Education (Later 20th Century)

Education (later 20th Century)

1944 Butler Education Act – into effect in 1947
  * Elementary – state, free
  * Private fee- charging preparatory schools for m/c
  * Modern (attended by 80%): non-selective, co-educational, vocational education for those aged 11-15
  * Grammar (12%): selective through 11+ exam, single sex, academic = professions and universities. 11-18yrs
  * Technical (5%): selective through 11+; technical and academic from 11-15/18. Second cut of 11+ candidates went to technical schools. Very few LEAS built.
  * Continuation of public school system.
Conservatism of model
  * School leaving age extended, but examinatiosn to selct and motivate; success meritocracy through scholarships.
  * Successful w/c pupils in system may be rewarded and advamced
1944 Act distinguished: Those ‘interested in learning for it’s own sake’; Those interested/ or with insight in the machine; Those who could deal with ‘concrete things rather than ideas’

Was the 11+ fair?
  * ‘Equality of opportunity’ vs structural inequality: an equal opportunity to get into an elitist system
  * Cyril Burt and intelligence testing: assumptions underpinning the 11+ exams, how to assess the intelligence esp. re: language that is shaped by environment, class and ethnic backgrounds. Advantage to m/c background
  * Early sociological studies showed that grammar schools educated m/c
  * Those in top stream were educated to pass = passing 11+ = self-fulfilling prophecy. M/c culture ensured they benefitted form the system.

Early Leaving
  * Concerns raised by educational researchers about the number of grammar school pupils who didn’t stay on to 6th form, but chose to leave at 15. 1959; 11% left at 15.
  * Reasons given for leaving; Low ability; home conditions; no will to work
  * Higher proportions of the minority professional/clerical classes get the majority of A levels.
  * Those that passed the 11+ benefitted hugely....