History of Schooling



We are grateful to Derek Gillard for the carefully researched information which he has provided and which is available on his website for those wishing for a more in-depth article than our own. Here is Derek's site.

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Board Schools

Board Schools were the first state run schools and local Boards could:

  • raise funds from a rate
  • build and run non-denominational schools where existing voluntary provision was inadequate
  • subsidise church schools where appropriate
  • pay the fees of the poorest children

  • if they deemed it necessary, create a by-law making attendance compulsory between ages 5–13
  • not impose any religious education, other than simple Bible reading
Board School Street

Picture of the Board School at Street, Somerset

The spread of Board Schools was intended to make education available for all children, and perhaps to impose some kind of standardisation.