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History of Education Seminar Programme 2018/2019

The ‘History of Education Seminar’ at IHR (Institute of Historical Research) is convened by Georgina Brewis and Gary McCulloch. The seminar attracts speakers from around the world, providing a forum for established historians as well as early-career researchers to present their work. For further information please contact Gary McCulloch or Georgina Brewis at ioe.ichre@ucl.ac.uk

All welcome, no registration required. Unless otherwise stated these seminars are held in the Institute of Historical Research (IHR), Senate House.

Thursday 7 February 2019, 5.30pm, Room W3.07, UCL Institute of Education (Please note the room change because of the ongoing boycott of Senate House)

Dr Lottie Hoare (University of Cambridge)

John Scupham: The written word, the broadcast word and the recorded

John Scupham (1904-1990) is usually best known to historians of  education as Controller of Educational Broadcasting at the BBC and as a  contributor to the Newsom Report of 1963. This talk explores his wider  interest in education from the 1940s to the 1970s. It investigates his concerns over how education was represented in the postwar years by the BBC in programmes aimed at an adult audience. It does not address schools broadcasting but instead it explores the overlap and contradictions between Scupham’s letters and memos held in archives;  oral history transcripts of interviews with John Scupham and the perspective expressed in interviews by his son, the poet, Peter Scupham.

Thursday 7 March 2019, Room 784, UCL Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, 5.30pm

Dr Deborah Sabric (University of Roehampton)

The Very Recent History of English Free Schools:  Discourse and the Coalition Government’s Education Policy

Free schools, launched in 2011 as part of the rapid expansion of academies, were key components of the Coalition Government’s broader Big Society reform agenda. Noting the decline in educational outcomes on global league tables and the poor state of English education generally, Michael Gove (2010) argued stridently for free schools as an e ducation innovation that could address the pressing issues faced in English schools. This seminar paper will consider the discourses surrounding the development of free school policy, the impact of transnationalist impulses in the discourse and the challenges for historians in researching very recent education history.

Thursday 23 May 2019, Institute of Historical Research,  Peter Marshall Room (N204), 5.30pm

Maria Patricia Williams (UCL Institute of Education)

‘A Pedagogy of Peace’: The contribution of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini to Progressive Education 1880-1917

An Italian schoolteacher, Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850-1917) founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (MSC) in 1880. She took sisters to the United States to serve Italian migrants in 1889 and went on to establish 70 institutions in nine countries. Her progressive Catholic alternative to modernity’s secular provision has been described as a ‘Pedagogy of Peace’. Jane Martin and Joyce Goodman identified child-centred pedagogy and social reconstructionism as key features evident in the historiography of progressive education. Case studies of MSC practice in Rome, New Orleans and London also identified these features. Additional progressive features of MSC education were an independent, female, professionally qualified teaching force and openness to new educational opportunities. Cabrini did not leave an educational treatise but a lived tradition of practice. This will be considered using sources including letters, school documents and testimonies of teachers, pupils and officers of secular authorities.

Thursday 20 June 2019, Institute of Historical Research,  Peter Marshall Room (N204), 5.30pm

Laura Carter (University of Cambridge)

Gender and secondary education in Britain since 1945

Drawing on quantitative and qualitative research from an ESRC project based in the Faculty of History, University of Cambridge, the first part of this paper maps the changing patterns of single-sex and co-education in British secondary schools over the past 70 years. The second part focuses on girls’ experiences of secondary modern schools in the 1950s and 1960s using newly-constructed life histories from the 1946 British birth cohort study, in order to understand how this much-marginalised but entirely mainstream group of women understood their educational trajectories across the life-course. The paper concludes with some observations on the relationship between structural and policy change, and everyday experiences of and attitudes to secondary education in relation to gender

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