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Repression of Private Effort in Education, by "Veteran
THE FUTURE OF SPANISH IN ENGLAND. BY PROF.
In his eighteenth annual report Sir George Newman, as Chief Medical Officer of the Board of Education, reviews the real positive and preventive purpose of the School Medical Service which should lay the foundation of national health and national capacity. points out that to extract a tooth is one thing, to reduce dental decay and remove the occasion for extraction is much better. It is wise to provide a child with spectacles, to prevent the deterioration of eyesight is wiser; to send a child with tuberculosis to a sanatorium may be necessary, to prevent the onset of tuberculosis is more scientific and more economical. Following up this line of thought through the volume we see that while it is well there should be ample provision for mal-adjusted children, it is better still if educator and medical practitioner, social worker and nurse, can so co-operate as to avoid from the very start those emotional disturbances which deprive the child of much of its natural drive, lower its capacities and in extreme cases lead to the development of permanent anti-social qualities. The acid test of an education authority is the healthy and effective adult life of the pupils who pass through its schools.
The final chapter of the report, entitled:
is challenging and arresting; it breathes hope though uttering a warning against any slackening of effort. Records from all the countryside reveal an undiminished stream of defect among the entrants to the schools at the age of five, and a steady burden of disease in older children—why is this? There are the biological laws of heredity and the influence of environment upon the
individual. Our children are in the main the offspring of six generations of town dwellers; we are only slowly passing out of the period of the Industrial Revolution, and much of our present urban environment, insanitation and unwholesome, sunless home life is a continuance of that revolution. Our civilization saves the sickly and rears the weakly infant, our ways of life are softening" in their effect: teeth and eyes decline in survival value and are replaced in necessary degree by artificial dentures and spectacles. More disease is being treated but there is not actually more disease. We are still catching up arrears; for prevention we need to get at the children earlier and earlier in life. Both from the physical and the mental standpoint the emphasis must fall more and more on the nursery school and the Infant Welfare centre. Still, much has been done; the general physical condition of the children has improved, cleanliness is much greater, certain diseases have declined in severity. The child who is leaving school at fourteen is better physically in every way than was the "leaver" of twenty years ago. Education, the teaching of hygiene and physical training, medical inspection and treatment, are producing a healthier adult with a better understanding of the importance of soundness of body and mind. Direct medical treatment is necessary for the relatively small population of abnormal children; physical education is the supreme method of medicine in behalf of the normal school child. Food, air, exercise, rest, and the practice of hygiene-these essentials of health demand continued attention if "the wisdom of the body" is to grow and extend in England.
Sir George Newman in his report draws attention to the vivid effects the repercussion of the changed methods of education in the ordinary elementary school must have on the system of day special schools for mentally defective children. Formerly the elementary school catered for "the type "-in mass formation there was no room for much consideration of the "individual"; the more the trend and curriculum were directed in the interests of the average child" the less able was the school to cope with deviations from the average, and the more anxious was it therefore on educational grounds to rid itself of the subnormal. But this is changing; there is a tendency towards smaller classes, definite tops to schools, central schools, to the adoption of the principle of individual work rather than of class teaching. The junior school may therefore be in a position to adapt its curriculum more readily to the different types of children with their varied educational requirements. Educational retardation may thus be met. When anti-social traits are combined with educational retardation the problem is different, and special provision, it may be, in a residential school is needed. The various Acts dealing with the subject recognize the distinction; the Education Act concerns itself with those children who show a degree of retardation in excess of that associated with the merely dull and backward," the Mental Deficiency Act on the other hand lays stress on social disability.
The chief Medical Officer concludes his résumé by pointing out that we need to pay primary attention to social rather than to educational defect; children presenting marked defects in character leading to anti-social behaviour should, as early as practicable, be transferred to a special home or school, preferably one to another department of which they could be passed on at an appropriate age; in the case of those presenting
missioners, the basis of reconstitution proposed by the DR. GRAHAM LITTLE, the member for the UniverDepartmental Committee of the Board of Education and incorporated in the new Act, promises a more effective administrative machinery for the great University which London ought to possess. To Lord Eustace Percy, President of the Board of Education, congratulations are due for his skilful piloting of the measure through the House of Commons. If the new Act has not the impressive appearance of some Education Acts of previous Governments, such as those associated with the names of Mr. Fisher and Lord Balfour, its ultimate results for the nation and the Empire may be of comparable value. The highest tests of nationhood in the future will be found in the triumphs of our men of science and scholarship rather than of statesmen and soldiers.
HE Bill passed its second reading in the House of Commons on November 19. In his introductory speech, Lord Eustace Percy gave a clear exposition of the questions at issue. The reason for The Bill in the Bill, he said, was "the present the Commons: financial impotence of the University of London." The Senate, as at present constituted, was
sity, moved the rejection of the Bill in an able but not altogether convincing speech. He discovered a new danger in the threat to the independence of the affiliated colleges. This argument is novel, for one of the chief objects of the Bill is to promote co-ordination and development of University education in London, and this cannot be achieved, as experience has shown, unless the position of the University vis-à-vis its affiliated colleges is greatly strengthened. Dr. Little also argued that the Imperial link would be weakened and that the external side was faced with a serious menace; but this argument was not fully developed and would be difficult to substantiate. Sir Alfred Hopkinson welcomed the assurance of the Government that the rights and privileges of external students would be maintained and stressed the importance of introducing the " business element." He was not convinced, however, that Government nomination was the best means of securing this representation.
not the best body to allocate grants from public grantias THE Bill passed through its committee stage without
bodies that was generally agreed by all sections of the University. He explained the provisions of the Bill in regard to the constitution of the new Council. As the Senate will have an effective majority on the Council, the policy of the Senate, whether on academic or financial matters, "could prevail and would prevail on the Council." That was the intention of the Departmental Committee and of the Government. This declaration of the Government spokesman will, we hope, remove many misapprehensions as to the object of the Bill.
serious amendment. Dr. Little proposed that the representation of the Crown on the Council should be reduced from four to two, and of the London County Council from two to one, and that three members appointed by Convocation should fill the vacancies thus created. After a long discussion, the amendment was negatived. Mr. Somerville raised the important question of the representation of the City of London, suggesting that from the City and the City Companies generous financial help might be secured for the University. Lord Eustace Percy replied that representation of this kind on the Senate might be secured by the co-option of members, for which provision had been made. There were other important bodies with substantial claims for representation, and it was impossible to give representation to all.
ORD EUSTACE PERCY's explanation of the Crown representation on the Council of the University is ingenuous. He disclaimed any desire on the part of the Government control university Crown policy. Notwithstanding Dr. Graham Representation: Little's protest, we agree that the effect SINCE the recently issued Report on Education
of the Act will be to reduce rather than to increase and Industry deals only with one part of the Government control over university education. The Committee's terms of reference, it would be unwise, detailed work of the University Grants Committee will perhaps, to say much more, at this Education and be abolished under the new dispensation. The object juncture, than that the summary of Industry: of Crown representation, according to the President, is recommendations makes disappointing to introduce business men into the administration of the reading. These recommendations may, of course, have University" in the most efficient way possible." If any- | implications which will be seen more clearly when
the second part of the Report appears we must, in classic phrase, wait and see." In the meantime it will be recalled that the Committee was appointed to "inquire into and advise upon the public system of education in England and Wales in relation to the requirements of trade and industry, with particular reference to the adequacy of the arrangements for enabling young persons to enter into and retain suitable employment.' The portion we have italicized has been dealt with in the present Report, and it presents a task which might well baffle the most earnest and optimistic committee any Government could appoint. The arrangements which enable young persons to enter into suitable employment are notoriously inadequate and uncertain: how far arrangements can be made to secure retention of employment is a problem containing so many conflicting factors that even attempted solutions are usually lost beneath the trite piety of phrases concerning personality a matter which, it is often glibly assumed, transcends even opportunity.
IT may be, then, that the difficulty of the problem is responsible for the guarded wording of some of the recommendations even in the case of issues which have already the backing of considerable School Leaving public opinion. The raising of the Age: Compulschool leaving age would, it is admitted, sory Day Continuation remove many existing difficulties, but Schools: the change, if made, should be made for educational rather than industrial reasons." The italics are ours. Almost precisely the same phrase occurs in a recommendation which deals with the advantages of compulsory day continuation schools. The Committee's problem is, of course, linked with the administration of " Choice of employment and Unemployment Insurance for Juveniles." It is recommended that the powers of Local Education Authorities (under Section 107 of the Education Act, 1921) should be maintained, but, in connexion with the same questions, a recommendation that the present system, under which responsibility for administration is shared by the Board of Education and Ministry of Labour, should be terminated and the central responsibility assumed by the Ministry is opposed by one member of the Committee, Mr. Byng Kenrick, who bases his dissent upon the Chelmsford Report.
AMONG what appear to be the most important
recommendations occur those of the setting up of a National Advisory Council for Juvenile Employment,
upon which Local Education Authorities should be strongly represented, and the bringing into operation of a permanent scheme of Juvenile Unemployment Centres conducted by Local Education Authorities under the Ministry of Labour; for this purpose a permanent appropriation of public money is recommended. Necessary legislation, too, is recommended to give effect to a scheme of Working Certificates, under which it would be a statutory obligation on employers before engaging juveniles who are exempt from obligation to attend school, and are below the age of entry into Unemployment Insurance, to require from them a Working Certificate issued by the Exchange or Bureau, and a statutory obligation on every such juvenile seeking employment to attend a juvenile employment centre or other course of instruction when required to
do so. Upon those recommendations which urge cooperation between neighbouring areas with regard to employment, the maintenance of the provision that a child shall not leave school until the end of the term in which the fourteenth birthday is reached, and the increasing of the volume of information available to parents and children as to industrial conditions, we shall make no comment. It should be noted, however, that Juvenile Employment and Advisory Committees should have access to the views of teachers in secondary and technical as well as in elementary schools.
THE period of educational conferences is again close upon us; indeed by the time that this issue of the Journal is in our readers' hands, the conferences will have begun. The virtual abandonment of the old practice by which every educational society settled the date of its annual meeting independently has been abundantly justified by its results. Education is now
envisaged, and is presented to the general reading public, as essentially one great national activity. The seemingly separate parts are seen to be separate only as the parts of any living organism are separate. The distinction between university and school, secondary and elementary, liberal and vocational, public and private, are all necessary in the actual working of the vast whole. But these annual conferences as now organized help to bring out the intimate connection as well as the distinction. And this advantage is clearly reflected in the opportunities which teachers and administrators of all kinds have of gaining that contact with one another which is an essential condition of understanding and sympathy. There will be meetings of different sorts, from business meetings "for members only" to crowded gatherings, not only of teachers, but of other friends of education. Let us hope that for light and leading the forthcoming conferences will compare favourably with any of their predecessors..
THE annual report of the Education Officer of the London County Council necessarily assumes in great part the form of bare statistical and other facts. But Mr. Gater has, we think wisely, London Schools brightened his pages by an account, written by Dr. P. B. Ballard, of the elementary schools of London, as viewed by one who has known them intimately for forty years. The School Medical Officer also draws some interesting conclusions from photographs of former and present-day school children which illustrate the text. These photographs give striking support to the evidence that modern educational methods have made children healthier and happier than they used to be. It is important that social values such as these should receive due recognition in any assessment of the results of the present system of elementary education. We hear a good deal about a falling-off in spelling and in arithmetical accuracy, and so on, as compared with the old rigorous days; and it is quite possible that the pendulum has swung rather too far in the direction of interest as distinguished from effort. But the failing leans to virtue's side, and, so far as it exists, it is in process of correction. Meantime, we are more and more acting on the conviction that a happy childhood is a life-long blessing.
Numbers and Costs.
THE figures relating to London education are of course stupendous. The Council maintains or aids more than 1,500 schools and institutions, attended by more than a million persons, of whom about one-third attend voluntarily, the rest being children of compulsory school age. The annual cost of educating a pupil in a London elementary school is £16, in a central school £27, and in a secondary school £41. A blind child costs £60, a physically defective child £53, and a mentally defective child £43. A notable feature of Mr. Gater's report is the reference to traffic accidents, which are becoming an increasing source of anxiety, notwithstanding the precautions taken. In 1925, more than In 1925, more than 9,000 children under 16 were killed or injured, and traffic accidents are figuring more largely in the causes of teachers' absences. A somewhat disquieting fact is the greater number of cases of juvenile delinquency,
their buildings, and pay heavily for the privilege. It is often urged that Londoners have not that corporate spirit so evident in provincial towns like Glasgow, Manchester, or Leeds. And yet the London Society, which exists for the very purpose of increasing interest in what is, after all, the most important town in the world, can gather more members than it can accommodate for any of its excursions to the historic sites at our doors. History can best be taught by reference to the things we know; if we have seen a spot where great events have occurred, how much more likely we are to recollect it. How the great Addison lives for us if we see the 'Adam and Eve' in the Kensington High Street. Now a reputable Trust House, it was in Addison's day a country inn, whither he would repair to drink, and that when the nagging tongue of his Countess proved too annoying.
notwithstanding the fall in child population, although it GOLI
is to be noted that even now the proportion of serious cases is very small. Voluntary day continuation schools are attended by over 10,000 boys and girls, an increase of 14 per cent over the figures for the previous year. Altogether the report is a record of ground gained, of good work done, and of promise for the future.
T is good news to hear that only twenty-seven members of our Lower House could be induced to vote in favour of the possible destruction of the churches in the City of London. Lord Hugh The City Cecil is one of our most conscientious Churches: legislators, but he has been born out of his time; he has the medieval mind of a Torquemada and would sacrifice everything to his own view of the duty of the Christian Church. However, we have in these columns no interest in the political side of the controversy; its educational importance has not been sufficiently considered. No one seems to have mentioned what an education it is for a child to visit-and better still to worship in-these edifices erected in an age of faith. What could be better to teach such a one history than to see the Norman chapel of St. John in the Tower, to attend service in St. Peter ad Vincula on Sunday morning with the Guards, and hear them join in the military hymns and not be allowed to leave the building before the representative of the King, the Lieutenant of the Tower, has walked out in solitary state? Therein are the tombs of many of those executed on Tower Green. If he visits St. Bartholomew the Great, he is reminded of Henry I and his minister, Rahere. In St. Olave's, Hart Street, he can sit in Pepys's pew, see his tomb, and read the affecting epitaph to his wife. In St. Helen's, Bishopsgate, the Westminster Abbey of the City, he sees the tombs of Sir Thomas Gresham and Sir Julius Caesar. At All Hallows, Barking, the cradle of Toc H, he can study the finest series of brasses in our city. At St. Giles's, Cripplegate, he can see the tomb of Milton.
E do not mean to infer that any of the abovenamed would be touched even by the most ardent advocate of new churches in Tooting or Tottenham; but even the least interesting And Historical of these buildings, such as St. Mary Woolnoth, or St. Alban, Wood Street, has points of interest that should not be destroyed to permit wealthy banks and insurance offices to enlarge
'OLDSMITHS' COLLEGE at New Cross has celebrated the twenty-first anniversary of its birth. The original plan of the University of London to establish a great training college for teachers Goldsmiths' in the buildings presented by the College. Goldsmiths' Company has been brought to full fruition. For this achievement, congratulations are primarily due to the two wardens, Mr. Loring, who died in the War, and Mr. T. Raymont who, we regret to learn, will shortly sever his connection with the College. Dr. Graham Wallas, the chairman of the Delegacy, said with justifiable pride, that it had built up, not only the largest, but by all agreement the best training college in England. The whole question of the training of teachers is now in the melting pot. Whatever may be decided, the contribution of Goldsmiths' College to this essential work will be regarded with respect and admiration.
N his address to the boys and parents of Sloane School, Chelsea, at the annual prize-giving, the Dean of St. Paul's, sometimes called "the gloomy Dean," was positively cheerful on the question of secondary education. The movement, Dean Inge said, was from a national point of view a very good one. If efficiency is our aim, we must see that the right man is in the right place, the tools in the hands of those who could use them. Boys from poor families were sometimes intended to become great scholars and scientists, and they ought to have the opportunity. This is sound gospel, both in a social and an economic sense, and it is well that it should be propagated by a leader of the Church whose record in this matter is somewhat piebald.
THE proposal of the Assistant Masters' Association to
An Educational Bureau.
establish an educational bureau, recalls Mr. Acland's scheme for the Office of Special Inquiries and Reports at the Board of Education. Mr. (now Sir) Michael Sadler was the first Director, and the original intention was. to give the office great freedom of investigation. Under a later dispensation, Mr. Sadler felt that this freedom was restricted and tendered his resignation. The office has never recovered from the loss of prestige which resulted, though it still exists in name. We have read with interest, in the "A.M.A.", Mr. R. H. Tawney's suggestions" as to the work which might be done by an education research and information bureau." Much of the work proposed
could appropriately be done by the Board of Education. On the other hand, there is a real need for independent criticism and research, broadly based on the teaching profession, and we wish success to the new enterprise if and when it takes definite shape. Should not the Teachers' Registration Council associate itself with this important work?
OVERNMENT reports generally emphasize the good side of things; teachers' organizations the defects. At a recent meeting in Dublin the national Grievances of teachers' organization called the attention of the public to the condition of many of the national schools, whose buildings were a disgrace to a civilized community. Sanitary arrangements sometimes did not exist, or were very primitive; three or more classes were sometimes held in one room; and medical and dental examinations were sorely needed. The meeting was intended to give publicity to these things, but the teachers have a proposal to remedy them. Educational control is at present too bureaucratic. They want an Educational Bill to provide for (1) a council of education, to assist the Minister in all educational matters, and (2) an educational authority in each county and county borough, whose main functions shall be to make provision for adequate and suitable school accommodation, and for the heating, cleaning, and general upkeep and maintenance of school buildings. The policy is sound, but for some occult reason the Ministry of Education has set its face against an advisory council, although this worked well under the old Agricultural and Technical Instruction Board, and has been recommended by various commissions, and repeatedly asked for by the representatives of schools.
Schools in the
THE HE Free State Department of Education has published its report for the year 1924-25. It has under it 5,914 schools, 5,636 primary with 493,382 pupils, and 278 secondary with 22,897 Irish Free State. pupils. The cost of the primary schools in public money was £3,501,790, an average of £7 IS. IId. per head, and of the secondary schools £319,525, an average of £13 19s. 1d. per head. The cost per head is much below that in England and Wales, Norway, and Switzerland, and is just one-half that of Holland. The Department recognizes that its first work should be the co-ordination of primary, secondary, and technical education, but points out that co-ordination under local control as carried out in England and Scotland would present very grave difficulties. What was immediately possible has been done. Aims and methods have been unified by the co-ordination of the curricula of the various systems and the creation of administrative machinery to keep the work of all three branches in harmony. The curricula for primary and secondary schools are dovetailed into one another, and the courses in the training colleges for primary teachers are assimilated to those in secondary schools. The inspectorate, too, has been reorganized on similar lines. The chief obstacle to further co-ordination is that primary education is free, and secondary is not, and few students pass by scholarships from primary to secondary schools. The Minister, however, now has power to make attendance at post-primary courses compulsory up to the age of 16. There would still remain a lacuna on the side of technical education,
which may be filled up when the present Commission on this subject has reported. The task of education in the Free State is complicated by the great experiment of creating a bilingual country, the progress of which is sketched in the report.
HE teaching of colloquial Irish has been compulsory in the primary schools of the Free State; it has been encouraged in various ways in the secondary schools, and in the coming school year, Compulsory 1927-28, it will be an essential subject Irish. for the Intermediate Certificate Examination for all pupils. Was this contemplated when the treaty was made? Was it clearly understood on both sides, that citizens of the Free State who objected would be subject to compulsion or to pressure to learn a language which they had no intention of using? Anyhow, after three years' experience, the conscience of many thoughtful people is growing increasingly uneasy as to the results. Primary education is asserted by large numbers of persons with experience to have seriously deteriorated. An hour a day given to Irish has not at present increased the number of Irish-speaking citizens, while it has taken time from other subjects. Children from the primary schools competing for scholarships in secondary schools achieve results much below the standard formerly attained. Protestant schools in particular are hard hit. It becomes more and more difficult to obtain sufficient candidates for the training colleges, for the admitted reason that young men and women have no inclination for a life devoted to teaching Irish and teaching in Irish. The Dublin Protestant Training College this year, out of 100 candidates, found only nineteen come up to a standard never very high. The supply of good candidates has dropped. It is a serious question for Protestant schools. In secondary schools the encouragement and extension of Irish teaching has led to the almost complete disappearance of German from the curriculum, and to the rapid decline in French. Unless the proposed rule is withdrawn, candidates for the Intermediate Certificate will next year have to qualify in the following five subjects: Irish, English, history and geography, mathematics, and science. Other subjects must find what place they can. Is this a satisfactory curriculum for secondary schools? And is it satisfactory that there should be no variety of curriculum in them?
N his lecture on "Psychological Difficulties of the IN Nursery," Dr. C. W. Kimmins published some conclusions of great educational interest, based apparently on direct observations. His division of child-life and adolescence into ageperiods on psychological lines deserves careful study. The years from three to six," the great fantasy period," are of great importance in the child's life. From six to ten, the child is docile and happy, ego-centric, and content to play alone. From ten to fourteen, the herd instinct begins to develop, and from fourteen to nineteen is the age of romance.' Dr. Kimmins states that up to the age of fourteen there is no dreaming connected with the opposite sex. Day dreaming, he says, is not necessarily harmful, but if carried too far may be a bad preparation for the rough and tumble of life. A happy home is the great safeguard of mental stability in later life, as specialists have confirmed.