Past TimesEd

18th April 2003 at 01:00
75 years ago. April 14, 1928

IT is not generally realised how serious a moral loss sometimes attends the transference of children from their village school to the district senior school. Children who were once pleasant mannered and friendly become temporarily hooligans. The classes in their new school are probably large and the type of discipline is new to them. There are novel subjects in the curriculum, and methods of work in arithmetic and other subjects are often slightly, but to children, bewilderingly different, from those in their old school.

50 years ago. April 17, 1953

ONE of the least edifying spectacles that education provides is the sex war that is waged between men and women teachers. It has all the marks of a squalid domestic dispute that is made public by the noise with which it is carried on. Both parties almost seem to resent the other's presence.

Members of the National Association of Schoolmasters and the National Union of Women Teachers last week appeared to be shouting at each other and calling one another names across the south of England.

25 years ago. April 21, 1978

POLITICAL education again: this time money for youth organisations for training in politics and, at a different level, more evidence of the stress to the system caused by political campaigning by extreme groups whose main claim to attention is the relish with which they offend all decent notions of behaviour. The hand-out of funds ... seems a good example of the old truth that no kind of public expenditure is too barmy to gain support in a period of acute financial stringency. For once the egregious Dr Boyson hit the nail on the head. This is an absurd waste of money. It is also based on a grotesque misunderstanding of the causes of present-day apathy.

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