Young Report (1920)

1920 Young Report (text)

Young Report (1920)
Report of the Departmental Committee on Scholarships and Free Places
London: HMSO

Background notes

Historical context

The state provision of secondary education began, in a very limited way, with the 1902 Education Act (the Balfour Act), which empowered local education authorities to 'supply or aid the supply of education other than elementary'.

The 1907 Education (Administrative Provisions) Act introduced a scholarship/free place system and the Free Place Regulations of the same year aimed 'to secure that all secondary schools aided by grants shall be made fully accessible to children of all classes'.

The 1918 Education Act (the Fisher Act) provided for the raising of the school leaving age to fourteen, though this was postponed because of economic difficulties (as were many of the Act's other measures).

In October 1919, the President of the Board of Education, HAL Fisher, appointed Liberal MP E Hilton Young (1879-1960) to chair a departmental committee to examine the issue of scholarships and free places for secondary education. The committee's report was published in November 1920.

The main recommendations

A summary of the report's main recommendations will be found in Chapter XV.

They include:

  • increasing the proportion of free places from 25 to 40 per cent;
  • increasing the number of secondary schools to provide at least 20 school places for each thousand of population;
  • selection for secondary education should be by tests in English and arithmetic plus an oral examination;
  • transfer to secondary schools should be at around age 11;
  • maintenance allowances should be available for 'all free-place pupils who show need'; and
  • the abolition of all fees in secondary schools should be the long-term aim.

The report online

The complete text, including the Appendices, is presented in a single web page.

I have modernised some of the punctuation and replaced the archaic l with . Otherwise, the text presented here is as in the original print version.

The statistical tables in Appendix I are shown as images.

The above notes were prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 31 December 2016.