Chapter XII



THE NEW HEADMASTER was the Rev. John Rosindale Wynne-Edwards, M.A., an old Giggleswick boy and formerly scholar of Christ Church, Oxford. In Moderations he obtained a first-class in mathematics in 1884, and in the Final Schools a first-class in mathematics in 1885 and a second-class in natural science in 1887. From 1887 to 1891 he was master at Giggleswick, and from 1891 to 1902 at Cheltenham. He was now 37 years of age. He entered upon office at the beginning of the summer term 1902.

THE REBUILDING of the School, according to the plans of Messrs. Austin and Paley of Lancaster, began in February, 1904, and on April 29th the foundation stone was formally laid by the Lord Mayor of Leeds—A. Currer Briggs, Esq.

Of the old building the upper schoolroom was retained. The lower room had long been divided into two, of which the eastern was now fitted up as a gymnasium and the western became a cloakroom, and south of the latter a lavatory and a dressing room were erected. On the staircase the masters' room, united with a small room once part of the Headmaster's study, was allotted to the bookseller. In the north transept the library became solely a classroom and the room beneath it a train boys' room (turned into a classroom in 1917), with a lumber room and in course of time an armoury below.

Of the house only the front rooms were left, to serve as the Headmaster's study, a clerk's office, and masters' rooms. All the rest was destroyed, and on its site and along the line of the old garden wall a new wing was erected, containing on 2 floors 12 classrooms with, at the west end, laboratories, lecture rooms, etc. The old laboratory became the library and the temporary art room was turned into a dining room.

Great attention was paid throughout to lighting, heating, and ventilation, and the plans were so designed as to permit the future erection of buildings along Moorland Road parallel to the new wing and united with it by a central hall. A fund for the erection of the latter in commemoration of the boys who have fought in the war was started in 1918. The new buildings were opened on 13 July 1905 by Sir A. W. Rücker, principal of London University. They cost almost £24,000, to which may be added c.£3000 for the house purchased for the Headmaster in Clarendon Road, and c.£470 for the art room subsequently erected.

MEANWHILE GREAT CHANGES were made in the organization of the School.

(i) The Curriculum.

In the existing system there were several weak points. The entrance examination was lenient and the standard of the bottom Form low, and this of course affected the work of the Forms above. The boys from elementary schools often had a very fair knowledge of mathematics but knew little of languages, and so had to be put in a lower Form than their attainments in the former would have warranted. The co-ordination of the work was still imperfect. The younger boys needed more practical work and physical training. Geography was not taught above Form ii, except in the Special Class. The “modern” boys did not do enough science. The training for a business career did not appeal to parents, and the facilities for specialization were not enough. Finally, the allotment of the work among the masters was not satisfactory, for in some cases men were teaching subjects for which they had no special qualifications.

Perfection of course is an unattainable ideal, but in many cases a substantial improvement has been made. The entrance examination has been stiffened. The difficulty as to promotions has been met by the separation of Forms into divisions according to the capacity of the boys. Arrangements have been made for pressing on the elementary scholars in languages during their first term. In the Upper School specialization has been facilitated by the division of it into classical and modern sides, and allowing a good deal of freedom in the curricula of the top Forms, and on the modern side the course has been adapted to suit business requirements. The teaching has been better co-ordinated, and to a large extent the work of the masters has been specialized by the introduction of the “set” system in many subjects.

For this purpose the School was in 1902 again divided into 3 blocks—the Upper School (Forms vi and v), the Middle School (now containing Forms iv, iii and ii), and the Junior School (comprising all below). Alterations too have been made in the subjects taught. All boys under normal circumstances learn divinity, history, English, mathematics, French, and Swedish drill, and (in the Junior and Middle Schools) geography, science and drawing. In the Junior School singing is taught, and in Form ii carpentry. Latin is taught throughout the Junior and Middle Schools except in the lowest Form, and Greek and German are alternative subjects in iii A and iv A. In the Upper School the classical boys learn Latin and Greek (and in Form v science) but none now learn German: on the modern side all study science and can learn also Latin or German and drawing. Book-keeping, shorthand, and carpentry (except in Form ii) are caught, mainly out of school hours, to such boys as wish to learn them.

(ii) Hours and Terms.

In 1903 afternoon school was extended to 4-15; and in 1909, when, owing to the requirements of the O.T.C., a third half-holiday was introduced, the hours were rearranged (though the total remained unaltered), viz.

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 8-55—12-15: 2-15—4-30.
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, 8-55—12-45.

The “break” on half-holidays was extended to 15 minutes. In 1903 also the Easter vacation was cut down to 2 weeks and a week was given at Whitsuntide, and in 1912 the vacations as stated in the Calendar were in Summer c.6½ weeks, at Christmas 3½ weeks, at Easter 2½ weeks, at Whitsuntide 1 week.

(iii) Discipline.

In 1902 prefects with limited powers were instituted, the infliction of corporal punishment was confined to the Headmaster, and parents of candidates for admission had to undertake to abide by the rules of the School.

(iv) Physical Training.

In 1902 the fee for the gymnastic classes was dropped. In 1904 the games were made an integral part of the curriculum. In 1905 gymnastics became part of the regular work of the Junior School, and boys not taking part in the games had to attend a gymnastic class out of school hours. In 1912 Swedish drill became part of the regular work of the Middle School as well as of the Juniors, and in 1917 was introduced into the Upper School. To the annual “Gymnastic Display” (which started in 1895) a house competition was added in 1905, and other incentives have been provided by a few matches with other schools and a competition for membership of the School team. In 1917 a system of medical inspection was instituted.

(v) Reports.

The custom of sending home the weekly places of the boys became in 1902 the rule in the Middle and Junior Schools; and c.1909 annual “At Homes” were instituted to enable parents to come into personal contact with the teachers of their sons.

SEVERAL OF THE changes were due to the inspection of the School by the Board of Education. This body, which since 1902 had control of secondary education, was willing to inspect schools, and, if satisfied, to make them, under conditions, an annual grant. The latter would be of considerable help to the School, and a satisfactory report would be conclusive evidence that it was doing good work. Accordingly in October 1905 the School was visited by 6 inspectors of the Board. They were present for 3 days, listening to the lessons, and talking with the masters, and their report was therefore far more reliable than that of an ordinary examiner, while their experience rendered their suggestions of much value.

The site they thought “exceptionally good for a town school,” and the buildings “admirably adapted to their purpose,” though an Art Room was badly wanted. [One was opened in 1911.] With the staff too they were satisfied. The Headmaster they described as “a thoroughly capable, experienced and vigorous man,” and of the other masters they said “The qualifications . . . the ability displayed in the work and the care and interest shown in matters relating to the School deserve warm recognition.”

On the teaching the report is discriminating and therefore the more satisfactory. In classics “the course of work and the standard of teaching reach a high level and in all Forms there is thoroughly sound good work.” The mathematical standard is described as high and the teaching as good. The modern languages were commended, but French was better done than German. The science teaching was satisfactory, but the way in which the boys wrote English needed improvement. English indeed and English subjects are the points most criticized, especially on the modern side. In gymnastics they praised the teaching but thought that compulsory physical training should be extended considerably. In carpentry they suggested a more adequate supply of tools. They also urged a stiffening of the examination for admission, and laid stress on the desirability of extending the playing field accommodation.

AS THE RESULT of this report the School on 10 March 1906 was “recognized” by the Board.

This implied that it was efficient; that its management, curriculum, and fees were approved of; that the number and qualifications of the staff were satisfactory; and that the premises were sanitary, well-equipped, and convenient for teaching purposes. It involved also certain requirements.

The School must at all times be open to inspection by the Board. Records must be kept of the admission, attendance, and fees of the scholars. No scholar must be excluded for religious reasons. The curriculum, the time-table, and the accounts must be submitted to the Board. The School must meet regularly for at least 36 weeks in the year. The instruction must be general, progressive, and in every subject reasonably complete. The fee charged must be substantial, so as to secure financial stability and emphasize the fact that the education provided was of a superior stamp, for “good education cannot be bought cheap.” The salaries of the staff must not be subject to variation according to the amount of grant received. At least 20 scholars must take an “approved course,” and for each of these who made 80 p/c attendances during the session a grant was given of 40s. in the 1st year, 60s. in the 2nd, 80s. in the 3rd, and 100s. in the 4th.

The requirements were complied with, and in 1906 the Headmaster reported that 154 boys were taking the course.

IN 1907 the course was abolished and it was only stipulated that there should be due continuity of instruction and adequate time assigned to each subject, and that the subjects themselves should be of educational value. It was also laid down that the number of boys in a class ought not to exceed 30 and must not exceed 35, and that no boy under 15 might (except with special leave) go in for any external examination unless it were taken by the whole School.

There was a change too made in the grant. 50s. was now allowed for every boy between the ages of 12 and 18, and 40s. for every boy between 10 and 12 who had previously been for 2 years at an elementary school, and the former of these sums might be doubled if members appointed by the local educational authority formed the majority of the Governors and 25 p/c of the admissions were free places for scholars from elementary schools. Of these conditions however the first might be waived with the consent of the local authorities, and the proportion of free places might be diminished with the leave of the Board. The consent was given and the leave obtained, and since 1908 the higher grant has been earned. In 1907 it amounted to £420, in 1909 £882.10s., in 1914 £1027.

IN 1909 the scheme for the management of the School was amended in some respects, viz.

(a) In 1902 the functions of the School Board had been transferred to the Corporation, and in 1904 the Yorkshire College had become the University of Leeds. The representative Governors were now raised to 9, the 2 School Board seats being given to the Corporation, that for the Victoria University to the University of Leeds, and a new member added to represent the West Riding County Council. The representative Governors also were in most cases to hold office for 3 years, and the co-opted for 5. Absence from meetings for one year was now to involve the vacation of a seat.

(b) The Headmaster might now be a graduate of any university in the British possessions, or have “such other equivalent qualification as may be approved by the Board of Education.” His remuneration was left to the discretion of the Governors, but the existing Headmaster was to receive £200 p/a and a capitation fee of not less than 30s.

(c) The Endowed Schools (Masters) Act of 1908 had declared that assistant masters held their office from the Governors of a School and not from the Headmaster, and now every master in the School was to have a written “contract of service” with the Governors, and the engagement was (except for “misconduct or other good and urgent cause”) to be terminable by 2 months' notice—6 months in the case of the Headmaster—to take effect at the end of a school term. The Headmaster could still appoint, dismiss, or suspend a master, but only “after obtaining in every case the approval of the Governors.” The Governors were empowered also to arrange with the masters a pension scheme.

(d) In certain respects the rules were made less rigid. For admission no subjects were now specified but candidates must be “found fit in an examination graduated according to the age of the boy.” For the curriculum too no subjects were now stated but “instruction shall be given in the School in such subjects proper to be taught in a Public Secondary School for boys as the Governors in consultation with the Headmaster from time to time determine.”

The rules as to examinations also were relaxed. The higher Forms were now to be examined at least once in 2 years by some approved external board, with the help of the masters if the Governors thought fit; the lower Forms once at least in every year by the staff. The Board might dispense with an examination in any year in which the School had been inspected, and indeed with the external examination altogether if they thought fit.

(e) The scholarship system was entirely remodelled. Henceforth there were to be annually

  • 4 Junior Leeds Scholarships giving exemption from tuition fees for 4 years (but renewable annually on the recommendation of the Headmaster). These were limited to boys, natives of or resident in Leeds, and under 13 on the previous Dec. 31. Half were confined in the first instance to boys who had been for 2 consecutive years at some Public Elementary School in Leeds. In the case of the latter such arrangements were to be made for the election as seemed “best adapted to secure the double object of attracting good scholars to the School and advancing education at Public Elementary Schools.”

  • 4 Continuation Leeds Scholarships giving exemption from tuition fees for 3 years, awarded and renewable annually on the recommendation of the Headmaster. These were open to boys in the School, natives of or resident in Leeds, and under 17 on the previous Dec. 31. Half were confined as above.

The Governors might also grant exemption from tuition fees to other boys, and make to scholars maintenance allowances of not more than £10 p/a, and in the case of Junior elementary scholars, of not more than £6 p/a for the first 2 years.

[N.B.—More scholarships than those stated above have usually been awarded, and in 1903 the Headmaster agreed to receive in the School not more than 6 West Riding “major scholars.” In 1905 scholars began to be received from the Leeds City Council.]

(f) The Foundations exhibitions and the Leeds exhibition, all confined to natives of or residents in Leeds, were made tenable at any university in the United Kingdom, and the Leeds exhibition might also be held at any Training College for teachers or other institution of higher instruction. Each exhibition might now be split into two of £25, and as to the Leeds exhibition even more liberty was allowed.

(g) The Governors might maintain a preparatory department with such modifications as to ages, instruction, examinations, and fees as they might think fit, and also (with the consent of the Board) make similar modifications with regard to boys intending to qualify as teachers in elementary schools.

IN FEBRUARY 1910 the School was again inspected by the Board. The inspectors were 5 in number and the inspection occupied 4 days. The report was satisfactory.

“The efficiency of the School has been in all directions maintained and in some directions increased since . . . 1905, and it continues to fulfil worthily its function as the first grade secondary boys' school of a great city. The work generally is sound and the upper boys reach a very good standard of attainment in most of the cardinal subjects of the curriculum.” In English the report notes “a marked improvement,” and adds, “in reading, writing, spelling, and neatness the work as a whole is very good.” In history there had been “numerous alterations and improvements.” In geography the work was “developing on good lines.” French and German are described as satisfactory. The classical work “continues to be thoroughly well organized and the teaching is in general sound and careful.” In mathematics “the work as a whole is very good.” In science “the schemes of work are well arranged and the lessons seen were well given.” Manual work is spoken of as “well done.” In art “a real attempt is being made to cultivate the, taste and perception of the pupils, and a very fair standard of drawing has been acquired.”

The inspectors “noted with satisfaction” that many of the suggestions in the report of 1905 had been carried out. They were glad also to learn “that substantial additions had been made . . . to the salaries of several senior members of the staff” and hoped that the Governors would “find it possible to accord still further increments from time to time, especially in the case of those masters to whom the Headmaster delegates wide responsibility for the whole work in important subjects.” [A new salary-scale was instituted in 1917.] They suggested also that the institution of a system of pensions should be considered.

Finally they “heartily congratulated the Governors and the Headmaster on the steps that had been taken to raise a contingent of the O.T.C. in the School.”

SINCE 1898 then a virtual revolution has been wrought. The School has been rebuilt, its government reconstituted, its curriculum widened, its organization remodelled, and the whole institution brought under the control of the Board of Education.

The effect upon the numbers is striking. In 1898 the total was 155; in 1903-4, 232; in 1907-8, 301; now (1918) it stands at 517. Of the boys, according to the report in 1910, just about 50 p/c were under 15, 75 p/c came from Leeds, and 23 p/c from the rest of Yorkshire. Of 32 p/c the parents belonged to the professional or independent classes; 40 p/c were described as mercantile or trading; 2 p/c were farmers; 10 p/c clerks, commercial travellers, etc.; 10 p/c artisans.

THE ALTERATIONS have naturally considerably affected the finances. Large sums have had to be spent on the Schools both for boys and for girls, but the assets in 1914 (the last accounts published before the war) showed a substantial increase on the figures of 1895.

School - land and buildings £45,236.5s.2d.
Calls and Call Lane property £48,250.15s.11d.
Concord Street property £13,780.13s.0d.
Clarendon Road property £2679.14s.0d.
Investments £18,024.19s.1d.
Loan to Girls' School £7000.0s.0d.
Etc. £529.12s.6d.

The expenditure has of course risen, for greater numbers necessitate an increased staff and larger buildings cost more to maintain. For the year ending 31 March 1914 the expenditure was as follows:

On the estates £837.17s.3d.
  the School £6939.7s.1d.
  Scholarships and exhibitions £817.3s.4d.
  Pension £400.0s.0d.
  Girls' School grant £250.0s.0d.

Some of the items with regard to the School expenses may be interesting:

Salaries - Headmaster £1394.18s.0d.
Salaries - Assistant masters £3475.0s.0d.
Salaries - Visiting teachers, etc. £343.2s.0d.
Examinations £67.4s.6d.
Prizes £36.6s.8d.
Care of buildings £155.15s.6d.
Repairs and painting £310.19s.5d.
Fuel and lighting £196.17s.0d.
Rates, taxes, insurance £339.5s.7d.
Grant for playground £30.0s.0d.
Grant for library £25.0s.0d.
Advertisements £42.5s.11d.
Ground maintenance £44.4s.0d.
*Games fund £141.2s.9d.
*Printing and stationery £148.1s.11d.
*Carpentry wood and chemicals £73.6s.0d.

N.B.—“Care of buildings” include caretaker's salary, charwomen, cleaning, etc.
Items marked * are mainly paid for by the special charges now included in the school fee.

IF THE EXPENDITURE has risen, the income also has greatly increased. In 1914 it stood as follows:

From Rents £3248.13s.0d.
  Investments £486.14s.2d.
  Fees £4219.6s.6d.
  Board of Education grant £1027.0s.0d.
  Poor's Estate (according to scheme of 1878) £542.3s.4d.
  Interest on Loan to Girls' School £210.0s.0d.
  Etc. £16.8s.8d.

As to the item “fees” a few words are necessary.

In 1902 the school fee was £10.10s., but in addition to this there were

(a) a “small charge for stationery”—3s. per term in 1905;

(b) an optional subscription of 3s.6d. per term for games;

(c) 3s.6d. per term for wood used by boys doing carpentry out of school hours;

(d) a fee—4s. per term in 1905—for chemicals used in the laboratory by boys in Forms iv, v and vi.

In 1905 the ordinary fee was raised to £13.10s. and the subscription to the games became compulsory. In 1909 the fee became £15, but included all the extra charges except that for wood.

In 1911 the fee for boys in the Junior School under 10 years of age was reduced to £14, and a reduction of a third of the tuition fee was made “in respect of the youngest of three brothers attending the School at the same time, and the same for additional members of the same family.”


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Postscript Assistant Masters since 1854

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