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Absent Through Want of Boots. Diary of a Victorian School in by Robert Elverstone

By Robert Elverstone

Following the 1870 Forster common schooling Act, Albert street Board institution in Leicestershire opened on second September 1878 with a typical function of 500 young ones. Drawn from the first-hand accouns of the headmasters within the institution log books, this ebook information the ailments and diseases suffered; the fight of neighborhood households to feed and dress their little ones, in particular in the course of tricky time of strike and warfare; the creation of vaccinations and the college wellbeing and fitness inspector; the coming of the phone and electrical lighting fixtures; and reviews concerning the curriculum, employees and rest actions. occasionally funny and infrequently unhappy, way of life is captured right here: from debts of overcrowded school rooms and corporal punishment, to squabbles approximately tending the study room fires. This ebook captures the truth of existence at this Victorian tuition and is a needs to for neighborhood and relations historians alike.

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May 21st: Weather very uncomfortable, the rain falling fast all morning, which has caused the attendance to be considerably lower than usual. June 16th: Highest class examined in numeration and arithmetic, result very fair. Several children away with hooping [sic] cough. July 19th: Number present at all this week 100, highest number attained. Of these, sixty-one gained the regular attendance ticket. August 22nd: School closed this morning, for a fortnight, on account of the fair etc. September 8th: School reopened after Harvest Holidays.

Children in Hinckley often came from very poor families and, especially in the winter months, were inadequately clothed. The logbooks refer to children being cold or not attending due to poor weather. Particularly in deep snow, some children were marked as absent through ‘want of boots’. Epidemics of measles, scarlet fever and diphtheria were widespread. Lack of medical care and poor health meant these diseases would often lead to death. Ringworm, headlice and ‘itch’ were common ailments which often caused prolonged absence.

March 29th: School visited by Mr Kiddle, who told me that the Board had raised my salary. 30 as her mother still continues very ill. Average for week: 131. April 4th: Letter from Miss Dawkins this morning; her mother died last night. In consequence she will not return to school this week. Applied to Board for books for Class Three and two reading boards. April 11th: On Monday admitted five fresh children and three, who were transferred last week, have returned, not yet being seven. Miss Dawkins sent in her resignation; she wishes to leave in a month.

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