chapter  14
10 Pages

The Secondary Modern School

From 1918 onwards a number of factors were operating to make the reorganization of all post-primary education seem a practicable proposition. The raising of the age of compulsory school attendance to the end of the term in which the fourteenth birthday was reached, was completed in 192 I by the final abolition of partial exemption.1 The demand for some form of secondary education was increasing and there was besides a readiness to stay longer at all types of school. The Labour Party policy of secondary education for all was attracting the attention of a wider public, and the growth of secondary and central schools had demonstrated, in the words of the Hadow Report, 'a wealth of ability among children attending the elementary schools, the existence of which is a

ground for both confidence and anxiety--confidence in the natural endowments of our fellow countrymen and anxiety lest, at the age at which the powers of the rising generation are susceptible of cultivation and neglect, the nation should fail to turn to the best account so precious a heritage'.1 Finally there had been attempts on the part of certain education authorities to tackle the problem for themselves.