Board of Education and successors: Medical Branch and successors: Special Services, Registered Files (M Series)
Files of the Medical Branch and its successor, the Special Service Branch concerned with the consideration and formation of policy under the Elementary Education (Blind and Deaf Children) Act, 1893; the Elementary Education (Defective and Epileptic Children) Act 1899 and subsequent Education Acts for the provision and administration of special educational facilities for physically and mentally handicapped children.
There are a few papers of an earlier date (1872-1893) urging the compulsory education of blind children and deaf children and reports by HM Inspectorate on arrangements made in the metropolis for the education of the blind and the training of teachers of the blind.
This group of files also embraces "general" matter of the School Medical Service which stemmed from the provisions of the Education (Administrative Provisions) Act 1907 and the Local Education Authorities (Medical Treatment) Act 1909; and the policy, procedure and organisation of the School Meals Service following the Education (Provision of Meals) Act 1906.
The papers record evacuation arrangements in respect of the Second World War, and provision for the conduct of the school health service (including special educational treatment), and of the school meals service, during wartime.
Records dating from 1946 include, inter alia, the school health, school meals, and special educational treatment general policy decisions arising out of the 1944 Education Act, and its subsequent modification under the Education (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1953; also changes in arrangements in consequence of the National Health Service Act 1946 and the School Health Service and Handicapped Pupils Regulations 1953. The post-war problems of shortages and rationing in a period of rapid social development figure prominently in the papers.
Both M (Medical) and SS (Special Services) files are represented in this series. The latter series was raised in the late 1960s and both ran concurrently. After 1974, when the medical function was transferred to the Ministry of Health, only SS files were raised.
Files appearing under the subject heading "General" within each of the major groupings were formed from a composite collection of various subjects. Additional papers on a particular code subject may therefore be found among the files listed under code numbers 1, 11 and 17.
A few files contain indexes.
Files dated 1945 and earlier are arranged in chronological order under subject headings, falling under the major groupings of (1) School Health Service, (2) School Meals Service and (3) Special Educational Treatment.
Records dating from 1946 are listed in file number order as far as practical, instead of grouped, as in the earlier coded system.
Board of Education, Medical Branch, 1923-1944
Board of Education, Medical Department, 1907-1923
Department of Education and Science, Medical Branch, 1970-1972
Department of Education and Science, Schools Branch 2, 1973-1992
Department of Education and Science, Special Education Branch, 1970-1972
Ministry of Education, Medical Branch, 1944-1948
Ministry of Education, Special Services Branch, 1948-1964
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