30 years ago

12th March 2004 at 00:00
Plus ca change. On March 15, 1974, schools are declared the only institutions where antisocial children can receive moral and social training: A call for more social education was made on Saturday by Arthur Williamson, retiring president of the Ayrshire local association of the Educational Institute of Scotland.

Mr Williamson, headmaster of Shortlees primary, Kilmarnock, said schools must now give a much more important place to social education.

Young people growing up without a consistent set of moral values would create a society unable to survive . . .

The school was now the only institution where antisocial children received social and moral training. This training, often begun in the infants'

department but scaled down considerably as the years went by, must be given a more important place in the primary curriculum.

"Guidance departments now exist in secondary schools, but for many of the worst behaved pupils this is too little and too late. Habits of truancy have already begun. Acts of vandalism have been perpetrated, bullying has been practised and even extortion rackets operated.

"Thus the home is not accepting its responsibilities in regard to these children, and although much good can be done in a school day, it may be that time in school is not long enough to provide all the social education needed."

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