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The development of full time elementary education for the lower orders during the nineteenth century, with special reference to schooling in Hessle, Hull, Kirk Ella, Swanland and North Ferriby

Davison, Leigh Maarten


Leigh Maarten Davison


V.A. McClelland


Baring the nineteenth century the State increasingly intervened in the field of elementary education. This study examines why the intervention occurred, the form it took, and its impact upon the development of schooling in Hessle, Hull, Swanland, Kirk Ella and North Ferriby. The aim of the study is not to list every state intervention or to provide a history of the provision of schooling in the areas mentioned. Attention rather is focused upon (a) the several unsuccessful attempts made during the period from 1807 to 1858 to entice Parliament to legislate for a national system of elementary education, (b) an examination of the local impact of Robert Lowe's Revised Code of 1862 and (c) the process of the making of the 1870 Elementary Education Act with a description of the School Board era it ushered in. The significance of the School Attendance Committee created by the Elementary Education Act of 1876 is also discussed.
Chapter One details the various types of voluntary schools which flourished throughout the nineteenth century. The origin and development of both the British and Foreign Society and the National School Society is examined. The final section of the first chapter delineates a case study, the provision of voluntary schooling in Hessle during the nineteenth century. The failure of the State from 1807 to 1858 to provide a national system of elementary education is treated in chapter two, by an examination of four unsuccessful elementary education Bills introduced into Parliament, Samuel Whitbread's Parochial Schools Bill of 1807, Henry Brougham's Parish Schools Bill of 1820, J. A. Roebuck's 1833 resolution that the House with the smallest possible delay consider the means of establishing a system of National Education, and W. J. Fox's 1850 Education Bill, 'to Promote the Secular Education of the People in England and Wales'.
In chapter three the workings of the Revised Code of 1862 is detailed and its impact upon North Ferriby National School, Swanland Congregational School and Bishop Barton National School is examined. The Revised Code had nothing to do with school provision, Edward Forster's Elementary Education Bill of 1870, however, aimed to end the existing deficiencies in school accommodation. Chapter four outlines the proposals contained in the Bill and gives a detailed account of both liberal and tory opposition. The 1870 Elementary Education Act ushered in the School Board era and some aspects of the problems it brought with it are discussed in chapter five.
During the School Board period, a second local education authority was established in areas not covered by a school board, namely the School Attendance Committee. The formation of School Attendance Committees resulted from Sandon's Elementary Education Act of 1876. The first section of chapter six outlines the measures relating to the School Attendance Committee that were contained in Sandon's Bill. The second section of the chapter is a case study of the Sculcoates Attendance Committee; it had little success when trying to combat the problem of truancy. Truancy is also discussed in chapter seven. The chapter examines the causes of truancy at North Ferriby National School from the period when attendance became compulsory in 1880, to the end of the nineteenth century. Truancy, as revealed in chapter eight, sometimes led to confrontation situations arising between the truant's parents and the school master. The chapter, using data from the previously mentioned local areas, examines conflict situations that arose in the classroom, and secondly the use of corporal punishment. The Conclusion reveals the major problem faced by the voluntary schools studied in the thesis was not the religious one, but the need to remain financially solvent and secure the regular attendance of children.


Davison, L. M. (1982). The development of full time elementary education for the lower orders during the nineteenth century, with special reference to schooling in Hessle, Hull, Kirk Ella, Swanland and North Ferriby. (Thesis). University of Hull. Retrieved from

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Jun 13, 2023
Publicly Available Date Jun 13, 2023
Keywords Education
Public URL
Additional Information Department of Education Studies,
The University of Hull
Award Date Oct 1, 1982


Thesis (22.3 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 1982 Leigh Maarten Davison. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder.

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