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Scottish Education
Here we are providing some information on the history of Education in Scotland

While we are constrained by copyright regulations meantime to publish, as pdf files, two of the most comprehensive volumes ever written about the history of Scottish education up to 1969, we feel it important to alert scholars and interested readers to the availability of the following volumes in libraries, or for purchase,

Volume One: From the beginning to 1872
SEN 340 07157 5

Volume Two: From 1872 to the present day
SEN 340 09548 2

James Scotland, Principal of Aberdeen College of Education (1969)
University of London Press Ltd.
St Paul’s House, Warwick Lane, London, EC4

The value the above publications can be gauged initially not only from their extensive bibliographies, but also from this quotation from the first paragraph of the Preface, common to each of the two volumes.

“It is more than forty years since Alexander Morgan published his Rise and Progress of Scottish Education. John Kerr’s Scottish Education, School and University came out before the First World War. And these are the only two histories of education in this country which may be reasonably claimed to be complete. …… ….. There seems …. to be a place for a new comprehensive history, and this book attempts to fill it.”

Recommended Bibliography for the study of the History of Scottish Education

In December 2016 I looked at Education as a result of the International Pisa scores. The influential Pisa rankings, run by the OECD, are based on tests taken by 15-year-olds in more than 70 countries.

I was interested in the Pisa Scores and noted the press comments in Scotland on how we're seeing a decline in our rankings.  I was asked how Canada did and confess I didn't know but have since found out that...

Canada ranked 2nd for Reading, 7th for Science and 10th for Maths.
Australia Ranked 16th for Reading, 14th for Science and 24th for Maths
UK Ranked 22nd for Reading, 15th for Science and 27th for Maths
USA Ranked 24th for Reading, 25th for Science and 40th for Maths.
Singapore was overall in first place.

Scotland trails behind England and Northern Ireland - recording its worst results in these Pisa rankings.

The small Asian country Singapore focused relentlessly on education as a way of developing its economy and raising living standards.

And from being among the world's poorest, with a mix of ethnicities, religions and languages, Singapore has overtaken the wealthiest countries in Europe, North America and Asia to become the number one in education.

Prof Sing Kong Lee, vice-president of Nanyang Technological University, which houses Singapore's National Institute of Education, said a key factor had been the standard of teaching.

"Singapore invested heavily in a quality teaching force - to raise up the prestige and status of teaching and to attract the best graduates," said Prof Lee.

The country recruits its teachers from the top 5% of graduates in a system that is highly centralised.

All teachers are trained at the National Institute of Education, and Prof Lee said this single route ensured quality control and that all new teachers could "confidently go through to the classroom".

This had to be a consistent, long-term approach, sustained over decades, said Prof Lee.

There is an article this week about Scottish Education in the Scottish Review which you can read at:

Scotland's scores for maths, reading and science all declined in the latest set of Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa) figures

Bet your house on the teachers. The OECD's education guru Andreas Schleicher has a catchphrase: "No education system can be better than the quality of its teachers". And this week's TIMSS rankings have the same message - success is inseparably linked to the supply of good quality teachers. Whatever headline-grabbing wheezes might be deployed by education ministers, it all comes down to investing in teachers.

Long-term planning in a short-term world. It might take 10 years before changes in an education system make any positive difference in global rankings. That's not much of an incentive for the fleeting life-span of ministerial office. A recent reforming education minister in Argentina's capital Buenos Aires entered office as the third minister in 12 days. But the big message from global rankings is that what is needed is consistency and continuity.

It's not a knockout competition. Education league tables are based on the proportion of young people reaching some benchmark of ability. The winners will be those who assume that everyone should cross that finishing line, including the poorest - and that is a distinguishing feature of the top Asian systems. They put the best teachers with the weakest pupils to make sure everyone gets to a basic standard. In contrast, much of the western approach to education is more like the Grand National, with the expectation that very few of the horses starting the race will still be there at the finish. And the rankings reflect this fundamental difference.

I also noted a news item on the BBC called "Life Chances are set by the age of 3" which I believe was a 40 year study in New Zealand where they followed 3 year olds through their life.  They found that 3 year olds that had problems went on to be by far the highest percentage in prison, the highest number on social security and the highest number with health issues and so on.  They thus conclude that the early years of a child's life is by far the most important time.

Scottish Education - Schools and University
From early times to 1908 by John Kerr, M.A., LL.D. (1910)
History of the High School of Stirling
Eight centuries of Scottish Education by A. F. Hutchison, M.A. (1904)
The New High School of Stirling at Torbrex in 1962
Globe Readers
These are 5 books that were compiled by Professor Murison when he was Master of English at The Grammar School in Aberdeen. They were intended to teach the English language, spelling and grammar and also to educate the children on nature, history, geography and science.
Old pictures of Scottish Universities

Literary Landmarks of the Scottish Universities by Laurence Hutton (1904)
Edinburgh University (pdf)
Glasgow University (pdf)
Aberdeen University (pdf)
A History of the University of Aberdeen 1495 - 1895
By John Malcolm Bulloch, M.A. (1895) (pdf)
Studies in the History and Development of the University of Aberdeen
A Quarter centenary Tribute paid by certain of her Professors of her devoted sons edited by P. J. Anderson, M.A., LL.B. (1906) (pdf)
St Andrews University (pdf)
Brief History of Glasgow University (pdf)
Education of the Highlander
By Professor Blackie (1877)
An Introduction to Arithmetic
The One Hundred and First Edition by James Gray (pdf)
Biography of John Kerr HMI
By John Henderson (pdf)
Other Memories Old and New
By John Kerr
History of the Burgh and Parish Schools of Scotland
By James Grant M.A. (1876)
Memories Grave and Gay
Forty Years of School Inspection by John Kerr LL.D.
The Church and Education in the Highlands
By The Rev. Donald Masson
The Parochial Schools of Scotland
A two part article from Tait's Edinburgh Magazine (pdf)
The Educational Institute of Scotland
Its Origin, History, and Objects
Bulletin of the Scottish Centre for Social Subjects
December 1973 (pdf)
America at College
As seen by a Scots Graduate by Robert K. Risk, M.A. (1908) (pdf)
A History of Secondary Education in Scotland
An Account of Scottish Secondary Education from early times to the Education Act of 1908 by John Strong, M.A., F.R.S.E. (1909) (pdf)
A History of the Training of Teachers in Scotland
By Marjorie Cruikshank (pdf)
History of Early Scottish Education
By John Edgar (1893) (pdf)
The Work of Scottish Rhetorician George Jardine
A Foreshadowing of Modern Theories and Practices of Collaborative Learning: The Work of Scottish Rhetorician George Jardine by Lynee Lewis Gaillet.(1992) (pdf)
A Role for Parents, Students, and Teachers in School
Self-Evaluation and Development Planning by John MacBeath (1992) (pdf)
A Case Study of a new Scottish Open Plan School
By David Hamilton (pdf)
David Stow
Founder of the Training System of Education
Seed Time and Harvest of Ragged Schools
By Thomas Guthrie, D. D. (1860) (pdf)
The Ragged School Union Magazine
Volume 1 (1849) (pdf)
Sheriff Watson of Aberdeen
The Founder of Industrial Schools
History of Early Scottish Education
By John Edgar (1893) (pdf)
The Rural School
Its Methods and Management by Horace M. Culter and Julia M. Stone. A story about American Rural Schools. (pdf)
The Teaching of History in Scottish Schools since 1945
A Progress Report (pdf)
Recreational Reading and the Reluctant Reader
The primary aim of this project was to stimulate interest in reading for pleasure (pdf)
Maths and Arithmetic for Kids
Links to learning resources
Scottish Education
An extract from the book "Tour through Scotland" in Caledonian Sketches.
Children’s right to play
An examination of the importance of play in the lives of children worldwide By Stuart Lester and Wendy Russell (2010) (pdf)
The Intelligence of Scottish Children
A National Survey of an Age-Group (1933) (pdf)
The North British Review
November - February 1866-6. Scottish Education. This is an interesting selection of articles but some pages are not readable nevertheless is worth a read. (pdf)
Bullying in Scottish Secondary Schools
By Andrew Mellor (1990) (pdf)
The Education of the Wage-Earners
A Contribution toward the Solution of the Educational Problem of Democracy by Thomas Davidson (1904) (pdf)
Diary of a Western Schoolmaster
By J K Stableton (1900) (pdf)
Teacher Preparation in Scotland, 1872 - 1920
By Moira Hulme (pdf)
Your Problems and Mine in the Guidance of Youth
A Case book for Teachers and Parents by J. K. Stableton, Doctor of Pedagogy, Author of "Diary of a Western Schoolmaster". (1922)
Plan of Education
In the Marischal College and University of Aberdeen with the reasons of it drawn up by order of the faculty (1755) (pdf)
The History of the Twenty Seven Gods of Linlithgow
Being an exact and true account of a famous plea betwixt the Town Council of the said Burgh, and Mr. Kirkwood, Schoolmaster there (1711) (pdf)
An Old Educational Reformer Dr. Andrew Bell
By John Miller D. Meiklejohn, M.A., Professor of the Theory, History, and pratice of Education in the University of St. Andrews (1881) (pdf)
Royal Commission on Physical Training (Scotland)
Report of the Royal Commission on Physical Training (Scotland) Volume 1. Report and Appendix and Volume II. Minutes and Index (1903) (pdf)
Report of the Committee of Council on Education in Scotland
With appendix 1902-1903. Presented to both Houses of Parliament by Command of his Majesty (1903) (pdf)


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