Powys Digital History Project

Education in Wales
Background briefing

  "Strange notions, has he?" said the old man. "Ah, there's too much of that sending to school in these days! It only does harm. Every gatepost and barn's door you come to is sure to have some bad word or other chalked upon it by the young rascals: a woman can hardly pass for shame sometimes. If they'd never been taught how to write they wouldn't have been able to scribble such villainy. Their fathers couldn't do it, and the country was all the better for it."
Thomas Hardy, The Return of the Native, Book 2, Chapter 1.

The following pages contain a fairly detailed textual account of the evolution of formal education in Wales.

The list below this menu briefly describes the main types of school referred to in the text. The sections of this website which describe the local history of the six Powys communities will include extracts from the records of some of these kinds of schools.

  Introduction 1870-1902
  1811-1847 1902-1970
  Types of Schools: 
  Board School: a school established by a School Board following the Education Act of 1870, usually in areas where there was inadequate provision by British or National schools. 
  British School: a school originally established by The British & Foreign Society to teach non-sectarian education (often by Nonconformist donations). 
  Church School: another name for National schools. 
  National School: a school originally established by the National Society to teach an Anglican education. 
  Non Provided School: term used by the 1902 Education Act to refer to Church schools (not funded by the rates) 
  Provided School: term used by the 1902 Education Act to refer to Board schools (funded by the rates). 
  There are 6 pages on the origins of education in Wales. Use the box links below to view the pages in sequence. 
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