Challenge and Response (1950)

This pamphlet explains how the Ministry of Education set about training 70,000 teachers in the immediate aftermath of World War 2.

The complete document is shown in this single web page. You can scroll through it or use the following links to go to the various sections.

1. History of emergency training (7)
2. Buildings, equipment and finance (15)
3. The candidates (23)
4. Students, staffs, courses (36)
5. The curriculum (76)
6. The probationary years (116)
7. Summary (1945-1950) (127)

I. Memorandum - Ministry/LEAs (131)
II. List of colleges (144)
III. Map of colleges (152)
IV. Memorandum sent to interviewing boards (153)
V. Teaching practice - college principal's note (155)
VI. Statistical tables viii-xiii (159)

The text of Challenge and Response was prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 25 October 2022.

Challenge and Response (1950)
Ministry of Education Pamphlet No. 17

London: His Majesty's Stationery Office 1950
Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO and the Queen's Printer for Scotland.

[title page]





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The training of teachers must always be the subject of experiment. It is a growing point of education.



The Ministry wishes to thank the following for the use of photographs:

Messrs. Aerofilms, Ltd. (for the aerial photograph of Alnwick Castle in "Country Houses");
Messrs. H. Tempest, Ltd., Mundella Works, Nottingham (dining hall);
Lancaster Guardian, Ltd. (dormitory);
Messrs. S. J. Herbert and Sons, St. Thomas Street, Weymouth (workroom).
Most of the remaining photographs were taken by students or members of the staffs of the emergency colleges, to whom the Ministry is happy to make acknowledgment.

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The Origin of the Scheme7
A "Pilot" Course8
Responsibility for Putting the Plan into Action9
The First Candidates for Training9
The End of Hostilities10
Progress in 194611
Progress in 194712
Development in 1948 and 194913

The College Buildings15
Furnishing and Equipment18
College Libraries19
Distribution of Colleges20

Selection of Candidates23
Allocating the Students to Colleges29
The Waiting Period34

The Students36
The Staffing of the Colleges51
The Layout of the Session56
Teaching Practice60
The Scope of the Courses64
Principles of Education76
Welsh Studies81
Physical Education83
Health Education85
Modern Languages88
Religious Knowledge90
Art and Crafts95
Handicraft (Woodwork and Metalwork)98
General Science100
Rural Studies102
Visual Aids103

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Social Studies111
Combined Courses112
Individual Study113

Probationers' Reports120
Special Courses123

7. SUMMARY (1945-1950)



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TOWARDS the end of the war the need for large numbers of new teachers presented the educational system with an unprecedented challenge. This pamphlet records the response that was made to that challenge. The emergency scheme for the training of teachers was designed and carried out as a combined operation in which every branch of the educational service undertook to play its appropriate part. It called for new and often informal methods of administration on the part of the Government Departments concerned, but its success depended on the faith and vigour with which all the partners carried out their work. I am sure that the originators of the scheme would join me in paying tribute to the men and women who came forward in such large numbers to be trained; to the local education authorities who took on the heavy task of staffing and administering the colleges; to the teaching profession who provided most of the college tutors and welcomed into their ranks the teachers trained under the scheme; to the many headmasters, headmistresses and teachers who, in their schools, gave to the students encouragement, guidance and practical help in the practice of their new craft; and to all members of selection boards who gave up their time week after week to interview the host of candidates who appeared before them - some 95,000 in all. Lastly, I should like to congratulate the Principals and staffs of the colleges who, by devoting themselves to the job with tireless enthusiasm, quickly transformed a paper plan into a lively reality.

I have no doubt that the account of the scheme contained in this pamphlet will be of great interest and value to a wide public; and in issuing it I send my best wishes to the teachers trained under the scheme. No one who saw the colleges at first hand could have doubted the quality and promise of the candidates in training; I am sure that in their work in the schools they will prove worthy of the great profession which they have qualified themselves to enter.

September, 1950.

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DURING 1943, before the Education Act of 1944 had even been passed, the Board of Education began to consider how to meet the need for teachers which would arise after the war. They knew that the Act and the reforms with which it was associated would require far more teachers than had been employed in 1939. Accurate calculations were impossible; detailed statistical returns had been discontinued during the war, and there were many uncertain factors - in particular the extent to which men and women would return to teaching after war service. It was estimated, however, that to make good deficiencies and to provide for raising the leaving age to 15 and for other new developments, about 70,000 new teachers would have to be recruited within a few years after the war, over and above recruitment at the pre-war level, from the training colleges and universities.

These sources had before the war provided rather fewer than 7,000 trained teachers each year, so that even if their capacity were doubled, it would take about ten years to bridge the gap. While therefore it was clearly necessary both to restore and to expand the capacity of the existing training institutions, it was equally clear that they could not by themselves meet the needs. Exceptional measures were required to solve the problem and the Board of Education began to consider a special scheme of emergency training, with its own training colleges, giving shortened intensive courses on a large scale to men and women released from war service. At the end of 1943 and the beginning of 1944 informal meetings were held with representatives of local education authorities and teachers throughout the country to discuss and explain the proposed scheme. The normal course for students coming straight from school is one of two years, and it was widely held, as recommended a little later in the McNair Report, that the two years should be extended to three. At these meetings the fear was often expressed that a shortened course would produce inferior teachers, and that the scheme would be detrimental both to the children, who would suffer from poor teaching, and to the emergency entrants themselves, who would hold through their professional life a status inferior to that of the regularly trained teacher. At the same time, there was general

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appreciation of the need for exceptional measures, and of the good quality of the candidates that it might be possible to attract - older men and women who would bring to their training a much greater width of experience and maturity of judgment.

The President of the Board had also, in December, 1943, appointed an advisory committee, consisting of local education authority officers, teachers, His Majesty's Inspectors and officers of the Board, to study these problems, and to make recommendations. The Committee reached the conclusion that an intensive one-year course of 48 working weeks could give a satisfactory training, if the right candidates were selected, and if they were required to follow up the one-year course by a course of part-time study lasting two years. The Committee discussed in some detail the subjects to be studied; the division of time between college study and school practice; the objects to be sought in each part of the training; the staffing of the colleges; the assessment of students at the end of the course; and the nature of the part-time study required. In publishing the Committee's report (Circular 1652, dated 15th May, 1944) the Board announced that they accepted these recommendations as the basis of action.


Though the war in Europe was still far from its end, and demobilisation seemed to be distant, there was already a number of candidates (such as men discharged from the Services on medical grounds) who could qualify for the scheme. It was therefore decided to make a start at the earliest possible moment and to run, if not a full-scale college, at any rate a pilot plant. For this purpose the good offices of Goldsmiths' College were enlisted, and with the enthusiastic co-operation of the Principal and his staff, a small group of men were accepted in September, 1944, for a one-year experimental course. The students (who eventually numbered 28) were selected by the College authorities, while fees and maintenance allowances were paid by the Board of Education under the further education and training scheme. A second course was run in 1945-6. The staff of the College found this experience both strenuous and exhilarating; and they passed on its fruits, either directly or through H.M. Inspectors, to the emergency training colleges proper, as they struggled with the many problems of the new venture.*

*A full report on the work of this course written by members of the college staff and edited by Dr. M. M. Lewis was published in 1946 under the title "Teachers from the Forces". (G. G. Harrap & Co., 6s.)

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Since the scheme was designed to meet a national need it was proposed that the whole cost should fall on national funds, but that its administration should be based on close co-operation between the central government and local education authorities. The Board (later the Ministry) were to be responsible for the candidates - selection, allocation to colleges, correspondence about grants and so on. Local education authorities were invited to suggest suitable buildings, but the selection was in the hands of the Ministry whose officers drew up plans for adaptations. The buildings, when found, were leased or requisitioned by the Ministry of Works, who also carried out the adaptations, and in most cases were responsible for maintenance. This was appropriate, as most of the buildings were already in Government occupation, having been put up or taken over for some war-time Government purpose. The Ministry of Works also furnished and equipped the colleges according to standard schedules drawn up by the Ministry of Education. Once the colleges were established, they were to be conducted by local education authorities in almost the same way as any other educational institution which they maintained, except that their expenditure would be met in full by grant from the Exchequer. In detail, the relations between the Ministry and authorities were governed by a "Memorandum of Arrangements", which was first issued in a relatively simple form, and later gradually amended and expanded as the result of experience. Its effect was, broadly, to entrust the day to day administration of the colleges to the local education authorities while the Ministry laid down the general principles, ensured that practice between colleges was uniform where uniformity was required, and controlled expenditure mainly by controlling the numbers and salaries of lecturers, and numbers of domestic staff. The fact that the document determining the lines of administration was not a statutory instrument, but an informal memorandum, permitted great flexibility in adapting action to local circumstances. Extracts from it are printed in Appendix I.


It was decided that war service should be an essential condition of eligibility. "War service" for this purpose was very widely defined, and included civilian employment to which a candidate had been directed, or in which he (or she) had been allowed to remain by the Ministry of Labour and National Service. This would cover very nearly everyone of suitable age and experience. while making it possible to finance the students' training on the

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same lines as the Government's other post-war resettlement schemes. No fees would be charged for tuition, and candidates would be given substantial allowances sufficient to provide not only for their own maintenance, but for dependants as well.

By December, 1944, the peak demand for civilian labour of all kinds for war purposes had been passed and it became possible to invite applications for training under the scheme from men and women released from the Services on medical grounds, men in medical grades III or IV, and women in civilian employment. By the end of March, 1945, over 7,000 applications had been received, 29 interviewing boards were at work, and 547 candidates had been accepted for training. Three buildings had also been found which were not in use for any war purpose and which did not require much adaptation to fit them as emergency training colleges - Wall Hall, a country house in Hertfordshire, which had recently been bought by the County Education Authority; a hutted hostel at Exhall, near Coventry, which had been put up to house war-time factory workers, but was no longer needed for that purpose; and Alnwick Castle in Northumberland. Colleges were opened in these three buildings in May and June, 1945, the first two for women, the third for men. In addition, a permanent training college for men (Chester) arranged to take a group of emergency scheme students for the session 1945- 46.


In June, 1945, as a result of the end of the war in Europe, it was decided that applications could be invited from men and women in the Services, and as a result they poured in at a rapidly increasing rate; in August 2,000 were received, by the end of the year the rate was 5,000 a month, and it rose to 6,000 a month in the early part of 1946.* The number of interviewing boards and the number of centres in which they worked were rapidly increased, and the whole of the selection machinery was expanded. By the end of 1945 60 boards were working in 29 different towns, and the number was growing quickly.

Candidates were not given any priority of release from the Services, but were to become available for training when they were released in the ordinary way. Though this would do something to spread the demand for admission to college, the rate of application made it clear that every effort would have to be made to open colleges quickly. The search for buildings was therefore intensified. Ultimately the end of the war led to the release of many properties

*For details of the flow of applications see Tables I and II on pages 28 and 29.

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held by Government Departments, but at first there was an increase in the number of troops stationed in the United Kingdom. and the Services' requirements for accommodation grew in some respects. This was a period of intense house hunting, in which the officers of the Ministry, helped and spurred on by the local education authorities, scoured England and Wales, investigating every rumour of a possible building. These efforts were so far successful that by the end of 1945 the number of colleges opened had increased to six, while the number in hand for conversion was over twenty, with room for about 4,000 students. Many more had been identified as suitable, but it was not known when they would be given up by their occupants, or to whom they would be allotted. By this time many other post-war schemes were emerging, sponsored or initiated by other Departments, and there were many more official claims than buildings being surrendered.

It was also decided during 1945 to set up a parallel system of emergency training for teachers of technical subjects, mainly with a view to employment in technical colleges and other further education establishments. This decision eventually led to the establishment of three colleges devoted solely to this form of training. They were faced with quite different educational problems and their work is not therefore described in this pamphlet, nor do any of the figures quoted in it cover this special form of training.


At the beginning of this year just over 1,000 candidates had been admitted to training, and places for 4,000 more were in sight. On the other hand, over 5,000 candidates were already on the waiting list for training and about 15,000 more were awaiting interview, with fresh applications coming in at the rate of over 1,000 a week. In its early stages the scheme had been planned on the assumption that the end of the war in Europe would be followed by a substantial period of partial demobilisation while prolonged operations went on against Japan. The sudden collapse of Japanese resistance had meant a complete change in demobilisation plans, and the effects of the atomic bomb were now being felt even in the emergency training scheme. If candidates were not to wait an impossibly long time for training, the scheme would now have to deal with a large flow of candidates in a short time instead of with a moderate flow over a long period. At the same time the Ministry had to consider not only the number of candidates but also how many new teachers the schools could absorb in a limited time. With these two points in mind, it was decided in May, 1946, to aim

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at providing colleges with places for about 12,000 students, to be operated probably for an average of three sessions each.

By July, the number of colleges opened had risen to 19, with just under 4,000 places; and the first 400 emergency course students had completed their training. During the second half of the year the flow of applications diminished to about 2,000 each month. By the end of December, 31 colleges had been opened, with places for 7,350 students, and some 800 students had successfully completed their training and taken up teaching posts. The pool of waiting candidates, on the other hand, in spite of some 7,500 having been drained away from it, now amounted to 25,000. The popularity of the scheme among Service men and women was immense, and the applications had surpassed all expectations both in quality and in quantity. As a result candidates had now to be asked to be prepared for a wait of anything up to two years. It was therefore decided, as buildings became available, to "raise the sights" and to aim at providing 13,000 places in all - 8,500 for men and 4,500 for women.


The results were now seen of the previous year's efforts in acquiring and converting buildings. In January seven colleges were opened, in February five more and by the end of May a further five, making a total of 48 colleges with just under 12,000 places. The work on the remaining buildings was completed under increasing difficulties caused by shortage not so much of labour as of materials; but by the end of the year seven more colleges had been added, giving in all nearly 13,500 places. Seven thousand seven hundred emergency students had completed their training, 5,400 men and 2,300 women.

During the early months of 1947 it became possible to estimate more closely how many teachers the schools would be able to absorb during the succeeding few years. It was now known that practically all the teachers who had left the schools for war service had returned to teaching; and that the fall in the number of teachers through lack of recruitment in the war years was very closely matched by the fall in the number of children, due to the low birth-rate of the early 1930's. Additional teachers would therefore be needed mainly for:

(i) Teaching the additional (14-15) age group; this demand would arise between April, 1947, and the end of 1948.

(ii) Reducing the size of classes; this reform would have to be spread over a number of years and would be largely dependent on the supply of buildings.

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(iii) The increase in the number of children due to the high birth-rate of the years from 1944 onwards.
The additional teachers required under (i) and (ii) would include a substantial proportion of men, but those required under (iii) would be almost entirely women for some years to come, as men are not employed in teaching infants' classes. If the birth-rate continued at a high level, there would be practically no limit to the number of women teachers needed for the emergency scheme, but there would be a definite limit to the number of men that the schools could usefully absorb. The Ministry consulted on this matter the newly formed Interim Committee for Teachers and as a result decided to close the scheme to further applications for men at the end of June, 1947 (end of August for overseas applications).


To meet the need for women teachers the emergency scheme was adapted in two distinct ways. First, some of the emergency colleges for men (or for men and women) were closed after only two sessions and were made available as new two-year colleges wholly or mainly for women students: in some cases there was a transitional year in which they took some emergency and some two-year students. There were five such conversions in 1948 and nine more in 1949, and they made an exceedingly valuable addition to the country's training resources. Since the end of the war, the permanent training colleges for women had been expanded as rapidly as possible, but large-scale building was out of the question and most of the buildings suitable for adaptation were being taken for emergency colleges. As a result, in spite of the need for women teachers, there were many suitable girls leaving school and wishing to enter permanent (two-year) training colleges for whom no places could be found.

Secondly, arrangements were made to train more women under the emergency scheme itself. It had been open throughout to women as well as to men, but their response had been relatively small - possibly because fewer women had been in the Services, or otherwise uprooted from pre-war occupations, and fewer women were therefore brought face to face, as so many men were, with the need to seek new employment. In the colleges one place in three was allotted to women, but the proportion of women applicants was only one in five. In the early months of 1948, a publicity campaign was prepared to attract more women into the emergency training scheme; at the same time the number of places for women was increased by re-organising a number of men's emergency colleges as

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"mixed". This involved mainly the replacement of a few of the men tutors by women, and was preferable for various reasons to re-organising a smaller number of men's colleges into wholly women's colleges.

As a result of these two measures the waiting period for men still due to enter college was increased - for some of them to well over two years - and this caused a good deal of hardship. It was felt; however, that the needs of the schools were paramount.

The recruiting campaign for women started in July, 1948, and had immediate results for a month or two. From an average of 100 applicants a week the figure rose to 600 a week in mid-July, and 870 in the third week in August, but thereafter fell steadily to reach the old level by the end of the year. As was to be expected, the increase in numbers resulting from the campaign was partly offset by a lowering of the quality, reflected in a lower acceptance rate; hitherto rather more than half of the women applicants interviewed had been found suitable for training, but now only about a third were found acceptable. Among those accepted, too, were a high proportion of married women with children, who were difficult to accommodate, as many could not be sent to residential colleges and could be trained only if there was a college within reach of their home. The recruitment of women continued until the end of June, 1949, with the result summarised in Table II on page 29, and thanks to the re-organisation of the colleges, the women recruited as a result of this last campaign could all be offered admission to college after quite short periods of waiting.

By the end of 1949, 33 emergency colleges were still in operation compared with 55 at the peak - 10 for men, 8 for women and 15 taking both men and women. AIl but six of these were due to close before the end of 1950.

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THE conversion of the buildings was carried out by the *Ministry of Works, according to plans drawn up by the Ministry of Education. In the early stages of the scheme, in 1944 and 1945, work was hindered by the general shortage of labour; later very often by shortage of materials. Various expedients, and in particular the employment of some of their mobile labour squads, generally enabled the Ministry of Works to provide a substantial labour force on the site, but even in 1947 completion of colleges was being held up by shortages of heating pipes and electrical switch gear. Many devices were used to shorten delays. The work was reduced to the essential minimum, both because this was national policy in a period of general shortages, and for the sake of reducing the time of completion. Even so, completion was often exasperatingly slow, and arrangements were often - in fact, usually - made to enable a college to start before the work of conversion was finished. Where for example, heating apparatus was the cause of delay, work was concentrated on, say, half the residential quarters. The college was then opened with these residential quarters filled with twice their proper quota of students, while work proceeded on the remaining quarters; and oil stoves might be used in classrooms while work advanced on the permanent installation. Seldom. if ever, had all the workmen left a college before the students arrived.

The students accepted such quarters with equanimity, preferring makeshifts to a longer period of waiting. The harassed staffs, often living under conditions of discomfort in their own quarters, but fully sympathising with the students' impatience to start work, cheerfully organised their courses in spite of shortages of space and equipment, and improvised until laboratories and craft rooms were ready, until equipment and books had arrived. All concerned preferred to accept the conditions rather than to wait until all was complete, which in the circumstances of the time must have meant much longer delay. Students sometimes arrived at college to find the tutorial staff scrubbing out the classrooms, and within a short time

*There were three exceptions to this, at Alnwick, Wall Hall, and Newland Park, where for special reasons the work was carried out by the local education authority according to plans approved by the Ministry of Education.

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set to work themselves; and they did much in the way of fitting up work-rooms and laboratories, and in improvising equipment. This experience of working together for a common purpose under conditions of difficulty brought about a sense of comradeship in adventure which was highly characteristic of the first session of each college, and brought to the fore the men and women with initiative and organising ability.

For the purpose of deciding on the suitability of buildings, and of planning conversions, the Ministry drew up early in 1944 a schedule of accommodation for an emergency training college. This schedule was inevitably a compromise; on the one hand it fell short of what was desirable in a training college for 200 students, while on the other it was already clear that few available buildings were likely to afford as much accommodation as it specified. In the event, no college building conformed to the schedule. Many colleges, especially in the early days of the scheme, were markedly below the standard suggested in number of students accommodated, and in quality of accommodation offered. In the later stages, when industrial hostels and hutted hospitals were available, the schedule was sometimes exceeded, both in the number of students and in the amount and nature of accommodation offered. Experience showed that the large country house, regarded in so many quarters as the solution of the problem, was seldom practicable and never wholly satisfactory. It was nearly always too small, inadequate in washing and sanitary provision, in kitchens and dining rooms, and in large teaching spaces. Heating was a constant difficulty, as coal fires meant a large domestic staff when such help was almost unobtainable, and central heating, if already installed. was usually derelict and useless. The few country houses that were selected had for the most part been used by Service Departments during the war, and had been extended by the addition of huts. Hutted hospitals, of which a few became available, had ample floor space, and good teaching rooms were easy to provide. Their disadvantage was that the students had to sleep in large dormitories, because partitioning the wards into cubicles or bedrooms would have been excessively costly in time, labour and materials. Temporary office blocks proved to be well suited for the purpose, being well built, well lighted, and having large rooms suitable for teaching; and a variety of smaller rooms usable as bedrooms for two to six students. Industrial hostels, however, were the most convenient for college purposes, and it was these buildings, of which the Ministry secured a considerable number through the Ministry of Works in the course of 1946, which ultimately provided the backbone of the scheme. The residential huts were already divided into small bedrooms,

[text continues after photographic plates]

[The following photographic plates were printed on unnumbered pages between pages 16 and 17. In each case, click on the image for a larger version.]




Country Houses - continued


These buildings form part of one college

Composite Institution - continued





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which were used as single bed-sitting rooms for students. The central administrative block as it stood offered a large kitchen with up-to-date equipment, large dining hall, assembly hall with stage, and a number of rooms useful as administrative offices, common rooms, library, etc. Teaching accommodation was provided by gutting some of the residential blocks. These buildings were usually of unprepossessing appearance, but on the whole they were in comfort and utility the best available in the scheme. Some idea of the variety of buildings used, and of the kind of accommodation which could be contrived in them, is given in the preceding photographs.

As was to be expected, experience showed the need for modification, where space permitted, of the standard schedule of accommodation. The provision first suggested for art, craft and science was found in practice to be too low. and when conditions permitted, the space allotted to these subjects was doubled. A more serious problem was the provision of gymnasia. Apart from one or two buildings which had previously been used as schools, none of the premises available for emergency training offered the possibility of a good gymnasium. In the industrial hostels the assembly halls, while usually large enough, had solid floors, and were also much in demand for other purposes: and gymnasia could not be provided out of the rest of the buildings, which generally consisted of standard hutting 18 feet 6 inches [5.6m] wide. In colleges converted out of temporary office blocks, no large clear space could be obtained because the roofs required supporting stanchions at comparatively close intervals; while in converted country houses spaces as large as 60 feet by 30 feet [18.3 x 9.15m] were practically unobtainable. Thus in the early stages all colleges were obliged to make do with the part-time use of the assembly hall, together with such help as could be obtained from neighbouring schools. In the smaller colleges this practice could be tolerated for the duration of the scheme. In the larger colleges, however, the part-time use of the hall was, if possible at all, quite inadequate for the purpose, and the Ministry decided that separate gymnasia should be built. Permanent construction for a temporary scheme such as this was out of the question. and the usual forms of hutting gave neither the necessary width, nor height, nor the solidity required to support fixed apparatus. After some search a special form of hut was found which could be adapted to give the minimum dimensions of 60 feet by 30 feet and could support apparatus, and this was provided in some of the largest colleges.

The accommodation of the college staffs in residential colleges provided a special problem. In the general housing shortage it soon

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became clear that male staff could not be recruited in any numbers unless married quarters could be offered. The Ministry was reluctant to accept this conclusion, for two reasons. In the first place, the formation of self-contained flats, with kitchens and bathrooms, made heavy demands on scarce materials and on labour, and appreciably lengthened the time required to adapt a building. Secondly, married quarters made much heavier inroads than single quarters on the space available for students. The standard of accommodation was far from lavish, especially in the hutted types of colleges, where the standard width (18 feet 6 inches [5.64m]) of the huts set narrow limits to what could be done. Nevertheless, the difference in size between single and married quarters represented accommodation for six to eight students, and where, as often happened, ten or more flats were required, the reduction in student places was serious. Increasing difficulties in finding staff compelled the Ministry to raise the proportion of married quarters until in the later colleges for men up to three quarters of the staff accommodation took this form, and the provision of living quarters for the staff accounted for more than half of the work of conversion. In all 449 self-contained fiats were provided for family occupation. This was a fair sized housing scheme in itself, and in post-war conditions did much to attract suitable candidates for posts on the college staffs.


A standard schedule of furniture and equipment for the teaching rooms was devised with the help of H.M. Inspectors, and for the residential and catering side by the Ministry of Works. This schedule was drawn up in a form flexible enough to be adaptable to different sizes and types of college and different types of building. It was comprehensive, covering everything from demonstration benches and cinema projectors to teaspoons and dishcloths. Almost the only items excluded were items of science apparatus, as these proved difficult to order in bulk, and local education authorities were authorised to buy them direct. The furnishing was austere, but it was efficient and adequate, and many a permanent training college envied the emergency colleges their relatively ample supplies. The Ministry of Works used large stocks of furniture which were released as industrial hostels closed, but many of the special items such as woodwork benches, art room furniture and tools and equipment had to be ordered specially for the scheme. There were the inevitable post-war difficulties in obtaining timely delivery of items for which special orders had to be placed (such as science benches), and no college opened with a complete supply.

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On the whole, however, within a short time of starting the colleges considered themselves reasonably well provided.

All colleges were supplied for instructional purposes with one sound and one silent 16mm film projector, and a main broadcast receiving set with two or more separate speakers. These were almost invariably supplemented by equipment put together by staff and students, particularly such items as film strip projectors. The Ministry of Works also provided the assembly halls with stages for dramatic work, with curtain arrangement and lighting as ample as space permitted. In these respects particularly the emergency colleges were probably better equipped than the average permanent college.


Many of the colleges were isolated. and all except those in London, Manchester, and Birmingham had to send students far afield for teaching practice. The Ministry therefore provided all colleges other than those in the largest towns with one 8 h.p. [horse-power] car for the use of Principal and staff, and one utility vehicle for goods and passenger carrying. These were supplemented by the use of private cars belonging to members of the staff, who received mileage allowances for the use of their cars. The largest colleges were allowed two or three utility vehicles, while one or two large and isolated colleges were supplied with a 25-seater bus.

These vehicles were intended to provide for the normal needs of the colleges, including visits by the teaching staff to schools in the neighbourhood. They were not intended to meet the problem, with which so many colleges were faced, of sending away perhaps two hundred students at a time for teaching practice in scores of schools scattered over two or three counties. As teaching practice had to be confined to a few short periods during the college session, it would not have been economical to provide each college with enough buses to meet the full load, and at these periods colleges met their requirements by hiring.


In 1945 the educational life of the country was suffering from an acute shortage of books of all kinds. There was a good deal of anxiety when the scheme opened about equipping the colleges with essential books. In view of the difficulty of getting books by ordinary methods it was decided to introduce a scheme of central purchase through H.M. Stationery Office, combining a standard nucleus of books to be purchased in advance and supplied without request to all colleges with selection of further books by Principals

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and staff. The standard issue to all colleges consisted of a "unit library" of 400 books on a variety of topics (originally designed by the War Office for distribution to army units and specially ordered in great quantities from the various publishers), and a standard set of selected publications of the Ministry. The bulk of the college library, however, consisted of books selected by Principal and staff. As each Principal was appointed, he was invited to submit lists of additional books required, subject to certain limits of total numbers and total cost. The limit varied according to the size of the college, the smallest college being allowed 2,000 books for the college library in addition to the nucleus, while 5,000 was the limit for the largest colleges.

In the early days of the scheme it was usual to find that at least half of the books selected by a college as first choices were out of print or for other reasons unobtainable. Nevertheless, each college had a fair number of books by the time it opened, and this number was subsequently increased to form as comprehensive a library as possible. In fact, since the work of the colleges was largely experimental, Principals were generally advised to limit their first orders to books certain to be needed at once, and to add to their first collection in the light of experience.

Apart from its original quota, each college was free, if it could, to purchase urgently needed books direct from retailers when they could not be obtained through the Ministry because the publishers' stocks were temporarily exhausted. Some 54,000 volumes were also distributed to the colleges from surplus educational books given to the Ministry by the Service Departments. The local education authorities also provided books for special purposes - for example, children's school books which were required by the students in preparing lessons during teaching practice - and the colleges made good use of the facilities provided by public libraries.

Thus by various means emergency training colleges were as well supplied with suitable books as the times allowed. Moreover, their libraries contained only up-to-date publications, and were entirely free of the "dead wood" that is scarcely avoidable in long established institutions.


Suitable buildings were so few that the Ministry could influence the distribution of colleges throughout the country only within broad limits. The original intention had been to site the colleges in or near large centres of population (preferably university towns) so that the students could take advantage of their cultural oppor-

[page 21]

tunities. It was soon apparent, however, that it was in the large towns that the shortage of accommodation was most acute and that few large buildings were likely to be vacated there. The Ministry was therefore compelled to fall back on buildings in the smaller towns, which had to be organised as mainly residential colleges, and on buildings outside the towns, which could only be wholly residential.

From the educational point of view the residential college has great advantages. On the other hand, a large proportion of the students were married men, many of whom asked to be allotted to a day college so that they could live at home while training; and residential colleges also made much greater demands on space, and were very expensive to maintain. For the most part, however, provision had to be made in residential colleges, and the total number of places required, together with the scarcity of suitable buildings, severely restricted the Ministry's choice. One of the most important factors, after the actual suitability of the premises, was the amount of teaching practice available in the neighbourhood. Teaching practice played a large part in the emergency training course, and this, together with the relative shortness of the whole course, meant that each college required nearly twice as much provision for teaching practice as an ordinary college of the same size. In the end, it proved impossible for each college to have enough practising schools within daily travelling distance, and many of them had to send their students far afield and board them out for teaching practice. A full list of the colleges and a map showing their distribution are given in Appendices II and III. It will be observed that the colleges cluster thickly in south Lancashire, and the Midlands. This is merely because each of these areas during the war had an exceptionally large number of industrial hostels. In the West Riding of Yorkshire, on the other hand, comparatively few industrial hostels were available and in spite of prolonged efforts, buildings could be found for only three colleges. The concentration in and around London reflected the dense concentration of population and buildings in that area.


As already explained, the whole cost of the scheme was met by the Exchequer, either by direct payments, or by re-imbursing wholly the expenditure of local education authorities. Expenditure on acquisition or renting of buildings, their conversion, equipment and maintenance, was generally met by the Ministry of Works; other costs of maintenance, chiefly salaries and wages of staff, and

[page 22]

boarding costs, were met in the first instance by the local education authorities, their expenditure then ranking for 100 per cent. grant from the Ministry of Education; while maintenance allowances to students were paid direct by the Ministry. The actual running cost of colleges averaged about 220 per annum for a resident student, and about 120 per annum for a day student. The average maintenance allowances for the main categories of student were:

Men students -day 320; resident 220
Women students -day 200; resident 130

The allowances paid to men were on the average greater than those paid to women, because more of the men had dependants. About half the men students were married, and of these about half had children. Allowances were paid in respect of dependants up to 110 per annum for a wife, and 40 per annum for each child.

The cost of converting and equipping the colleges averaged rather more than 100 per student place. It was estimated in March, 1950 that the total cost of the scheme, including maintenance of colleges, allowances to students, cost of conversion and equipment, and expenditure by local education authorities in giving assistance to waiting candidates and to teachers during the period of part-time study, was likely to be in the neighbourhood of 20,500,000. Actual and estimated expenditure is as follows:

[page 23]




ORDINARILY the selection of candidates for admission to training colleges is carried out by the college authorities, who rely in the main on examination results (school certificate and higher certificate), reports from schools, and the results of personal interviews. For the emergency scheme a special nation-wide organisation was needed and the methods of selection had to be adapted to candidates who had left school several years - sometimes many years - previously. The advisory committee that had already submitted recommendations on the general planning of the emergency course was asked to consider the matter and submitted a report which was published in Circular 18, dated 19th December, 1944. The committee's chief recommendations were:

(i) Age limits should normally be 21 to 35.

(ii) Selection should be based on full information about candidates' full-time and part-time education and on their record in the Services or in civil employment.

(iii) There should then be an interview, the purpose of which should be to enable the members of the interviewing board to form a sound judgment on the question "whether a candidate is suitable by temperament, personality and intellectual capacity for an intensive course of training of the type proposed, and is likely subsequently to render efficient service as a teacher".

(iv) The possession of a school certificate should not be regarded as essential, but a candidate who had not passed a school certificate or similar examination should be required to write a connected account of some subject related to his own experience, and the scripts should be available to the interviewing board as part of the material which they would have before them. "Every interview should be conducted so that the candidate is given an opportunity of showing his powers of clear speech and exposition."

(v) Each interviewing board should consist of an officer of the Ministry of Education, a teacher, a person of experience in local educational administration and someone with experience in the work of training teachers. Interviewing boards dealing with

[page 24]

candidates for teaching in Wales should be composed of persons familiar with Welsh conditions and requirements.
Interviewing boards were set up on this model, invitations being issued by the Ministry, but it was not always possible to include a member with experience of local administration or of training college work. They met in all the large towns and at other convenient centres up and down the country, usually in rooms made available by the local education authority. The initial memorandum issued for the general guidance of the boards is set out in Appendix IV.

Applications were first scrutinised in the offices of the Ministry to see whether the candidates were technically eligible (one year's "national service" being the principal condition), and to make sure that they were not obviously unsuitable. A proportion of the applicants failed on one or other of these tests, but the greater part went forward for interview.

All candidates who had passed one of the examinations which normally qualify for admission to a training college, provided they were eligible on other grounds, were interviewed. But it was important for the boards to discover whether a candidate who had passed, say, the school certificate examination some years previously had maintained his interests in reading or general culture and, quite apart from this, whether he had the personal qualities required in a teacher. It was a matter of surprise to many members of boards to note the considerable number of candidates with school certificate and higher school certificate who had pursued no sort of systematic reading or study since leaving school. Similarly, for a candidate without certificate it was important to discover what value should be attached to claims on his written record to part-time education and private study, as they were the main factor in deciding whether he had reached the minimum standard of education.

In a typical interview the board had before it the candidate's application form which contained details of his formal education and subsequent study and experience. The members of the board examined the form in private and, when all were familiar with the main facts, invited the candidate in and began a conversation designed to bring out his chief characteristics. Usually an interview of 20 to 25 minutes was considered sufficient; but difficult cases might occupy half an hour or longer. Many boards made a practice of not recommending acceptance unless they were unanimous. As a rule, besides a plain indication of acceptance or rejection, the boards' reports included personal impressions which were of value to the college Principals and sometimes to the section of the Ministry

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concerned with the allocation of students to colleges, e.g. "Mr. X should be posted to a college with a strong Principal and staff, or he will run the place". Apart from recommending acceptance or rejection for the emergency scheme, it was open to the boards to recommend candidates for a university course, or for a two-year training course. if one of these seemed more suitable for the person concerned.

Candidates were medically examined at the time of interview, so far as medical officers were available. In order, however, to reduce the demands on civilian doctors, of whom there was an acute shortage until the last stages of demobilisation, the Ministry arranged with the three Service departments to obtain the demobilisation medical reports on ex-Service candidates (with the candidates' consent) and many were accepted without further medical examination, provided the demobilisation report was satisfactory.

Reference has already been made to the rapid expansion which took place in the interviewing organisation, following the flood of applications in 1945-6, and to the progress made in subsequent years.* The peak was reached in 1946, when the number of boards at work totalled 140. The members of these boards were almost all men and women in exacting full-time posts, and their work on the boards was limited by the amount of time that they could spare from their normal work. On the average the boards might be able to meet once a week, but when the waiting lists were long, they all made exceptional efforts to increase the number of interviews, and many contrived to give two days a week to this work for considerable periods. As a result 58,000 applications were dealt with in the course of the year, and the back of that particular problem was broken.

A large number of applications were sent by men serving overseas, many of whom were likely to remain abroad for some time. The Ministry decided to send interviewing boards to see these men and give them decisions, instead of leaving their applications in suspense for months, if not years. In April, 1946, ten boards were sent out, two to each of the theatres B.A.O.R., M.E.F., C.M.F., India and the Far East. These boards travelled many thousands of miles, and interviewed several thousand candidates in the space of two to three months. The Service departments gave all possible help, but owing to the nature of the season, the local conditions in many places, and the amount of work to be done in a limited time, several boards found their tour trying and arduous. The ten boards between them interviewed 4,280 candidates, of whom they accepted

*See Tables I and II on pages 28 and 29.

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2,885 or 67.4 per cent. This was a markedly higher proportion of acceptances than was usual in England and Wales, and all the boards remarked on the exceptionally high quality of the candidates they saw. These overseas candidates were almost invariably young, mostly in the early twenties, as it was the youngest men who under the demobilisation scheme were retained or sent abroad.

It was not possible at first to set up any machinery for considering appeals from rejected candidates, but the reduction in pressure which followed the closing of the scheme to men enabled the Ministry to meet this need. Appeals were entertained if the candidate could obtain written support from some person with experience and qualifications in educational work, and in such cases the candidate was given a second interview with a different board. From the beginning of July, 1947, to the end of March. 1950, 840 candidates were offered second interviews under this arrangement, 252 men and 588 women. Of these, 358 were, as a result, recommended for training, 110 men and 248 women.

At the outset of the scheme the problem of achieving a common standard was discussed, but the fact that the boards' judgments were concerned with qualities which could not be quantitatively assessed precluded any attempt at uniformity by mathematical methods such as are used in connection with large-scale written examinations. It was necessary to rely on the experience of members of boards to provide them with an approximately common idea of the standard required of a 'qualified' teacher. The Ministry assisted with memoranda of advice on points which were susceptible of a general ruling, and from time to time issued to the boards a table showing, for each board, the number of candidates (men and women) accepted and rejected to date, showing also acceptances and rejections as a percentage of the total number interviewed. This enabled each board to compare its rate of acceptance and rejection with that of others, so that boards whose rates differed appreciably from the average could review their practice and consult others about their standards.

A fair number of men candidates had to be rejected straight away on the medical evidence available at the time of their application, usually their Service medical records, but rejections on medical grounds were otherwise comparatively rare. Up to the end of March, 1950, only 216 men and 119 women recommended by interviewing boards as otherwise suitable were rejected as a result of medical examination. Arrangements were made for the examining medical officers, in cases of which they were doubtful, to obtain the opinion of a specialist, the cost being paid by the Ministry. On the whole, the most difficult problems were set by candidates with

[page 27]

neurotic tendencies. Medical officers hesitated to reject candidates who were physically fit and whose only difficulties were mental or spiritual. Interview boards, on the other hand, tended to regard mental health as the province of the medical officer; while specialist advice, when obtained, not infrequently recommended acceptance of a candidate on the ground that a course of training followed by interesting employment would be a valuable means of rehabilitating a neurotic subject. Students with difficult mental histories, when admitted to college, almost invariably caused anxiety to their Principals.

It was generally expected, when the selection machinery was set up, that owing to the circumstances of the scheme, with its large numbers of candidates, interviewing boards working under great pressure, and limited opportunities for forming judgments, mistakes would be fairly frequent, and that many candidates would fail after a short period at college. In fact, as is shown later, failures in college were surprisingly few.

Tables I and II overleaf summarise the results of the process of selection. They are not quite complete, because at the time of writing decisions had not been given on quite all the candidates. Tables VIII to XIII on pages 159-164 show the ages, previous education, previous employment, etc., of the accepted candidates.

[page 28]



*Omitting applications which were withdrawn before a decision could be given.

[page 29]



*Omitting applications which were withdrawn before a decision could be given.

†Received just after the official closing date (30th June, 1949), or delayed for some special reason.


In the circumstances of the emergency scheme, the Ministry had to undertake the sole responsibility for allocating students to colleges, and experience soon proved that allocation must in the main be made on the basis of position on the waiting list. Accepted

[page 30]

candidates were asked to state the two main subjects they wished to study (in addition to the general aspects of the training), but the results were of little value for placing purposes. Few candidates had much idea of their real bent and capacities, and after various trials in college and discussion with tutors, their ultimate choice was often different from their first. A small degree of specialisation was carried out among the men's colleges inasmuch as only certain colleges included modern languages and rural science in their curriculum, but in the main each college had to accept practically a random sample of the waiting candidates, and to be prepared to cater for it.

The men's colleges needed to offer only the choice of primary (junior) or secondary work, and it was possible to staff all of them to cover this age-range. The women's colleges, however, had among them to offer training, not only for primary (junior) and secondary work, including housecraft, but for infant and nursery work as well. Not all of the colleges could be staffed to cover so wide a range without extravagance, and some of the women's colleges concentrated on primary work (including the nursery stage), but with opportunities for transfer to secondary work if this should prove to be desirable. For women candidates, therefore, admission to a college depended partly on the type of training sought and partly on position in the waiting list.

The vast numbers of successful candidates, the difficulty in finding and converting buildings, and the acceleration of demobilisation, all combined to create a major problem in the shape of a large and rapidly growing waiting list. In the earliest days of the scheme, the general complaint took the form of "When am I going to be interviewed?", but this soon changed to "When am I getting into college?". The waiting period soon rose to six months, then a year and more, and it became a matter of first importance to ensure that the burden of the waiting period should be fairly divided among the candidates. This could be done only by allocation according to place on the waiting list - with certain modifications, as described below.

Even the making of a waiting list was not without its complications. By a Service decision, the scheme was not opened to men and women in the Forces until June, 1945, when it had already been open to civilian applicants for nearly a year. Thus a simple waiting list according to date of application would have been unfair to Service applicants. Again, even within the Services, men and women stationed at home in the summer of 1945 heard about the scheme months earlier, and could submit earlier applications, than those serving overseas. To meet the first of these points, the

[page 31]

Ministry set up entirely separate lists for Service and civilian applicants, and in each college allotted fixed proportions of places to Service candidates and civilians, related to the proportion between the two categories of applicants. The proportion varied slightly from time to time, but for the greater part of the scheme remained at 87½ per cent for Service candidates and 12½ per cent for civilians in the men's colleges. In the women's colleges the proportion was 55 per cent Service and 45 per cent civilian, but the early completion of demobilisation of women, and the much shorter waiting period, made it unnecessary to maintain separate lists beyond 1947. To meet the second point, Service candidates who applied while still serving were placed on the list according to date of demobilisation. Those who applied after demobilisation were placed according to date of application.

In the early days of the scheme, when two or three months might elapse between the start of one college and the next, offers of places were made strictly according to position on the waiting list. This meant that a Cornishman might be sent to Alnwick, while a Northumbrian was sent to Exmouth. Later, when four, five or six colleges might be starting sessions within a month or two, a geographical grouping was used, and as a rule it was possible to allocate a candidate to a college not too distant from his home, without making more than a month's difference to the length of his waiting period. Places for day students in colleges had to be allocated mainly on residence, and apart from the large cities position on the waiting list made little difference. In the more remote colleges, any waiting candidate who lived within daily travelling distance was admitted as a day student. regardless of his place on the list, since the number of such candidates was so small that they could be admitted without reducing the number of residents, or diminishing the chance of admission of any students higher on the lists. It was open to a candidate, when offered a place, to elect to wait for admission to another college which he preferred, and to help candidates in deciding whether this was worth while, bulletins issued to them from time to time listed the colleges, showing probable dates of starting their next session. The option was most often used in the large cities, in order to wait for the chance of admission to a local college as a day student.

On the whole the allocation system, depending on position on the waiting list, was accepted as fairest in the circumstances. Such complaints as were received from candidates were chiefly based not on objections to the system, but on suspicions that it was not being properly followed. The admission of a few day students to remote colleges, as described above, sometimes caused misunderstandings.

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The following Tables show the admissions to colleges up to 31st March, 1950:



†Total up to the end of December, 1947. Quarterly details not available

*2911 of these secured admission to a normal two-year course of training and so withdrew from the emergency training scheme. Information as to the date of their withdrawal is not available. They are not included in Column (3). 126 men were still awaiting admission at the end of March, 1950.

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†Total up to the end of December, 1947. Quarterly details not available.

*76 of these secured admission to a normal two-year course of training and so withdrew from the emergency training scheme. Information as to the date of their withdrawal is not available. They are not included in Column (3). 243 women were still awaiting admission at the end of March, 1950.

[page 34]


The main complaint against the administration of the scheme was the length of the waiting period before admission to college, and this undoubtedly bore hardly on the candidates. At a very early stage in the scheme, candidates were warned, when the receipt of their application was acknowledged, that they must expect to wait about six months between acceptance and date of admission, but circumstances soon belied this forecast. Estimates of the rate at which buildings would be released, and of the time required to convert them, proved to have been too sanguine, while the rate of demobilisation and especially the rate of arrival of applications exceeded all forecasts. By the middle of 1946, the waiting period for men from the Forces was rising to a year, and was likely to go even higher. On 2nd May, 1946, no less than 17,800 candidates had been accepted, but of these only 3,250 had been placed in colleges, and although additional places for well over 6,000 students were in sight another 17,200 applicants were still awaiting interview.

The general shortage of manpower made it unlikely that the waiting candidates would be faced with unemployment, and many of them had rights of re-instatement to former jobs, but it was clearly necessary to do something to retain their interest in education while they waited to enter college, and to help them prepare for their future course of study. The lack of trained teachers in the schools also offered the opportunity to give some waiting candidates practical experience of their intended profession, while helping to relieve the shortage of trained staff. The Ministry therefore decided:

(i) to allow men and women accepted for the scheme to be employed in the schools as "temporary teachers", under the Primary and Secondary Schools (Grant Conditions) Regulations;

(ii) to ask local education authorities to get into touch with waiting candidates in their areas, and help them by means of advice, financial assistance for travelling and attendance at classes, and the provision of special courses.

Expenditure on these services was refunded in full by the Ministry.

In response to innumerable requests, the Ministry also published to the waiting candidates a list of books from which they might make selections for preparatory reading; but they gave a warning that the books used in any particular college were determined by the Principal and staff, and that a student might find that none of the books on the list was used in the college to which he was ultimately sent.

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The Ministry also issued to each candidate as he was accepted a bulletin of information and advice, which from time to time was brought up to date by a supplement. The bulletin gave an estimate of the probable waiting period for each class of candidate (men and women, Service and civilian) according to place on the waiting list; it gave advice on preparatory work during the waiting period, on employment as a temporary teacher, the suggested book list, list of colleges with starting dates, information regarding maintenance allowances at college, and so on.

In the summer of 1946, each local education authority was sent a list of the waiting candidates in its area, and these lists were brought up-to-date at intervals. The candidates themselves were also advised to get into touch with their local education authorities, and the authorities were thus able to make contact with candidates, and to give them assistance. This usually took the form of advice on reading, and on suitable evening classes and courses, with grants of money to cover travelling and fees, but a number of authorities also organised courses designed solely for candidates for emergency training. Some appointed special, officers to keep in touch with candidates and to supervise their preparatory studies, combining these duties with supervision of teachers who had completed their emergency training course and were in their period of probation.

Many authorities employed large numbers of candidates as temporary teachers, and the total number so employed soon formed a substantial proportion of the waiting "pool" of candidates, as shown in the following table:

Posts as temporary teachers were popular with candidates as they were keen to start on their profession and the experience was generally valuable.

[page 36]





FROM the educational point of view, the most significant feature of the emergency training scheme was the actual quality of the students themselves. Three characteristics stood out: their keenness, and singleness of purpose; the wide range of their talents and accomplishments; and their powers of initiative and organisation. These characteristics conditioned the tempo of the courses and the scope of the training, and together they accounted perhaps for the specifically rewarding quality of "emergency" work: the quality which, as so many tutors declared, made their work with and for their students at once so enjoyable and so stimulating an experience.

Keenness and singleness of purpose one would expect. Though of the first importance, the point hardly needs elaboration. These mature men and women were in college because they had decided for themselves that they wished to be teachers. They had considered with care the step they had taken. Many had given up other jobs. The married men, especially, realised only too acutely the risks they had taken and the vital importance of "making good". It is natural that, in some instances, wives should have felt jealous of the time and attention claimed by an intensive course of study. But, in fact, there was plenty of evidence to show how much support and encouragement the men received from home.

For the married student with family responsibilities there might occur, in the course of thirteen months, many events of a highly distracting nature - births, illnesses, financial and housing worries; for the unmarried, there were the concerns of elderly parents and relatives. As one would expect, however, it was the married woman with young children who was most likely to find her interests divided, and her energies severely strained. Nevertheless, as the Principal of a women's day college reported: "It has amazed this staff that students as a whole have overcome the difficulties of domestic responsibilities while taking the course. The progress of far fewer than was anticipated has been adversely affected. The staff estimate that three students out of 200 (24 married; 5 divorced)

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have done less well than they would have with easier home conditions".

A tutor in a women's college observed, "Most of our students who are involved in marital complications have reached a sufficient degree of maturity to see these in proportion to the rest of their lives and do not allow them to destroy the career which, in some cases, they have adopted as a direct response to such complications", and added, "There are no 'marital complications' as disturbing to work as becoming engaged". In general, for married women students the most important single factor was whether the husband did or did not completely approve the wife's decision to undertake a course of training.

On the men's side, the general picture was much the same. One Principal wrote, "A few students have continuing financial difficulties and a small number have marital complications, but as a rule these are men who lack stability and whose progress is affected more by their general unreliability than by any particular circumstances arising during the course".

Briefly one may say that financial and domestic worries of one sort and another did not, except in a very few cases, seriously interfere with students' progress. On balance, domestic responsibilities had a steadying effect on their work in college. Indeed, many Principals remarked upon the courage with which certain students, men and women, met severe blows of fortune and, in due course, took up their work again with undiminished vigour.

Wide range of talents and accomplishments. An indication of the variety to be found within any particular college may be obtained by a glance at the accompanying tables. (See also Appendix VI, Table XI.)

A men's college of 216 students: average age 28 years 11 months.

Previous occupations

Clerical84    Aircraft5
Accountancy (unqualified)5    Electrical4
Insurance7    Motor3
Building    Shipbuilding1
    Surveying3    Sheet Metal Worker3
    Architecture1    Production1
    Clerk of Works1Municipal Worker
Decorating1    Police4
Engineering    Local Govt. Officer2
    General11    Transport4

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Shop Assistant19Regular Air Force1
Leather Worker2Merchant Navy1
Boot Repairer1Solicitor1
Textiles6Auctioneer's Assistant1
Library Assistant2Commercial Art1
Teaching5Own Business2

Regular Army          2

A women's college of 179 students: average age 20 years

Previous occupations, if any

Clerical91Shop Assistant3
Teaching8Shop Manageress3
Agricultural (Women's Land Army)7Telephonist4
Civil Service6Factory Worker4
Nursing10Motor Driver1
Nursery Superintendent1Seamstress2
Nursery Nurse3Corset Agent1
Matron (Girls' Home)1Own Confectionery Business1
Governess1Woman Editor1
Library Assistant3Psychological Work1
Laboratory Assistant4Actress1
X-ray Research1B.B.C. Engineer1

It is evident that groups of people comprising so many different elements must have had within themselves at least the possibility of becoming highly self-educative communities. The mere range of age (21-49) was one factor: but of chief importance was the variety of experience of life coupled with wide differences in individual endowment. Many students developed personally in a very remarkable way as the result of the social life of the college and the activity of the college societies. They realised gifts they had hardly suspected themselves to possess; they increased the range of their interests and, as a result, improved greatly in self-confidence and poise. Some doubtless made the useful discovery that, in certain respects, they had over-estimated their abilities.

It is, of course, one of the chief merits of college life, especially if the college is residential, that this valuable reservoir of diverse experience is continuously available to all members of the group in every sort of informal and casual manner. Students often remarked upon the stimulating effect which daily intercourse with their fellows

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had upon their own development. There are many persons of lively intelligence who, in the ordinary course of civil life, lack opportunity to meet others of kindred interests but quite different antecedents: bring them together, in the circumstances of college life, and there is great and mutual advantage. But, as a student put it, "One of the limitations of this course, from the human point of view, is that one 'discovers' people too late". In this connection, it may be remarked that in those colleges in which students could be offered a choice of single study-bedrooms or bedrooms for 2, 3, 4, or 5 students, while most of the women preferred a single-room, most of the men preferred not to be alone. Over and over again they emphasised the encouragement they had received from the fact of sharing a room and the opportunities this had afforded them of discussing work problems of all sorts, assisting one another, sharing books and apparatus. Often the enthusiasm of a room mate for a particular hobby set a student along a line of enquiry which he would not otherwise have taken up. Some men expressed the view that, on an intensive course of this sort, it was not good for a fellow to be able to shut himself in a room of his own and 'stew'.

One student may be quoted: his view is typical:

"I shared a room with two others of widely differing background and experience from myself. I gained enormously from our intimate association as we worked towards a common end. Looking back I feel I owe a heavy debt to my room mates; our various interests attracted a fair cross-section of the college into our room, and in the course of our conversations many problems were resolved and much light was thrown in dark places. On entering college I would have preferred a room of my own: were I now to re-enter college I would wish to share a room with at least two others." In a questionnaire on this subject to a group of men and women it was interesting to note that, whereas the men tended to stress the advantages of mutual aid in their studies, those women (most of them ex-Service) who preferred not to have a room of their own stressed rather the advantages of social companionship.

It is not, however, only upon the personal side that variety of experience in the student body was valuable. It influenced the nature and method of the work itself. There was hardly any branch of their course of training concerning which some of the students had not some specialised knowledge, some relevant and peculiar acquaintance, some out-of-the-way skill. All such talents and accomplishments the wise tutor used to the full to the mutual benefit of his class, the student and himself. Many cases could be quoted of the manner in which a student's previous occupation influenced his mode of approach to his college studies. A single

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instance must suffice. Before coming to college the writer of the following passage, aged 34, was a gardener:

"I was born and bred in the country. Almost all of my boyhood experiences were centred round the countryside and I believe that I learnt as much from mole catchers, keepers, thatchers, farm labourers and the like as I did in school. When I say I learnt more I mean that I learnt the things that mattered in life, and I did so in a most interesting way. In my ignorance I was undergoing what is now called environmental study. Imagine then, my surprise and delight when I arrived at college to find that much of our study was to take the form of neighbourhood studies. It was as if my boyhood dreams had come true. Here at last was a sane way of learning, a way that must appeal to any boy or girl, a way in which I when a boy had learnt most. It was refreshing to find that my past experiences, my long talks with game keepers, days spent in harvest fields and the long summer evenings spent with my father in learning the rudiments of horticulture, were to be of value. Later in life I took up horticulture for a living and found it hard and interesting. I learnt, often against my will, what it meant to do a hard day's work. I studied the ways of country craftsmen and gained, if not their skill, at least something of their enthusiasm and pride, and what I believe is most important, I learnt what it means to earn a living the hard way - the hard way but the enjoyable way. My past experience both as a boy and as a man has confirmed me in a desire to teach children through the environmental approach. My only regret is that I have forgotten so much that I learnt."

Powers of initiative and organisation. This characteristic derived in the main from the students' maturity and their experience of responsibility in other walks of life. To tutors used to boys and girls in their teens, the drive and initiative shown by these older students was very gratifying. Not only was it admirable in itself, but it largely freed the staff for more specifically tutorial work. College societies, of which there might be more than a score in a large college, started and ran themselves - a decided advantage in an institution in which, since the whole of the 'year' passed out en masse, there could be little continuity from one generation to another. Did a complicated fire-drill need organising? Half-a-dozen of the students were ex-National Fire Service men: they took over the whole matter. If there was transport to be arranged for some distant expedition there was sure to be available a man or woman whose very job this was during the war. To quote the Principal of a women's college: "After 18 years' work in two-year training colleges I cannot say too strongly how much I have been struck by the qualities which

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appear to be inherent in the more mature student, quite apart from the gain that we have recognised from certain outstanding gifts of individuals. There is a strong sense of purpose, a certainty, a quickness of response, a vitality, an acceptance of responsibility for routine jobs, a steadiness which one could not possibly expect from the immature student. I am bound to say that such successes as have, quite rightly, been associated with the emergency scheme, seem to me to have arisen largely from these conditions. We have in this college had the experience, which I know to be common in other emergency colleges, of having a project or some enterprise proposed to the students and after an outline of procedure had been agreed upon, finding that the whole scheme was almost taken out of the hands of the staff. If the staff could make a contribution well and good, but in these circumstances we had a sense of shared experience that I have never known so acutely before."

This sense of responsibility among the students was the basis of college discipline. There was a bare minimum of rules. The three quotations which follow may be taken as typical. The first is from a report by the Principal of a residential college for men and women.

"In this college, discipline in the main is self-imposed. A college committee exists, composed of representatives of both staff and students, and this committee, meeting weekly under its student chairman, deals with all problems that affect the lives and activities of the students and makes such rules as it thinks necessary for promoting the general welfare of the college. Such rules, when made, are more in the nature of recommendations than of edicts having the force of law. The system works well: no abuse results from the vast measure of individual freedom allowed: absenteeism from lectures is virtually unknown, ragging is non-existent. The prevailing atmosphere of friendliness and happiness, the concern that individual students display for promoting the general welfare, and their obvious gratitude for the full measure of freedom allowed, provide adequate justification for the system adopted."

The second is from the Principal of a residential college for women.

"The maintenance of general college discipline here depends upon a tutorial system. Each tutor has a group of about twelve students whom she meets regularly once a week for about thirty-five minutes. These meetings are used for matters which may be raised either by the tutor or by the group representative of the Union committee. When there is no college business, the meeting is used for discussion on matters of interest in current affairs or of topics very much in the minds of students at the moment. Incidentally we feel

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that a valuable contribution to training in expression and clear thinking is made. The Union committee consists of one representative from each tutorial group, one representative of the staff (which is rather larger than one tutorial group) and in addition the Principal and Vice-Principal who are members ex-officio. Each society as it is formed applies to the Union for official recognition and its secretary has the right to attend Union meetings without voting power. In addition, Union representatives sit on the entertainment and social committee and on the messing committee and these report back any business to the Union. All college business is discussed at the Union committee, and decisions affecting the life of the college are made here. Although the Principal exercises a right of veto, occasions when this has been necessary have been very few. When it has been necessary, the Principal's decision has been accepted without serious difficulty, provided that she made her reasons clear. Each member of the Committee is responsible for reporting back to her group all the decisions of the Union. One important feature of our organisation is that staff opinion is offered and accepted on a democratic basis, though I think the college is quite clear that on certain matters where she is responsible to other authorities, the Principal must make a final decision. There is a compulsory weekly assembly, preceded by prayers which are optional, at which the Principal raises matters, sometimes at the invitation of the Union committee itself, which appear to be most satisfactorily dealt with in a public meeting. From time to time students themselves (the president of the college Union, the editor of the college magazine, the secretary of a society) make use of this opportunity. The staff have their quarters scattered about the buildings and, except on very rare occasions, do not accept responsibility for law and order. If there were flagrant misdemeanours, I am quite sure that they would act merely as law-abiding members of the community, and not as people in authority. The staff have in fact themselves received suggestions from students about the amount of noise in their own bathroom, and a suggestion from the students to the staff that they would perhaps prefer their conversation not to be overheard, was received with the good humour it deserved."

The third quotation comes from a report by the Principal of a residential college for men.

"There is no code of rules but certain traditions have been established mainly by the students themselves. A strong Students' Union, having its duly elected council and officers, works in conjunction with the Staff Advisory Committee. All societies are part of the Students' Union organisation and are subject to their control. except that a member of the staff acts in every case in an advisory

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capacity. No one smokes at all in the dining room, nor in the hall or lecture rooms until after dinner in the evening. Students leave the administration block at 10.15 p.m. or alternatively within 15 minutes of the close of any function which finishes later than 10.0 p.m. House chairmen report all absences or names of students who are sick and each House Committee attends to all affairs of the House. No time limit is put on the use of the House Common Rooms and no "lights out" is enforced. Ragging or horseplay is unknown partly because the men are mature and are well past the stage of adolescence but mostly because they themselves would not tolerate such activity. The standards of conduct are those of good family life and one senses always the feeling of responsibility which the absence of rules engenders. Friendliness and helpfulness are everywhere apparent and in one and a half sessions I have found no occasion to intervene because of anti-social conduct. I cannot claim to have experimented in any particular direction. This has not been necessary, because in all my experience I have never known control so easy, or established on so firm and pleasant a basis."

There is abundant evidence that the students appreciated and respected the very full acceptance of the principle of social responsibility implicit in all the arrangements for the internal organisation of the colleges. They have time and again expressed their appreciation of the large measure of freedom they enjoyed and, indeed, helped to create. In one mixed college, which dealt with several hundred students, the Principal reported only one instance of disciplinary trouble. Another wrote: "In two years I have not had a single case of indiscipline to deal with."

Principals assumed that adults who had a strong purpose in training would conduct themselves sensibly and that the community would construct a framework in which individuals could live and work. Their assumption has been fully justified. In commenting thus briefly on the general demeanour and conduct of students, it has not been overlooked that a few unstable individuals were admitted to the scheme who proved incapable of adapting themselves to college life because of personal difficulties. Students of this type, however, were in general of a neurotic character and withdrew from the course at an early stage.

To assist students to adapt themselves easily to their new conditions, it was suggested at an early conference of Principals that it would be well to devise a system of 'personal' as distinct from 'subject' tutors, The plan worked well: besides providing individual students with an 'anchorage', it usefully divided the community into groups of 10 to 15 on a purely personal basis

[page 44]

without reference to their particular professional interests. The students showed themselves more appreciative than perhaps one might have expected of the opportunities such a plan provided for intimate discussion of their private affairs; and many would seem not only to have obtained signal relief, but to have regained confidence through the discussion of their personal problems with a tutor. This was particularly the case in the early months of the session and during school practice. On the whole, men made fewer demands than women on their personal tutors. But there was much variety: some students liked to be seen and helped often, others preferred to get on by themselves except in a crisis. For this reason it seemed desirable that the arrangements, times of meeting, etc., should not be too highly organised. Indeed some tutors regarded the actual existence of the 'personal' tutorial group, which properly should be a cross-section of the student community, as more important than the fact that it met under a personal tutor: the members got to know each other on a family basis and, by this means, solved for themselves many of their perplexities. At the same time they had the knowledge that they could, in case of need, look to an individual tutor for sympathetic advice. As the course proceeded students tended to take their problems to the members of staff whom they had come to know best: they rightly made their own confidants.

Students ranged in age from 22 to 48 or more. In 1945 the average age on entry to college was 27 for women and 32 for men; by the middle of 1947 the average age for women was still about 27, but for men it had fallen to about 30; towards the end of 1949 the average age for women had risen to 32½, while for men it had fallen to 27. It is difficult to point to any one age group rather than another as being more worth training, or as containing a higher proportion of potentially good teachers. Within the age range in question, mere chronological age was almost the least significant of the many factors which made for success in training. There was a general presumption that over the age of 35 individuals become more 'set', and the process of learning therefore more arduous: but interviewing boards had these general presumptions in mind when they had older candidates before them, and endeavoured only to recommend those for acceptance who appeared to have retained their resilience and a lively interest in ideas. Certainly, every Principal could cite cases among the 'over 35s' who were amongst the most promising teachers of their year - men and women with quite exceptional gifts of sympathy and understanding, with a considered philosophy of life, and much therefore to contribute to any school.

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From the beginning of the emergency training scheme much was expected of the 'greater maturity' of the candidates who would present themselves. Maturity, in this context, needs defining. The value of experience of life depends, in part, upon circumstances, in part, upon the personal quality the individual brings to his experience. If the student had held a responsible post, demanding resource and imagination, he tended to bring these qualities to the direction of his work in college. On the other hand, if his interests were narrow and his work had been of a routine nature, his previous experience was of little value to him. It was observed that many of the younger women students who had entered the Services direct from school seemed to prefer to await instructions rather than to be left free to organise their work in their own way: in this respect, they were in marked contrast to many of the older women who had held civilian posts before joining the Services. The same was true, in less degree, of the men.

There is no doubt that there were in the colleges very many men and women of intelligence and character whose previous experience of life had enabled them to bring to their studies considerable powers of discrimination and to their teaching a certain authenticity which was sometimes valuable. For a student in training, the possession of certain skills acquired in a previous occupation may be of value; but there are not many jobs experience of which can be used directly for teaching purposes; at the best, such direct use can only be employed occasionally; indeed, by the weak teacher, with little general knowledge, it was sometimes exploited with pathetic eagerness. As a rule the value of non-teaching experience was general, not specific: it lay principally in the effect it had had upon the student's habits of mind and upon his outlook as a teacher; and these qualities derived from his contact with a variety of persons rather than with a variety of occupations.

It has been very generally believed that for most of the students in emergency training colleges formal schooling ended at 14. That this was not the case a glance at Table X will show. In fact, 76 per cent had had grammar school or technical education; and, of these, over 60 per cent had school certificate or some higher qualification. The significance or non-significance of the possession of a school certificate is worth a brief reference. There is no doubt that in the eyes of many students - perhaps because formerly it was the sine qua non for entry to a training college - its possession was desirable. The mere fact of having, at one time, successfully taken the examination appeared to encourage those who had been

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away from study for a long period; on the other hand, non-possession of the certificate made some students needlessly distrust their powers. The general opinion of Principals is perhaps best summed up in the following report from a men's college:

"The possession of a school certificate does not indicate much. The possession of a good school certificate has been an index of educability. We found length of grammar school education a more certain pointer. Our best students were either those who had left the grammar school at 18 or students who were genuinely self-educated at whatever age they had left school."

Apart from intellectual qualities, the main personal attributes which appeared to favour success in the process of training may be roughly listed as follows:

Genuine interest in one's fellows.
Conviction of the social importance of schools.
Willingness (and ability) to consider the problems of teaching from the child's point of view.
Readiness to reflect on and profit by one's own experience and to accept and act upon the advice and criticism of others in college and during school practice.
Unfavourable traits were:
Colourless personality.
Aloofness tending to prevent sympathetic contact with class and colleagues.
Complacency due either to some degree of success in a previous field of experience, or to failure to measure the difficulties of the new task.
Cynical attitude towards teaching.
Progress towards competence in teaching very largely depended upon a student's' make-up' in these respects. Mention has already been made of the need for a period of 'settling down', especially for entrants direct from the Services. This process of adjustment was largely a social matter to be distinguished (but not separated) from development as a student. Some, at the beginning, were apt to be on the defensive, anxious not to give themselves away before their fellows; but as they got to know their tutors better this not unnatural reserve wore off. Indeed, some tutors considered these mature students, on the whole, less afraid to admit ignorance than those straight from school. The Principal of a women's college observed: "They ask many more questions and have no inhibitions

[page 47]

about asking simple ones - they do not know what is naive, educationally. This freshness is very fruitful".

As the course proceeded students showed increased ability to profit from their studies as they became more clearly aware of their own powers and limitations, and of the nature of the problems confronting them. They arranged their time to better purpose and learned to be more selective in their reading. The young student fresh from a secondary school is in the habit of memorising facts for examination purposes: but he has little personal experience to bring to bear upon what he hears and reads. Some of the younger 'emergency' students were at this stage. For the great majority, however, the training process presented itself as an altogether fresh experience. For many, it was their first experience of directed study on a liberal basis; and the best amongst them welcomed it, notwithstanding its intensive nature, as a period of extraordinary intellectual freedom to be 'enjoyed', in the fullest sense of the word.

Many, however, as has been noted in a previous chapter, presented themselves at college in a severely utilitarian frame of mind. As one Principal put it: "At the outset of their course, consciously or unconsciously, they expect to be drilled into the acquisition of a set and specific technique called 'teaching'. They tend to be either over-optimistic or over-pessimistic about their prospects of learning to wear this special uniform. They think in terms of getting notes down, reading points up, learning things off, and look anxiously for signs that they are turning into teachers. Somewhere about the twelfth week there is a subtle but unmistakable change in the atmosphere, showing that a working majority have come to believe their tutors that the power will come from within, not from without and that teaching is an individual art."

As already mentioned, it was open to candidates accepted for the scheme and waiting entry to college to take posts as 'temporary' teachers. Many did so for varying periods. The accompanying tables for two colleges, whose courses began towards the end of 1947, indicate the proportions at this period.

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A year later (October, 1948) the figures for a men's college for 211 students were as follows:

In this table, it will be observed, one third of the men had had no teaching experience and one third more than 18 months. Almost all students regarded this experience as of immense value to them, and wherever figures were taken out they indicated that those who had had considerable 'temporary' teaching experience tended to secure higher final marks for teaching practice than those who had had none.

Most Principals were agreed that, in the great majority of cases, such experience was of value to the students at least in as much as it accustomed them to the 'classroom situation', introduced them to the mechanics of the school day and thus gave them a foretaste of the conditions of a teacher's life. As regards the technique of teaching, and attitude towards teaching, it is clear that a great deal depended on the precise nature of the teaching experience, and the actual conditions under which it was done. A period of temporary teaching served under an authority which had organised special 'introductory' courses for their waiting candidates, and in a good school with a keen Head and enthusiastic staff, was certainly advantageous. A student with such experience behind him was able to bring an informed mind to bear upon the various educational problems presented to him in the course of college lectures and discussions. On the other hand, from service in a bad school almost nothing but bad could result. Wretched buildings, a cynical, dull, disillusioned staff and, their frequent accompaniment, bored or unruly children are the reverse of helpful to a beginner. Indeed, not a few students came to college direct from 'temporary' teaching already set in thoroughly bad habits: having discovered at least a 'modus vivendi' at a low level of competence, having proved to themselves, over a period of months, that they were able to 'control' a class, they were apt to think they had little more to learn and that their only purpose in attending college was to secure a certificate.

Those who suffered most from poor example during their temporary teaching were probably some of the older men: one

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Principal reported: "Some of our present intake have, after 18 months to 2 years' teaching in the schools, become quite set in their opinions about such matters as corporal punishment, class order and discipline, parent-teacher co-operation, and the school meals service. They reflect the opinions of the teachers they have met in the schools and are unwilling to reconsider their judgments in the light of fresh reading and further discussion". The consequences were particularly regrettable when a temporary teacher, having been placed prematurely in charge of a backward class, built up a conception of the child as a slow, inactive performer. In such case he was apt to find it difficult to adjust himself to normal and bright children. The effects of unsuitable previous experience, then, might be serious. At the worst, definite harm might be done. At the best, time was wasted later in college disposing of wrong notions which should never have found a lodgement.

The practical teaching difficulties which presented themselves to the students did not differ in kind from those which face most beginners. Four stood out:

(i) Understanding children's mental processes and their ways of looking at things. -
(ii) Grasping the distinction between teaching and the mere imparting of facts.
(iii) Fear of 'letting themselves go': to a large extent this was due to insecure knowledge. Because of this, free questioning and genuine discussion were neglected, or warily avoided, in favour of the prepared lesson.
(iv) Acquiring confidence in their power to maintain order in class.
These were the major failings as they presented themselves to tutors. The following record of comment by a 13-year-old girl, who had recently had students practising in her school, puts the matter from a different point of view:

"I wouldn't mind students teaching our form if only they wouldn't treat us as if we were all M.D. They tell us everything, including what we know already, and that makes me think they don't know much. Besides, if they tell us everything, or ask only soppy questions, it's no fun because there's nothing to think about. Then you stop putting your hand up and read something, or talk. They even tell us what colour to paint things and they don't know what kinds of paint won't go on what kinds of paper, and all that. It makes your pictures messy and a waste of time. They ought to find out more about what we've got to use, and what we haven't got, before a lesson. They're always telling us to do something we haven't got the tools for and that makes people giggle and start

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larking about. Also they set you things to do at home that take too long, specially in winter, when it's dark. They don't think enough whether you live in the country, or have a garden or can get to a shop or the library before it shuts. They say, 'Bring this tomorrow, and bring that tomorrow' and you can't and you get worried and wonder if you'll get into trouble. Of course some of our own teachers are just as bad. If students have nice faces and are sort of friendly and you can talk to them and if they don't say 'be quiet' or ' sit down' whenever you ask them a question, it's a nice change to have them, really."

To sum up: as compared with students of the normal training age (18-20) these older students, although they may have had a certain initial difficulty in accustoming themselves to systematic study, were capable of more sustained effort. On the whole, they were more self critical, and more critical of their tutors. They took a more detached view of their training and were less concerned with the problems of their own self-development. They were critical of the education they had themselves received and had a keen appreciation of the fact that different children have different educational needs. They showed marked sympathy with mentally backward and physically handicapped children. Having been out in the world and having endeavoured to pick up again the threads of their school subjects, they realised how much of their factual knowledge children forget: a point which must be largely lost upon a student who goes to college direct from school. Typically they took a modest, level-headed view of the work they had set out to do, and did not, as a rule, under-estimate the demands of the course. As one observed, "It has taken me ten years to become an engineer, it cannot take me less to become a schoolmaster".

It was a distinct gain to these older people that they had adult friends and acquaintances in other walks of life. The social factors in education made a strong appeal: even during school practice they experienced a good deal of satisfaction from their ability to appreciate the problems their older pupils were likely to encounter when they entered trade and industry; and they found especially valuable their personal acquaintance with the behaviour and outlook of young people in their first jobs, and of the attitude of employers towards them. At the other end of the scale, no one who has attended a tutorial composed of students many of whom have children of their own at the very infants' schools whose doings were under discussion could fail to be impressed with the 'reality' this circumstance introduced into the debate.

Through the ordinary channels of recruitment, the profession receives many teachers who, in due course, become parents. But

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through the emergency scheme many parents have become teachers. And to have been a parent first in point of time had an important bearing on these people's views on school matters - certainly during their period of training and probably, too, in their subsequent teaching. It is perhaps useful that both these angles of approach should be represented in the schools.

Once they had settled down and grasped what they were about, the general attitude of mind of these students suggested that, for a profession of a highly social character like teaching, the whole process of training takes on a quite distinctive quality when approached at a mature age. The values which it seeks to discuss and to establish have much greater significance for the individual. He can put more in, and he can take more out.


Although the first colleges did not open at full strength until May, 1945, the recruitment of tutorial staff was begun twelve months earlier. Circular 1652 was issued on 15th May, 1944, and a week later an announcement was published in the educational press inviting teachers in schools and training colleges to apply to the Board of Education for consideration for appointment to the staffs of colleges to be set up as and when students became available for training. Even before the issue of Circular 1652 a number of direct applications from teachers interested in the scheme had been received by the Board. At this time only civilian candidates could be considered, but it was made clear that it was hoped that opportunities would be available later for selecting candidates from amongst those serving in H.M. Forces. Applicants were informed that the posts would be temporary, that selection at that time could be only provisional, and that it was hoped to be able to arrange with employers to second those selected for so long as might be necessary. At the same time, local education authorities and governing bodies were requested, in view of the great importance of the emergency training scheme for the welfare of the schools as a whole, to be ready to facilitate the secondment of any teachers in their employ who might be selected. As a result of this announcement some 3,200 names were received by the Board in the course of the succeeding 15 months (June, 1944 - September, 1945). Further during the summer of 1944 lists of possibly suitable candidates for Principalships and for assistant staff were being compiled by the Divisional Inspectors of the Board in various parts of the country;

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and valuable suggestions for staffs were received from local education authorities.

At the outset, and as long as provisional staffs were being appointed before college buildings had been acquired, it was clear that Principals and their staffs would have to be selected on a national basis from a national pool of applicants. By September, 1944, the first 16 Principals had been provisionally selected and in subsequent months 'shadow' staffs on a provisional basis were gradually built up by Principals in consultation with the Divisional Inspectors. Eighteen months later, when it became possible to work not only to fairly precise dates, but with definite locations in view, this procedure ceased to be appropriate.

From this time onwards, namely from early in 1946, the system of appointment was changed; all posts were advertised in the normal way, and applicants applied direct to the local education authority administering the college. In the selection of staff the authority had the advice and assistance of H.M. Inspector for the college, and of the Divisional Inspector where necessary. The appointment of a Principal required the concurrence of the Ministry.

Although they were without a physical habitation, there was plenty for the 'shadow' staffs to do in preparing schemes of work. As the months passed, the needs and characteristics of the students were gradually becoming better understood, partly through the experience of the interviewing boards, partly through the operation of various courses run for men and women still in the Services, but principally as a result of the lessons learned from the valuable work of the 'pilot' course conducted at Goldsmiths' Training College, which had begun its first session in September, 1944. Encouragement was given to Principals to call periodic conferences of their 'shadow' teams. As time went by and suitable premises still proved difficult to find, it was natural that these staffs should have found the delay vexatious. In two cases some sixteen months, and in one nearly two years, had passed before the 'shadow' staffs were at last able to open their colleges and meet their students face to face.

In May, 1946, when it was already clear that, owing to the growing availability of premises, the rate of expansion of the scheme was about to accelerate, Circular 106 appeared. This Circular, amongst other things, pointed out that a very considerable number of teachers would be needed to staff the new colleges to be opened in the coming months. The Circular went on:

"Staffs are now selected and appointed for specific posts, and so far as possible the dates when they will be required are deter-

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mined well in advance. It may, however, sometimes happen that to secure the opening of a college at the earliest possible moment, the staff is required at short notice. The Minister asks that in such cases local education authorities and Governing Bodies will do all in their power to facilitate the release of any teachers, who may be urgently needed in this way, on request from the local education authority responsible for conducting the college concerned, even if this involves the waiving of the period of notice usually required. As the scheme is a temporary one, most teachers can accept appointments in emergency training colleges only if their previous posts, or equivalent posts, can be kept open for them against their return. The Minister hopes, therefore, that authorities and Governing Bodies will be ready to arrange releases on this footing."
The response of authorities and Governing Bodies to this appeal was most generous. In many instances teachers were released at short notice often to the great inconvenience of their employers. The selected teachers were among the best in the schools, and their release was required when staff shortages were at their worst. The authorities appreciated that the extent of their staffing difficulties was a measure of the need for the emergency scheme, but this knowledge was of little help in filling the gap left in a particular school by a key man when replacements were nearly unobtainable. The Ministry owes a very great debt to the authorities and Governing Bodies who took the long view and co-operated so wholeheartedly in this especially difficult aspect of the scheme.

Owing to the intensive nature of the course, and the amount of individual work which would be required, it was considered, as a rough guide, that for a college of 200 students the teaching staff, excluding the Principal, should consist of the equivalent of about 18 full-time tutors - a ratio of one tutor to eleven students. For very large colleges the proportion of tutors might be reduced somewhat, while for smaller colleges it might well be necessary to raise it, if all the subjects of the curriculum were to be adequately covered. It was laid down that the number of senior lecturers' posts should not normally exceed half the total full-time teaching staff, inclusive of the Principal.

With certain exceptions, the rate of salary was in accordance with the Report of the Committee on Scales of Salaries for the Teaching Staff of Training Colleges (England and Wales).* Experi-

*H.M.S.O., 4d.

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ence early showed that there was only limited scope for part-time lecturers in colleges of this sort where the demands of students on the staff at all hours were apt to be high. A tutor who was only intermittently present was unable to enter fully into all aspects of the life of the college and, to that extent, was at a disadvantage.

In selecting staff, chief attention was given to individual qualities, but it was also necessary to build up a team familiar with the schools to which the students would go. It was particularly desirable to obtain tutors with practical experience of primary and secondary modern schools. In the early days, it was expected that the men's colleges would be concerned principally with the training of teachers for work with children of secondary school age, but by the end of 1946, it became apparent that a very considerable proportion of these men - possibly nearly one half - would be appointed, at least in the first instance, to primary (junior) schools. Moreover, it was becoming clear that many men had a genuine preference for this type of work. Accordingly, some adjustment of staffing took place and the proportion of tutors with experience of primary work was increased. These proved to be particularly difficult posts to fill adequately.

The staffing of 55 emergency training colleges meant considerable depletion of other educational institutions. The following table sets out the educational antecedents of the total staff of 1,211 lecturers engaged in emergency training in September, 1948:

The category 'miscellaneous' comprises mainly local inspectors of schools, county organisers and teachers in technical colleges. Eight of the Principals and over 25 per cent of the 800 men lecturers were appointed direct from the Services. In some men's colleges the proportion of lecturers so appointed was as high as two-thirds.

Lecturers with Service experience had a sympathy with the point of view of ex-Service men and women which was of great

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value in college; and, although one of the principal strengths of the emergency training staffs was that they came fresh from the teaching of children, in these particular cases the break with classroom conditions very often proved beneficial, whether the interval had been employed in educational work in the Services or in quite other fields.

Reference has been made in a previous chapter to the necessity of providing accommodation for married lecturers and their families. In a large college, it was possible to have on the site a number of indigenous infants and 'under 5s' who together constituted a valuable group for observation, especially in mixed colleges with a group of students training for infant work. In at least one men's college a room was admirably decorated and equipped with furniture and apparatus by the students taking various crafts, while others, specially interested in young children, took turns of duty as observers and minders. The presence of tutors' children, with their very 'out-of-school ' attitude towards both tutors and students, was a valuable element in the general social and educational life of the colleges.

It is an interesting innovation in training that so high a proportion of the staffs should have been drawn from teachers in secondary modern and primary schools. Just as the students, with their varied backgrounds, brought a new element into training at the student level, so the broadening of the basis of recruitment of the teaching staffs brought new blood into the tutorial ranks.

The qualities needed for successful service in an emergency training college are not common. That the lecturer should have been a successful teacher of children and know his subject thoroughly goes without saying; but much more than this was required. It was important that he should be capable of regarding his experience of teaching with critical detachment, and be prepared to re-examine the basic beliefs and principles on which his own practice had been founded. For these older students - many of them - asked searching questions, and did not easily accept a glib reply; it was one of the pleasures of working with them. Again, he (and of course she) required considerable gifts of sympathy, since an appreciable proportion of the tutorial work was 'pastoral' in character; the issues were as often human as professional. The work was therefore exacting in the full sense of the word. Principals and staffs brought to their work freshness and tremendous enthusiasm; and they were singularly successful in winning and holding the confidence of their students. The vitality of the old students' associations and the character of the many reunions that have been held bear testimony to this.

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As originally set out in Circular 1652 the session was to last 52 weeks and the broad divisions of time suggested were as follows:

Preparatory Stage (including school visits)6 weeks
Main Course, Part I4 weeks
Teaching Practice3 weeks
Vacation1 week
Main Course, Part II12 weeks
Vacation2 weeks
Teaching Practice9 weeks
Vacation1 week
Main Course, Part III14 weeks
52 weeks

Provision was made for an interval between the end of one session and the beginning of the next to provide a reasonable vacation for the college staff. It will be noted that this time allocation allowed for a vacation of only four weeks during the session itself. Experience soon proved that this placed an undue strain on both students and staff, and in January, 1946, the course was extended to 13 months expressly to meet this point. From this date, it was laid down that the working time of the session should cover 48 weeks; the total length of the session (including vacations) should not exceed 56 weeks, and the interval between the starting of successive sessions should not exceed 63 weeks. This provision therefore allowed for a total of from 4 to 8 weeks' vacation during the session and a 7 weeks' vacation between sessions or more, if less than 8 weeks were taken during the session. The proposed time-table was submitted to the Ministry for approval 6 weeks before the opening of a session.

It was not intended that the allocation of time proposed in Circular 1652 should be rigidly followed. Since colleges opened as soon as they could be got ready, a session might begin at any time of the year; and, clearly, the precise incidence of vacations and teaching practice had to depend, to a large extent, on school holidays. In one respect there was a general departure: almost all Principals found it advisable to have three roughly equal periods of teaching practice rather than two, one short and one long. In an intensive course of only thirteen months, three comparatively brief periods of practice proved on the whole to be less of a strain upon the students. Further, this plan enabled the students to

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keep their college studies more closely related to their work in the schools, besides allowing the individual student a wider acquaintance with different types of school. It was considered that a student training with a particular age range in mind should have experience of work with a different age range during at least one of his school practice periods - in particular, experience with children younger than those whom he might feel himself drawn to teach. Three periods of practice gave the needed flexibility and, in addition, could be spaced over a session to greater advantage. Ideally, the first school practice should not take place until the student has been some 10 to 12 weeks in college, and it was generally found desirable that the final practice period should be completed several weeks (8-10) before the end of the session. It is true that some students might regard their performance in their final practice period as the really decisive hurdle in their course and so tend to 'ease off' somewhat during the remaining weeks of the session; but this attitude, when it occurred, was not difficult to correct. More commonly, the sense of relative security, and the increased confidence acquired as the course proceeded, had a beneficial effect on the quality of the work done. The educational advantages of a fairly prolonged final period for theoretical studies were very great: first the student and his tutors had a clearer picture of his deficiencies and academic needs; secondly - and much more important - it was towards the end of their period in college that many students found themselves able for the first time to take a 'synoptic' view of the whole business of preparation for teaching: it was good for them therefore to have some considerable time during which to reflect, not merely upon the relevance of their studies to the practical work of the schools, but upon the wider implications of their training.

One of the most puzzling matters for Principals to decide was the proper duration and content of the 'preparatory stage'. Circular 1652 proposed six weeks. It was realised from the beginning that students fresh from the Services or, at least, coming to a course of systematic study after a long period of urgent practical living, would require some little time to settle down. On the other hand they would be anxious to get to grips with their new work. How best could these two seemingly conflicting needs be met?

It was soon found that six weeks of exploratory generalities, even when interspersed with visits to schools, was too long. The men, especially, grew impatient. The very use of the phrase 'preparatory stage' was perhaps psychologically unsound: it implied delay, and delay, for these students, was anathema. The earlier entrants to the scheme have been described as arriving in college in the state

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of mind of one hurrying for a train, and anything which appeared to stay or deflect their progress towards becoming efficient practical teachers in the shortest possible time was regarded with something more than impatience. Principals, guided by the experience of others whose colleges had opened earlier, cut the period considerably. It should be remembered, in this connection, that as the scheme proceeded, the new intakes to the colleges contained an increasing proportion of students who had had several months' experience as 'temporary teachers' and were, to that extent, less in need of a 'settling-in' period. The majority of Principals eventually found about three weeks sufficient to devote to the introductory period. This allowed time for a student to adjust himself to college life; to get to know his personal tutor and tutorial group; to visit neighbouring schools; to attend lectures designed to explain the scope and significance of the several subjects of the curriculum; to decide upon the type of course - primary or secondary - that attracted him and the main subjects of study he most wished to pursue. A few colleges gave even less time than this.

One or two Principals however preferred to develop a different plan. In one men's college, after a brief introductory period of two weeks, the students settled down to a twelve weeks' 'general' course before deciding whether to train for junior or secondary modern work. During this twelve weeks they received some guidance and instruction on the scope and content of the main subjects of the school curriculum, and thereafter were free to devote their 'optional' time for the remaining weeks of the session to their chosen main subject and a 'combined course'. Further reference is made to this plan on page 113.

In planning the students' day, Principals endeavoured to strike a reasonable balance between lectures, tutorials, and private study. Roughly speaking, lectures and tutorials occupied about half a student's working time, 'directed' private study, reading, essay work, etc., about a quarter, and 'free' private study about a quarter - although most students, by working longer hours, increased this last proportion considerably.

The place of the 'lecture' in colleges of this type is referred to on page 67. At this point, it is only necessary to state that it was agreed by all Principals that lectures to large numbers of students together should be reduced to a minimum. They were most appropriate, perhaps, for certain aspects of the Education course: but even here their value was greatly enhanced if the Education tutors, as a body, themselves attended the lecture, and so were in a position to develop, in their subsequent tutorials, the points raised.

The art of getting the most out of a tutorial group demands a

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high degree of skill, and it is the aspect of college instruction in which the tutors showed the widest variation. It required no little tact on the tutors' part to draw out the diffident, and to keep in their proper place the merely loquacious or opinionated. On the other hand, groups varied in their capacity to profit by this type of tuition according as the members had within themselves, by virtue of their knowledge, or experience, or type of mind, something of real value to contribute.

Perhaps, however, the most difficult matter for Principals to decide was the proportion of time which should be deliberately left free for private study: for the answer depended on whether this free time, theoretically so valuable, was in fact profitably used. As indicated above, it was the general practice for a student following a course requiring much reading to have at least a third, and more nearly a half, of his time free for private study, 'directed' or otherwise; a student following a practical course had, as a rule, at his disposal about one fifth of his total working time to devote to reading or additional practical work. These estimates should be regarded as applying to an average distribution of working time over the course as a whole. It was the common experience that when they first came to college both men and women found difficulty in employing their 'free time' profitably, and became worried and depressed if left too much to their own devices: not until about half way through the course did they feel sufficiently sure of themselves to enjoy being left alone. In one women's college the experiment of making all lectures optional during the last term led to what was described as a 'disappointingly small' number of students availing themselves of the concession.

Experience established that odd free periods scattered through the day were of doubtful value: students had little more than time to arrange their materials, books, papers, etc., before they had to get ready for the next period. 'Free time', to be valuable, had to be substantial and continuous. Much, too, depended upon whether the cultural resources open to the student, within and without the college, were adequate. Colleges well-placed and well-found in these respects could afford their students more 'free time' than those less fortunate. In the early days, difficulty in the supply of books, both for the college libraries and for the students' personal use, undoubtedly affected college policy.

The general problem of time-tabling, from the Principal's point of view, may be best expressed in the following quotation:

"Students and staff have all voiced their disapproval of one or other aspect of our time-table, but by and large the criticisms tend to cancel out. It is obviously impossible to draw up a scheme which

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will completely satisfy over 200 individuals. The better students complain that they are over-lectured and over-tutored; the weaker students that they lack direction. Some tutors complain that other tutors set too much written work which interferes with reading and private study. Most tutors complain that their subject does not get an adequate share of time-table hours."


The principal factor in determining the distribution of the colleges throughout the country was the availability of suitable premises. A second factor, however, of hardly less importance, was the availability of suitable teaching practice for the students. At the period of maximum operation of the emergency scheme there were some 13,200 students in training: the schools of the country had therefore to carry this load for teaching practice in addition to the claims of the 18,400 students attending the permanent institutions. The effect was to increase three-fold the load on the schools as compared with conditions in 1939.

In certain areas, especially in those already supporting a cluster of permanent training colleges, for example in London, and in south-west Lancashire, the problem was acute. On the other hand, certain rural areas also presented difficulties on account of the small size, the wide distribution, or the relative inaccessibility of their schools. Accordingly, a wide survey of the incidence of teaching practice 'demand' was undertaken and the degree of 'saturation', area by area, ascertained. In urban districts an area was held to be 'saturated' when 6 out of 10 of the available classes in suitable schools were known to have students in training attached to them for not less than twelve weeks in the year.

In the densely populated areas, it proved possible, by the mutual agreement of adjacent authorities and the generous co-operation of the often overpressed schools and of the existing training institutions, to find room for a considerable number of colleges; for example, 8 in the 'Greater London' area with 1,888 places, and 10 in Lancashire, with 2,840 places; or, together, more than one third of the total number of places provided by the scheme. To increase the total number of students requiring teaching practice by over 13,000 meant using a very large number of schools which had no previous experience of this work. The emergency training colleges had to enlist the co-operation of more than 6,000 schools, and, of these, nearly half had not had students before. Naturally, experience of students in training is unequally distributed over the schools of the country. Although in certain areas, for example, London

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and other large cities, nearly all the schools are accustomed to having students, some emergency colleges found themselves in areas where there was no such tradition; indeed in a few cases, out of the 150 or so schools 'allotted' to the college for practice, not a single one had had students in training before; and, in numerous instances, the great majority had not.

It would not be easy to overstate the debt the scheme owes to the many thousands of head and assistant teachers who contributed to the training of these students: they helped them and encouraged them in numberless ways; and their opportunity to do so, in the most effective manner, was increased by the special care taken by the Principals and staffs of the colleges to establish personal and friendly contact with them. By way of illustration, the circular issued by one of the colleges situated in an area in which the schools were unused to receiving students is reproduced as Appendix V. It explains the general lines on which the students were instructed in preparation for their work in school, and sets out in sensible terms some suggestions for the most suitable employment of their time. Doubtless there is room for difference of opinion on this or that point, but the note makes clear what the college expected of the student, and indicates some ways in which the school could help him to obtain the maximum benefits from his period of practice. Naturally the issue of such a document was either preceded or closely followed by a personal visit by the Principal or his Deputy to the school.

While a certain standard of amenity is desirable, far more important than the physical adequacy of the building is the attitude of the teaching staff to the presence of students in the school. From the point of view of the college, a 'good' school is one which welcomes students. As one Principal reported, "the quality of the help given the student and the value of the school's subsequent report depend on the quality of the staff as individuals and as members of a team. Good teachers provide useful guided observation and helpful demonstration and criticism. Good heads arouse the interest of the student in the social side of school life and the part it has to play in the community. Good teachers can judge when the student is beginning to 'drop the pilot' and are confident enough in their classes to be able to leave the student in charge for gradually increasing periods. ... The good school accepts students and fits them in without fuss and without much interference with the normal programme, and the staff find time to study the student and comment adequately on his progress".

In large colleges in comparatively remote areas the business of getting away 300 or more students so that they might reach their

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schools by 9 o'clock each morning was a formidable one, involving much extra work on the part of the domestic staff and the organisation of special transport, at very considerable cost. The alternative was dispersion of the students, either to billets or to their homes. Both schemes had disadvantages: the student away from college was relatively isolated from his books, his tutors and his fellows; and for the beginner, at this phase of his training, to be able to share his joys and sorrows with his fellows was comforting and therefore important. Moreover, billets were sometimes far from satisfactory: for his evening preparation, a student might well have to choose between a cold bedroom in peace and a warm sitting-room in pandemonium. Conditions in the students' own homes might often be no better in this respect. Nevertheless, for one college in the north, set down perforce in a district known to be well-nigh 'saturated', it was necessary deliberately to select nearly two thirds of the students from industrial areas some sixty miles distant, and then return them to their homes for teaching practice: only in this manner could the 'practice' problem be met. Principals devised various measures to meet these difficulties. Sometimes it was possible to billet a number of students together in a large house; one group was accommodated in an Oxford college; frequently, a room was taken at some central point in the area to which books from the college library could be sent and where the tutors (who were themselves billeted in groups in the district) could meet students by appointment in the evenings and on Saturday mornings. On the other hand, to be billeted in a relatively remote country district was not always a disadvantage. In very many cases, under such conditions, students were able to take a full part in the out-of-school activities of their pupils; to get to know the parents of the children, and so to develop a keen appreciation of the life of the community in which they found themselves. It should be added that just because students sent to a distance were, in some degree, cut off from consultation with tutors and the college reference library, it was especially necessary that they should visit the practising schools well in advance and familiarise themselves with the schemes of work of their classes in situ; or alternatively that the school should send all such information to the college and that a few days should be allotted for the students to work upon it, with tutorial help, before they went out.

At the same time it was not possible for a student to foresee his needs in detail, and any series of lessons that rigidly followed a plan unrelated to the children's own reactions would have been of little worth. For these reasons, to be cut off from the resources of the library and the college craft-rooms was always a very serious handi-

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cap. And although something could be done by a suitable grouping of general and special subject supervision, it was not possible altogether to overcome the difficulty of providing tutorial advice on special subjects just when and where it was needed. In some cases it was possible for billeted students to return to college for the weekend. Special financial arrangements were made to cover all the expenses incidental to billeting.

Mention has been made of the extra burden placed on the schools by the demands of the emergency training colleges. It would be wrong however to give the impression that the co-operation of the schools in this work was always and invariably a burden to them. It is certain that for many schools, and especially perhaps for those which were for some reason unused to visitors, the incidence of school practice was not without advantages. Within limits, it is good for children, as it is good for teachers, to have friendly, earnest and inquiring visitors anxious to learn and to help. There are many schools up and down the country that have had their day-to-day routine enlivened, and their teaching methods in some degree enriched by the freshness of approach of keen students; and the general diffusion of ideas which results from intercourse with college tutors who were themselves actively re-sorting their habits of thinking. Nor should one forget a second advantage: from time to time the colleges held 'open days' and festival weeks, and these were attended by many teachers from the practising schools, who not infrequently brought their classes with them. On such occasions much interchange of ideas took place; a good deal was learnt by all about methods of display, lettering, labelling and lighting; and the students had the advantage of being put through their paces by expert questioners, of being required to justify their elaborations and explain the virtues of their sometimes highly original techniques.

In considering the function of teaching practice it is natural to think first of its value to the students; but it is also of value to the tutorial staff, for in the course of supervision they have the opportunity of observing in the schools a great variety of conditions and practices. As one tutor remarked, "It is uncommon to enter a strange school without learning something". Moreover, it is impossible to criticise the teaching of others without taking stock of one's own practice; and to watch others teaching - even if they are beginners - and to note in detail their effect upon the children, prompts one to consider afresh the criteria of a 'good' lesson. These are salutary experiences. It is one of the misfortunes of the teaching profession that individual practitioners often have so little opportunity of seeing 'what the other fellow is doing', and how he

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does it. Of all general comments by college lecturers - especially of those whose experience hitherto had lain solely in secondary grammar schools - the most common was an expression of admiration for the work of the teachers in many of the smaller rural schools.


The full course of training comprised a thirteen months' period in college followed by an approved course of part-time study during the two-year probationary period. This section is concerned only with the courses followed during the period in college. In designing the courses of study the fundamental principle was that the students in the emergency training colleges should be regarded as potential teachers in the fullest sense of the word. They required therefore to be introduced to, and engaged upon, such a course of training as would enable them, when they received their full recognition, to take their place as equals beside teachers who bad entered the profession through the more usual channels. It followed that in the first place the college course should include, besides supervised practice in schools, careful study of the general principles of education and an acquaintance with the needs and characteristics of children. In the words of Circular 1652, "the students must be given full opportunities of studying and practising educational methods and techniques, but it is equally important that they should be provided with every possible facility for reading and thinking about education in the wider sense, having regard to its individual, social and ethical implications, and to its setting in the general pattern of life". Secondly they required a course designed to ensure competent use of the English language, spoken and written. Finally, there was the close study of fields of knowledge chosen for their own sake because of their intrinsic interest for the student as a person. To quote Circular 1652 again:

"In some ways this will be the most important part of the course, for we regard it as essential that, by the conclusion of the course, every student should be set on the way towards acquiring that background of general education and culture which is rightly expected in a teacher. For this reason the course must be concerned with the interests and personal development of the student himself as well as with his professional training. The distinction is relative; each part of the course reacts upon the other, and each has its own contribution to make in some degree both to personal development and to professional competence."
For the realisation of these several aims, Principals were allowed

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a large measure of freedom. The only subjects every student was required to take were: principles and practice of education, health education and English usage. For the rest, the student was free to choose, and the Principal was free to approve, whatever combination of subjects seemed most appropriate. In the upshot, a well-designed course reflected the individual needs of the students, the requirements of the schools, the talents of the staff, and the opportunities provided by the environment and circumstances of the college.

At the outset, the potentialities of the students, their power and rate of working, were virtually unknown; the ability of practising class teachers quickly to adapt themselves to the rather different art of training had largely to be taken on trust; the capacity of Principals to devise and effectively to conduct novel courses in a novel way was, in some degree, a matter of conjecture. Indeed, that the Ministry should be directly taking part in the business of training teachers at all was in itself something quite new in the history of education in this country. On all counts therefore the maximum of freedom to experiment was an essential condition of growth; and it remained a chief characteristic of all aspects of the scheme throughout its development. At the same time, it was necessary that Principals and staff, on appointment, and before their colleges were in operation, should be given some general advice on the scope of the curriculum and the planning of their syllabuses. Accordingly, a series of fairly detailed Suggestions for the consideration of Principals was drawn up by panels of H.M. Inspectors convened for the purpose. The Introductory Note to these Suggestions contained the following passages:

"The Principals of the emergency training colleges and their staffs will be confronted with an interesting, even an adventurous task. They will be dealing with students who in comparison with ordinary training college students will be much more mature, not only in years but in experience and outlook, and some will have held posts of considerable responsibility. Among them will be a few who have advanced far in certain subjects or have read widely, but the majority will be somewhat rusty if not actually weak in those scholastic skills with which the teacher is expected to be equipped. One of the first things to be done will be to size up the students, to find out where they are strong and where they are weak. Some may have pronounced intellectual interests while others may have a strong preference for practical pursuits. Among either group there may be those who will need special attention because they are not good at arithmetic, or at the writing of English, or at gathering information from books. In particular it may be expected that a good

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many, however ready to express themselves orally, will be unable to make the best use of their voice, which after all is the teacher's chief instrument, and will need a good deal of special training. These students are in fact likely to differ from one another far more extensively than the students who enter training colleges in the normal way, so much so that at first sight each one may seem to require a separate course for himself. It is true enough that the course must be made to fit the student and not vice versa, for it is not so much what has been presented to him that matters as what he has assimilated, and equally true that every course however well devised should be capable of modification in the light of experience and even of allowing a good deal of exploration away from the beaten path. A course may perhaps be regarded not so much as a continuous series of things to be learnt as an indication of the direction in which progress is to be made; and this direction is decided largely by the needs of the schools. Each Principal will naturally wish to work out the courses of study in his own way, and the Ministry are far from desiring to impose a common system on the colleges. But it is felt, especially where the field is so extensive and relatively unexplored, that all may find it useful to have at hand a set of suggestions relating to the various subjects, showing possible lines of development and topics that may be studied with advantage. These have been drawn up by groups of Inspectors in the hope that they will provide a stimulus to thought and a reasonably broad basis for consideration. No attempt has been made to weave them into a coherent whole. That will be the task of the Principal, in consultation with his staff, when he has decided how he can best make use of these suggestions. Needless to say the advice of H.M. Inspectors will be available at all times, and it is hoped that Principals will not hesitate to consult them in making their plans. ... It is not easy to say how many main subjects should be taken by an individual student. That will depend on his previous knowledge, his interests, and his capacity. A student who intends to teach in a primary school will realise that he will have to teach a good many so-called subjects, whereas one who has his eye on the secondary school will probably wish to specialise. But it is good for the student both as an individual and as a future teacher not to follow too narrow a course, and it is safe to say that he should not study less than two subjects, apart from the professional subjects. On the other hand it is not likely that in the limited time available any student could profitably undertake more than three subjects.

"As in other training colleges the students will learn through

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lectures, through study, through writing, and through tutorial groups. Lectures can be a valuable stimulus to thought and effort; they can bring known ideas into new relationships; and they can present in a compendious form knowledge that can be extracted from books only with immense labour. They are probably more useful in some subjects than in others, but in general they should be used sparingly and with discretion. It is easy to provide students with a surfeit of lectures and to reduce them to the condition of rather passive listeners; while there will always be some who fail to understand what they hear. The fact that these students will not be preparing for an external examination will relieve them of a good deal of arduous preparation in the form of writing. No doubt they will have to be tested on paper from time to time, but the bulk of their writing will be done because of its value to the student. Many occasions will suggest themselves which call for written expression, but it is always worth while to remember that writing is itself a form of thinking. A student who has committed his ideas to paper has gone a good deal further than one who has either not put them into words at all or who has expressed them orally and in a half finished form. ..."
Colleges opening up to the autumn of 1946 planned their courses in various ways, within the framework laid down in Circular 1652, and in general accordance with the Suggestions. By the end of the year, however, it was desirable to review matters in the light of the experience gained, and at a conference of Principals held in London in November, 1946, certain matters relating to courses were discussed and agreed. It was decided, for example, that when considering courses of study appropriate to the needs of students desiring to prepare themselves for work in different types of school, Principals should bear in mind the following age-ranges: 2-6, 5-9, 7-12, 9-15, 11-15, and plan their courses accordingly. It will be observed that these suggested age ranges overlap the age ranges usually to be found in nursery, primary (infant), primary (junior) and secondary modern schools. Although it was considered right that a student's course should have particular reference to a certain age range, it was undesirable that this limitation should be narrowly conceived.

It was also decided that in addition to his three compulsory subjects a student might make a choice from the following list: English literature, Welsh language and literature, history, geography, religious knowledge, French, German, mathematics, general science, physics, chemistry, biology, rural science and gardening, music, art, art and light craft, handicraft (woodwork and/or metalwork),

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housecraft, needlecraft, physical education, social studies, combined courses and individual study. Further, the conference endorsed the view expressed in the Suggestions that, as a rule, students should take not more than three and not less than two of the above-mentioned subjects. It was realised, however, that in addition he might, and almost certainly would take various short courses of a professional nature and of varying length during his year of training.

A student could choose certain main subjects, but it was for his Principal to decide whether he should be allowed to take them. On being accepted for the scheme, but before being allocated to a college, students were invited to state the two main optional subjects they wished to study, and the age range for which they wished to train. This information enabled the Ministry to post the student to an appropriate college, for not all colleges offered all types of course - nursery, infant, junior and secondary; nor did all colleges offer the whole range of optional subjects. For example, only certain colleges offered courses in modern languages and rural science, and one or two of the men's colleges did not offer handicraft. The distribution of these initial options, expressed as percentages, is shown in the following table:

English Literature31.840.7
General Science24.715.7
Physical Education10.014.9
Woodwork and Metalwork9.30.5
Art and Light Crafts (including Needlecraft)8.045.3
Modern Languages7.46.3
Religious Knowledge3.77.2
Rural Science and Gardening3.74.2
Welsh Language and Literature0.60.06

At this pre-entry stage, when choices were largely determined by students' memories of their own school days, one would expect to see the normal school subjects at the head of the list, and to find geography a popular subject with the 'travelled' men. On arrival in college a certain sifting took place: in the event, fewer students took mathematics, general science and modern languages; rather more took music and rural science; many more men took art and

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light craft; otherwise, for those colleges requiring their students to take two main subjects, the picture remained broadly the same. It was reasonable that a student should be allowed to take the subjects that attracted him most. Some regard, however, had to be given to his own abilities and initial skill and to the suitability of particular groupings. Many students, it was felt, would benefit by taking one academic and one practical subject. Others, again, would be well advised to choose subjects so related that each reinforced and added meaning to the other, e.g. mathematics and science. Few combinations could be altogether ruled out. But it was considered unwise, as a rule, for a student, unless exceptionally well qualified, to choose two subjects that involved a heavy programme of reading, e.g. history and English literature; while for purely practical reasons, the combination for example, of physical education and handicraft was discouraged, since both are specialist subjects and rarely taken in schools by one and the same individual.

As has been noted already, it was realised towards the end of 1946 that nearly one half of the men trained in the emergency colleges would probably be required to take up posts in primary schools. Accordingly, early in 1947, some more specific suggestions were issued for a type of course designed especially to meet the needs of students proposing to teach younger children. Briefly, it was proposed that such students, instead of choosing two main subjects. should choose one main subject, which they should study for its own sake and carry as far as their abilities allowed, and, in addition, take what came to be described as a 'combined' course.* Such a course might take several forms. The two indicated in the Suggestions were briefly described in the following terms:

(i) A course designed to give students an experience which would help them with the creative work of young children. Such a course would provide opportunity for the students themselves to study and practice one or more of the arts. e.g. drama. drawing, painting, modelling, music, handicrafts, so that they might personally appreciate the significance of creative work. It would include trained observation of children's creative activities, and a study of the ways in which these activities can be encouraged and helped to grow.

(ii) A course designed to show students how young children gain, in every-day life, experience of the subjects of the curriculum, and how the presentation of these 'subjects' In school can be based on experience of a similar kind. Such a

*See also page 112.

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course would begin with environmental studies. These would be carried out by the students individually or in groups, and developed according to their own interests, e.g., in biology, geography, history. etc. Where conditions allowed, the course would include practice in preparing for and carrying out local studies by young children, and opportunity to consider how the curriculum of the junior school can be integrated in this way.
A course of this type had been in operation for some time in one or two of the women's colleges training students for primary work, but it was new to the men's colleges. Several adopted it with enthusiasm, and, from tentative beginnings, developed some highly interesting and original courses. Some colleges which by chance found themselves suitably staffed for the purpose adopted the principle "one subject plus a 'combined' course" not only for their primary students, but also for those intending to teach in secondary modern schools. 'Suitably staffed' is mentioned advisedly, for the successful translation into practice of a course of this type requires a high degree of skill and initiative on the part of a team of tutors who thoroughly believe in their aims and thoroughly understand what they are doing.

It may be remarked that the introduction of the "one subject plus a 'combined' course" had the effect of appreciably raising the standard of work in the main subjects: for when each man took two subjects it was likely that his first choice would be stronger than his second; but, when he took only one, he chose, as a rule, his strongest. The classes, therefore, in history, mathematics, etc., in colleges which adopted this plan, were both of a higher standard and more homogeneous, and so were able to proceed further and faster. There remains the question of the steps taken to prepare the students for teaching subjects which they had had little time to study during their course in college. It was considered important that their course, brief as it was, should not be allowed to become too superficial; and on this account students were advised to take two main subjects only (besides the three compulsory subjects already mentioned). But in the schools they might have to teach six or seven. Nor was there any guarantee that they would have the chance of teaching the subjects of their choice. Again, compared with students coming to college straight from school, the gaps in their knowledge of the usual classroom subjects were often wide. In the circumstances, it is hardly surprising that students, especially after their first spell of school practice, were anxious for some guidance over a wider field. Within the time available all that could be done was to provide a series of supplementary or profes-

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sional courses. These courses did not pretend to do much more than indicate the place and scope of the subjects in the school curriculum, to suggest some methods of treatment, and to direct students to useful sources of further information. The adoption of the "one subject plus a 'combined' course" plan went some way towards easing the general problem. And experience showed that a good part of the probationer's time during his two-year part-time study* was spent in making good the more obvious gaps in his equipment, as revealed by the actual requirements of his first teaching post.


The report of the Interim Advisory Committee, embodied in Circular 1652, contained the following passage under the heading "Assessment of the results of the course":

"We consider that a formal external examination of the usual type would not be desirable, as being bound to go too far in restricting the freedom of the college staff in planning suitable courses. We have also in mind that such an examination would exert additional pressure of an undesirable kind on students who will be already under a sense of considerable pressure; and that elaborate machinery would be necessary, quite inappropriate to a temporary scheme, especially if courses finish at varying dates in the year. We recommend, therefore, that the work of the students should be assessed on the basis of internal tests for which the staff of the college would be responsible. Internal tests must, however, be subject to a fully effective external check and the Board of Education must be in a position to take responsibility for the maintenance of a national standard. Full records must be kept in such a form that an external assessor can see how assessments are being made. The process of testing and recording should be continuous and the external assessor should have the opportunity of being associated with the process at all stages, and not merely at the end of the course. The student must feel that there has been a real testing of his year's work."

This bold recommendation was adopted, and fully justified itself in practice.

For the colleges to be able to develop the most suitable courses for students of this type, known in advance to have very different backgrounds and highly individual needs, it was essential that the maximum degree of freedom should be allowed. Moreover, it was fairly certain that men and women whose schooling might have

*See page 116.

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ended some 10 to 20 years earlier would regard examinations of a formal kind with peculiar sensitiveness; and indeed most Principals have emphasised how acutely nervous many of their students became at the prospect even of an internal test. It is quite certain that for over-anxious students - and there were many such - the prospect of a final 'full-dress' examination could have overshadowed the entire session with deplorable results. Again the course was an intensive one; there was a great deal of ground to cover; habits of study had to be acquired; new attitudes and points of view needed to be introduced, considered and reflected upon; early hesitations resolved. With so much of a positive, forward-looking nature to be tackled, time for the mere mechanical checking of progress could be ill afforded. Too great an insistence on written examinations would have been apt to lead students to concentrate on those aspects of their work which lend themselves to testing, and consequently to grudge time given to many other aspects of their course - games, co-operative work, societies of various kinds, musical, dramatic, artistic - all of which are of great importance in preparing students to become active and effective members of a school community.

On the other hand, it was essential that students should know where they stood, not so much, if at all, in relation to others, but in relation to their own past performance. Tutors also needed to be assured, from time to time, that they were carrying their students with them, that essentials had been grasped, that a due amount of purposeful reading had been done; and, finally, that the students had, or had not, reached a certain minimum standard of competence in their studies. Experience proved that these ends could be satisfactorily accomplished by a system of 'cumulative assessment' based on a wide range of evidence: the student's showing in tutorial discussion; assignments of all kinds, including essays, maps, graphs, charts, etc.; his performance in occasional written tests; and at a few colleges, in tests of a more formal character, at least in certain subjects. In the practical subjects, progress was similarly judged on performance; and, in the very various forms of project work, account had to be taken of much activity which was part individual and part communal. Finally, the student's attitude and bearing throughout the course - in short, his quality as an individual, as a teacher and as a member of a community - needed to be assessed with the greatest care; for, fundamentally, the most important question the college had to decide was, "Is this student a fit and proper person to be entrusted with the education of children?"

It is clear that a method of assessment of this kind - at once searching and humane - places a heavy responsibility upon the Principal and his staff. Efficiency in practical teaching has always

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been assessed in this way: but the extension of the method over the whole range of the course made new demands. Periodic and precise individual records were essential and each tutor had to know his part in the process. Practice varied, but it was usual for a student to have his day to day performance assessed at prescribed intervals during the course. Alternatively, or in addition, progress reports were prepared by his tutors for staff discussion. Responsibility for the co-ordination of records fell in the main on the Principal and his Deputy. This task did not prove as difficult as it might at first appear; with experience, staff teams learnt to co-operate well together. It required, nevertheless, a good deal of practice and contrivance on the part of Principals to secure that the tutors in the different subjects assessed their students not necessarily in the same, but in a reasonably comparable manner.

It was, of course, for the Principal to decide on the final assessment of the student. To have this point clearly understood helped tutors to give a judgment upon the students' progress in their own subjects without unduly considering the effect of their verdict upon the ultimate decision whether the student should be allowed to become a teacher; they realised that their report was only part of the evidence, and this made for fairness in assessment. The importance of a balanced judgment was especially necessary in the case of weak students where, perhaps, sentiment or sympathy for a hardworking and conscientious man or woman - possibly with considerable family responsibilities - might be expected to operate. Here the personal and professional integrity of the tutorial staff, coupled with the fairness of the methods of assessment as a whole, were the proper safeguards. Cases of doubt were discussed with H.M. Inspector.

The methods of cumulative assessment adopted by the several colleges varied in detail and all were to a large extent experimental in character. As already stated, one of the advantages of the system for these particular students was that, when properly supervised, it avoided the strain inseparable from a set examination. This was certainly true. Yet, according to temperament, there were students who found the sense of being continually under observation hardly less irksome - a feeling voiced in the exceptional request, "Why cannot we have a final examination to relieve us of the bogey of assessment?" To a large extent, this particular bogey was laid by taking pains to see that all students understood clearly the principles of the method employed by the college. As a rule, it was considered inadvisable for students to be informed of their literal or numerical assessments as they tended to read too much into their marks and the weak were often unduly discouraged.

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The principal advantages of the system may be set out briefly as follows:

(i) It is individual and takes into account the students' widely different academic levels.

(ii) For the most part the work assessed is done to meet the student's real educational needs and is performed under normal conditions.

(iii) The student is encouraged to do his best consistently throughout the course.

(iv) Account is taken of much valuable work which is not assessable under examination room conditions.

(v) There is room for experiment and individual work, and the students do not feel constrained to concentrate upon a rigid syllabus.

(vi) The assessment is based upon the whole personality of the student as revealed to a number of tutors who have watched his work and play over a considerable period.

In a sentence, the method presents an unhurried and detailed account of the student's effort, progress and effectiveness in all aspects of his training from the day he enters college to the day of his departure.

On the other hand, experience indicated certain weaknesses or difficulties which required watching:

(i) The idle student had opportunities for sheltering behind the industry of others.

(ii) Some students, having sensed that everything they did was being assessed, tended to 'play up' in tutorials, to concentrate on the 'showy' aspects of their subjects and to adapt their social behaviour a little too obviously to winning the good opinion of the staff.

(iii) A few considered the system allowed too much room for purely personal prejudice.

(iv) Others complained that they found the method vague and that it was difficult to know what progress they were making.

These defects, however, did not prove serious.

It should be added that students were failed on personal grounds who would have acquitted themselves satisfactorily in a formal written examination; while others were passed who could not have managed a test of this kind. Whether a proportion, and, if so, how large a proportion, of these latter students should not, in fact, have been passed, should be shown by the results of the two years' probationary period.

The necessary external element in the assessment was provided

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by visits from H.M. Inspectors. During the session the college Inspector saw various aspects of the work in progress. At the end of the session with the assistance of colleagues he scrutinised a representative sample of the written work and took note of the standard of attainment in the practical subjects of the curriculum. The practical teaching was observed in the schools towards the end of the final period of school practice. A considerable proportion - in the first two years of the college's operation, a very high proportion - of the students was seen, and, at a final conference with the college staff, impressions were compared. Each student would have been seen by, perhaps, six or seven of the college tutors during his practice periods. In this way an agreed assessment was determined. Moderation of the college assessments by H.M. Inspector and his colleagues was appreciated by the tutorial staff, who were naturally anxious to be assured that their judgment was in keeping with that of other colleges, and in accordance with a national standard.

Except for purely internal purposes, no graded teaching mark was given; and no system of discriminatory marking involving 'distinctions' etc., was employed either for teaching practice or for theoretical work. the student 'passed' or 'failed' or was 'referred' for one term or, at most, for two.

Opportunity was provided for the withdrawal during the course of those students who wished to do so, or who, in the opinion of the college staff, did not seem likely to complete the course satisfactorily and to make effective teachers. If a student considered he had been requested to withdraw unreasonably he could appeal to the Minister, whose decision was final. In the large majority of cases the student accepted the judgment of the Principal, and was sometimes grateful for having had his mind made up for him. Appeals, however, were not infrequent.

On the satisfactory completion of his course the student received from the Principal a certificate which set out the branches of study he had pursued and indicated the age range of children to which his professional studies had been mainly directed. Pending the issue of formal notification by the Ministry, employing authorities could take this certificate as evidence that the teacher holding it would be regarded by the Minister as a qualified teacher.

To sum up: under the conditions of the emergency scheme, and for the purpose for which it was devised, the system of assessment by cumulative record proved a success; college staffs were satisfied of its essential efficacy; and the great majority of the students regarded it as just, and for this reason were encouraged to do their best.

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APART from the quality of the teaching staffs, the most important factors governing the scope of the work done were time, physical conditions and the characteristics of the students themselves. Each one of these factors has been dealt with already to some extent: it remains to indicate briefly how they influenced the development of the various subjects of the curriculum.

It is not proposed to give a detailed account of the work of the colleges. It is intended rather to outline the considerations which governed the shaping of the several subjects, and to describe a few of the lines of treatment which some tutors found effective under the conditions of emergency training.

These matters may be most conveniently considered under the usual subject headings.


It was realised that not a single one of the elements of this wide subject - children, schools, educational purposes, social and educational administration, etc. - could possibly be studied fully during the course, yet it was essential to avoid the glib generalisations to which the attempt to cover so wide a field in so short a time might lead. The aim therefore was to bring the student to realise the existence of the problems which confront anyone seriously engaged in education and to encourage him to adopt a method of approach based on first-hand observation, reading and discussion. If he can do this, he is in a position, with suitable guidance, to continue his investigations. It is important also that he should acquire the habit of relating individual instances and concrete practice to principles, and, conversely, of testing theories by intelligently observed practice.

It must be said that it did not prove easy to find competent lecturers in education. From the nature of the case, there is in the country no large reservoir of well qualified teachers in this subject, and many of those appointed had to feel their way carefully and

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discover for themselves the most effective way of treating their material.

Reference has already been made to the severely utilitarian attitude of mind in which many students approached their year of training. This had to be taken fully into account. It was found wise to avoid too earnest an emphasis on the importance of 'principles' too early in the session; and an academic course in educational psychology was wholly out of place. These older students did not come to social and psychological questions without preconceptions, many of which were in the nature of mere prejudice, or mere misunderstanding of what had been read. On the other hand, many students had thought deeply on the human issues raised by social and educational problems and had much to contribute from their personal experience. To attend a series of 'principles' tutorials, in the hands of a good tutor, was to realise the very high level of discussion which might develop simply by reason of the wealth of experience and reflection which could be thrown into the pool by individual students for the common benefit. As parents, many students found it easy to appreciate the importance of the individual study of children, and some very sympathetic studies of particular children were made in the course of school practice. At one men's college an elaborate first-hand study of children's cinema clubs was carried out by groups of students over considerable periods in two successive sessions. In the second enquiry, which lasted six months, about 80 men took part and some 33 reports were made. The whole study was a valuable experience for those taking part.

It has been noted in a previous chapter that students made a choice of the age range of children they felt most drawn to teach, and accordingly the various principles of education courses differed somewhat in content. The general field covered was the same, but the emphasis varied. Naturally, in the courses designed for students training for work in nursery schools and classes special care was taken to keep the instruction closely associated with the actual and observable needs of young children. In one college, for example, besides the 12 weeks' practical work in nursery and infants' schools, one day a week throughout the course was spent in a nursery school in observation of children. On the theoretical side, in addition to the usual lectures and discussions on child study, there were short courses in needlework, woodwork, and the uses of waste materials and clay; a short practical course in dietetics, cookery and laundry; and a course on children's ailments given by the assistant Medical Officer of Health. As part of the general scheme for familiarising the students with children's needs, this college formed a special

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children's library, and small groups of from 10 to 20 children between the ages of 5 and 11 attended twice each week. The younger children were met at their schools on Saturday mornings by students and conducted to and from college; the older ones brought themselves to college for an hour each Tuesday evening. Each group was in the charge of two students: others might observe, but not interfere. The plan began as a means of observing children's ways with books, and some interesting individual records were made. Subsequently there developed an art and craft group, and a drama group - both on a purely voluntary basis. The students undoubtedly gained a good deal from these pleasantly informal meetings.


A course in English usage was compulsory for all students, but it was also open to any student to choose English literature as one of his main subjects. The diversity of background and attainment among the students was naturally very wide. The best were remarkably well-read, with a genuine feeling for language, and a real pleasure in speaking and writing with care. The value of students of this type in the primary and the secondary modern schools needs no emphasis. The need perhaps is even greater in the primary schools than in the secondary modern, for with the gradual abandonment of the formal distinction between the subjects, language enters more closely into, and is linked more closely with, all kinds of creative activity so that the need for teachers who are themselves aware of language as a lively instrument of thought and feeling is greater than ever.

Apart from these very good students, however, there was a large central group composed of men and women of practical capacity, who had plenty to say on things that interested them, but who had never been in the habit of reading and writing much; they had only a slight acquaintance with English literature; poetry was largely unexplored territory; and most of them needed training in the use of books as sources of information. Lastly, at the lower end of the scale, were certain individuals who required quite rudimentary instruction in both written and spoken English. Many in this class had valuable personal qualities, but their initial weakness in English was sometimes a source of considerable worry to their tutors.

From what has been said it will be evident that the college staffs had some formidable problems to solve; but there were compensations. The students were not afraid of work and the majority made fairly rapid progress. Their written work, though sometimes disfigured by commercial English and officialese, often displayed

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vigour and originality. Discussion was free and eager; and in the actual technique of speech most students welcomed help and made great efforts at improvement.

On this very important matter of speech, the following passage from the Ministry's Suggestions for Courses may be quoted:

"It is not, as need scarcely be said, a question of dealing only with such defects in voice production as, if left uncorrected, may eventually injure the voice itself, or with slovenly speech habits of a kind that no teacher should retain; such cases will not, it is hoped, be common. Nor - though even this will not always be easy - is it a matter of securing mere audibility. A teacher's voice reacts upon his class. He needs to learn how to vary his delivery and to modulate his tone; a too forcible style of utterance, for example, may be almost as bad as a lifeless one. Every teacher should realise that in his voice he possesses a delicate and flexible instrument of his craft which it behoves him to respect, to manage and to preserve."
It is mainly on these lines that the work in speech technique was carried out, and though achievement in speech is not easy to measure, very many students were helped to realise what might be achieved.

As regards the content of the course in English usage, a principal need was to widen the student's cultural background, and many tutors felt that for this reason alone no course was likely to be effective which did not draw its life blood from books really read and enjoyed - literature in the best sense. The courses themselves varied considerably, but the most successful were those in which the emphasis was on content rather than on technique, since where this was not so, it was found that over-anxiety soon bred insincerity and stilted language. The aim was usually to provide as wide and varied an experience as possible of spoken English, with as much emphasis on reading and speaking as on writing. Group work and individual work proved more effective than formal lectures, though the lecture had its place, especially towards the end of the year's work. This meant that often lecturers other than the English tutors were required to take part in courses in English usage - sometimes with very good results. Reading included poetry as well as prose. Speaking included the speaking of poetry and play acting. These helped to improve speech, but only indirectly, and when they were enjoyed for their own sake. Some tutors doubted the 'carry over' value of dramatic work, used consciously as a means of speech training. One of them reported:

"Though of course dramatic work helps a student to read with more life and vigour, the real problem is not to make John

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Jones speak well when he is dressed up and pretending to be someone else, but to make John Jones speak a little better when he is completely John Jones and wants to be John Jones."
Written work included much creative writing; the students enjoyed writing poetry and making plays, and learned, through their own experience, something of the value of individual creative work in the classroom.

Certainly, many of the English usage courses developed in very interesting ways. And this doubtless came about largely because Principals and tutors alike took closely to heart the statement in the Suggestions, "Each college will have to turn all or most of its students out, not as specialist teachers of English, but as teachers of English up to a certain point." The difficulty of such a task, within the severe limits of time available, could hardly be exaggerated. An English usage course, if it is to achieve the aim set out above, must be in effect allowed and encouraged to take on the characteristics of a simple general English course. How this can best be done is a matter of first-class importance, and it was one to which college Principals gave much attention. For one thing such a development meant associating all or most of the staff with the main purposes of the general English scheme - a move for which there is a great deal to be said.

The scope of the courses in English literature, where this was taken as a main subject, and the manner of approach adopted are best indicated in the following passages from the Suggestions:

"A course in English literature in a one year college can clearly have none but the most modest scope. It will not resemble a degree course cut down; there will probably be no attempt at 'period study', nor, while some apparatus of scholarship will certainly be needed for the intelligent reading of any literary text, will the aim be the impossible one of producing scholars in the equivalent of a few weeks. But the treatment will be scholarly at least in the sense that superficial reading and hasty generalisation will be discouraged, and it is hoped that at the end of it the students will feel that they have gone some if only a little way in exploring a wide and interesting subject The colleges need not indeed fear the reproach of turning out amateurs, if, according to its etymology, that word be understood to mean men and women who will have acquired a love of English literature and a desire to read more of it. The spirit indeed which will animate the actual teaching given in the college, and the attitude of mind which it will encourage in the students towards both English literature itself and their future

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work, will be matters of more importance than the actual contents of the courses themselves."
All tutors endeavoured to carry out their work in the spirit of these passages, and to a large extent were successful.

The students concerned were those who were most interested. in English, and they often started with a good deal of the right background and considerable powers of, expression. As a group, they perhaps profited most of all from the close and friendly talks between lecturer and student which were so characteristic a feature of the work of emergency colleges. More than any other subject, (except religious knowledge) English depends on the leisurely and informal interchange of ideas as well as on the give and take of lecture and tutorial. Such interchange was fostered in every possible way and the result did much (though admittedly it could not do everything) to counteract the disadvantages of a one year course. It is significant that many colleges advised their outgoing students to pursue a course of English as part of their further systematic study during the probationary period.


The three colleges situated in Wales had to design Welsh studies for three types of student:

(i) students intending to teach in the Welsh-speaking areas (chiefly in primary schools);

(ii) students intending to teach in any part of Wales and wishing to make some special study of Welsh;

(iii) other students, the very great majority of whom were expected to teach in Wales.

Students in the first group would be teaching principally in schools in which Welsh would be the main - and, in the junior classes, the sole - medium of instruction, and it was felt that the most helpful course for them would be an aggregated course of Welsh studies. The course aimed at presenting as clear a picture as possible of Welsh life and letters. It thus included aspects of Welsh history and geography, literature, drama and music (more especially folk song and folk music). It was to be expected that the course would develop in different ways at each of the three colleges, and this expectation was certainly fulfilled. Although the number of students taking the course was never large, there can be no doubt that it was successful in making the Welsh cultural background vivid to those intending to teach in the Welsh-speaking areas.

Many members of the second group intended to try for posts in

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secondary modern schools where they would take part in the specialist teaching of Welsh. For these students, and for others in the group who wished to pursue further their study of Welsh, there was available a course in Welsh language and literature. The aim of the course was not so much to pursue a series of formal studies as to widen the students' reading of Welsh literature, and to emphasise the essentials of good modern usage in speech and writing.

The poetry section of the course ranged over a wide field and included poetry in the 'strict' as well as in the 'free' metres. It was assumed that the students would have some acquaintance with Welsh poetry and that it would not be difficult to extend their knowledge of the content and technique of poetry in the 'free' metres. It was felt however that without some reading of poetry written in the traditional 'strict' metres the course would lose much of its purpose.

In the study of Welsh prose the aim was not to make an intensive examination of any particular author or authors so much as to widen the students' acquaintance with the great range and development of Welsh prose. Thus, while the works of modern writers (including modern Welsh novelists) were read and discussed the course included some study of great prose writings such as the Mabinogion (in a modernised version), the Welsh Bible and the work of such writers as Ellis Wynne.

Reading and study of Welsh drama, as might be expected, was confined almost entirely to modern one-act and three-act plays. Nevertheless some study was made of the history of drama in Wales, and this included a reading of one or more of the interludes of Twm o'r Nant.

The aim of the language section of the course was to make the students aware of the essentials of good modern usage. This involved some study of grammar and syntax, but emphasis was always laid on the importance of an acquaintance with good modern practice as seen in the works of the prose writers and in the major periodicals. Speech and writing were both emphasised and each was practised in a wide variety of exercises.

It was to be expected that students would differ widely both in the scope of their reading before entering college and in the amount they were able to do during the year. Many of them read widely, and the liveliness of their response, the range and quality of their written work, including original writing in prose and verse, showed that they had gained substantially from their reading, in the ability both to express themselves and to estimate the value of the writing of others.

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A third course offered by the college was based on the assumption that any student proposing to teach in Wales should have some idea of its traditions and cultural background. This course was therefore compulsory for all students who expressed their intention of teaching in Wales. (Welsh-speaking students, however, were excused if they chose either a course in Welsh language and literature or the aggregated course of Welsh studies.) A large number of tutors at each college took part in drawing up the course and in the subsequent teaching. Much of the work was done, not through formal lectures, but by way of projects and assignments which were frequently related to the areas around the students' own homes. Welsh-speaking students did much of their work in Welsh.

A study of the bilingual problem necessarily entered into all three courses. The students studied the history of bilingualism in Wales and the problem of bilingualism in the schools of Wales today. This included a study of the problems involved in teaching Welsh and English as first and second languages, and the use of each of these languages as a medium of instruction. Reference was also made to the bilingual problem in other countries. The periods of teaching practice provided opportunity for further observation, and for the practice of methods studied and discussed in the college.


This subject was conducted under special difficulties. In the first place, in few of the colleges were the conditions altogether satisfactory. All colleges had a hall equipped with portable apparatus, but it was much in demand at different times of the day for other purposes; very few colleges had properly equipped gymnasia; playing fields were often inadequate; and facilities for swimming were mostly inconveniently distant. Secondly, experienced lecturers were difficult to find - especially on the women's side. Authorities were most generous in lending the services of their organisers on a part-time basis: even so, in some colleges, effective work was severely handicapped by staffing difficulties. Nevertheless, students and staff were most commendably keen; adaptability and resourcefulness characterised the work; and in many cases, the necessity for improvisation was turned to good account. Thus, students appreciated being shown how features of the terrain adjoining or forming part of the premises of a school might sometimes be exploited in the interests of the children's physical education, and how simple, improvised apparatus could be used to add interest to, and increase the range of the work. Often great trouble was taken (and long distances covered) in the endeavour to make good local deficiencies:

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swimming baths were attended regularly, wherever transport could be arranged, and visits were paid to displays and demonstrations of various kinds. In built-up areas, it was usually possible to secure the use of a suitably equipped gymnasium out of school hours, but in country districts this was more difficult, and, in consequence, the scope of the work in gymnastics was restricted. There was thus a particular need for the Ministry's special three-months' course for the further intensive training of suitable students of physical education. Further reference to these courses is made on page 123.

Except for the medically unfit, all students not taking physical education as one of their main optional subjects took the subject at 'basic' level. devoting from two to three periods a week to it. In some colleges, it was possible to give the students training for work in primary schools rather longer. The time allowance, however, was only sufficient to introduce them to the elements of the subject, and many will doubtless need a good deal of further expert help and guidance during their probationary years.

Where conditions were satisfactory, some very good work was done. The tutor at a men's college reported that many of the students were apt at first to regard the prospect of compulsory physical education with considerable coolness. After their first school practice, however, their appreciation of the importance of this subject in schools, and of the obvious need for teachers, brought about a marked change of attitude: they became keen to learn all they could; and the problem, from the point of view of the tutors, was to satisfy the men's demands upon their time and upon the resources of the college.

In addition to the formal courses, numerous voluntary classes were held to prepare students for the various awards offered by outside bodies. Of these the St. John's First Aid, the Life Saving and the Football Association Referees classes were the most popular. In many colleges extensive use was made of films covering various aspects of physical education.

In a large men's college it would not be unusual to find the following sports and games provided through the students' union clubs, aided by the tutorial staff as coaches: association football, rugby football, cricket, athletics, lawn tennis, swimming and water polo, fencing, boxing and folk dancing. In a women's college, the usual activities would be netball, hockey, badminton, tennis, swimming and country dancing.

In physical education (as in handicraft) it was considered advisable that employing authorities should be given some guidance as to the degree of competence achieved by the student by the end of

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the college course. The standard reached by any student was assessed by the college authorities in consultation with the specialist H.M. Inspector. In order to avoid ambiguity, all Principals used an agreed form of words to describe the standard attained.


This subject was treated as a rule in close association with the compulsory courses in 'basic' physical education. It was a subject difficult to make live, in part because sufficient time could not be devoted to it, in part because the great majority of the students were ignorant of the most elementary biological facts.

As a rule the work was in the hands of the physical education staff, and most courses attempted to cover the accepted aspects of the subject - elementary physiology, school hygiene, the medical and social services in relation to schools, elementary first aid and some discussion of sex education. Where the course was confined to a series of thirty lectures it was clear that not much of value could be accomplished. But in a number of colleges, in addition to the lecture course, the students were divided into groups to pursue particular aspects of the subject on project lines, either from college or during their school practice: and in the pursuit of these enquiries they paid visits to clinics, schools for handicapped children, maternity and child welfare centres. etc. Certain of the colleges developed a close link with their authority's school medical officer, whose specialist assistants visited the colleges to speak upon their specific work - dental, ophthalmic, mental and so on. One college made a close study, not only of the health services, but of the vital statistics of its area. In at least two colleges a determined effort was made to approach this subject from a broadly biological point of view. Additional time was allotted in order to allow of a certain amount of practical work in the biological laboratory and, by this means, remarkable enthusiasm was developed. The courses were designed to emphasise the relationship between personal and social health. and to establish useful links with psychology on the one hand and physical education on the other.

As was to be expected with mature students (many of them parents), the question of sex education was a matter of genuinely felt concern. With students of normal training college age it is generally considered that sex instruction should be mainly directed towards assisting them in their own personal development, since they are considered too immature to tackle competently the instruction of young children in these matters. In the emergency colleges these

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considerations hardly applied; accordingly, it was found possible to adopt a more positive attitude, and to discuss the problems involved on an adult level. In a number of colleges the subject took its place naturally as part of the general course on principles of education.


Certain difficulties faced the tutors responsible for this subject. First, there was the fact that almost all the students would at some time be called on to teach at least arithmetic as a class subject - a formidable prospect, as it must have seemed, for many men and women to whom mathematics was a difficult subject at school. Secondly, there was the wide variation of attainment among the students. Thirdly, since most lecturers were new to the work of training teachers, they had to be guided in planning their courses largely by a priori considerations. Many of them showed great resource in tackling the problems which confronted them; indeed the experience gained in coping with the exceptionally difficult problems presented in the emergency colleges should prove of the utmost value to those tutors who may wish to continue in training college work.

At the beginning of the session it was usual for a careful survey to be made in order to ascertain the attainments of students and to gain some indication of their capacity. Since all students were required to take a basic course in mathematics, it was possible, because of the large numbers involved, to grade them as a result of this survey into reasonably homogeneous groups. Of some, more especially those training for primary work, it was certainly true to say that, at entry, their knowledge of the very elements of arithmetic had rusted from disuse, and that they were unable to carry out even elementary computations with accuracy. In the main, this was due to unfamiliarity with the multiplication tables and to sheer inability to 'do the sums'. Fortunately, experience showed that all but the very weakest could be brought up to a respectable standard by the end of the course. This largely remedial work proved of great interest to certain tutors who displayed much ingenuity in devising means of giving their students confidence in their own powers of reckoning. And it is satisfactory to note that, in sympathetic hands, the students, though acutely aware of their limitations, did not, as a rule, allow themselves to be unduly depressed, but, on the contrary, were keen to improve their performance and to familiarise themselves with the most profitable ways of presenting the subject to children.

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As regards method, for students training for work in primary schools, attention was given to carefully directed observation of children which in turn led to discussion both of the nature of the subject and of the way children learn, and to the collection of simple materials which could be used by children in situations making demands on ideas of number and space. In particular, interesting collections of home-made measuring apparatus, graded in difficulty and suited to a variety of circumstances, were assembled. Although, in these basic courses, due attention was given to teaching method, many lecturers included topics of wider interest, such as simple algebra and easy surveying; nor were the historical aspects of the subject neglected. In the classes taking mathematics as a main optional subject most tutors tried to break away from the traditional textbook treatment. The great value of the infinitesimal calculus as an instrument of mathematical education was generally realised and attention was also usually given to such activities as surveying and elementary astronomy. By these and other means an attempt was made to lead students to an appreciation of the part which mathematics has played in the history of thought as well as in the economic development of civilisation.

Individual or group work on a topic basis was very general. For example, in one college, in addition to their formal studies, the students, in groups of three, undertook the study of the mathematics relating to special enterprises such as gas, electricity or water works, a small business, farms, a car, or the building of a house. In nearly every case the resulting account was accompanied by working models and a variety of other appropriate visual aids. At another college, individuals were encouraged to take up a particular study and to pursue it under tutorial guidance for a period of two terms or more. Topics ranged over a wide field in accordance with the tastes and the mathematical training of the student. The choice of a suitable topic was often not easy, and demanded from the tutors a good deal of tact and sympathy. Several weeks were devoted to reading, research and note-taking and in due course a draft outline was submitted to the tutor. Tutors were always available; but most students became increasingly self-reliant, making good use of college and county libraries, and being allowed time off on a generous scale for special visits. In the course of two years a hundred or more topics were pursued.

Often the topic chosen would have some bearing on the student's previous experience. A few examples may be given:

'Mathematics in the milk trade', an excellent study by a student who left school at 14.

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'Analysis of public library records', by an ex-librarian - a study in which the trends in public taste were presented in a series of novel graph-forms.

'Mathematics of a Hollerith tabulating machine', undertaken by an ex-operator - an illuminating technical exposition and mathematical justification of the operation of the machine.

'Position', by a student who held the Board of Trade Master's Certificate and had wide interests in navigation, astronomy and geography, all of which were drawn upon to produce a remarkably well-constructed discourse.

Other students launched into hitherto unfamiliar branches of mathematics: for example, the mathematics of a geological survey. The student who did this, a woman interested in geography and mathematics, sought to establish the position of a well-defined underlying rock stratum from an examination of the location of wells and of the relevant well-borings. The enquiry involved the study of three-dimensional co-ordinate geometry, which, for her, was new territory. Another student, a school leaver at 14, took up the closer study of a map device he had encountered during the war. This led him to a study of nomograms: and he proceeded to build up his own demonstration of the principles involved and to illustrate them in varied and interesting applications. In almost every instance the individual project formed the major independent academic enterprise in the student's life; and, despite the pressure of other college demands, its development and successful completion appeared to afford a satisfaction of a distinctive kind. From the tutors' point of view, it was particularly pleasing to note, this satisfaction was experienced not least by those whose mathematical background was relatively slight. It has already been observed in the schools that students who have had this experience even at a relatively modest level have been the more ready to appreciate the importance of similar experience for their pupils.

These particular educational values could have been pursued and realised on this scale only in a course freed from the necessity of working to a set syllabus.


It was expected that a certain proportion of the students might wish to take modern languages; and the interviewing boards had not been long at work before it became evident that among the men and women candidates from the Services a number, having by residence abroad acquired a fluent knowledge of a foreign language, particularly French, were anxious to offer this subject in their

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course of training. Apart from those who, through business connections, had had close contacts with France, Belgium, Luxembourg or Switzerland, there were also men and women who had retained a keen interest in French and German as a result of their studies in grammar and technical schools; and such interest had of course been heightened by active service on the continent. The number was never large: not more than 7 per cent actually proposed to take a modern language and, of these, approximately half, when they were put through their paces on arrival in college, were found to have insufficient acquaintance with the language to make it worth their while to pursue it in the limited time available in so short a course. However, as the scheme developed, 16 colleges eventually were staffed to offer French; several added German, and one, Spanish. Colleges which did not offer a modern language as a formal subject of study, as well as those which did, often ran very flourishing 'circles' which were among the best attended of the various recreative societies. The most successful courses generally included treatment of phonetics, language, literature, the civilisation of the foreign country, and teaching method. Great care was taken to ensure not only that the student's own accent was good, but that he also knew how to exact good pronunciation from his pupils. Language was very rightly approached through oral practice and free composition. For French conversation, most colleges had the benefit of the services of an 'assistant'. The literature programme, while not ignoring the great writers of the past, found a place for contemporary authors. Nor was interest centred only upon the linguistic and literary aspects of the country's culture. The French or German way of life received due emphasis as well as the art, the music, the architecture, in a word, the civilisation of France or Germany. Observation of good class teachers in action, demonstration lessons undertaken by the lecturer or by the students themselves and lectures dealing with the practical problems of the classroom were integral parts of the course. The gramophone, the radio, and the film strip were profitably used, often by the student for his own needs.

Six of the colleges arranged for groups of from 10 to 20 of their students, in charge of a tutor, to attend summer schools run by French universities on French soil. The plan worked admirably, and some colleges repeated it in each session. There is good reason to believe that many teachers trained in the emergency training colleges are giving a very creditable account of themselves not only in the increasing number of secondary modern schools now including a foreign language in their curriculum, but also in grammar schools.

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The courses provided in the colleges were undenominational in character and it was open to any student to take the subject either as one of his main options or at 'basic' level.

Some colleges without a formal chapel set aside a room fittingly furnished which was available for prayer and meditation, and for simple services. In many colleges a form of corporate worship was held each day and was well attended.

In view of the need for informed teachers in this subject in the schools the proportion of students who took it as a main subject was disappointingly low. On the other hand, the quality was gratifyingly high.

The students who chose religious knowledge as a main subject did so because they were convinced Christians deeply conscious of the importance of the subject in schools and of the significance of the fact that it is very frequently at school that the child makes his first and only contact with religion and corporate worship. It is true that some of the students had a very limited knowledge of the Bible and hardly one knew anything at all about the history of Christianity; but they had the essential foundations of religious experience, and a full appreciation of the vital importance of the teacher's own integrity and faith.

Some of the most difficult students to deal with were those with considerable textual knowledge of the Bible, but with a narrowly limited view. For many such, modern interpretations and modern methods of approach proved distasteful; and, in a few cases, students of this type withdrew from the class.

The urgent and over-riding need of the students was for more background knowledge so that they might be reasonably equipped to approach the subject in an intelligently adult manner. A tutor in a men's college reported as follows:

"There is an idea (among the students) that one does not have to do any thinking about religion; ... because in some sense it has been with them all their life there is a tendency to assume they know all about this subject ... There is a consequent necessity early in the course to show them their limitations as gently as possible. It is, obviously, quite easy to 'blind them with science' - discussion of manuscript evidence, original language of the Bible, philosophy of religion, etc., but equally obvious that such an approach would be pernicious. In the current course we started from some of the answers to Mass Observation's 'Puzzled People' and from children's questions which quickly showed the necessity for some consistent,

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integrated and rational study of religious knowledge and opened the way to the course proper ... We have concentrated on the teacher's own ideas rather than on how or what he shall teach the child, on the principle that until he has got his own ideas sorted out ... he cannot expect to be very successful in conveying those ideas to others."
This manner of approach, there is good evidence to show, was greatly appreciated by the students.

In all colleges the work was conducted mainly on tutorial lines; but in this subject more than most it was necessary for the tutors to keep a tight rein on discussion; the students themselves often deprecated argument on the sensible ground that they did not know enough to argue at large and preferred that discussion should be limited to the elucidation of points raised in lectures.

In all colleges there was a strong demand for basic courses, and everywhere attendance at these was very high. As a rule, the courses comprised one or two lectures a week throughout the session. Naturally, in so limited a time, it was not possible to equip the students with the factual knowledge they should possess to teach divinity. The purpose therefore was first to help the students to think maturely, and secondly to consider the possible aims of religious education; to suggest as a minimum aim that children should be brought fully into touch with their heritage as members of a civilisation based upon the Christian faith, so that even if they rejected it they at least knew what it was that they were rejecting and were not considering it in a garbled form.

A tutor in a women's college with wide experience in grammar schools and in a two-year training college made the following general observations:

"In the first place, these students naturally for the most part show a more mature outlook. They have had more experience of those who think differently from themselves and are therefore more tolerant. But some are rigidly sectarian, and for the first time find themselves obliged to think out the basis of their faith in the light of opposing views. This is hard for them, and some of them at the outset of the course feel that their faith is being shattered. It is remarkable that they bring so much good sense to bear upon what is undoubtedly a painful situation and are usually able to look back on it at the end of their course as a useful experience. In dealing with adolescents one is aware that they are either closely following the home pattern, or violently in revolt against it. In either case one has to help them to reach an emotionally independent standpoint. This problem is not so acute with older students (though some are

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at this stage emotionally) and therefore they listen to and appraise what is said by the lecturer and by fellow students in discussion. The result is that one seems to achieve more in a shorter time ... One fundamental necessity has been left to the end precisely because it is of supreme importance. The life of the college must be based upon Christian values, and lectures on the meaning of the Bible and on Christian doctrine are irrelevant unless seen against that background."
With this view all concerned with effective teaching in this subject would concur.

Tutors in emergency training colleges had to solve many important problems of approach. In particular they had in many instances to shift the emphasis of study from textual matters to questions of apologetics and sociology, in order to meet the needs of students who were more mature and more conscious of the impact of materialism on religious beliefs. Permanent training colleges may be interested to take note of this development.


The spirit of adventure which characterised the college staffs and bound them together in close co-operation was particularly valuable to the music tutors whose own experience was often enriched by contact with other tutors, particularly those associated with infant method. Freed from the narrow limits of 'school music', each tutor brought to the subject a certain originality of approach and the resulting enthusiasm, infectiously caught by staff and students alike, was responsible for the very high sense of comradeship and purpose which everywhere enlivened the work.

The proportion of students who elected to study music as their subject of special interest was generally small. In most colleges, however, provision was made for a basic course for those wishing to gain a working knowledge of the fundamentals of class music. Colleges training intending infants' teachers made a particular effort to give some musical instruction to all students even though there were many who played no instrument. The students were even more diverse than the staff in age, musical experience and qualifications, though it was possible to separate them into two main groups - the initiated and the uninitiated. The first category included many who had been pianoforte teachers in private practice before the war or professional instrumentalists from cinema, theatre, and military bands; singers, both amateur and professional who had made a special study of voice culture or had operatic experience were represented, and the greater number had sung in local choral

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societies. In the second category were those who had the desire to further their musical knowledge but whose experience of music was decidedly thin. Many, indeed, were unable to read a simple melody or to perform on any instrument. Much valuable time therefore had necessarily to be given to the acquisition of basic musical skill with corresponding curtailment of time available for the wide cultural and æsthetic possibilities of the subject.

Amenities for a full study of music were not always ideal. In some colleges residential accommodation was only sufficient for the bare necessities of student life; there were few or no practice rooms, and often no chapel suitable for music. Other colleges were fortunate in having a number of small rooms, such as dressing rooms behind a stage, which made excellent practice rooms, in addition to a lecture room reserved entirely for music students.

An encouraging feature in the majority of the colleges was the liberal provision of musical apparatus including recorders, percussion band instruments, and, exceptionally, some orchestral instruments. Sets of song books were available and, above all, adequate library stock. At least one college established a section in the library devoted entirely to specimen copies of new music books from publishers' catalogues. A limited number of pianos and radiogramophones was supplied to each college and representative libraries of records made possible a widely varied use of the gramophone for educational and recreational purposes.

In many of these colleges the musical life was so rich that it was difficult to separate the content of the musical syllabus from the extraordinary wealth of activity organised by the students themselves. This feature was of special value since, without this reinforcement, many of the students would have left college with only a skeleton of knowledge and very limited practical experience. Periods of directed study and practice were nearly always adequate, and since only a small number of students chose music as a main subject, constructive discussions between tutor and students in group tutorials played an important part. With these students studies in composition led to simple orchestral writing - often intended for the 'ad hoc' groups of instrumentalists in the college. No better preparation for this type of work in the modern school band could be imagined. Other students, many of them attempting musical composition for the first time, wrote songs and arrangements of songs, dances and other simple forms of music. In addition, techniques of choral, and orchestral conducting, accompanying, aural training and the direction of choral work of every type were generally fully considered.

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Musicianship was the focus of the course at most colleges; but even diploma holders were often found to be weak in the normally accepted basic skills. Six years of war and the lapse of many years since taking diploma examinations undoubtedly had their effect; but in many cases the root of this failing had to be sought at a much deeper level in the musical structure of our educational system.

In some colleges interesting experiments were made in the approach to infant work, and discussion on novel apparatus for rhythmic and melodic training led to observations concerning the nature of musical development at the infant stage; for example, the use of tubular bells, bottles containing coloured water and dulcimers prepared the way for further enquiry into individual melodic growth.

Reference has already been made to the wealth of corporate activity which was almost without exception the central feature of musical life in these colleges, both day and residential. Choral groups of every constitution sprang up, and one Welsh college produced four separate societies, mixed, men's voice, women's voice and madrigal group. Under the guidance of tutors, chapel choirs were formed, and made most valuable contributions to the religious life of the colleges at morning assemblies and Sunday services.

Instrumental work followed a more chequered course. The assumption that to learn music means to play the piano is still prevalent. Large numbers of students volunteered as pianists; far fewer came forward with instrumental experience. Too seldom has it been possible for a child to learn an orchestral instrument at school, and instrumental classes have rarely been available. In this field emergency training colleges have done most useful work. A few were able to organise official string classes directed either by the resident tutor or by a visiting teacher. Others relied on students to act as coaches and leaders. One student was known to devote a phenomenal amount of time to informal string classes, including viola, cello and bass, and the majority of his 'students' joined the college orchestra, if only for the last few months of their training. Where students felt the need for pianoforte tuition, classes were started if at all practicable. College orchestras, though frequently incomplete and inadequate for public performance, gave students that valuable social experience which can only be realised by participation.

Informal concerts by students in co-operation with the music staff played a significant part in aiding the development of good taste. Initial concerts consisted largely of ballads and café music. Towards the end of a course students attempted scenes from opera,

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chamber music and some large-scale choral works as widely divergent as Dido and Aeneas, Rio Grande and Haydn's Creation. In all colleges the gramophone society was a most popular club activity.

Many of these colleges were situated in remote country districts where concerts by renowned national artists are a rare luxury. To some of these it was possible, by various means, often with the help of the Arts Council, to bring concerts of chamber music and small orchestras. In the less remote colleges large parties of students frequently attended concerts and recitals in the neighbourhood.


The scope of the work in this subject was naturally conditioned by the limited time available. Two important aims in the normal training of the art teacher, the development of a high degree of special skill, and the maturing of a personal view through a wide range of experience, could not, it was evident, be achieved.

On the whole the students tackled the work with remarkable enthusiasm. Good art lessons are usually busy functions, but traditionally art study at an adult level is accompanied by the measured deliberation of the craftsman. The various media of art and crafts cannot be hurried. Paint dries as slowly in an emergency training college as it did before the war and paste imposes its own degree of leisure in a craft process. The eagerness of the students, however, gave an air of bustle and speed in the attack on the problems set. The willingness to teach, which brought the students into the scheme, was manifestly based on the willingness to be taught. There was little necessity to urge students to greater efforts; on the contrary the urging came from the students with continuous and sometimes merciless demands on the time and energies of the lecturers. It is interesting to note further that this almost impetuous spirit could last on into the period of special study following the college course, and in one evening class for the further training of emergency trained teachers in a local art school the men and women moved about the studios and sprang at the apparatus with all the zest of children at a party. This great store of enthusiasm if, as we may hope, it persists should enable these students to make a very notable and important contribution to the schools.

The students varied greatly in type. Among the most rewarding were those who had had little or no experience in art, but who had always had a keen interest in the subject and a strong desire 'to do something about it'. Students of this type floundered courageously, and appeared the most easily able to identify their own difficulties

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in self-expression with those of children. Others came into the colleges with a rigid conception of art and an assumption that the subject was bound up with photographic representation. They proved difficult to deal with; for so much time had to be spent on breaking down initial preconceptions. They had a tendency to be rigid and unfeeling and to concentrate upon standards of technical accuracy where one might have hoped to see an emotional response to rhythm or colour or pattern. Finally there was a very small number of students who had had some preliminary training in the skills and techniques of commercial processes; it is likely that, here and there, students of this type left the colleges fundamentally unchanged.

In spite of the enthusiasm to learn and to do things, it was found that many of the more sensitive students needed the most careful handling if their innate creative ability was to be properly nourished. In the traditional and more leisurely system of art education, a student automatically gains and loses confidence in a rhythm which is a part of normal growth. A 'stale' student can recover creative power through an extension of experience and the passage of time, but in a college where every day is vital, the despondency of an unexpected failure or an unforeseen difficulty has to be countered immediately, and lecturers found that not the least of their heavy responsibilities was the provision of the right sort of encouragement during these negative phases.

There is no satisfactory basis on which the work of the students can be compared with the technical standards achieved on the longer courses of training. The work varied greatly not so much between groups of students in a college, as between one college and another; for in art to a greater extent than in other subjects, the quality of the work done closely reflected the quality of the tuition. Where this was good - and it often was - the work was marked by a refreshing and satisfying awareness of colour and design.

At a time of unparalleled shortage of art teachers of any sort, the problem of staffing the colleges with good art lecturers was one of great difficulty. The majority of those appointed came from secondary grammar and modern schools and few came with any experience of training college work. This was not necessarily a disadvantage in an art lecturer - except that it normally indicated a lack of experience in dealing with adult students. In consequence, the first year in many colleges was frankly a year of experiment. There is no doubt that the lecturers were called upon to face a very difficult problem and that the duration of the scheme was barely sufficient to enable them to. find their feet. They worked in many instances in adapted rooms not entirely suitable for the purpose and

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they were called upon to use their utmost skill in improvisation. Nevertheless, it is certain that their work has made a very valuable contribution to the personal and professional training of the students.

The opening stages in most colleges were difficult owing to shortage of materials and difficulties in obtaining equipment - and the need for making a flying start on the course. In the settling down period, after overcoming the initial difficulties, there were various problems to be solved connected in the main with the integration of art with crafts and with their relation to the course of training as a whole. At first there was evidence that in some colleges there was one type of work done on paper and called 'art' and other work carried out as an unrelated activity and called 'craft'. In most colleges, however, it was quickly discovered that art and craft activities are indivisible. The sheer pressure of time favoured integration for it soon became apparent that art and craft could not be kept separate from visual and practical exercises in other subjects: and problems connected, for instance, with play production as a part of an English course were regarded as the legitimate content of an art course instead of becoming a mere unrelated series of odd-jobs to be done 'after hours'.

In planning the courses, the time factor had constantly to be borne in mind. Students usually made slow progress at the beginning. There was first the process in most cases of re-awakening long dormant creative abilities and giving students the confidence to smack colour about instead of cowering behind a full brush. There was the difficulty of finding reading time in the face of the demands of practical work. In general, lecturers were justified in sacrificing much reading and written work to the greater urgency of seeing and doing.

A good deal of attention was properly given to lettering, and picture-making had a place in all courses. The main crafts undertaken included pottery, weaving, fabric printing and bookcrafts. Some colleges built their own kilns - and the weaving included in some instances spinning and dyeing. Puppetry proved an exceedingly popular craft, and the value of modelling and carving was generally realised. It is not possible in this brief account to discuss in detail the many aspects of these crafts, nor even to catalogue the full range of activities. It must suffice to say that in the better colleges the approach to all craft processes was distinguished by liveliness and good quality in design together with standards of technical skill normally associated with longer courses of training. The main problem which lecturers had to face was the need, within the very limited time, for the student to develop skill in a worth-

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while craft, and not merely to learn a few unrelated technical processes. On the whole, this problem was successfully solved.

Viewed against the whole background of art education and the training of art teachers with its highly specialised traditions and standards, experience to date in the emergency training colleges has served to re-emphasise certain principles and modes of procedure. The following, very briefly, are the points of major importance:

(i) Close co-operation between the art and the craft lecturers in a college.

(ii) Association of the work of the art department with the work in other subjects where there is a genuine link to be forged.

(iii) Flexibility in the conduct of the course to meet individual needs.

(iv) A 'philosophy' which will assist the future teacher to think out for himself how best he can educate his pupils through art and crafts.

(v) The need for the teacher to be an artist himself if he is to exercise his full influence as an art teacher.


Forty-one colleges provided a course in handicraft and some 9 per cent of the men chose it as one of their main subjects. It was to be expected that a considerable number of the students who had had experience as tradesmen or technicians in one of the Services would wish to follow up their speciality. Moreover, as they carne to know more of the matter they realised that handicraft, and indeed practical work of all kinds, would play an important part in the secondary modern school in which many of them wished to teach; and further that the opportunity so provided would enable a man with well developed craft skill to make a special contribution to the education of the ordinary boy while at the same time finding personal satisfaction from the continued exercise of his craft. The specialist tutors brought with them a willingness to approach their new task with an open mind, and a keenness which enabled them to surmount initial difficulties of accommodation and equipment.

Workshop accommodation varied considerably: in some cases it was good, but in many it fell far short of the ideal; old stables and Nissen huts had to be brought into use, and in nearly every case the first batch of students did much work in fitting up shelves, cupboards and tool racks. In several colleges where the supply of equipment was unavoidably delayed, the tutor and students designed and made benches from material which was acquired from

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various sources. Most of the tools came from surplus war stores; some were new, but others had seen much service. In quality they varied considerably, and a number of them did not satisfy the high standards of the tutors and of some of the ex-tradesmen students; accordingly private sets of tools were brought to the workshops and the readiness with which their owners made these tools generally available was a measure of their keenness and an indication of the pioneering spirit which especially characterised the early entrants to the scheme. Time, space and the need to use the practical work not only as a means of extending craft skills, but also as a 'text' for the study of aims and methods in handicraft teaching made it necessary to place a limit upon the scope of the work.

Woodwork was the main feature in all the colleges; metalwork, except for a few individual students, was subsidiary. This arrangement was due in part to the traditional place of woodwork in schools and in part to the very wide range of the different branches of metalwork and the variety of tools and equipment which it would have been necessary to provide if metalwork had been given greater prominence. Simple cabinet-making formed the core of the woodwork course, but the work done by individual students was very varied, and embraced, in addition to cabinet-making, equipment for the farm and garden, toys, stage properties and model theatres. apparatus and teaching aids for a number of subjects, model boats, and, in one college, a sailing dinghy; metalwork of course was combined with woodwork for many of these projects, especially science apparatus.

In metalwork the aim was to give all students a basic course in benchwork, some simple forging and some experience in the heat treatment of metals. Individual students were able to carry out further work in greater or lesser degree according to the facilities which could be provided at their particular colleges. Such work covered more advanced blacksmithing, tool making, model engineering and hammered work in non-ferrous metals.

All students who hoped eventually to specialise in handicraft were given some experience of teaching the subject during one of their periods of school practice. Here the college courses did not set out to produce fully-trained specialist teachers. It was agreed at an early stage that for most men it would be possible only to consolidate existing skill, to introduce them to certain new branches of craftwork, and to direct their minds to a study of the place of handicraft in schools. While certain men could and did, by reason of their previous experience and their general ability, show themselves at the end of the course to be competent to take immediate charge of woodwork or metalwork in schools, others were recom-

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mended for a special course of three months' duration at one of three two-year training colleges where there are special facilities for intending specialists. That the students were prepared to go on to these special courses and that the tutors in the two-year training colleges were well satisfied with the students sent to them, are indications of the soundness of the work done during the year of training.

A very important side issue in handicraft was the number of 'handyman' courses which were run to provide teachers of other subjects, especially science, mathematics, geography and rural studies, with a knowledge of the simple basic processes in woodwork and metalwork, and of the sources of supply and the methods of ordering the commoner materials; women as well as men attended these classes and indeed in most colleges the handicraft workshop was the centre and focus of many activities.

Certainly from the experience gained in the emergency training colleges much has been learned about the training of handicraft teachers, and also about the further possibilities offered by handicraft in the work of the schools.


Every college training for work in secondary modern schools offered a course in general science and it is not surprising that, amongst the men, it proved one of the most popular options. In colleges training for primary work, a course in nature study was taken by all students; and this as a rule was closely linked with a more general first-hand investigation of the environment as a whole. Where conditions allowed, this type of field work was planned as a group study extending over considerable periods of the course.

Laboratory provision was generally satisfactory, although, in many cases, the colleges had to open before the laboratories were fully equipped. As a result, staff and students sometimes were compelled to manage in the early days with makeshift quarters and equipment - circumstances which put a premium on their resourcefulness and powers of improvisation.

The staffs were necessarily drawn, in the main, from grammar schools, but there was also a valuable sprinkling of tutors familiar with the needs and capacities of the pupils in secondary modern schools. Almost all students choosing science had some acquaintance with chemistry and physics, but few had any knowledge of biology. As was to be expected, many ex-Service men had already knowledge and skill in certain narrow fields, but they often lacked general scientific background.

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As a rule students chose science because of an existing interest in a particular field, but interest in the problems involved in teaching science had to be built up. Many came to college with an impression that, for a given topic, there existed one method which, under all circumstances, was better than all others and that their purpose in attending the course was to acquire a collection of such methods. They tended to believe that if they left college well supplied with instructions on how to teach the required topics, then (barring disciplinary troubles) they would be well set for a straightforward teaching career. No tutor could ignore this attitude of mind; but it needed firm, convincing and, above all, positive handling. The students had to be led to see their way through this particular problem.

Plenty of practice in demonstration work, and in the choice, construction and handling of apparatus was essential. The students were often ingenious in this respect, but they needed to be familiarised with the most suitable components and taught to judge which kind was the most useful and which, in the long run, was the most economical to buy. Much time was occupied in devising apparatus, and close liaison with the wood and metal workshops was a special feature in most colleges. An experienced tutor reported:

"In the course of the making of apparatus many students - women as well as men - found a new outlook on demonstration. Traditional models were criticised and re-designed and the increased confidence gained in this way led to the criticism of existing forms of laboratory equipment and layout. All this was good because it put them in the frame of mind to design apparatus and equipment, and, in time, courses of their own; that is to say, it helped them to stand on their own feet."
Setting up demonstrations on given lines led on to original work and to the development of individual or group projects. A great variety of work of this kind was done; and in its development every available technique was brought to bear - practical work, the display of information in chart form, photography, the construction of film strips, the making of ciné films, library work, visits to places of interest (rural and industrial) and, finally, the arrangement of the work in display form to tell a story. This last feature was often carried to a very high standard indeed, and where properly controlled and used for the benefit of the whole college, and not merely for that of the science groups, proved a very valuable exercise.

As already mentioned, field work played an important part everywhere. In one college a critical study was made of methods of conducting outside surveys and the truth established that it was only too easy, by over-meticulous assignment, 'to organise much of

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the delight clean out of the work' - a most useful lesson for students in training.

To sum up: within the obvious limitations set by the general conditions of the scheme, much good work was done and progress was greatly assisted by the individual method of approach adopted, which allowed each student to develop at his own pace; within the several courses there was ample head-room for the student of exceptional gifts to stretch himself. It is very important that these students should preserve the enthusiasm and spirit of enquiry they showed in their college days. If they do so, science teaching in the schools will be the richer for their practical skills and their ability to devise and construct. It is much to be hoped that they may have ample opportunity of meeting their scientific colleagues from all types of school - grammar, technical and modern - so that they may periodically discuss their common interests and purposes.


Of the 55 colleges, 28 (3 women's, 7 mixed, and 18 men's) provided courses of this type. The use of the rural environment in rural schools is now so well established that there is an obvious need for courses designed to set students on the road to acquiring some understanding of the nature of 'rural bias'. Such courses are not easy to arrange, for there must be space for gardening operations, a supply of outdoor equipment, accommodation for keeping at least small livestock, and access to the wider materials of agriculture. Within the means available, interesting and often ingenious schemes of work were devised. Eleven colleges were fortunate in finding on their sites already well-established gardens and suitable accommodation for small stock-keeping, and they were thus able to make a quick start. The rest had to begin from scratch, making their own gardens from rough land and improvising accommodation for stock. At several colleges the students themselves erected greenhouses and piggeries; at a few, power cultivators were provided to ease the burden. This pioneering experience will doubtless stand the students in good stead should they be required to introduce the subject into their schools. Visits to farms and to horticultural institutes of various sorts formed part of the course; and county organisers were most generous in giving the colleges the benefit of their advice.

The students attracted to these courses were either themselves country-bred, or men and women with a strong sentiment for the countryside and especially interested in teaching in rural schools. These personal qualities did much to compensate for the compara-

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tively meagre scientific knowledge which is all that many of them were able to bring to their studies.

While the courses were not carried to any advanced stage, the students received a training in the ordinary tillage operations, in handling garden rotations, in the elements of fruit and flower culture, and in the routine care and maintenance of small livestock, including, in some colleges, pigs and goats. In soil science and elementary biology, students were encouraged to go as far as their abilities and previous knowledge would permit. In spite of the difficulties and the short time available, the record of achievement in this rural work is a very creditable one. Tutors and students alike showed initiative and intense keenness in developing the subject on sound lines.


In the preceding paragraphs frequent reference has been made to the part played in the development of the several courses by visual aids of various kinds. Most of the students were familiar with the use of many of these aids in the Services, and some brought to the colleges considerable skill in the art and science of photography. The staffs of the colleges were at first perhaps less experienced in these respects than many of the students: moreover those tutors who were willing to experiment had little time to adjust their traditional procedures and were further hampered by difficulties of supply of apparatus and of pictorial material and blackout. However, the adaptation of technique from the special needs of Service instruction to those of the school was readily made in most colleges.

In the practical training of the students in these matters the most severe limiting factor was the lack of equipment in the schools, for this prevented them from employing, during their school practice, many of the aids to which they had been introduced at college. In some areas the college equipment was taken to the schools, but the quantity available was too small to make much difference.

In all colleges, a great deal of thought was given to the development of those visual aids that do not require elaborate apparatus, and practice in the preparation of charts and diagrams, models and demonstration devices played a prominent part in the training. It was not to be expected that a high average skill in the devising and execution of these aids would be reached in a relatively short course, and certainly many of the students will require further instruction and practice in the art of illustration; nevertheless, an unusually high proportion of them did remarkably good work both in making models and in drawing pictures. A few of the colleges.

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sought the expert advice and co-operation of the regional college of art: the good results of this collaboration suggest that the practice should be more widely adopted.

As regards ciné films, no teacher can profitably select his material for class teaching unless he is familiar with what is available, and most teachers find it difficult to make opportunities for film viewing. Many of the emergency colleges provided such opportunities through their visual aids study groups and film societies; and most colleges were able to produce from amongst their number individuals with either Service or civil experience of projection, who could manage the film viewings.


Students who wished to equip themselves as teachers of housecraft took this subject as one of their main optional subjects during their 13 months of general training, and then proceeded to one of the recognised housecraft training colleges for further study and teaching of the practical skills. This period of additional study normally covered 35 weeks. All students desiring to take housecraft were specially interviewed and nearly all had had some previous training or experience in the practical crafts of the home. Two emergency colleges, the City of Birmingham and Borthwick, offered a housecraft course and the students went on for the second part of their training to one of the permanent training colleges of domestic subjects. Oakley Park Training College also had one group of housecraft students during the session 1946/47. They did their practical work during the first 13 months at the Gloucester Training College of Domestic Science and returned there for their further training. In all, about 230 housecraft students will have been trained under the emergency scheme.

During the first year students learned to think of housecraft as one part of the whole school curriculum, to integrate it with other subjects and to appreciate something of its value as a natural centre of interest to the school child. In particular the general science, social study and art work in the colleges made useful links with the housecraft and in each course the students did some needlework; many would have liked to do more if there had been sufficient time for another practical subject.

In some groups each student selected a topic in which she was particularly interested to form the focus of individual study of the correlation of housecraft with other subjects. Among the topics chosen were the housing conditions of a certain neighbourhood; food habits of pre- and post-war days; modern fabrics for clothing and household furnishings; and the health and social services of the

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community. These studies involved many visits and much personal enquiry which the students found of great value.

The time given to housecraft averaged, on paper, about one day a week, but the interest in the subject was so great that the sum total of time spent over and beyond time-table hours was very considerable. In both colleges the teaching accommodation was good, and the arrangements and equipment corresponded closely to the best in the secondary schools: practical work could therefore be done in the right conditions for school teaching. Throughout the course stress was laid on teaching methods and this was strengthened by observation and some teaching practice in schools.

After a short holiday the students began their further training at one of the established housecraft training colleges. In almost every case their chief desire was now for concentrated work on the actual practical skills of the household crafts, cookery, laundry work and housewifery, and indeed it was only with difficulty that they were restrained from over-working both themselves and the training college staffs. In conjunction with their practical work they studied the essentials of the content of a progressive four-year housecraft course for secondary modern girls, and were able to try their hands at putting their knowledge into practice in the schools. Teaching was done on one day a week throughout the training followed by a concentrated period in the same school varying from two to four weeks in length. Here, as in their emergency training college, each group of students was the responsibility of a particular tutor; but the group also had the advantage of sharing the college staff who taught the three-year students. A feature of special interest was the voluntary social and club work which some of the students did during this time; this widened their knowledge of children and young people, and helped considerably in their study and understanding of the place the home should hold in the national life.

In every case the students were warmly welcomed in the housecraft colleges and as far as possible shared in the general social life, mixing freely with the other students and in some cases providing members for the college students' council. This arrangement was mutually helpful since the older women gave willingly of their wide and varied experience, and the younger students, with the long tradition of their college behind them, helped the newcomers rapidly to find security and a real place in the life of the college community.


It was open to all women students to take needlework as one of their optional subjects during their training. The work varied in

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different colleges and with the individual interests of the student; but in the main the course covered the basic processes used in simple garment construction, with some study of fabrics suitable for school use and a close link with art, craft and dramatic work. An important aspect was the study of the development of manipulative skills and interests in the school girl as she passes from doll dressing to a desire to clothe herself, since upon this will hang the construction of the needlework scheme which the teacher will draw up for her class. When possible, visits were made to appropriate factories, clothing stores, museums, exhibitions and dress shows.

Certain students who showed particular aptitude and interest in the teaching of needlework took a further three months' course of specialist training at one of the permanent training colleges of domestic subjects. In this course basic skills were polished, and further knowledge of dressmaking acquired.


It has become something of a platitude to point to the educational advantage enjoyed by the emergency training colleges by virtue of the fact that they were educating students who already had some experience of the world. Yet the point bears repeating, and even underlining, in respect of the work in history in these colleges. For whatever opinion may be held about the dictum "history is an adult study" it is certainly a study which gains greatly in scope and depth as its students gain experience of the world. It is hardly to be doubted that many of the students fresh from national service turned naturally to history because they had experienced some of the phenomena which it is the stock-in-trade of the historian to try to explain: they had experienced the jostle of local and personal freedoms trying to accommodate themselves to central national control; they had witnessed an unparalleled volume of discussion about social progress and social justice; some had seen France, Italy, Germany, Africa or the Far East.

Such students could naturally see some sense in studying history. But they also presented a very considerable problem for the history tutor. Almost no outline knowledge of history could safely be expected: the little learnt at school had too often faded. Yet a surprising proportion of students proved to have some special line of historical interest or experience. In the words of one tutor:

"There is no general level that can be assumed - 'left school at fourteen, Diploma of the Sorbonne, higher certificate, school certificate, long attendance at W.E.A. classes, general interest in

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clothes, in ruins ...' this is a cross section of starting-points for the reading of history which will be familiar to everyone teaching in these colleges ... The students are acutely conscious of their lack of background - some almost to a point of despair and many to the extent of prolonged uncertainty and diffidence - and indeed are often tempted to overwork quite seriously to make it good ... To fill at least some of the gaps, to begin the process of integration, and to develop confidence are major objectives from the first."
"To fill at least some of the gaps, ..." History tutors were much pre-occupied with this problem. Generally an 'outline' course of some sort was provided, varying greatly in the length of the period covered. But often a real attempt was made, in addition, to get at the reality of historical study by encouraging and guiding simple research in a wide variety of limited periods, by local or environmental studies, by working backwards from present-day social and political problems and learning to gauge them more accurately by understanding how they arose. It was in work of this kind that the interest and enthusiasm required for future study were aroused and the self-confidence of the students, so often lacking at first, acquired. It led to some remarkable achievements. In some places it led to the preparation of brochures, or 'theses', on chosen local topics, which involved much enquiry and much hard work, most of it done in spare time and simply for the love of exploration and of creation. With others it led to the more academic study, in libraries, of a particular period of history or of a particular aspect, such as costume or transport. At one college, through the kindness and generosity of the owner, the history group had the extraordinary privilege of being allowed, for a whole term, to work on books and manuscript material of the Tudor period from one of the richest private libraries in the country. Their researches were embodied in an historical play in which all members of the group took an effective part.

It is clear that in thus being brought into the closest touch with the practical evidences of history the students had the opportunity of experiencing what it was to be an historian; of entering into the feel and reality of the thing; of escaping, perhaps for the first time, from the text-book chapter heading, and from the sense of a remote and largely irrelevant past with which they felt little concerned, and which they found it hard to visualise. It was an experience of incalculable value to the student in training.

On the whole, in very wide measure, tutors took the liberal view of their problem, regarding it as essentially one of showing the student the tools of his trade, developing and widening his natural

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interest in the subject, and leaving him in the end with a sense that he was just beginning rather than just ending his studies. Knowing that time - a lifetime - for reading and exploration is necessary to the student of history, tutors, generally, showed a sensible appreciation of the fact that it is useless to summarise two thousand years of history in text-book style and to hand the result to the student to be learnt. Yet there was a real dilemma; few felt justified in letting huge gaps in basic outline knowledge go unfilled. Some depended upon recommending a few 'outline' books - H. G. Wells', H. A. L. Fisher's or Dr. G. M. Trevelyan's histories - and turned the student loose in the college library where these books were generally found in sufficient quantities. But on the whole tutors felt the need for giving an 'outline' course for, roughly, half the time available, leaving the rest of the time free for the more detailed studies. Sometimes the existence of a separate social studies course freed the tutor, within the limited time allowed him for history, from the need to tackle this aspect of the work. But always the study of history requires time - most particularly for reading - and much of this had to be found, and was found, 'out of school'.

Normally there was little attempt to separate at all strictly the students' study of history from their study of its teaching method, and there was a very healthy and sensible inclination to leave the student to work out his own teaching approach and his syllabus in the light of his own studies at college, of his own inclinations, and of the character of the children and the locality where he would teach. It is already evident in the schools where these students have taken teaching posts that there is a wide variety of practice. Some, who may be geographers as well as historians, have set their pupils to work on exploring the neighbourhood of their school, finding out all they can about the reasons for the street names of the locality, for the growth of the local industries, for the public works undertaken by the city council. Others have turned their attention not primarily to their locality, nor even to explaining the wider world around them (the newspapers, films, B.B.C., Parliament), but have been more strictly historical. They have very frequently decided that they can best develop the sense of history by taking things children are interested in - ships, costumes, houses - and tracing their evolution. Most have felt the need to combine work of this kind with some outline of a more conventional and traditional kind.

The variety of approach, freshness and enthusiasm which the best of the emergency trained teachers are bringing into the schools is already bearing fruit in the history class. They tend to see history as a problem and a challenge, as requiring the co-operation of the

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class in a work of exploration and investigation, and as supplying, after enquiry, the answers to real contemporary problems which the children can recognise. All this can be, and generally is very much to the good, provided that those of the older concepts which were most true are not lost to sight. History remains, after all, a story, not solely a quarrying place for evidences. The past does exist in its own right, as well as to explain the present. The lives and adventures of great men can never be too often retold, and will always be listened to eagerly by children. History is an art as well as a science. At college it is surely right that students should be trying to grapple with lines of enquiry, with causes and effects; later on, as teachers, they will find it natural, and rewarding, to return, often, to the narrative.


It was to be expected that this subject would prove a popular choice. In all colleges the courses were designed with a twofold object: to give the student a simple geographical training, and to provide him with the necessary knowledge and skill to deal with the subject in schools.

It would obviously have been unwise for a tutor to include in the course all aspects of the subject. On the contrary, it was essential that the course should be so limited in content that it could be followed without harassment, to the student or tutor, and, at the same time provide ample scope for the, students' special interests.

In general the courses included a study of:

(i) The immediate locality of the college.

(ii) The geography of the region of which the above locality was a part together with its relationships to the British Isles.

(iii) The study of certain distinctive areas of the world which lent themselves easily to comparison and contrast. Under this heading, it was usual to include a sub-section on political regions and forms of government, the four units selected - a self-governing dominion, a dependent colony, a federated state and a sovereign state - forming one comparative study.

The students brought much enthusiasm to their work. A tutor at a men's college reported: "The freshness of outlook of the comparatively untrained men was striking; they were not afraid to experiment, suffered no sense of limitation of the scope of geography, and quite correctly took any aspect of man's relation to his environment into consideration. The corresponding weakness, of course, was an inability to pick out essentials from a mass of

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material, and an ignorance of fundamental facts. This fresh outlook was later reflected in the teaching practice, where originality of approach was the rule rather than the exception, and the weakest lessons were usually given by those who could dimly recall their school certificate studies."

In most colleges the study of the immediate environment was undertaken with remarkable thoroughness. The main purpose of the work was to give the students practical experience, at their own level, of this type of investigation. The detailed organisation varied greatly, but in general the plan was to set teams (or individuals) to work on particular aspects or districts and to leave the conduct of the investigations very largely in their hands. Obviously the maturity of the students, their initiative and their general ability in interrogation and in finding their way about the countryside were assets in work of this type.

As a single example, the 72 students of one men's college set in a rural area were divided into groups, each group dealing with a particular aspect of a planned survey: geology (6 students), hydrography (12), land utilisation (15), population and settlement (8), public utilities (6), social life (9), flora and fauna (9), local government (7). The small size of the groups is important as, in this way, the work could be pursued in a more coherent fashion. Elsewhere, the whole college divided into 10 groups for the purpose of pursuing a local study of the rural districts on a parish basis. The investigation extended over a period of three months. At the end of that time all the recordings, specimens, diagrams, survey charts, models, etc., were brought together, and the various exhibits explained and expounded by the particular students who had carried out the work under discussion. This final pooling of data for the benefit of all was considered most important. Incidentally it is one of the advantages of this type of work that it helps the student to realise that geographical reasons cannot be given for everything. Several colleges planned four and five day excursions to places of special interest, excursions attracting not only the geographers, but the historians, the geologists, and the naturalists.

It would be out of place to attempt here to describe in further detail the range and variety of the environmental studies undertaken. It must be sufficient to say that it is one of the directions in which the emergency colleges have shown conspicuous initiative, and there is no doubt that it played a most valuable part in the students' general training. As an example of voluntary enterprise it may be recorded that in one college a regional survey group (a society of 44 men not all of whom were geography students) came into being and undertook a thorough study of the locality, organis-

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ing the work themselves, collecting information and recording their findings. A photographic survey of local shore-life was a specially interesting feature of this most creditable piece of work, which as a comprehensive exhibit has already proved of value to other colleges and schools in the neighbourhood.

In the Welsh colleges, geography formed an essential part of the aggregated course of Welsh studies for Welsh-speaking students, and of the special short course designed to give all students intending to teach in Wales a knowledge of the cultural background of Welsh education. The aggregated course ranked as a main option and the geography tutors gave it its spatial setting.


Several colleges experimented with courses of this nature and where the co-operation of the history and geography departments was cordial and effective some very interesting work resulted. Experience showed, however, that if the class was large it was difficult for individuals to pursue special lines of investigation under adequate supervision. One college, after experiment in one session, considered it advisable in the next to allow only those students to take the course who had chosen either history or geography as their second subject: this, it was felt, ensured that each student had a factual and academic background for his work and experience of study in depth as well as in width. In this particular case the scheme of work was based on a study of a locality; proceeded to the examination of a national European unit considered in its continental or sub-continental framework; and concluded with an introduction to the study, on the same lines, of two countries organised on a continental scale. The group, after a few introductory lectures, embarked on a fairly comprehensive study of the neighbouring village and district - its general conditions and local government being reviewed in relation to its national setting. This lasted 13 weeks and during this period the 12 geographers in the group gave most of their attention to the sociological aspects of the investigation, while the seven historians concentrated chiefly upon the local geography, at the same time receiving some instruction in formal geography. At the end of this period the students reported fully to the group as a whole on the results of their investigations. The second phase, lasting six weeks, was occupied with a study of France, approached through a study of the lives of ordinary Frenchmen living in carefully selected towns. It would have been well to have been able to study five or six towns, but owing to pressure of

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time and the smallness of the group only three could be undertaken - Le Mans, Poitiers and Carcassonne. For this study, again, the method of individual assignments was adopted, based largely on written and pictorial material received at first hand from correspondents in each town. The course devoted the concluding 14 weeks of the session to parallel studies of the U.S.S.R. and the U.S.A., and closed with a consideration of the teaching of social studies in schools.

At another college, a study of the Mississippi Basin provided an admirable focus for similar lines of enquiry. Here the work included an historical study of territorial expansion in the U.S.A., together with an examination of the social and economic consequences of the setting up of the Tennessee Valley Authority: it included also some study of the music, folk-lore and dance of the negro and white communities. The findings of the group were very fully recorded in maps, diagrams, and models, and in performances of appropriate dance, mime and song.


It is an easy transition from the type of study recorded above to consideration of the courses to which reference has already been made in Chapter 4. Courses of this nature combining elements of the more usual 'subjects' were first proposed for students training for primary work, but they were adapted by several colleges to meet the needs of students preparing for work with the 9-15 age-groups.

It will be recalled that in addition to his 'combined' course each student might choose a 'straight' subject, e.g. history, geography, mathematics, etc. But he also, as a rule, had a choice of several 'combined' courses. A single instance may be quoted by way of illustration. At a men's college, the course as a whole was planned in such a way that the students preparing for primary work took one 'combined' course while those contemplating work in secondary schools had a choice of several. The primary course comprised two sections each occupying 10 weeks. Section A involved first an environmental study which borrowed aspects from history, geography and nature study: and secondly, elementary bookcrafts, including a short course on lettering, which incidentally contributed to the more effective recording and preservation of the material collected. Section B explored the possibilities of puppetry, dramatisation and movement in the junior school. This proved a thoroughly interesting course - the more so, perhaps, because it was necessary to overcome a certain amount of scepticism and prejudice

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on the part of the students, especially those fresh from temporary teaching in schools run on formal lines. However, visits to schools where work of this kind was manifestly being carried on with a high degree of success did much to allay early misgivings. The students might not feel themselves able to cope with work of this kind immediately; but the majority were convinced of its value in competent hands, and looked forward to experimenting in this field once they had learnt to deal with the day to day problem of handling a class in all circumstances.

The four combined courses open to the men training for secondary work dealt with the following themes:

(i) "Man's Use of Power", combining aspects of science, mathematics and handicraft.

(ii) "The Arts and the Theatre", involving the collaboration of the English, art, music and handicraft departments.

(iii) "The Pattern of Town and Country" (history, geography, and health education).

(iv) "The Countryman's Skill". This course was specially designed for students proposing to teach in rural schools, and brought together in a most interesting way the departments of rural studies, art and crafts and handicraft.

Briefly, the purpose of these courses was to give the student not only a reasonable acquaintance with several 'subjects' but, in particular, experience in viewing these subjects as complementary approaches to a specific field of human activity. They proved very valuable experiments, of interest alike to tutors and students, demanding much ingenuity, and yielding results, often unexpected. but almost always thoroughly worth while.


Almost every college rated highly the value to the students of the discipline of an independent study extending over an appreciable period of the session. It was regarded as important that students should learn to look for what they wanted and above all learn to pursue their enquiries in a systematic and economical manner. Moreover, the experience was valuable not only during their year of training, but as a preparation for the considerable amount of largely self-directed study they would be undertaking during their probationary period. Students, therefore, were encouraged to choose some topic which interested them, to find out as much about it as they could, to order their material in an intelligible manner and to present it, either in essay form, or if that was inappropriate, in a series of charts or models with suitable commentaries. It was

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one of the advantages of this type of work that it provided occasion for frequent consultations of an informal kind which allowed tutors a more intimate view of a student's capabilities and interests than was possible in the course of a group tutorial.

Some tutors preferred a student to devote a very considerable amount of his time to a main topic; others preferred a series of shorter assignments; but in each case, as a rule, the topic was chosen from within a particular subject as, for example, mathematics or history. It might, however, as in social studies, cover a wide field. Incidentally, it was noted that the quality of the written English in a personal investigation was often distinctly higher than in more formal exercises - perhaps because the student was really interested in putting down what he had to say.

In several colleges this type of work was given particular prominence: in one women's college, indeed, it was given the status of a main subject. Here the students, instead of taking two subjects, took one subject and an 'individual' study, which, in effect, was a topic pursued throughout the session. No limit was placed upon the choice of topic; it was for the student to discover for herself where her interest lay, and then, with tutorial help, to nourish and sustain it. In most cases the study covered, or at least impinged upon several subjects, and sent the student to a variety of 'sources' - to nature, as well as to libraries, museums, art galleries and individual authorities. The essential characteristic of the study was its strictly personal quality. It was considered important that the final product should be well presented, and that the student should feel that what had been done at least deserved her respect; at the same time, the principal justification of the work lay, not in any visible result, but rather in the educational value for the student of the process of self-discovery which accompanied the experience. Naturally, students reacted to the situation in different ways. Some were perplexed and worried, but the majority, after a period of uncertainty, took to the unfamiliar procedure with enthusiasm and thoroughly enjoyed it. In particular, they felt it to involve an activity of mind different in kind from that involved in dealing with a straight subject, and, to that extent, a refreshment as well as a process of discovery.

It is obvious that the organisation and effective supervision of work of this kind present numerous difficulties, and there is room for a good deal of further observation and experiment. The amount of time the work should claim; at what point in the course it should be introduced; how far freedom of choice should be allowed; whether it is an activity suitable for all students irrespective of ability - all these are matters which require further critical examination.

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The foregoing sections will have given an indication of the scope of the college courses and, it is hoped, conveyed something of the spirit in which they were tackled by tutors and students alike. The permanent value of the work done depends largely upon the attitude of mind of the students leaving college - especially their appreciation of the fact that, at best, they can have made only a beginning in their various subjects of study. The true nature of a course cannot be fully set out on paper: syllabuses are notoriously misleading; the degree of their translation into practice is everything. It is natural however, to ask what 'lessons' have been learnt from the experiences in the emergency training colleges that could usefully be carried over to the 'permanent' system. The question is natural, but too simple. The conditions under which the two systems operate are so radically different that no clear answer can be given at the moment. Fortunately, through force of circumstances, there is now developing a transitional period during which the answers can and will be worked out in practice. At the time of writing several emergency colleges have either become, or are about to become, 'permanent'. Six of them are starting with two distinct groups of students - 'emergency' and 'permanent' - working in close association on parallel courses, the first lasting one year, the second two. Moreover these colleges are staffed by tutors some of whom have had 'permanent' and some 'emergency' experience. The conditions, therefore, are most favourable for a careful evaluation of what can and what cannot be usefully carried over from one system to the other. How far, for example, is the 'personal tutor' system - so valuable in the emergency colleges - appropriate to much younger students? To what extent can the set lecture be replaced by tutorial discussion? What is the true function of a 'combined' course? What part should study on individual lines play? How will the younger student respond to 'assessment by cumulative record'; will he thrive or wilt? These are some of the questions upon which the transitional period may be expected to throw light. None of them, of course, is new, but all have been thrown into relief by the experiences of the emergency scheme.

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By the end of March, 1950, close on 27,000 students had successfully completed their courses of study in the emergency colleges and were at work in the schools. Approximately 10,000 had already completed their two years' probationary period. This period of two years (as against one for teachers trained in the two-year colleges) was recommended by the Committee whose Report was embodied in Circular 1652. The Committee further proposed that during this period, the probationers should pursue a course of part-time study. The relevant passage (paragraph 21 of the Report) reads as follows:

"Two-year part-time course of study. We are convinced that owing to the shortage of teachers it will be necessary to limit the period of full-time training to one year for the great majority of candidates who come into teaching from the Services under the special conditions described in our report. We have no doubt that within a year a satisfactory percentage of these candidates will be able to acquire the art of class management, and to obtain sufficient academic knowledge to enable them to begin teaching. We are greatly concerned, however, to ensure that teachers trained in this way have a sufficient background of general education and culture to enable them to become worthy members of the teaching profession, and to enable them to educate their pupils in the broadest and fullest sense of the word 'educate'. We are also concerned that these candidates shall not be regarded by their professional brethren and by their future employers as an inferior kind of teacher. We want them to be eligible for promotion to Headships and other positions of responsibility, in spite of their concentrated training, and in some instances their lack of academic certificates. We consider, therefore, that the Board should require each candidate who receives provisional recognition as a teacher at the end of a year's full-time training, to follow for the next two years a course of part-time study related to his previous attainments, his aptitudes and the opportunities open to him. We suggest that each candidate's course of study should be settled on tutorial advice and formally approved in outline by the Board. The course might be varied during the two years with the Board's

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consent, for good and sufficient reasons. Many candidates would join existing or special classes provided by Universities, Technical Institutes or Colleges, or Associations for Adult Education. A few might have to rely on correspondence courses."
In the early days when the products of the emergency colleges were few, and scattered in twos and threes over the country, it was not practicable for authorities to make any special arrangements for them. The colleges provided their outgoing students with suggestions for courses of study, but these had to be either of an individual nature or such as could be put into operation through existing evening classes.

In time, however, the numbers employed by any one authority grew to sizeable proportions, and in the larger authorities ran into several hundreds. In one city for example, the number of emergency-trained teachers increased from 20 in June, 1946, to 631 in October, 1948. In May, 1946, the Ministry issued Circular 106, and an Appendix to that Circular offered advice to authorities on the arrangements which might be made to cope with the situation. It pointed out that each student, on leaving college, was provided with suggestions for his part-time study designed, on the one hand, to make good any deficiencies in his equipment as a teacher, and on the other, to indicate ways in which he might pursue his special interests. It was suggested that on appointment to his first teaching post the probationary teacher should discuss these proposals with the appropriate officer of the employing authority to decide on the best way of putting them into effect. It was recognised that for the first few months the probationers would be much preoccupied with their day-to-day work, and that it would be important that they should see their continued study to be of value, not merely in the future, but also in helping them to get well into their stride. Above all it was important that they should not come to regard it as a heavy burden and a distraction from their actual teaching work. For this reason, it was felt that at the beginning it would be better to err in the direction of requiring perhaps too little rather than too much. On this point of overstrain, it should be observed that since emergency training colleges did not keep the normal academic terms, but opened and closed their sessions at all times in the year. it often happened that students passed out from their colleges one week and took up their first posts the next with no more than a day or two's break between. In such case the probationer might have no holiday for several months.

Although it was not possible to lay down lines of development

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in advance, Circular 106 expressed the hope that there might emerge from the common experience a system "which would not only be a source of help and inspiration to the probationary teachers for whom it is primarily established, but might also in due course be extended so that some of its advantages might be made available to all those entering the teaching profession whatever their method of entry and course of training".

Local education authorities dealt with the new burden placed upon them in a variety of ways. The problem was two-fold: the provision of opportunity and the supervision of the students themselves. In the large towns no special difficulties presented themselves. But in the country districts, naturally, it was otherwise. Here, where possible, classes were arranged at reasonably convenient centres: or individual courses of reading were approved and the probationers placed in the tutorial charge of specially selected head teachers in the area; alternatively, and as a last resort, the probationers undertook correspondence courses. In one or two areas, adjacent authorities combined to formulate a common plan and so were able to offer their teachers a wider range of facilities than they could have done singly. In all cases the county and the teachers' libraries played an important part.

In the early days, some of the special courses arranged were not altogether appropriate in content, tending merely to duplicate aspects of the professional training already given in the colleges. But with experience of the real needs of these probationers the nature of the provision made improved considerably. Of special value were the week-end courses, and the short courses lasting a week or more and usually held at the emergency training colleges. It proved most helpful that the probationers, besides having facilities for pursuing their subjects, should also have opportunities of meeting their fellows under agreeable conditions for the discussion of common problems: for it is half the battle to know that your troubles are not exceptional. At the same time there was much also to be said for these people attending the type of adult class where they met fellow students who were not teachers.

Whatever the detailed arrangements made, experience has shown very clearly that the most important single factor making for success was the existence of a special officer of the local education authority whose principal business it was to keep in touch with the probationers and to be responsible, not only for their part-time study, but for their welfare generally. The sooner this officer could get into touch with the newly-appointed teachers the better. Systematic part-time study may not have been begun for some months after

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appointment; but, for the newcomer, the knowledge that there was some one person to whom he could turn for advice was of first importance.

One large urban authority reported as follows:

"The great majority of these teachers have come to the Committee's service with a refreshing sense of the adventure of teaching and a lively awareness of the new paths of learning and discovery that have been opening up before them during their college courses. They are keen to make further explorations along those paths, and they realise that while books will help, they must have more than books. One cannot, for instance, ask a book questions. And, therefore, throughout the arrangements for supervising these probationary teachers, there has been much stress upon the stimulus to be derived from personal intercourse between the inexperienced teacher and other more experienced people keenly interested in his professional success."
Towards the end of 1948, at the Ministry's request, twenty Principals invited some of their past students to say how they were getting on with their part-time study and what difficulties they were finding. Of the 766 replies received, nearly all considered that their studies were proceeding satisfactorily, although most said they found it hard to give to them as much time as they wished. As one remarked, "The trouble with part-time study is there is no part-time". For 23 per cent the question of finding sufficient time and energy presented a serious problem; but less than 3 per cent complained of excessive fatigue. A small number (less than 4 per cent) said they had had difficulty in finding suitable classes or courses to follow.

It must be remembered that the probationer from an emergency training college had in the early months of his service certain difficulties which were probably more pronounced than they are with the usual recruit from the two-year training colleges. In the first place, whereas the probationer entering through the normal channels has most of his 'school subjects' more or less at his fingers' ends, for most emergency trained recruits some of the 'subjects' he found himself required to teach were, in spite of his training, either relatively new to him, or still rusty. His need, therefore, for 'preparation' of lessons for the morrow was apt to be both pressing and time-absorbing. Further, he was liable to have family responsibilities which he could not, and should not, neglect. Thirdly, the enthusiasm of the great majority of these probationers for all sorts of 'out of school' and 'after-school' activities was very

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marked - and this ate still further into the time available for systematic part-time study.

A few - and amongst them some of the most able and conscientious - were disturbed to find that the pressure of the day-to-day necessities of teaching combined with the requirements of part-time study tended to lead, not to an enrichment of their lives, but rather to a severe restriction; that it was only too easy to allow themselves to become absorbed in the demands of classwork to the detriment of other interests. As one probationer very properly observed, "I must maintain my outside interests to some extent at least as I believe they played a large part in my selection for emergency training and are of great value in school". There is no doubt that the great majority have shown commendable keenness and determination in the pursuit of this often arduous and sometimes vexatious part of their preparation as fully effective teachers.

In April, 1949, the Ministry issued Circular 201 which, besides introducing certain modifications into the financial arrangements governing the provision of part-time study by local education authorities, briefly summarised the principal points of interest which experience of the working of this part of the scheme had brought out. The importance of avoiding over-pressure was particularly stressed. It was also pointed out that, while there could be no question of a rigid rule, it seemed clear that the chief value of the course of study was to make good the deficiencies in the teacher's background of general education and that at least as much importance should be attached to this as to the teacher's desire to pursue some special line of study in which he was interested.


Through the courtesy of the Principals of nearly thirty colleges, a number of probationers were invited to report at length on their experiences in their first posts and, in particular, to describe any special personal difficulties they encountered. One thousand and sixty-eight replies were received from men and women who had been teaching for upwards of nine months. The difficulties listed range over a wide field, from 'How to deal with the subject of death with infants' to 'Head teacher teaching the other side of the curtain'. There were, of course, numerous references to poor buildings, large classes and shortage of books and other materials, but 622 of the probationers reported no special personal difficulties. Of the remaining 446 however, 112 mentioned, as a principal difficulty, the range of ability within the class; 76, the problem of taking

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subjects they knew little about; 54, coping with 'backward' classes or groups; 39, understanding children - their range of interests, capacities and year-to-year differences; 42 spoke of the problem of squaring training college doctrine with school conditions (or the head teacher's views); while 30 referred to the apathy of children in their last year at school, or to their resentment at being kept in school an extra year.

Of all the personal difficulties mentioned, however, the most important was unquestionably discipline. One hundred and thirteen put down discipline as their greatest anxiety; and, for obvious reasons, it is likely that this figure is an understatement. But, taking the returns at their face-value, it appears that for 25.3 per cent of those who frankly confessed to having personal difficulties, discipline was a major source of concern, and potentially a cause of much unhappiness - the more so, indeed, for these older people, since failure to keep order, when the beginner is no longer young, is felt the more acutely. The point may be illustrated by the following quotation from a probationer's letter:

"During courses, and at informal meetings I have met many of the 150-odd emergency probationers at present in the county ..."

"Those who are completely honest among them always admit that discipline has been among their worst headaches (literally!) ... They are comforted by being told that 'everyone has that trouble at the beginning'. That is true enough; but the 'old hands' met it when they were 18 or 20 and the world was their oyster. Emergency-trained people, who had but little trouble with discipline when they were in the Forces, are amazed and sometimes humiliated when they find how much there is to learn in handling a bunch of eleven-year-olds."

Often the probationers attributed at least part of their troubles to having begun by being too 'free and easy' with the class. The distinction between friendliness and an over-eager effort to be on goods terms with the children is not always apparent to the beginner. One man wrote:
"In my case I have found it difficult to adopt just the right attitude to my class. When a teacher learns that in his class there are children who are orphans; children who never receive pocket money; who never go away for holidays; who are often left to themselves all day and get their own meals; who never receive that affection which all children need; in fact who are

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often just not wanted - then he finds it difficult to step out of the 'big brother' attitude, and to cultivate that air of aloofness which makes discipline so much easier."
Another puzzled man observed, "The trouble is I like children very much, but have not yet learnt how far I should disguise the fact".

Reflecting on his experiences in more general terms, a third remarked: "I realise more and more the importance of 'changing places' with the child to try and see things as he does. The importance, too, of paying attention to small matters and, above all, of keeping one's word. All this, in a way, is far more difficult than actual teaching problems".

From all available accounts emergency trained teachers have been well received in the schools. Of the 1,068 probationers replying to the recent questionnaire, only 14 reported having encountered in their schools anything that could be called prejudice or hostility to emergency-trained teachers as such; and since very many have, on the contrary, commented with gratitude upon the help and encouragement they received from school staffs, it seems likely that this return gives a fairly true picture. There is evidence, now and then, that not all probationers have been models of tact, and some have doubtless been too impetuous in their zeal for reform. On the other hand, independent reports also speak of others who adopted too modest an attitude; appointed perhaps to an indifferent school, they fitted themselves too easily into the routine of the place, content to discard the troublesome 'aims' and 'methods' of their training college days. But these are the disappointing minority. The great majority have been well received because they clearly had a distinctive contribution to make. They were eager and enthusiastic, and most willing to take on all manner of out-of-school activities.

One experienced observer reported:

"They have a lot to learn, but they have a profound respect and liking for their work and in personal relationships both with children and colleagues, they in general command a respect totally out of proportion to their initial teaching ability."
The question of suitable placing was a very difficult one. Family commitments of various kinds meant that, as a class, emergency trained teachers were singularly immobile. For many it was a practical necessity that they should find jobs within travelling distance of their homes; and this, as might be supposed, led in some cases to their taking posts for which they were not really suited. A man with good qualifications in woodwork, for example, would take a post in a primary school with no opportunity to exercise his craft;

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a woman trained for secondary work would find herself with a class of infants. Indeed it was not unknown for a probationer to report that he was 'specialising' in two subjects neither of which be took at college. Anomalies of this kind were unavoidable in the conditions of the time; but they made the beginner's task much harder, and, in certain cases, seriously undermined confidence. Again, the grave shortage of staff which was the lot of many schools throughout the war years often presented the beginner with a situation at once abnormal and unfair: a man, for example, with only a slender knowledge of science, might find himself entirely responsible for the subject in a large school which had been without a science master for years and was almost totally without apparatus; be had to fend for himself with no adequate guidance on the spot. Examples of this sort - and they could be multiplied many times - serve to underline the need for the steady development of the probationary service to which reference has already been made. The present is a more difficult time for beginners than any previous period in recent educational history. Classes are large; buildings often seriously inadequate. Educational ideas are in a state of flux; radical experiments in school organisation and in the planning of the curriculum are in train; there is much uncertainty of doctrine in the classroom; and, in addition, many head teachers have so large a proportion of inexperienced new-comers on their staffs that they are unable to give all of them the help they need.


In the Report embodied in Circular 1652 it was recommended that provision should be made for additional periods of study for certain selected students. The relevant paragraph reads as follows:

"Additional period of study for carrying a special subject to a more advanced level. Special courses should be provided for one or at most two terms for students wishing to take the study of some special subject to a more advanced level than can be attained during the year's course, and specially selected as suitable to take such an additional course after the completion of their year at the college. Such courses would normally be taken at an existing Training College or other suitable institution. We have in mind certain types of work such as physical training and handicraft, in respect of which the schools may need to obtain as quickly as possible a supply of teachers with fuller qualifications than can be obtained during a year of training, but it should be clearly understood that the needs of the schools,

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not merely the wishes of the students, must determine the extent to which provision of this kind should be made."
To meet this proposal arrangements were made by the Ministry for further full-time training, in the following subjects: housecraft, needlecraft, art and crafts, handicraft, music and physical education. These special courses took place during the student's probationary period and counted as part of his two years of further study. They were conducted, not at emergency training colleges, but at permanent training colleges and other educational institutions equipped and staffed to give the particular type of advanced instruction required. Because of the great expansion of the educational services in general after the war the pressure on the accommodation and facilities at these institutions was heavy and it was only with difficulty that the local education authorities and governing bodies were able to add groups of emergency students to their usual intake. Moreover the provision of a system of special courses for emergency students made great demands upon the patience, initiative and skill of all those concerned. At all stages both authorities and teaching staffs gave the Ministry every possible assistance in bringing the system into being and in ensuring that it should be effective.

As has been explained in Chapter 4, emergency students completed their general course of study at any time of the year according to the date of opening of their colleges. For their special courses, however, they conformed as a rule to the normal academic terms observed at the permanent institutions to which they were allocated. Sometimes they could go on to their further training without a break; but more often there was a considerable interval between the two types of training during which the candidates took teaching posts in schools. Furthermore, where candidates, as many did, preferred to teach for some time before taking their special course they were allowed to postpone their entry for any reasonable period, normally up to a year, from the date at which they left their emergency training college. The general and the special training however were essentially parts of one whole, and whenever practicable, the selected candidates began their further training in the academic term immediately following their general course. The arrangements for housecraft courses were of necessity somewhat different. The students entered college as potential housecraft teachers, and provided they completed their general training satisfactorily they automatically received an offer of further training in housecraft to begin immediately the general training was concluded, no matter when that might be.

The length of the courses varied with the subject. The housecraft

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courses lasted about thirty-five weeks; those in music and in art and crafts two terms or one term, according to the requirements of individual students; those in needlecraft, handicraft and physical education, one term. During the courses the Ministry granted maintenance allowances to the students assessed in the same way as allowances to students in emergency training colleges. This maintenance allowance procedure applied to all the special course students, including those who took their further training after an interval. If at that stage they were in teaching posts they obtained leave of absence without pay from their employers. All tuition fees were also paid by the Ministry, so that the whole cost of these special courses was met from central funds.

The process by which students were selected for further training was as follows. Towards the end of the general course the Principal of the emergency training college prepared a list of those students who on the one hand were certain to complete the general course satisfactorily and, on the other, while above average in promise in their special subject, were nevertheless not fully competent to do really good work in that subject in the schools. Because of pressure on the available facilities, among other reasons, students of merely average promise, or students already able without further training to teach their subject to a relatively high level, were ineligible. The Principal's field of recommendation was thus limited to students who were of distinct promise but who required just that little extra training which would enable them to take charge of their special subject in schools; and when he had prepared his list it was sent to one of H.M. Inspectors who was a specialist in the particular subject. In due course the Inspector visited the college, saw the recommended candidates and their work, approved or disapproved the recommendations as the case might be, and, in art and crafts and in music, decided whether an approved candidate should have one or two terms of further training. The list as thus finally determined was then forwarded to the Ministry who made the arrangements for the admission to special courses as early as possible for all candidates who wished to take a course immediately. Unfortunately, owing to domestic or other reasons, many candidates were obliged to decline these offers outright; others in temporary difficulty of one kind or another, asked for, and were granted, permission to take the course at a later stage; and a third category, previously mentioned, felt that the special course would be of greater value to them if they first of all gained some experience of the practical problems of teaching in schools. They also were allowed to postpone their entry. In the end about half of the students to whom courses were offered accepted them. The number

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of students in any one group varied with the subject; for example up to 14 in needlecraft, 30 in physical education and so on.

The special course system, like the general training, was free from examination requirements of any kind, but all students who completed a special course to the satisfaction of the authorities of the institution received an appropriate certificate, provided by the Ministry, and signed by the Principal of the institution.

Up to the 31st March, 1950, 2,084 candidates had been entered for special courses of one kind or another. The number of permanent training colleges and other educational institutions which took part in the scheme was twenty-four.

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SUMMARY (1945-1950)

THE emergency colleges were given their opportunity through the preparation and organisation of the local education authorities, the Ministry of Works and the Ministry of Education, and through the ready and generous co-operation of the teachers already serving in the schools. That they have made good use of their opportunities is generally recognised. The staffs would, many of them, say that the students were responsible for this measure of success, and there is undeniably some truth in this view, as many of them showed outstanding qualities of character, maturity and sincerity. It is, however, scarcely necessary to say that the tutors themselves have had a major share in the matter. The work of teaching in emergency colleges has been in many ways highly exacting, beyond anything usual in other forms of teaching, but almost without exception the tutorial staff have found it enthralling, and have given to it the utmost devotion and energy.

The bare facts of the scheme's progress are summarised in the statistical tables, but some of the outstanding figures may well be quoted here. At the peak period, in the early months of 1948, 55 colleges were in operation, of which 18 are likely to remain as part of the permanent training system. From start to finish (December, 1944, to summer, 1947) 82,000 men applied for training, of whom 37,600 were accepted: of these 2,900 preferred to take normal two-year courses in permanent colleges when these switched over to admitting ex-service men instead of boys straight from school, leaving 34,700 men selected and available; of these up to 31st March, 1950, 10,600 withdrew between selection and admission, nearly 24,000 were admitted to training and just over 100 were still awaiting admission. From start to finish 42,500 women applied for training, including 17,800 who applied during the period after July, 1948, during which special efforts were being made to attract women candidates; 16,400 in all were accepted; and of these again 3,400 withdrew between selection and admission; 12,700 were admitted to training up to 31st March, 1950; and about 250 were then still awaiting admission.

Withdrawals between selection and admission account for about 28 per cent of all the men selected and about 20 per cent of all the women. Wastage among women was in the early stages higher than

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among men, although the women were being offered admission to college more quickly than the men, and it has continued at quite a substantial rate even when there has been hardly any interval between acceptance and the offer of a place in college. For men it has naturally been highest for those who have had to wait longest.

The following tables show how many students failed or withdrew after being admitted to college. The rate of wastage at this stage from all causes was under four per cent for men and under ten per cent for women, a tribute to the work of the interviewing boards and to the quality of the students who were allowed to go forward.



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If past experience is to be a reasonably accurate guide for forecasting the number of withdrawals and failures during the last stages

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of the scheme its total yield may be about 35,000 trained teachers - 23,000 men and 12,000 women.

Up to 15th November, 1949, 18,460 men and 7,783 women had successfully completed their courses of training, as shown in the following table:



The great majority of these men and women then took up teaching posts in primary or secondary schools in England and Wales, while a few went to posts in special schools, approved schools, further education, the Services, etc. They have played a vital part in the expansion of the establishment of teachers in the first difficult post-war years and may for a short time form something like one seventh of all the teachers serving in primary and secondary schools. In so large a company, drawn from such diverse elements in the community, one would expect a wide variation in professional competence; and it is probably true that between the most promising and the least promising there is a wider gap than is likely to have existed in any previous recruitment to the profession. Many, it is already clear, will make an altogether outstanding contribution to the teaching strength in the schools; the majority will develop into useful and thoughtful teachers; others losing their first enthusiasm, or discouraged by conditions, or finding themselves without the necessary internal resources, will settle down to a humdrum routine; inevitably a few will fail.

More than this cannot reasonably be said so soon; the next few years should enable a just appraisal to be made of the contribution of emergency trained teachers to the life and work of the schools.

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[Incorporating amendments and additions issued from time to time, but omitting the Appendices]



1 Premises.
2 Equipment.
3 Staff.
4 Students.
5 Curriculum.
6 Finance.
7 Insurance.
8 Medical Inspection and Treatment.
9 Travelling Expenses and Subsistence.
10 Accommodation and Meals for Visitors.
11 Correspondence.

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The college premises and any hostels shall be selected by the Ministry; alterations, additions or redecorations shall be carried out only with the prior approval of the Ministry.


(a) Furniture, apparatus and equipment for colleges and hostels will be provided by the Ministry of Works on loan, according to a scale based on that Ministry's standard schedule of furniture and equipment for emergency training colleges. Copies of the schedule will be furnished to the Authority in the initial period. The Authority may ask the Ministry of Works to supply further equipment beyond that provided in the schedule. The Ministry of Works may refer such requests to the Ministry of Education at its discretion, before fulfilling them.

(b) Science equipment (as distinct from furniture for science rooms) is not provided by the Ministry of Works, and should be supplied by the Authority as required.

(c) The Ministry of Works makes an initial supply of "expendable" items such as cutlery, crockery, bedding, linen and linoleum, but cannot undertake replacements. Replacements of these items should therefore be undertaken by the Authority. (Stocks should in no case exceed the level of original supply by the Ministry of Works.)

(d) The Authority will take on charge the equipment, etc., provided by the Ministry of Works, and will be responsible for its maintenance and in due course its return to the Ministry of Works.

(e) Consumable Stores. This includes items such as stationery and writing materials generally, chemicals and craft materials, sick bay supplies, cleaning materials, fuel. These will be provided by the Authority on such scale as appears to them to be necessary. The strictest economy consistent with the efficient conduct of the college must be observed.

(f) Books. An initial supply of books will be provided by the Ministry of Education, as the nucleus of a college library. This will be supplemented:

(i) by arrangements made for loans from libraries (e.g., university or public);

(ii) by application to the Ministry, who will obtain books through H.M. Stationery Office so far as they are available;

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(iii) by direct purchase on the part of the Principal, out of the sum at his disposal for miscellaneous expenditure.
All books provided by the Ministry, or otherwise purchased out of public funds, remain the property of the Ministry and the Authority should ensure that adequate records are kept to enable these books to be accounted for.


(a) Full-time Teaching Staff

Posts will be advertised by the Local Education Authority in the joint names of the Authority and the Ministry.

A list of candidates for interview will be compiled by the Authority in consultation with H.M. Inspector for the College.

The candidates selected for interview will be seen by a panel constituted as follows:

(i) For the selection of Principal - two representatives of the Local Education Authority, the Divisional Inspector and H.M. Inspector for the College.

(ii) For the selection of Assistant Staff - two representatives of the Local Education Authority, the Principal of the College, H.M. Inspector for the College (and the Divisional Inspector if he so desires).

The services of H.M. Inspector for the College will be available to the panels for the making of any necessary enquiries of H.M. Inspectors for the districts from which the candidates are drawn.

When the Ministry ask the Authority to advertise for the teaching staff, they will state

(i) the number and sex of the students for whom the college is expected to provide, and the types of course that will be followed.

(ii) the estimated date on which staff will be required (at this stage the date is speculative, and is subject to later review).

(iii) the number and composition of the staff required.

Appointment of Principal - The Authority will forward the recommendation of the interviewing panel, together with the application form and other papers of the recommended candidate, to the Ministry for their concurrence, and for information as to the date on which the appointment should take effect.

Appointment of Assistant Staff - When candidates have been selected by the interviewing panel, the Authority may proceed, without further reference to the Ministry, to offer appointments after agreeing with the Ministry the date on which staff will be

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required. Copies of the letters of appointment should be sent to the Ministry, who should also be informed of the replies received to these offers.

*        *        *

Secondment - Unless the candidate has made it clear that he does not wish to return to his existing employment, arrangements should be made with his present employer to second him for the period of the Emergency Training Scheme, and to keep open his post, or a comparable post, against his return; the employer should also be asked, where appropriate, to safeguard any prospects of promotion which the teacher may have, on the understanding that if the teacher were willing he would be released from the emergency training scheme if required on promotion by his former employer.

The Ministry will be prepared to raise with the employing authorities the question of secondment of particular teachers if the Local Education Authority administering the College asks for this to be done. In the absence of any special request, the Ministry will assume that the administering Local Education Authority is taking the necessary measures.

Terms and Conditions of Appointment - The Salary to be paid to the members of the assistant teaching staff will normally be calculated in accordance with the terms and conditions set out in the Report of the Committee on Scales of Salaries for the Teaching Staff of Training Colleges (England and Wales) 1948.

The other conditions of service, which should be embodied in a contract of service between the Authority and the lecturer, will be those customary with the Authority, modified as may be necessary to suit the academic terms and the academic year worked by the College. The appointments will be temporary in the sense that they will be terminated not later than the date ultimately fixed for the closure of the College. The Authority should therefore make clear to a lecturer in offering a firm appointment, the conditions in accordance with which his present employer has undertaken to second him. If these are not known at the time when it is desired to offer an appointment, the Authority should make the offer of appointment subject to the willingness of the employer to second the teacher for the period necessary for this work.

Dismissal - A member of the teaching staff should not be dismissed except with the prior consent of the Ministry. The Authority may suspend a member of the staff from duty, if in their opinion that is necessary, provided that the facts are reported at once to the Ministry. The Ministry may require the discharge of any member of the staff.

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(b) Part-time Teaching Staff

The approval of the Ministry will be required for the engagement of part-time teaching staff (including in this term lecturers giving courses of lectures) and to the rate of remuneration proposed; or where the part-time teacher is already employed by the Authority, to the proposed apportionment of salary.

(c) Occasional Lectures and Music Recitals

Occasional lecturers may be engaged at the discretion of the Principal, provided that expenditure incurred for this purpose shall not exceed 50 in any session.

This allowance may be increased to 100 to enable provision to be made for the engagement of professional musicians to give personal recitals of musical works for instructional purposes at the college, subject to the conditions:

(i) details of any proposed arrangements must first be submitted for the approval of the Ministry.

(ii) it must be shown that the increased allowance is necessary to enable this provision to be made.

(d) Non-teaching Staff

The secretarial and domestic staff shall be selected and appointed by the Authority subject to the approval of the Ministry to the number and the type of the posts.

Conditions of service shall be determined by the Authority and rates of payment should be those current in other branches of the Authority's service, or in the district, for comparable employment.

Proposed establishments of non-teaching posts and any modifications or additions must be submitted to the Ministry for approval before appointments are made.

(e) Superannuation

Full-time service as a teacher in an emergency training college is "contributory service" for the purposes of the Teachers (Superannuation) Act, 1925. The teachers' and employers' contributions should be accounted for in the ordinary way. As regards the non-teaching staff, these should be included in the Authority's superannuation scheme only if the Authority is bound by law to include them. Expenditure on superannuation contributions in respect of non-teaching staff will be recognised for grant only in cases where the Authority is bound by law to admit the person concerned to their scheme.

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(a) Admission. The students to be admitted to the College will be selected by the Ministry.

(b) Changes from Residential to Day Status and vice versa. After the course has begun it is generally undesirable that there should be changes from residential to day status and vice versa on the part of students. Applications should be forwarded to the Ministry through the Authority, by the Principal. Approval will normally be restricted to those cases where there are strong compassionate grounds for the change.

(c) Tuition Fees. No fees shall be charged as a general rule. In special cases a student may be selected by the Ministry for admission as a fee-payer, at a fee fixed by the Ministry. Any such cases will be notified to the Authority. The fee will be payable by the student, and should be shown in the college account.

(d) Board and Lodging. As a rule, students will qualify for free board and lodging in college or hostel, but in some cases a contribution will be required. The amount of this contribution will be fixed by the Ministry according to the financial circumstances of the student and will be notified to the Authority. The contribution will be payable by the student, and should be shown in the college account.

(e) Maintenance Allowances. Maintenance allowances will be fixed by the Ministry and will be paid in the form of drafts made out by the Ministry, issued through the college Bursar or Secretary. Each student will be required to sign an undertaking binding himself if he fails to complete his attendance for any term, to refund the whole or part of the maintenance allowance for that term, as the Ministry may determine.

(f) Conduct. Rules governing the conduct of students shall be drawn up by the Principal, subject to the approval of the Authority. Students may communicate with the Ministry only through the Principal and the Authority, except on questions of maintenance allowances or dismissal from the course, where they may communicate direct.

(i) Compulsory withdrawal - The Principal may dismiss a student for misconduct, unsatisfactory progress or other reason which may seem to him sufficient. The facts must, however, be reported at once through the Authority to the Ministry. If a student considers that he has been dismissed unreasonably he may appeal to the Minister, whose decision will be final.

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(ii) Voluntary withdrawal - The Principal may accept the voluntary withdrawal of a student, reporting to the Ministry through the Authority the facts of the case, including the date of the student's withdrawal.

(iii) Withdrawal - termination of maintenance grants.

It is essential that when a student withdraws in the course of a session, either of his own volition or compulsorily, he should be informed immediately that all maintenance grants will cease with the termination of his course; and that the Minister retains the power, if considered desirable, to require repayment of all or part of the grants already made. In most cases, the student will have received already payment of grants up to the end of the current term and for the vacation following it, and he will certainly be required to repay such part of the grants already made as is attributable to the unexpired part of the current term and the vacation following it. This applies not only to the student's personal allowance, but to any dependant's allowance. It is possible that the student may also be required to repay the whole or part of the allowances attributable to the time during which he has attended at the college, but this power is rarely exercised.

Once a decision has been taken, either by the student himself, the College authorities, or the Minister, that a student should withdraw from the course, it is desirable that he should leave immediately. In order, however, to mitigate the hardship to students because of the consequent immediate cessation of grant, Principals may at their discretion post-date the time of a student's withdrawal from College by a week, and in the meantime give the student a week's leave of absence from College. It is not expected that this discretion will normally be exercised in favour of a student dismissed for misconduct, but it is open to Principals to consider special hardship to the offender's dependants. When reporting voluntary or compulsory withdrawal to the Ministry through the Authority, Principals should give the date of the student's last day of attendance at college, together with the official date of withdrawal, where this is later.

It is essential that matters relating to the withdrawal of students should be treated as urgent at all stages.

(g) Absence on account of illness

(i) If a student's attendance at his approved course is interrupted by illness, the Ministry may find it necessary to make

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an adjustment to his maintenance grant if the absence is prolonged.

(ii) If the absence exceeds a fortnight, the student should send to the Principal, for transmission to the Ministry, a medical certificate showing the nature of the illness, when it commenced and, its probable duration, and the Principal should inform the Ministry whether the student will require an extended course. Further medical certificates may be required by the Ministry at intervals.

(iii) If a student falls ill during vacation, and is unable to resume attendance within a fortnight of the commencement of the ensuing term, he should send a medical certificate, as in paragraph (ii) above, to the Principal for transmission to the Ministry.

(h) National Insurance

The position of students undergoing emergency training is as outlined in the Ministry of National Insurance notice to persons receiving full-time training under the Further Education and Training Scheme or the Emergency Training Scheme for Teachers, dated September, 1948.


(a) The Principal will be responsible for the scheme of work, subject to any requirements of the Ministry. No detailed rules can be laid down, since the widely varying needs of the students will require great variety and flexibility in the organisation of the work. The working time of the session should extend to 48 weeks; the total length of the session (including vacations) should not exceed 56 weeks; and the interval between the starting of the successive courses should not exceed 63 weeks. The proposed timetable should be submitted on Form 249 R.E. to the Ministry 6 weeks before the College is due to open; but teaching practice periods may be notified later than this.

The maintenance allowances of students are assessed on the basis of the time-table which is approved before the beginning of the course. Consequently, once the course has begun, changes in the time-table which alter the overall length of the already approved instruction and vacation periods will not be approved by the Ministry unless the circumstances are exceptional.

(b) No catechism or formulary distinctive of any religious denomination shall be taught in the College.

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(c) Teaching practice should form a substantial portion of the course. The Principal will be responsible for arrangements for teaching practice in consultation with the Authority and for its supervision.

(d) If for any reason the Principal of an Emergency Training College desires to use a Home Office School or Schools for teaching practice he should consult the College H.M. Inspector before doing so. Where arrangements have already been made to use a Home Office School, H.M. Inspector should be informed and his views obtained on whether it is desirable that these arrangements should continue. The Home Office requires the Managers of Approved Schools to obtain Home Office sanction before agreeing to admit Training College students for teaching practice; this, of course, is a matter to be arranged between the Managers and the Home Office.


(a) Estimates and Accounts. Approved expenditure incurred by the Authority in maintaining the College will be grant-aided at the rate of 100 per cent under Article 11 of the Education (Local Education Authorities) Grant Regulations, 1945. The grant will be paid as part of the ordinary grant to the Authority. For this purpose the Local Education Authority should, when it furnishes its periodic estimates and accounts to the Ministry, submit separate estimates and accounts for the College on the forms provided.

The Ministry will inform the Authority as soon as possible of any item in the estimates to which exception is taken. No expenditure for which provision was not included in the approved estimate will be accepted for grant, unless it has been separately approved by the Minister.

(b) Administrative Expenses. The Minister will be prepared to admit for 100 per cent grant the Authority's headquarters administrative expenses allocated to the Emergency Trailing Scheme on the following basis:

(i) The remuneration (including employers' contributions in respect of national insurance and superannuation) of any member of the Authority's staff engaged whole time on administrative, technical or clerical duties connected directly with the administration of the College, whether or not he was specifically appointed for this purpose; and in the case of any person employed part-time on those duties an appropriate part of

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such remuneration. No part of the remuneration of a Chief Officer or his deputy (or if there is no deputy, his next senior assistant) may be included. The expression "Chief Officer" means the Clerk, the Chief Education Officer, the Chief Finance Officer, the Surveyor, the Chief or Senior Medical Officer of Health or School Medical Officer, the Chief or Senior Sanitary Inspector, and any other officer being the head of a department whom the Ministry may specify.

(ii) Expenditure on rent and rates payable on office premises used to accommodate the staff employed on such administrative, technical or clerical duties, in so far as such premises were not used by the Authority for other purposes immediately before they were used in connection with the administration of the College: where part only of such premises is so used, an appropriate proportion of the charges may be included.

(iii) Expenditure on such items as heating, lighting, cleaning, telephones, postages, stationery and office furniture and equipment in so far as it can be shown to have been incurred in respect of office staffs employed on administrative, technical or clerical duties in connection with the administration of the College.

(c) Miscellaneous Expenditure authorised by Principal. The Principal shall have discretion to expend sums to a total of not more than 150 in the first year and 100 in each succeeding year, for the following purposes:
(i) Purchase of urgently needed new books which cannot be supplied at once through the Ministry;
(ii) purchase of second hand books;
(iii) purchase of pamphlets and professional periodicals;
(iv) purchase of teaching apparatus such as aids to infant teaching;
(v) purchase of gramophone records for teaching purposes;
(vi) hire and purchase of films.
Advantage is to be taken of any discounts obtainable by the Authority (e.g., on gramophone records) in making purchases under this paragraph.


The Authority should insure against all their legal liabilities in connexion with the maintenance and conduct of the College. The cost of the premiums for this purpose will be eligible for grant by the Ministry at 100 per cent.

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Risks affecting (i) premises of which the Ministry of Works are tenants on behalf of the Ministry of Education or of which the Ministry of Works are owners, and (ii) furniture and equipment taken on charge from the Ministry of Works, are the concern of the Ministry of Works. No insurance by the Local Education Authority against such risks is necessary.

Insurance against all risks affecting personal property of students and staff, brought by them on to the college premises, shall be a responsibility of the individuals concerned who should be so informed.


(a) No student may be admitted to the College unless he has satisfied the Ministry as to his physical fitness for the course.

(b) The College shall have a Training College Medical Officer appointed by the Authority. As a general rule it is desirable that the Medical Officer should be on the medical list of the Executive Council for the area or be willing to apply for admission to the list. His duties will include:

(i) medical examination as required for the purposes of Grant Regulation No. 2, Schedule II, paragraph 1, of all students at the end of the course:

(ii) medical examination of any student referred by the Principal during the course, where the Principal is doubtful of the student's physical fitness for teaching as a career:

(iii) general advice to the College on medical matters.

(c) The fee to be paid to the Medical Officer for services under (b) shall be fixed by the Authority at a rate not exceeding the following amount for each college session:
9s. 6d. in respect of each of the first 100 students.
7s. 6d. in respect of each of the second 100 students.
5s. 6d. in respect of each student in excess of 200.
(d) In Day colleges, a Training College Medical Officer should be appointed to carry out duties under (b) at an appropriate fee.

(e) For ordinary medical treatment, students should look to the doctor whom they choose under the National Health Service, as their general medical practitioner. Where students spend the larger part of their time away from home in College, the convenient course would be that they should be on the list of a doctor in the area of the College and that they should be treated under the scheme when at home by a local doctor as temporary residents. If the Training College Medical Officer is providing

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general medical care under the Service, the students may choose him, if he is willing and able to accept them. In the event of accident or sudden illness, if the National Health Service doctor is not available, any other doctor taking part in the Service may be called in. The doctors will be paid by the local Executive Council for these services.


(a) Staff. Members of the staff necessarily travelling in connection with their duties shall be eligible for payment of their travelling expenses (first class travel for the Principal, third class for others), and for subsistence allowance, according to the Authority's usual scale.

The Authority may, at their discretion, authorise members of the teaching staff to use their private cars for official journeys in connection with the supervision of, or arrangements for teaching practice, and pay mileage allowance in accordance with the Authority's scale.

(b) Students on Teaching Practice

(i) Travelling expenses: travelling expenses necessarily incurred by resident students undertaking their teaching practice may be reimbursed from the College account. Third class rail fares and bus fares will be allowed. Day students will normally be expected to meet travelling expenses from their maintenance allowance; where, however, a day student is involved in additional travelling expenditure because of the distance of the school to which he has been sent for teaching practice, the Local Education Authority may allow to the student the amount by which his travelling expenses exceed the greater of (i) 1/- a day or (ii) the usual expense of daily travel to and from the College.

Day students who are sent out to temporary lodgings for teaching practice may be reimbursed the cost of one return journey between home or lodgings and the temporary lodgings.

(ii) Cost of Meals: It may be necessary for resident students, although still living in college. to pay for their mid-day meals elsewhere while on teaching practice because they cannot return to college at mid-day. The cost of such meals may be reimbursed, within the limits laid down by the Authority's usual scale.

(iii) Lodging Allowance:

Resident Students: It will in some cases be found impossible to arrange teaching practice for all the students within

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daily travelling distance of the college. Students will therefore have to be sent further afield, and will have to stay in their own homes, or in lodgings. In such cases the additional expenditure necessarily incurred by the student for board and lodging may be reimbursed from the college account, subject to the maximum payment of 2 5s. 0d. a week in the case of a student who goes to live in lodgings, and 1 5s. 0d. a week in the case of a student who goes to live in his own home while doing teaching practice.

Home Students: It may in some circumstances be necessary for a student who lives at home while attending college to be sent away for teaching practice, and to live in lodgings during teaching practice. In such cases a home student may be reimbursed the cost of board and lodging (excluding the midday meal) up to a maximum of 1 18s. 0d. a week.

Day Students in Lodgings. These are not eligible for payment of additional lodging allowance, since their ordinary maintenance grant includes lodging allowance.


As a rule shortage of accommodation for students will preclude any except the most restricted facilities for visitors. Where accommodation is provided for any persons (except those entitled to free board and lodging as part of their conditions of service) payment must in every case be made for board and lodging, according to rates fixed by the Authority to cover the cost of the services provided. The only exception to this rule will be occasional lecturers, who may be given free accommodation in lieu of expenses.

Similar payment must be made for all meals provided, except:

(a) by persons entitled to free board as part of their condition of service:

(b) by resident students entitled to free board as part of the assistance given to them by the Ministry.

Day students must pay for all meals provided (the maintenance award is intended to cover expenditure of this kind).


Except as shown in Appendix II* the Principal and members of the staff shall communicate with the Ministry only through the Authority, unless the Authority directs otherwise.

*This Appendix is not reproduced.

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[pages 150-151]

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The selection of candidates for training for teaching

1. Everybody engaged on the task of interviewing candidates for admission to the Emergency Training Scheme will bring to it and will primarily be guided by his own knowledge of what is required of a teacher and his own experience of interviewing or of similar human contacts. At the same time it is worth noting that a fair amount of research has been carried out on the causes which make for success or failure in a teacher, and although this has dealt mainly with the careers of teachers who have entered the profession as young students taking the normal course of training, it is thought that members of Interviewing Boards may find it interesting or helpful to glance at the summary which follows. It should be emphasised that this is no more than a summary based on published opinion.

2. In the first place it is important to distinguish between qualities in the candidate on which a firm assessment can be made in the circumstances of the interview itself, and those qualities which can be assessed only in the light of the candidate's record or by a person having long and intimate acquaintance with him. As might be expected it seems clear that but few judgments can be based on the interview itself, but as the Panels will have before them details of the candidate's record, it will be possible through suitable questioning related to these to obtain additional material on which a judgment can be made.

3. At the interview itself certain personal qualities are directly revealed such as those connected with voice, appearance, lucidity and relevance of expression, and general bearing in the presence of a group of questioning strangers. All these are important points to consider in regard to the intending teacher. In connection with the last it will no doubt be possible to form an idea as to whether the candidate tends to be (say) cheerful or morose, and whether he tends to be withdrawn or, on the other hand, can make contact with others readily and pleasantly. At the same time it may be possible by somewhat searching questions to discover whether he has a lively and inquiring mind, as might be shown, for example, by an intelligent interest in current affairs.

4. Among the qualities revealed by the candidate's record

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would be educational standard and level of intelligence, success in social activity, interest in and adaptability for games and athletic pursuits, powers of co-operation and leadership, sympathy and tact, industry and determination. Though such qualities can hardly be judged accurately by the interview alone, the latter provides an opportunity for following up the information supplied by records and reports through questions based on these, and for bringing the result into relation with the opinion formed by the Panel on the more directly observable qualities referred to in the preceding paragraph.

5. Perhaps the most important facts emerging from this would be those relating to the candidate's cultural level, his capacity to share other people's interests and his own with them, his enjoyment of the society of others and particularly of children, while at the same time preserving a sense of balance and a certain detachment when necessary, and his general health, particularly in regard to emotional stability.

6. The causes of failure in a teacher may be personal to him or due to the effect on him of external factors such as bad material teaching conditions and large classes, and possible restrictions in regard to the full use of his intellectual powers or in regard to opportunities of making social contacts outside the ambit of his professional work.

7. Many of these causes of failure would be outside the field which could be covered by an interview, but there are some factors contributory to failure of which indications might appear at the interview. Among these are narrow-mindedness, greater interest in "subjects" than in the teaching of them, too much dependence on other people, dislike of making a decision, and lack of understanding of the needs and interests of children.

8. It is interesting to note that, in the long list of qualities recorded as of special importance in a teacher, "personality" - in the general colloquial sense - and resolution are put first, with intelligence second, and sympathy and tact third. Knowledge of pedagogy and classroom technique come a good deal further down the list, but these are of course acquired powers the level of which will depend very considerably on the personal qualities put at the head of the list.

9. Other points of importance are the candidate's motives for taking up teaching, into which a fairly searching inquiry might be useful, and his interests and recreations, cultural and other, outside his vocation. These interests and recreations are important not only for their reactions upon his professional work, but also because

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they provide a highly necessary contrast to, and relief from, the latter.

10. It will be clear that the factors involved in teaching success are so many and varied that they could not be brought within the scope of a single short interview. But the foregoing may suggest a field which might be at any rate sampled sufficiently to form the basis of a sound judgment. The basic characteristics on which it appears that a special watch should be kept are level of intelligence and culture, facility in making contact with others combined with the possession of impulses making for an interest in, and sympathetic handling of, children, emotional stability and good general health. Accordingly, it is into these points that the interviewing Panels might especially look, in addition to forming a direct judgment on those qualities immediately observable.



Explanatory note circulated by a college Principal to the head teachers of practising schools in his area (see page 61).

These notes which are the outcome of many years' experiment and experience in more than one training institution have been prepared for circulation to the practising schools in the hope that they may serve to give a brief summary of the general lines on which the students have been instructed in preparation for their practice and to indicate some of the points to which we attach importance.

We consider that the purpose of Teaching Practice is to afford opportunity for -

(1) Practice in actual teaching;
(2) Observing the work and organisation of the school as a whole;
(3) Studying the methods of teaching particular subjects.
We hope that during the period of practice, students will, as far as possible, be treated as members of the school staff. We expect them to abide by the rules and customs of the school (and of its staff room), to share in routine duties such as playground

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supervision and to take part in general school activities, including so far as practicable such corporate activities as may take place out of school hours. We shall impress on them that they are guests of the school and that they owe it both courtesy and consideration. We expect them to attend for the whole of the school day unless specifically excused by the Head Teacher or prevented by travelling difficulties. Unless considerations of conscience are involved we urge students to take part in the morning assembly and in the teaching of Religious Knowledge.

The amount of teaching done by a student will at first be small and will increase progressively. The underlying principle is that students should not teach more than they can thoroughly prepare. Hence we suggest that in the first two or three days no teaching should be done and for the remainder of the first week one or two lessons a day should be taught. In the second week an average of two or three lessons a day would be normal and in subsequent weeks the student should work up to a maximum of half to two thirds of the full teaching time-table. Except for one free period a day the rest of the student's time should be spent in definitely allocated observation. We hope that Head Teachers will use their discretion in deciding whether a student who has already had some teaching experience, should work rapidly up to the suggested maximum of teaching. We feel very strongly that it is the quality of the practice that matters rather than mere quantity of lessons taught.

Particularly in the first period of practice we hope that all students will be given practice in teaching the fundamental subjects - English and Arithmetic. In addition they should be afforded opportunity for teaching the subject or subjects in which they are specially interested or for which they are specially qualified. In the later periods of practice more emphasis will be laid on specialisation without neglecting the fundamental subjects.

It will probably be found most convenient and we think it best for a student to be attached permanently to one class and to teach that class the fundamental subjects. For other subjects it will be helpful for the student to observe and teach other classes in addition.

We expect students to secure good discipline by:

(1) Good teaching - which interests the children.

(2) Efficient classroom administration which prevents opportunities for disorder. Hence we shall expect them to note and imitate the exact procedure adopted for such routine matters as, for example, giving out books, etc. Occasion for the use of some kind of

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punishment may inevitably arise and students will be instructed to find out exactly what powers are at their disposal in a particular school. It will be emphasised that in no circumstances whatever will any form of corporal punishment be administered by a student.
Instructions have been given that a full record of the practice is to be made in the note-books under three main headings:
(1) For all prepared lessons, notes must be written beforehand, preferably a clear day ahead.

(2) A record is to be kept of lessons observed but it is not necessary to describe every lesson in detail.

(3) A brief diary is to be kept showing how each period of the day has been spent.

For the student himself the systematic making of notes is a means of ensuring the thorough preparation of lessons and of compiling a useful record of experiments, records and comments. For the supervisor the note-book is a valuable guide to the quality of the student's preparation and his grasp of the relation of one lesson to others and it indicates the lines on which the student is planning his work as a whole. The note-book is open to inspection by the Head Teacher and Staff of the school and we hope they will enter constructive comments and suggestions on lessons taught by students and also from time to time direct the student's attention to important points of technique in lessons they observe.

No one set form of notes applicable to all lessons has been given to the students but general headings have been given and certain points stressed, e.g.

(1) The preparation of a lesson involves more than a knowledge of the subject matter.

(2) Notes are inadequate unless they indicate the orderly development of the lesson in some detail, including for example, key questions to be asked and the use to be made of text-book, blackboard, illustrations, the planning of the pupils' practical or written work.

(3) It is a good self-discipline, without which the work loses precision and vigour, to define the precise aim and purpose of a lesson as distinct from its subject and title.

(4) The pupils' activities and opportunities for co-operation should be planned and indicated as well as the teacher's part in the work.

(5) The work accomplished should be summarised (preferably by the pupils or at least with their co-operation)

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at convenient intervals. The lines of such summarising should be indicated in the notes. Although a unit of learning may occupy more than one school period, it is unwise to allow a period to pass without a summary, which should also be a means of testing the learning that has been done.

(6) Lessons should be prepared far enough in advance to ensure the planning of the relation between the lessons of a series and to give time for the assembly of the necessary materials.

Notes of lessons observed should pay particular attention to the general principles of method and to such points as - methods of questioning, connection with previous lessons, supervision of practical work, blackboard work and the use of illustrations, manipulation of mechanical aids, use of text-books, methods of keeping a balance between the brighter and duller members of a class. More general observation in the school should be directed to retarded classes and the "Craft" approach towards subjects within the classes for backward pupils. It would be most useful for students to be given an opportunity of studying time-tables organisation and allocation of periods to subjects noting the differentiation of time and syllabus for each year and 'stream'. If possible students should also be given an opportunity of paying a visit to the Infants' Department of the school in order to gain some idea of the continuous process of Education.

It would be very helpful if the Head Teacher could find time to give the students a talk on the organisation and work of the school, its site, buildings and equipment and also direct their attention to a consideration of the school as part of its geographical and social environment, since the handling of work in school must depend very largely upon the conditions under which the children live.

There are two final points. While at first it is to be expected that a member of the staff will always be present while a student is teaching it is hoped that when the student has settled down he will be left on his own for gradually increasing periods. Secondly, we feel that some correction and assessment of written work should be undertaken by students. It would be helpful if the Head Teacher or a member of the staff could describe and explain the methods followed in the school and then allocate some part of the written work of one of the classes to the student.

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The following tables analyse the records of the great majority of the accepted candidates under a number of headings. It has not been possible to cover quite all the records, and the totals therefore do not agree exactly with those given in Tables ill and IV and at the beginning of Chapter 7.




[page 160]




[page 161]




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[page 163]




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