullest measure of success in any scheme of further education for industrial students, for whom the prime necessity is to work for a livelihood." We are informed by one of the tutors that he has watched individual students, who began work with enthusiasm and capacity, gradually sink through unemployment into a state of mental despondency and distress, in which every thought of education gradually disappeared before the question, "How shall I earn a living to-morrow?"

We have called attention to these evils because they are closely connected with our work, and because we think that the point at any rate might well form the subject of an investigation by the Board of Education. But, in spite of them, the work of the Tutorial Classes has been so encouraging, and has won so much approval among workpeople, as to suggest that nothing but money is needed for their wide and beneficial extension.

Signed on behalf of the Joint Committee,

W. TEMPLE,
A. MANSBRIDGE,
Joint Secretaries.

Oxford,
April 1909.


[pages i-xxvii]

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