English Conservatives and schools for the poor c.1780-1833 : a study of the sunday school, school of industry and the Philanthropic Society's School for vagrant and Criminal Children.
thesisposted on 30.03.2009, 10:34 by Malcolm McKinnon Dick
The chapters of this thesis concentrate upon three kinds of schools, all of which achieved initial significance in the 1780s: Sunday schools, schools of industry and the Philanthropic Society's institutions for the education of vagrant and criminal children. The thesis examines the providers of education and their doctrines, the process and content of schooling inside the establishments which they created, and the reactions of parents and children to the kind of education ostensibly provided for their benefit. In analysing the process and content of education, the study investigates the patterns of organization, forms of authority, assumptions about learning, pedagogy, the curriculum, rewards and punishments, and social welfare, contained in and provided by the schools. The ways in which the "consumers" of schooling, parents and children, received the education provided, enables some assessment to be made of the impact of instruction upon those it was designed to affect. Attention in the thesis, is largely concentrated upon the operation of the three kinds of schools in London and the Midlands, although other areas in England provide some evidence to support the contentions which the work contains. This chapter is in three parts. The first section considers some historiographical issues relevant to a study of education between 1780 and 1833. The second part attempts to explain the reasons why education was seen as socially significant by its promoters and the final section focuses upon the social ideas which provided the theoretical bases of the specific educational schemes examined in subsequent chapters.