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ERIC Number: EJ814698
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Aug
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0022-0620
The Concept of British Education Policy in the Colonies 1850-1960
Whitehead, Clive
Journal of Educational Administration and History, v39 n2 p161-173 Aug 2007
It is common in the literature to refer to British colonial education policy as if it were "a settled course adopted and purposefully carried into action", but in reality it was never like that. Contrary to popular belief, the size and diversity of the empire meant that no one really ruled it in any direct sense. Clearly some kind of authority had to be exercised from London but as Arthur Mayhew said of education policy in the Colonial Empire in 1938: "No Secretary of State for the Colonies...[is] anxious to adopt too definite a policy. He will be content with a few assumptions and a statement of general principles. And he will not be surprised if these principles in their local application are adapted with the utmost elasticity to local conditions." In the absence of any strong direction from the centre, this paper examines the factors that shaped twentieth century education policy in the 47 crown colonies, protectorates and mandates under the aegis of the Colonial Office in Whitehall. They included the all-important attitudes of the governor and his senior administrative officers towards education; the status of the director of education; the influence of the Christian missions both in London and in the colonies; denominational rivalry; long-standing British educational traditions based on social class; the state of the local economy; the attitudes of the European settlers; the advice and status of the London-based Advisory Committee on Education in the Colonies; the influence of the Secretary of State for the Colonies on the government of the day; the attitudes of key senior Colonial Office officials towards education; indigenous pressure groups; special reports and recommendations; war; national rivalry; the so-called Cold War; post-war constitutional changes, and the pressure of world opinion as reflected in the League of Nations after 1918 and the United Nations after 1945. Clearly there was great diversity in the ways in which education was developed from one territory to another but only detailed case studies can generate the data for broader and more historically accurate hypotheses about the development of British colonial education as a whole. (Contains 34 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Intermediate Grades; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: British Colonies; United Kingdom; United Kingdom (London)